Thursday, April 5, 2012

Baseball Fan Etiquette: What is ok for Opening Day?

There is nothing quite like Opening Day. Enjoy it.
We all know "that guy."

Yes, we have all paid for our ticket to watch a baseball game with thousands of other fans, only to find out that there are a few special people in the crowd who think that everyone came to see them. So they decide it's time to put on a show.

With Opening Day nearing, it seems like a good time to go over some of the "do's" and "don'ts" of attending a baseball game.

Do- If you are planning on attending a game with a friend who is traveling separately from you and arriving later, please inform them of the section that the tickets are in. Also, please let them know that the sections are in numerical order, with the first level representing which level the seat happens to be in. Look for the signs that can't be missed.

Don't- Don't be the cell phone guy. Don't be the guy who answers his cell phone, finds out that his late-arriving friend has made it to the ballpark, but simply cannot figure out where the seats are. This guy, instead of instructing the late-arriving fan to look at the ticket and follow the signs to that section, the cell phone answerer feels the need to stand up and wave, all the while saying into the cell phone something along the lines of "do you see me? I'm the guy wearing the Rockies jersey and Rockies hat? You don't? I'm standing up and waving. I have a Coors Light in my hand." No one likes that guy. No one.

Do- Get to the game early. Opening Day is a celebration. Many of the players have worked their whole lives to get to this level, and being introduced on Opening Day is a huge moment. As a fan, it is a responsibility to recognize this moment for player's on the team. Also, the will call lines are long, they take time. The player introductions and the flyover are a big reason why the tickets are priced higher. Make sure you get your money's worth.

Don't- Don't leave early. LoDo is appealing to almost everyone. After a day in the sun watching baseball, many fans are eager to go to the bars and hang out. However, remember the guy sitting in his office listening to the game on the radio who wasn't fortunate enough to get a ticket. He would love to be watching the Rockies hit in the 8th inning. Respect the fact that you got a chance to be a part of it. Stay for the whole thing.

Do- Be prepared at the concession stand. The last thing people need when the lines are already an inning long is a guy who is digging in his back pocket for his wallet. You knew you were going to have to pay when you got into the line. Be ready.

Don't- Don't be the guy who has already gotten up to go to the beer stand 10 times, yet still has to yell back to his buddies at their seats to find out who wants one and who doesn't. This guy always has a knack for being right in the way of everyone who is actually trying to enjoy the game right when he stands up. He also generally has a knack for getting up right at the most inopportune times. Just wait until the middle of the inning. The beer will still be there.

Do- Wear Rockies gear. Your friends might make fun of you, but secretly, they will be jealous that you have the confidence to do it. It's Opening Day. It isn't going to hurt to wear a Rockies hat and shirt and act like a real fan.

Don't- Wear the gear of a team that isn't playing- We've all seen that guy. The guy who is wearing his Alfonso Soriano Cubs jersey when the Rockies are playing the Giants. Are you lost? We know you are a Cubs fan. Remember, you were the annoying guy last year cheering for the Cubs even though you had no idea who their shortstop or starting pitcher was., yet felt the need to talk trash to the fans who are actually supporting their team. No one likes you. Leave that stuff at home.

Do- Take the kids out of school. This should be a holiday anyway. They get Christmas off every year. Baseball is a history lesson anyway. There is nothing they will miss out on by leaving school one day at 11 AM. It's worth it. They will love it.

Don't- Don't be the guy who makes the adult regret pulling his kids out of school. No one is going to think that you are more cool because you can manage to squeeze 17 F-bombs into each sentence. This is the real world, we all understand that. But if there are kids around, try to keep it somewhat clean.

Do- Have fun. There is no experience quite as amazing as Opening Day. You are very fortunate to live close enough to a place where Major League Baseball is played. Take it in. Enjoy the day.

Don't- Don't do the wave. There will be plenty of opportunities to do the wave when Peyton Manning is throwing touchdown passes. Keep the wave where it belongs, at Sports Authority Field. And if you do decide to participate, please don't be the guy letting everyone know that it is coming around and that it is almost here. We all know. We can see, and some of us are annoyed.

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  1. David,
    One other thing...don't pay $30+ for the outrageous parking prices on a biz day in LoDo. Take the light rail or bus, bike to Coors Field (there is a bike cage near the left field entrance), etc.
    Also, while I agree with you totally on the despicable wave, I've given up telling peeps not to do this...they get irritated when you shout them down, and I guess they pay the same $ ticket price.
    One final thing....BOO DINGER, the worst mascot in baseball.,,

  2. Kevin-
    Thanks for the comment. I agree. Not only is the parking extremely expensive on Opening Day, it is also ridiculous trying to get around downtown. Take the light rail, but make sure you park at one of the less-frequented stations, most close to downtown are jammed. Even if you are coming from the North, its almost worth it to drive down to Arapahoe or Dry Creek.
    And...I used to hate Dinger...until my one year old fell in love with him. Now I can't hate him.