One of my regrets that I’ll never be able to rectify is never seeing a game at old Arlington Stadium. That opportunity is long gone, since 1994. On the other hand, I probably saw 30 games at ‘the Temple,’ what we Texas fans called The Ballpark In Arlington, or whatever name it had at the time of closure.
The old ballpark would be brutally hot in April, and by July downright miserable. My favorite games were definitely night games, particularly in April and May and September. One of my favorite memories of going to a Rangers game in the old ballpark was having a giant thunderstorm send us to the corridor, cooling off the air by 20 degrees on a July night versus the Mariners.
And then we all went to Adair’s Saloon for a night of misbehavin’ and terrific music.
Another great memory: One of my first dates with my now-wife was at the Temple. We watched the Rangers walk it off over the Toronto Blue Jays, the day before the fight between Rougned Odor and Jose Bautista. Also, it was bring-your-doggie night at the Ballpark.
Oh, and we didn’t know it then, but we would spend our honeymoon in Toronto and took in a Blue Jays game at the Rogers Centre. I’ll write about that another time, two years after the fact.
And I became a massive Raptors fan.
Fast forward a couple of years, a full year after the stadium opened to nobody due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and Globe Life Field is open to fans. It was also opened to a ton of skepticism at why the Rangers even needed a new stadium. The other one was just fine, and it was only 25 years old.
But I get it, and I got it after a trip to the Atlanta Braves’ new stadium (Truist Park) complex in Battery Park. The new home for baseball was about more than the field. It was about shopping and restaurants. It was about a vibe.
Globe Life Field isn’t exactly the same, but what Truist Park is to consumerism, the Rangers’ new complex is to office space. It’s just a gorgeous complex, and while I didn’t see any shopping or eateries, I saw an amazing set of offices off the stadium. We enjoyed a game versus the Padres (night after Joe Musgrove’s no-no) with the roof off, but it’s good to know that in July, the roof will be on when it’s 92 degrees outside.
The seats were super affordable, but the steps were super steep — a bit uncomfortably so.
But that was the only complaint, if it’s even that.
The park, the field, the video production are all a massive step above what the old ballpark had, and I’m a sentimentalist. Loved the Temple.
Take a look though. There’s a reason why MLB decided to play the 2020 World Series at Globe Life Field.