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RetrOgrAde: It’s Not a Building; it’s Home!

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Roy Steele does a nice job of taking us through a visual montage of the years at the coliseum. Filmed in 2013, it’s a two minute reminder that, despite it’s aging appearance, it’s not just a ballpark. It’s not just a venue. It’s home.

Built in 1966, it’s the fifth oldest stadium in Major League Baseball. One of the primary architectural goals was to have fans enter on the upper deck level, walking down into the seats which is below ground level. In bygone days, the bleachers were a wide open area to sit and shag balls during batting practice—back in the day when the coliseum opened it’s gates earlier so you could SEE the full two-team batting practice. Mount Davis, eliminated those prime batting practice seats—as well as the view of the hills—and changed the stadium for the worst.

Of course the hot topic since 2013 has been the raw sewage in the dugout. But not just the home dugout. The Yankees experienced this in the visitor’s dugout (which amuses me because it’s the Yankees). The coaches’ room has been flooded with sewage more than once. This is probably the key issue that just can’t seem to be fixed in the current stadium.

But there are lots of fun pieces to the coliseum. For me, watching kids roll down the ice plant while waiting for the gates to open is awesome. WARNING: It stains the clothes brown. The human-tended, out-of-town scoreboard is a link to the past that I love. (For more on that, see http://www.athleticsnation.com/2016/7/4/12093836/behind-the-scoreboard)

Another favorite is the “tunnel” that the players come in and out of. I can still see Kurt Suzuki and so many others smiling and “high-fiving” fans on the way off the field. I love that close-up-and-personal. Matt Holiday signed my give-away jersey in that same spot.

So, it’s more than a stadium. It’s home. What is it about the coliseum that makes it home for you? Share your comments below.

Go A’s!