Located along the Embarcadero, next to San Francisco Bay, AT&T Park is typically considered one of the best in the league, beloved by fans and players alike, despite the occasional blast of moist, cool air that wafts into the stands and playing field. This stadium started construction on December 11th, 1997, opening about two and a half years later on April 11th, 2000. The cost of this facility was $357 million, and was the first MLB ballpark to be built entirely through private funding since Dodger Stadium, which opened in 1962. AT&T Park replaced Candlestick Park as the Giants home field.
A statue of Willie Mays, complete with 24 palm trees that surround, representing his jersey number, greets fans at the entrance. Other hall-of-fame statues dedicated by the park include Willie McCovey, Juan Marichal and Orlando Cepeda.
This stadium has one of the most spectacular vistas in Major League Baseball due to its location on the bay. Most fans are welcomed by a view that includes the Bay Bridge and McCovey Cove, which is dotted with canoes and boats during games, many of which hope to capture a baseball when a dinger is smashed out of the park and into the water.
San Francisco Giants Stadium
Before their incredible 2014 World Series winning season, the Giants performed well at home during the regular season, finishing with a 45-36 record, entering the playoffs as a wild card. As is the pattern of late, the San Francisco Giants don’t play as well in odd-numbered years, although an excellent 2015 home record has made up somewhat for their terrible road record. Giants fans are among the most loyal in the league, resulting in an average attendance that has been in the top five since 2010.
The 2015 MLB park factor stats shows that AT&T Park lies in the bottom five of the rankings in terms of runs produced. This stadium saw the least amount of home runs by a wide margin, as well as a below average rate of doubles. However, this ballpark ranks in the top three for triples production while generating an average number of walks.
The most noticeable feature of AT&T Park is the giant wire-frame Coca-Cola bottle that points towards an old-time baseball glove. Originally, a gigantic mechanical baseball player named Rusty, standing 14 feet tall and weighing more than five tons, lorded over the field, although it was removed due to multiple technical difficulties that constantly occurred. The right field wall is 24 feet tall – another nod towards the great Willie Mays.
Date Opened: April 11, 2000
Construction Cost: $357 million
Ballpark Type: Retro Classic
Capacity Attendance: 41,915
Playing Surface: Tifway 419 Bermuda Grass
Previous San Francisco Giants Stadiums
Polo Grounds I; Oakland Park; St. George Cricket Grounds; Polo Grounds II; Polo Grounds III; Hilltop Park; Seals Stadium; Candlestick Park
Other Major Events
AT&T Field has hosted several significant college football events and teams, including the Fight Hunger Bowl and the California Golden Bears.
Several international soccer matches have taken place at AT&T Park. One of the most recent was the 2011 World Football Challenge that saw Manchester City play against the Club America team. In 2006, the U.S. Men’s soccer team play against Japan, scoring a 3-2 win.
The 10th season of the smash-hit television program, American Idol, held their northern California auditions at this venue.