The PawSox were hosting the Toledo Mudhens, which are Maxwell Klinger’s favorite team (if you’ve never watched M*A*S*H, then we can’t be friends). So my partner and I met up with a couple of our friends to catch a game (my partner would like you all to know that the seats are too narrow and lead to many people invading her personal space, by the way).
The Pawtucket Red Sox are moving to Worcester in 2021, and while there are at least two scenarios that see baseball returning to McCoy (including one submitted by Frank Boulton and the Atlantic League), I am hoping to get a bunch of games in down in Pawtucket next season before the PawSox move west.
This particular visit was my first trip to McCoy since the 2017 season. Not much has changed. I would imagine there will be a hesitation to try new things with a finite number of games left at the stadium.
The stadium is definitely showing it’s age. The stadium is old, whereas new construction stadiums like Northeast Delta Dental feel “retro” or “vintage”, McCoy just feels old. Which wouldn’t necessarily be bad if they would spread some paint around. Every minor league stadium built in the last 20 years has the same map. Concourse with undisturbed sightlines to the field that lead down to seating bowls. Having a concourse that sits under the seating bowl with the exposed concrete feels very small town baseball to me in a good way. It reminds me of the stadiums I visited as a kid where concessions and souvenirs were sold from out buildings behind the bleachers.
If you’ve never been to McCoy, it’s an unusual experience. Parking is nonexistent. I end up parking in a small lot just above the main entrance. It’s a Greek diner across the street from one a firehouse. You walk down towards the main entrance to a wood carved statue of the team’s mascot (which is now missing most of it’s left arm). Walking through the main gate leads to a ticket window and selfie station to the left and the team store to the right, then a set of stairs that lead to the main concourse.
|Even the souvenir cups pimp the 33-inning game vs the Red Wings|
The staircase is covered by the iconic red roof that sits on the stadium’s third base side. On the main concourse are the typical selection of set-in concession and souvenir stands. There doesn’t seem to be any marquee or signature food stand in the stadium, which is always disappointing.
There are however endless murals and pictures hanging up celebrating the team’s history and their connection to the Boston Red Sox. The stadium is incredibly proud of it’s status as host of the sport’s longest game ever.
The game presentation was fairly bland. There was no focus, or theme to the presentation. Whoever was the game day host was very ragged around the edges. He seemed to be overwhelmed by the crowd. There were surprisingly few break in play games, which I wholeheartedly support.
Aside from a picnic blanket berm in left center field, there doesn’t seem to be much in the way of family accommodations. If McCoy continues to host baseball beyond next season, I hope this is addressed. If for no other reason than a play area would give kids a place to go that’s away from me.
Towards the end of the game, the PawSox did announce that later this month they’ll be playing as the Rhode Island Quahogs, with a logo designed by Seth McFarlane. The name and logo is probably one of my favorite alt-idents. Way better than the “Hot Weiners“.