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The Baseball Road Trip of a lifetime

Apr 21, 2010, 12:14 PM EDT

CAC Road Trip.jpgThere’s someone who does the whole visit-all-30-parks-road trip every year, but (a) I never get tired of hearing about it; (b) I never stop being jealous; and (c) I always root for the guy(s) to finish, whether or not they’ve given themselves a time limit.

The latest is Navin Vaswani, a journalist/blogger who is chronicling his trip in The Globe And Mail. So far he’s made it to Toronto, Detroit, Cleveland, Pittsburgh, and both New York
parks. He hits Fenway tomorrow and then points south and west.  I’ll be following his progress, and you should too because these kinds of things are fun.

Whenever I see this I like to drag out my proposal from a couple of years ago: a road trip show akin to Anthony Bourdain’s “No Reservations” but for baseball.

The premise: a half hour travel show in the host hits up a Major League city for a weekend in an effort to convey the
history, flavor, and general milieu of a given team, its park, its fans,
and its city. He meets up with a couple of knowledgeable locals, goes to a couple of games, hits a couple of loyalist bars, stores or a museum or two and gives viewers a
taste of what it means to be, say, a Brewers fan. Or a Dodgers fan. Or whatever.

I figure you have at least 40 ready-made shows there once you do all the Major League teams, a trip to Cooperstown, the All-Star Game, some select minor league parks, and some side trips to Mexico, the Dominican Republic and Japan and stuff.

If only I knew someone at a network who could get this sort of thing off the ground . . .

  1. IdahoMariner - Apr 21, 2010 at 12:20 PM

    YES PLEASE!!!! Awesome idea, Craig. You sir, are brilliant.

  2. Ron - Apr 21, 2010 at 12:22 PM

    You need an entourage. Where can we apply?

  3. Jason @ IIATMS - Apr 21, 2010 at 12:23 PM

    SHOTGUN!

  4. enough already - Apr 21, 2010 at 12:46 PM

    Food network also did a special about ballpark eats. It would be great to do something about baseball tailgating. Oh, I forgot, there’s no tailgating in baseball.

  5. Jeff Gingerich - Apr 21, 2010 at 12:49 PM

    Fabulous idea…I’d be happy to help when you get to Toronto.

  6. t ball - Apr 21, 2010 at 12:58 PM

    Be sure to include a blogger interview in his mom’s basement.

  7. MikeZ - Apr 21, 2010 at 12:59 PM

    Someday…Damn retirement is a long way off.

  8. okobojicat - Apr 21, 2010 at 1:00 PM

    Last spring I was unemployed right after the season began, and I did all the calculations for a 30 stadiums, and then I did the calculations for a 30 AAA stadium tour.
    As I was broke at the time, I limited it to hotels once a week, crash on friend’s couches or camping most nights. And lots and lots of ham and cheese sandwiches.
    It was still damn expensive for 1 or 2 people. But with 3, its easily manageable, especially because you can end up driving right through the night for a lot of those long drive and not have to sleep anywhere besides the car.
    The best scenario I could think of would be a large van or a smaller camper-van and have 4 buddies. Cost effective and the most fun because really, 45 straight days* with the same person gets old.
    *You can’t really do 30 stadiums/30 days because the schedules just don’t line up. You will always have to make two trips to LA/Chicago/NYC/NorCal because they purposefully schedule those teams to not be home at the same time. SO that creates a lot of Chicago/LA/SEA three game swings. Which is not cost effective in terms of gas…

  9. Kathy - Apr 21, 2010 at 1:22 PM

    This is what I would do if I ever won the lottery. But maybe we could all live vicariously through a show the MLB Network can produce along the lines of Craig’s idea. What a fantastic trip that would be, and it could air in the offseason, so us baseball fanatics would have something to fall back on during a long, cold winter after the boys of summer have gone……

  10. Levi Stahl - Apr 21, 2010 at 1:27 PM

    A friend and I did a trip of 11 games in 11 cities in 10 days back in 2004, and it was fantastic. I thought we might get bored by the end watching that much baseball, but we never did. And on top of that, the team we were rooting for won the first ten games of the trip!

  11. Kathy - Apr 21, 2010 at 1:29 PM

    This is what I would do if I ever won the lottery. In the meantime maybe MLB Network could produce a show along the lines of Craig’s idea, so we can live vicariously through someone else’s trip. And then they could air during the offseason so that us baseball fanatics would have something to get us through the long, cold winter, after the boys of summer have gone……

  12. Andrew - Apr 21, 2010 at 4:03 PM

    As fun as this would be, would you not miss watching your home team?

  13. Navin Vaswani - Apr 21, 2010 at 5:36 PM

    Thanks for the link!

  14. SouthofHeaven - Apr 21, 2010 at 5:44 PM

    This’ll be me in 2-3 years. Starting at Fenway, ending at Yankee Stadium. I’ve got it all mapped out

  15. bisonaudit - Apr 21, 2010 at 6:18 PM

    Michelle Beadle hosted Cathedrals of the Game several years back for one of the upstart HD channels. MLB Network has the rights.
    cised Belgian

  16. Jay Garfinkel - Apr 21, 2010 at 6:40 PM

    My wife and I did the 30 stadium baseball tour in 2008 as my retirement gift to myself. My wife agreed to go as long as we visited national parks and museums. It was outstanding. I highly recommend this to anyone who has the time. Here’s my blog should anyone want to check it out (http://baseballstadiumtrip2008.blogspot.com/)

  17. Andy II - Apr 21, 2010 at 7:24 PM

    BLITZ!

  18. ralf - Apr 22, 2010 at 11:41 AM

    MLB Network absolutely needs to do that show. Their offseason programming schedule is BORING: Last night’s hot stove 5 straight times, Yankees/Red Sox playoff game from 6 years ago, new Hot Stove episode 5 straight times. I don’t know if they have the money for anything else though. Seems like over half of the commercials are for MLB Network itself.

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