This Past Weekend, I had the chance to visit Atlanta, Georgia for a family obligation. Lucky for us, the Mets were playing at SunTrust that very weekend. So, I attended the Saturday and Sunday matinee games, and got to see the Mets take down the Braves twice, and visit a brand new ballpark.
I was staying at the Renaissance Waverly Hotel, which was within “walking distance” to the hotel, but it was quite a hike.
First, I had to traverse through a parking lot, up a staircase, and then cross over the main highway. Only then would I be able to cross the “ballpark bridge”.
After crossing the bridge, I entered the parking lot to the “Battery”, or the ballpark village.
The Battery itself was very nice, with restaurants and shops like Yard House, Sweet Pete’s, Haggen Dazs, Live! and even a theater called the Coca-Cola ROXY.
There was also plenty of live music, attractions and large signage that reminded me of the ballpark village in St.Louis.
While the battery was an interesting attraction for sure, the baseball field felt secondary, and the fans seemed to be happy and in a festive mood out there even when the Braves lost.
I mean, just look how Sun Trust Park is listed on the Battery’s website, like it’s “just another attraction”.
Unlike Citi Field and it’s hand wands, the security at SunTrust Park featured metal detectors, which I still believe is overkill, but what can you do.
From the moment I waked in, something seemed very off. Unlike the rotunda at Citi Field, or the open air concourse in San Francisco, there was nothing “grand” at any of the entrances at SunTrust Park.
Additionally all of the concourses at SunTrustPark seemed very metallic and factory like, and did not resemble a new ballpark.
One positive note of SunTrust Park was the concessions and their prices. Unlike the Mets and their $5.75 water, the Braves only charge $3 bucks for water, and $5 dollars for beer.
That’s right, The Mets charge more for water than the Braves charge for beer.
On the First Day, I had a Pulled Pork combo from Smokey Q’s BBQ, which came with Mac & Cheese and a Dill Pickle. The Pork was very fresh, and was superior to the BBQ at Blue Smoke.
On the second day, I tried a burger from 1871 Grill. It was very filling, and tasted like any other ballpark burger.
The stadium itself didn’t have any “amazing” views, like Citi Field, but the Battery was in view beyond the Right Field wall.
While I didn’t eat at any clubs or restaurants at SunTrust Park, the Chop House and Below The Chop, both sponsored by Coors Light, looked like a popular place for fans to hang out and watch the game.
The scoreboard was fairly pitiful, with no line boards for the majority of the game from either the main centerfield board or the left field board.
As a visiting fan, I tried to be respectful of the Braves traditions, so while I didn’t partake in the Tomahawk Chop, I did take note of it, and thought it was pretty catchy, at least in the beginning.
Overall, the Mets won, and it was a interesting look at a different ballpark. There were plenty of nice touches, like the organ, the lack of ads, and the good food, but buy and large, Citi Field provides a better gameday experience.