Dodger Stadium Fans and Food

Day 112

 

Fans

There are a lot of things to do in Los Angeles. Beaches, Hollywood hills, star watching and then maybe catch a Dodger game. Like I said in my last post, the joke on Dodger fans has always been they come in the third and leave in the seventh. I’m sure the hard core fans don’t appreciate that generalization but it doesn’t just make itself up! The two games I caught at Dodger stadium probably had every kind of fan available- hard core and not so much all at the same time.

The first things you notice driving into Chavez Ravine are the large number of Dodgers paraphernalia on the people and cars coming in. Getting out of their cars, seemingly everyone has some form of jersey, shirt or Dodger cap. White and blue are the overwhelming colors and there is no shortage. You wouldn’t doubt the fans coming in are set up for a game.

Fans like Emma from Crazyblue are some of the fans I had the chance to speak
emma.pngwith. I wish my computer had been working properly while I was in L.A. because I would have liked to talk with Emma and get her view of Dodgerdom. She’s obviously in the classy Dodger category and a great representative of the team and organization.

Fans I’d like to forget are some of the fans I had the displeasure of seeing in the left field pavilions. I know that when I put on the Rockies jersey and cap I am a walking target for all kinds of comments and gestures. I am a grown man and I have thick enough skin to take a whole lot. What I did not like is when a female or child who happens to be wearing Rockies gear is getting unnecessary comments. That to me is uncalled for and not part of the game.

There were some fans sitting directly behind me who represented the idea of “fun” jeering while not crossing any lines. They were Dodger fans and let it be known, but we could go back and forth joking with nothing kids couldn’t hear or you’d be ashamed to say in front of your mother. Dodger stadium pounds the number in your head to call if your time at the ballpark is being hindered.  After the pitching staff fell apart Saturday and the Dodgers were on a roll, I leaned back and jokingly said, “All this cheering back here is hindering my experience.” Everybody laughed and back and forth it went. Yes, it did not bother me when the Dodgers would make a good play and I’d get a tap on the back telling me that is the kind of player the Rockies need.

That to me is fine and I have no problem with. Watching the LAPD take out numerous people from fighting, I realized there is a good deal of fans in that section who really didn’t respect the game. Honestly, I have never seen so much police presence in one area of a ballpark outside of a playoff game where security is heightened anyway. After talking with a homegrown Dodger fan about the police hauling people out, he commented that I should have been there opening day when they had a 14 person police brawl. That is definitely hindering someone’s experience! I really shouldn’t have to worry about not accompanying a female to the bathroom at a baseball game for what might be said or done.

Sunday, sitting in a completely different section, I met some really great baseball fans who made up for the drunk idiots and comments from the day before.  As the sun got hotter and the day grew longer, fans all over the park were looking to stay cool. The Dodgers were selling blue fans with water you could spray to stay cool. The older couple sitting next to me were spraying each other and letting the fan cool them down. The gentleman put the fan on me and sprayed and I said, “If you’re trying to be my best friend you’re doing a great job,” and smiled. He said,”I don’t care what jersey you’re wearing. It’s a game.”

That was about the best thing a fan could say to me at that point. I knew not to judge all fans the same and now I had a very positive experience to leave with. We would talk off and on the rest of the game and I explained to him my journey. I could count on a fan and a spray the rest of the game and a nice comment on having a safe drive home.

The fans in general are loud and proud of their Dodgers. Russel and Ramirez can get some great cheering. Manny, most of the times he is up at the plate, is serenaded to chants of “Manny, Manny” and they don’t quiet down a bit when he takes one out of the park. What cracked me up is they don’t think he is perfect either. They know he can’t run and for the most part is a mediocre outfielder. After dropping a ball for no obvious reason, and then not being fast enough to track down a catchable ball, the fans let him know.


mannydod.JPGThe guys behind me cracked me up when they’d yell, “Use your cap Mannnny, use your cap. Stretch it out, you might catch it papi.” They’d follow it up, “That’s okay he better make it up at the plate.” For as much abuse he could take, he also got a lot of love.

Dodger fans are excited about their team and even though there may be the ones who come in the third and leave in the seventh, there is a loyal base who live and die with the team. I’d like to see the day when all fans come with respect and class to the ballpark, but by no means do I think this is a Dodger only phenomenon. There are a lot of great fans in the stadium, but don’t be suprised to run into some idiots because you are wearing the wrong jersey.

As for personnel working at the stadium, majority if not all, were very friendly and helpful. I even laughed when lot attendants would go back and forth with me challenging me on being a Rockies fan. All in good fun, I told the last attendant I’d be happy to see him in Denver over the weekend as it’s only an 18 hour drive. He laughed and said he’d be there. I’ll be looking..

The strangest Dodger fan I encountered was in the bathroom. He made it known that three Rockies fans he had talked to did not know who Garrett Atkins had played for. Waiting to stump me and giving me a know it all look, I just laughed and said, “UCLA first base from ’98 to ’00.. Anything else?” The look on his face was priceless as he studdered and said, “yeah, yeah that’s cool you know that.” Seriously dude, Rocky Mountain Way here, if you don’t know you better ask somebody. 

Food

I honestly couldn’t wait to try a Dodger dog. For years I had heard great things about them and I wondered if it would live up to the expectation. Stepping up to the booth, I looked and spotted the Farmer John Dodger dog for $5. They had the all beef Super Dodger dog for $5.75, but for this first time I wanted to start with the everyday variety.

Unlike the D’Back dog, my first impression holding it in my hand was it was warm and felt substantial. This was a good sign. I couldn’t wait to get to my seat and open this puppy up to see what it was all about.


DSCN0080.JPGLike a Christmas present, I opened the silver wrapper and set my eyes upon the legendary dog. It was bigger than I thought it would be. All signs were go. The first bite…

Ah, this is good. This is really good. Halfway through the dog I was satisfied this legend lived up to the stories.

No complaints, hands down one of the best dogs I have ever had at the ballpark. For $5, I would buy it again and recommend it easily.

I looked where I could on the level I was on for other food. Really, I didn’t think anything would take the Dodger dog in taste, so I looked for a unique opportunity. There was Carl’s Jr. and Panda Express and I could get those anywhere. I wanted something unique so I was drawn back to the Dodger dog yet again. They had the $5.75 Super all beef and I wondered how big the difference would be.

 


DSCN0094.JPGNot much.

I guess some people might like the idea of eating all beef in their hot dog, but I really didn’t notice so much of a difference to rank the Super any better. I’m glad I tried it and it was just as good as the regular, but I would see no need to buy it again. I’ll save my .75 cents and enjoy the regular.

If you have not tried a Dodger Dog, I recommend it easily. Whoever Farmer John is, he makes one heck of a dog. For $5 it’s on par for cost of any ballpark food and a great filling treat.

Photo credit- Manny Ramirez, Dodger dog(s) – Tom Walsh

 

14 comments

  1. raysrenegade

    Yessssssssssssss
    I am glad I got a great review on a Dodger Dog. I knew if anyone could get to the bottom of the “dog” controversy it would be you Tommy.
    That is the great thing about visiting other stadiums for every jerk you meet, you meet five great people. I remember going to The Jake in 2006 and meeting the parents and sister of someone in the Rays front office I knew.
    And I gave them a “Maddon’s Maniac” extra shirt I had in my bag.
    Awesome you got some SoCal revenge on the Garrett Atkins dis. Some people do not know who they are playing with some times………Great representation of the Rockies……I hope they read this and give you something grand.

    Rays Renegade

    http://raysrenegade.mlblogs.com

  2. rockymountainway

    Rays- If you make it out to L.A. anytime, the Dodger dog is no let down. Glad I could help you out on the info! The look on the guys face was payment enough. I think he really wanted to go home feeling like he knew more than all Rockies fans. Oh, well now he knows!
    -Tom

  3. juliasrants

    Tom – I’m glad you had a good time and “survived” Dodgers’ Stadium. The police presence is interesting. I spent many of games in the bleachers at Fenway watching the Red Sox and the Yankees (back in the day when you could buy tickets the day of the game!) and I don’t remember it ever being that bad! 14 person brawl! Oh my! Glad you met so many nice people and glad that you caught up with Emma! I knew she was looking for you! And why is it lately when I read blogs I get hungry! lol! Enjoy the next stop!

    Julia
    http://werbiefitz.mlblogs.com/

  4. Elizabeth D

    Tom,
    I don’t know if I’ll ever be able to go to a Dodgers game any time soon… all the “Manny” chants. It’s just too soon. Sounds like there are a lot of crazy fans. I was at a Dodgers vs Giants game and there was lots of verbal abuse and what not.
    Elizabeth
    http://redsoxgirl46.mlblogs.com

  5. rockymountainway

    Julia- I get hungry writing them too!
    Elizabeth- too soon eh? Didn’t think I’d hear that coming from a BoSox fan anytime soon!
    -Tom

  6. rockymountainway

    Jeff- Don’t let the photo fool ya. The whole thing was good and the bun was super fresh. Truly no complaints.
    -Tom

  7. mattpeas

    Dodger stadium is unlike any ballpark I have ever been to. The passion of the amazing but they take it way too far. I had beer accidently spilled on me during a verbal argument between two fans behind me. I also thinkthe dodger dog is overrated. Sorry to disagree. I can eat a decent over priced hot dog at any ballpark. My dog in la was too slimey for myliking

    http://pittpeas.mlblogs.com

  8. Jane Heller

    I’ve only been to Dodger Stadium once, but I thought it was a beautiful ballpark with the mountains in the background. I was wearing my Yankees garb, so I had plenty of people hassling me, but thank goodness I didn’t see any fights. Sounds like you’re getting a great taste (literally) of what different teams have to offer, Tom. What an adventure.

    http://janeheller.mlblogs.com

  9. AJRoxMyWhiteSox

    Calling out a child for their team gear is never acceptable. That’s totally not classy. As a woman, I don’t care if I get rude comments or whatever. I can take it. Some can, some can’t. It’s better to be safe than sorry. 🙂 I’m glad you got to meet some positive fans rather than all negative. Those Dodger dogs look fantastic. I should try and catch a game there after I get a car. Not just for the hot dog, of course. That’s just an added bonus. I don’t get the need for a Panda Express and a Carl’s Jr. You can totally get that outside the ballpark. And it’s cheaper outside the park too, I’m sure. 🙂
    Jen
    http://ajroxmywhitesox.mlblogs.com

  10. crzblue2

    Tom,
    So sorry I missed you! I was trying with Julia to see if she could help me get a hold of you. I wanted to buy you Dodger dogs and seats in my area. Oh well, I hope there will be a next time.
    .
    Thank you for mentioning me here! Ok, now, there is plenty of free parking outside the stadium. I never pay the $15 unless I am running late on a sellout game. If you are coming off Sunset(aka Cesar Chavez) and turn on Elysian Way, you can park on Elysian for free on Saturday and Sunday. During the week, instead of going inside the stadium, turn to your left or right on the street that hit the stadium which is Stadium Way. Free parking all along both sides of the street. If you exit Stadium Way, follow it to the stadium and just before you enter, turn left. that street next to that parking lot is called Academy road. The police academy is a block from there and parking is available on both sides of the street. The exit on the other side to the 110 freeway also has free parking outside the stadium. You just need to get there early, but if is no
    t a sellout you still can find parking.
    .
    Roaming around the stadium. Get there early for BP and if you have a ticket for Reserved or Top Deck they will let you in thru the field level so that you can watch BP! Then you can go get in line and you can go on the field area that they call “the corral” you are looking into the Dodger dugout there. Once you get an autograph then you have to move and let others get in there. My season tickets are in the Top Deck and I get there early to watch BP. Wish we could have hooked up on Sunday and I would have taken you to the club level so that you could see the Vin Scully pressbox from the outside of course and given you a view from the Top Deck. The mountains look so beautiful from there and if you turn around you can see downtown to one side and the Hollywood sign to the other.
    .
    Dodger Stadium has gone to some renovations in the last few years and there is more to come. All the seats were replaced not too long ago and sold to fans. Unfortunately I did not buy any.
    .
    Take care Tom
    Emma
    p.s. Glad that you were there for photo day so that you could be on the field and take that great picture. We could have bumped into each other there. Did you see the pictures I took?
    .
    Also Tom, if you ever have problems with your computer, don’t forget you can use the libraries computers. The closest library to Dodger Stadium is in Chinatown but there is the awesome library in downtown about 5 minutes from there. Lots and lots of computers there to be used. It does not matter if you are from out of state, you can get a library card in less than 5 minutes. Sorry for the long post.

  11. crzblue2

    Oh and Tom, did you have to mention In-N-Out? Ay! I am hungry and I started Weight Watchers today. I love In-N-Out! and I am with you, I prefer a regular Dodger dog than the all beef. I like my long grilled Dodger dog. Yum!! I better get something to drink to satisfy my hunger.
    Emma

  12. Kylie

    I love Dodger Stadium. I was fortunate to catch two Rockies games there last summer–one evening, one afternoon. The evening game was great. Sat in the right field all-you-can-eat pavilion (the only thing I ate was peanuts and Dasani, because I don’t do hot dogs or nachos), and the fans there were great. Unfortunately, the day game was somewhat disastrous. The entire row behind me was cursing throughout the first few innings, and I was going to call that wonderful hotline until they got up and left. There were kids in our section! I got booed when I got up to go to the bathroom. It was not a very good experience, but the stadium is beautiful and I love Los Angeles in general.
    Kylie — http://kylie.mlblogs.com

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