When we finalized plans for the 2001 baseball season this stop was one that did not
excite either one of us. Instead of the mantra to "just get us in the buildin"?, the first
thought was to just get this one over with and head for Milwaukee as soon as possible
where beautiful Miller Park would be waiting for us. Let's face it, the Metrodome has
always been under harsh criticism for being a horrible place to see a ballgame, not to
mention the fact that the Twins on field performance had been hideous in recent years.
Like other small market sports franchises, the Twins had become a casualty of the severe
revenue imbalance that has pervaded throughout baseball during the past decade.
Yet as we say in sports, that was then and this is now, and by the time of our arrival in the
Twin Cities on this day there was a stunning turn of events unforeseen by anyone. First
and foremost - the 2001 Twins, a ragtag collection of prospects and other nobodies who
have defied the experts predictions and have skyrocketed to the top of their division, all
while having the lowest payroll in baseball. Second, the opponent on this day would be the
vaunted Seattle Mariners, by far the best team in baseball this season. With this in mind,
Andrew and Peter were giddy with anticipation for the upcoming battle of David vs. Goliath
in front of a huge crowd at the 'Dome.
Note-much of what we saw concerning this venue has already been covered in our Vikings
Metrodome profile. In this venue profile we will attempt to describe what was unique in our
Twins experience.Click here for Vikings profile.
Outside the Venue
It was a bright and sunny day outside the Metrodome, and with a large crowd making their
way to the Metrodome there was plenty of excitement and enthusiasm to be found. A
street that runs in front of the Ticket offices was closed off to traffic and was filled with
fans chowing down on all kinds of concessions and trying the many interactive games that
were available. Did we forget to mention the kettle corn?? Also within walking distance
was Huberts's Bar and Grill for those who wanted to kick back and enjoy a meal and/or a
few drinks prior to game time. Other than that and the famed Domed Souvenirs Plus shop
across the street from the 'Dome, there wasn't much else in the way of stores and shops in
the immediate vicinity.
Being a twenty year old facility, the walkways were not all that wide and there were many
choke points with long lines at the concession/merchandise stands. One place of note
here is the Twins Rally Room, located in a small space behind the right field lower
concourse. This place appears very ordinary at first glance with a small bar and some
inexpensive lounge seating. But any fan who wishes to tip a couple at a bargain basement
price simply must come here. During the 2nd and 6th innings they have a 2 for 1 special
where a pair of brews can be had for a bargain $3.25!!! We dare anyone, ANYONE to find a
deal in major pro sports that tops that!!!! Although tipping the brews frequently isn't really
our style, we certainly had to take advantage of that bargain. Again, we shout out to anyone
who will listen about the enormous Dome Dogs here....Dodger Dogs cannot hold a candle
to this mighty creation.
Capacity here is roughly 45,000 which is roughly eighteen grand less than for a Vikings
game. The deductions in seating come from two major items of note. First, a huge white
curtain covers the upper deck seating beyond the right field fence. And second, there are
thousands of lower level seats that are located where right field is for baseball during a
Vikings game. During the baseball season these seats are retracted and stand vertically
behind the "Hefty Bag" errr...right field fence.
Seating is divided into two levels with suites sandwiched in between. No preferred club
seating or super preferred seating behind home plate to be found here. Also located
between the two levels is a continous mural of blue banners of the logos of all Major
League clubs(in foul territory), and continuing out beyond the outfield fences are the red
banners of those fine individuals who have earned the honor of being inducted into the
Minnesota Twins Hall of Fame. The names of Calvin Griffith, Jim Kaat, and broadcaster
Herb Carneal can be found here along with many others who have been associated with
the Twins franchise..
Here in Minneapolis they put the huge white curtain to good use. There you will find large
murals of the Twins retired numbers and banners of their finest moments. Players from an
earlier era, such as Killebrew, Oliva, and Carew alongside newer faces like Hrbek and
Puckett. The players murals are sandwiched by other banners signifying their '65 AL Title
as well as their two World Championships in '87 and '91. All of them up there as if they were
pictured on giant baseball cards.
We must also mention that unlike the Giants and the Dodgers, the Twins seem to pretend
that their franchise was founded in 1961 and appear to have complete anmesia about the
first sixty seasons of franchise existence in the nation's capital as the Washington
Senators. In their defense, other than Walter Johnson and a World Series title in '25, there
isn't much to that era of their history. How did that old saying go??? First in war, first in
peace, last in the American League...'nuff said.
Runs, Hits, Errors...
Hit...The dome usually is sparsely filled for Twins games but on this day, the place was
SOLD OUT!!!! To think we actually were gonna get tickets at the door for this one.....
Hit...Meeting up with baseball roadtripper Paul Kriegl, who also has been to almost every
ballpark in the Majors. It's always a good time to hang out with people who have been to all
of these venues while comparing notes and passing tips to each other. Have a blast in
Montreal and Cooperstown, we'll be thinking of you guys!!!
Hit...maybe it was the baseball crowd, but the restroom lines were much shorter for the
Twins game than for the Vikings game...officially the longest we've seen so far.
Error...The Twins went down to defeat on this day by a 6-3 score and it wasn't that close.
The M's showed exactly who is boss in the American League while sweeping the Twins in
four straight games. As a result, the electricity we were hoping to feel during the game
from the fans never arrived.
Error...The sound system still is pretty wretched in a big way here....who is that pinch
hitting for the Twins???
Hit.... Legendary Bison TOM PRINCE wears a Twins uniform, though he did not play on this
day, we guess you could say it wasn't his fault!
Patrick Klinger, VP Marketing for the Minnesota Twins, met up with us after the game for a
short interview and we thank him for his hospitality.
A place for the Twins to play and for fans to watch and that's it. Narrow concourses with
little color, ballpark dreck for food, etc. etc.. A plain jane domed stadium designed more for
the Vikings rather than the Twins(rumor has it that former owner Calvin Griffith was
ramrodded into going along with the Vikes to have the place built). The Twins have been
pleading for a new ballpark but their efforts have been somewhat futile. The Metrodome is
a great place when the fans fill the place and fortunately that was the case on this day. For
this we give this place 2 stars....
Food and team store 6
Scoreboard and electronics 3
Fan support 7
Location and neighborhood 6
Banners and history 8
In game entertainment 6
Concourses/fan comfort 3
Bonus: Home plate at Mall of America 1; Twins Rally Room 2; Dome Souvenirs 1, Dome Dogs 1
Hubert H. Humphrey