September 8, 2002: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Although Mike and I have visited Veterans Stadium, home of the Philadelphia Phillies from 1971 to 2003, my first visit was with Rachel. Rachel had never attended a baseball game before that Sunday afternoon. We drove 90 miles east from Lebanon, PA to Veterans Stadium to watch the Phillies play my hometown New York Mets. The 20,047 in attendance had a lot on their minds; it was the start of the 2002 NFL season and the Philadelphia Eagles were playing a road game against the Tennessee Titans. I spent the afternoon sharing my love of the game with the love of my life.
Despite Veterans Stadium receiving low grades on Ballpark rankings, I remember how excited I was when I first saw the multi-purpose donut from the highway. It was the first Mets road game I attended, and I was happy to see them win 11-3. Stars of the game included Vance Wilson and Ty Wigginton, who both hit home runs. It was an eventful game – Phillies manager Larry Bowa was thrown out in the bottom of the first. (Maybe he wanted to watch the Eagles game.) Sharing baseball with Rachel on that Sunday afternoon is something I will never forget.