As the hubbub and posturing over the Coliseum lease subsides, today we got some good news: the A’s spring training schedule has been released! It’s a momentous spring, too, since it’ll be the last at venerable Phoenix Municipal Stadium before the A’s move 10 miles east to Hohokam Stadium in Mesa. Hohokam is vacant in 2014 as crews make changes to accommodate the A’s after the departure of the Cubs.
Speaking of the Cubs, they’re set to open their Wrigleyville West, also in Mesa, in 2014. That’ll be worth checking out. The A’s play only one split-squad game at the Cubs’ yet-unnamed ballpark on March 5. Even if you miss that, don’t fret because the great thing about the Cactus League is that all of the parks are within a reasonable driving distance of each other. While there’s no neat sideshow like the World Baseball Classic in 2014, there’s still plenty to watch.
If you’re interested in visiting, remember that the A’s work out at the ballfields at Papago Park, which is nearly 2 miles north on the other side of the park from Muni. One thing I’ve never done is walk from Papago (where minor league camp games are held) to Muni, so I might do that this year.
Looking to check out several Cactus League ballparks? Consider that the 10 parks are set up in two clusters of five, to the west and east of downtown Phoenix. The east cluster, which Phoenix Muni is part of, is less spread out than the west cluster. Best to divide and conquer.
I’m targeting the 4-day weekend of March 13 through 16. The A’s play a rare night game at Muni. If I get there in the morning I can take in a game nearby in the afternoon before heading to Muni. There’s also a split-squad opportunity on Sunday the 16th, starting with a game in Muni and ending with the A’s taking on the Giants in Scottsdale.
There’s no league wide schedule available yet, as the teams are given the responsibility to arrange their schedules among themselves and publish when they’re ready. At this early stage, only a handful of teams such as the A’s and Giants have published theirs. Soon I’ll get all of them and put together a grid, the same way I did for the regular season.
One last note – keep in mind that Daylight Savings Time goes into effect on March 9, about two weeks into the schedule. That means all games before March 9 are an hour ahead of the Pacific time zone. From March 9 forward, games in Arizona are at the same time as California because Arizona doesn’t observe DST. The schedule shown is in Pacific time. If you’re planning to attend a game before March 9 and are traveling the same day, remember the time change.
I’m penciling in a Spring Training trip in 2014, but need to figure out exact dates. Is the experience much difference between attending a home and away spring training game?
Not really, the fans are pretty mellow. You just want to see as many stadiums as possible. One thing to keep in mind is that some of the ones on the west side are hard to get to from the east side given the traffic.
@Briggs – The east side ballparks are all a 10-20 minute drive from Muni (or the airport). Maryvale’s the closest west side ballpark at 20-25 minutes away. The rest (Camelback, Peoria, Surprise, Goodyear) are 30-45 minutes away. Allow for extra time getting to those parks.
Also allow extra time for a game at Tempe, in my experience they have the worst traffic flow/parking situation there (besides Camelback, which is in a class by itself.)
If you want to hit up Buffalo Wild Wings and don’t like lines, it might be easier to make it part of your Rangers/Royals stadium visit in Surprise instead of trying the one across from ASU.
On the 12th, it’s a 1pm start for A’s vs Royals in Surprise, and a 4pm start for the Sharks at Islanders. On the 24th, it’s a 1pm start for the A’s vs Rangers in Surprise, and a 6pm Sharks at Flames start.
There are no Sharks at Coyotes games that month.
What, none of you plan your trip events around other sports? 😉
Jrdv, city of oakland and coliseum city ripped off my baseball ballpark!They released new drawings last week, while my drawings say c2012Going to be hell to pay! I have new drawings but will hold them exclusive to protect myself, im not in water and I took over victory court. They stole it all; carbon copy: Look at right field monster, open outfield, river? Towers looking in, scoreboard, and new north orientation! Ps when the hell did east oakland get a river?