Park # 173
What I Remember
Toronto’s SkyDome is no longer considered the engineering marvel it was when it opened in 1989. There are new domes and new retractable roofs and stunning new downtown ballparks in many cities across the baseball landscape. But I could make a case that there is still nothing quite like SkyDome, now Rogers Centre, and there certainly was not when we visited in 1991. The only three other domed stadiums at the time were truly from another era – basically football stadiums with a roof over the top, while SkyDome felt a bit more like a huge shopping mall that happened to have a baseball field in its midst.
We were captivated by the dome itself, which we saw three times in all – once for the All Star Game, once for this game and finally for a game in the American League Championship Series. We were also fascinated by the prospect of elicit mysteries in the in-stadium hotel beyond the outfield fence. The Blue Jays penchant for having their fans do calisthenics to the beat of their own fight song at the 7th inning stretch was a little goofy and a lot quirky but we liked that. Mostly, though, we liked how the city of Toronto had come alive at the prospect of winning its third division title in its 14-year history.
I’ve been to Toronto several times, both before and after our 1991 visits and that is good because we didn’t see much of the city on this trip. During the All Star game Major League Baseball had put us up at the lovely Royal York Hotel but this time around, on our own dime, we stayed at an inexpensive motor lodge a few miles outside of the city and took a train into the game.
California Angels 2 Toronto Blue Jays 1
A Note about this Site
This site is intended to be a companion to the upcoming book In League with America. Although some games were particularly notable and will appear in the book, most of the results of the 199 games we saw over the course of the 1991 season will not. Our journey was never really intended to be about the games themselves, it was about the places we saw and the people we met along the way.
However, there is now an historic nature to the results from this season. All of the players we saw then, even in the minors, have long since retired. Some of the players we saw at Class A are now members of the Baseball Hall of Fame. These pages, then, will function as kind of a digital appendix with a brief recollection of each day, the result of the game(s) we saw that day and a map of our daily drive.