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I live in a hockey mad town and I play the game myself and follow it loosely now. During the good 'ol days I followed the sport with an obsessive fervor that totally occupied my time from my formative years between the age of 8 all the way until I was a supposed grown man of 31.
Now whatever. I'd rather watch bobby flay's throwdown or NFL reruns.
So to the title of this article. I was a die hard Jays fan as well. Followed Toronto's 2 majors equally with passion. In the oldie days I huddled under the covers during the Jays' west coast swings back in the 80's and early 90s when all 162 games weren't televised. I had my radio under the blanket so I wouldn't wake my parents while I listened to the Jays blow another against the California Angels or whatever was on. Being in the east coast, I would be up sometimes until 1:30 on school nights. I had a such strong passion for this team, baseball before the strike. Also I followed the Jays during their struggles of early 80's, taste of success during mid 80's and bitter defeats in the late 80's.
Anyhow, my real point is I don't know what's gone wrong with Baseball in Toronto but it just is not a winner in all sense of the word. Its a 2nd tier sport compared to the Leafs. I really want the Jays to be the hot item in this town. Winning helps but I what I concluded over the last 10-15 years is that a stadium with flavor and character is the Sistine Chapel for any sports team. This mistake by the Lake (Lake Ontario for those who don't know) is some structure that could have been built by the ancient civilizations of Atlantis or the gaudy architects of the 80's. The Skydome aka Rogers Center is an outright blasphemy to baseball and the Canadian version of football. I'm an NFL fan if that matters.
I used to go to ball games at the Old Ex in Toronto and went to the Skydome in the early 90s after the Jays World Series heyday. I had to walk out of that nasty UFO bubble by the 5th inning. Hated it. Hated the experience and ever since. That concrete junk at least for myself as a native Torontonian, is the worst eyesore on an otherwise decent skyline.
I think if some mega corp with some cahoons and a vision could right this organization for prosperity by imploding that cocoon pod and building an open-air baseball-nostalgic park that has a view of the beautiful lake and the city skyline.
I love the Pirates' home park. PNC Park is a fabulous ballpark even though the team blows chunks.
I went to a ballgame last year at the Skydome. Sorry I can't call it the Rogers Center. The game featured AJ Burnett vs Andy Petitte before the 2008 All-Star break. It was a beautiful sunny day, Jays won and all should have been great. Yet I left feeling empty. It wasn't because everyone at the time thought that was A.J.'s last start with the Jays before the deadline. It was partly due to the team having a roster full of dud players who just don't have a winning mindset BUT it was mostly due to just watching a great game in that hideous SkyBubble. Oh did I mention the price gouging food concessions that are high-school grade quality. I could get a tastier meal from the shelves of a dollar store.
I'm so disappointed with the Jays over the last decade or so. In conclusion that pales in comparison to the SkyBalloon that masks as a ballpark.
Please, will somebody already put this archaic concrete disaster out of its misery.
I'm out. Go Jays.