By Chuck Booth (Lead Baseball Analyst/Website Owner): Follow @chuckbooth3024
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Welcome to my 1st installment, of what could take about a year’s worth of writing to complete, if I were to post a blog everyday. I am talking about Modern Day MLB Baseball Doubleheaders.
I have done around 30 DH’s in my time so far, and have scouted every plausible scenario for all 30 Parks, to line up with dance partners, so you can see two games in one day.
For the last 2 years, have prominently displayed the Master List for Doubleheaders in the game of MLB, for each calendar year.
As some of you know, and now other will figure out, I am attending at least one baseball game every day of the 2015 MLB Season.
Listed in my itinerary, I plan to attend 50 – 60 Doubleheaders throughout the course of the year.
Of course the land attempts are far easier than flight, but I like the challenge of those to.
In the next 365 days, I will be giving you a preview of how to do all the doubleheaders possible, should time allow it on MLB’s schedule.
My favorite 1 – 2 punch thus far is the Wrigley Field/Miller Park combination. I have done 5 different days where I have tried to see a game in both parks. 3 were part of World record chasing trips, one was for casual, and one was the 1st Doubleheader chance I tried.
Unfortunately for me, the 1st time I tried to visit Wrigley Field, was during opening week of 2007. I wanted to attend a day game in Wrigleyville, 1st before driving north the 100 miles to Miller Park. I was snowed out in North Chicago, but made it to Milwaukee, where the roof saved my bacon,
The 1st thing to explain about Chicago, is to bring a “BAG OF CHANGE” if you drive in this city. It is tolls up the Wazoo, and when the coin ops aren’t killing you, the actual price of parking will.
3 times I have started a whirlwind 30 park tour in Chicago/Milwaukee. My usual plan is to fly into (MKE Airport) and rent a car in MIL. It is the cheapest out of anywhere in the USA (Canton-CAK) is routinely second.
I also have found that Priceline Bidding in Milwaukee is phenomenal. I have paid between $20 – $35 on several occasions – and they usually situate you in an Extended Stay America in Wauwatosa, or the Super 8, a few miles of the Interstate.
If you are driving your own car to make it to these two cities, my suggestion again, would be to drive you car to Milwaukee, and use public transit in Chicago.
Generally the best time for a doubleheader opportunity is on Friday’s and Saturday’s. The team has an agreement with the county to have day games on Friday’s and Saturday’s, to avoid excessive noise in the area once the game is completed.
The Cubs put a lot of games on at 1:20 PM for matinees, and the Brewers play during the week mostly at 7:10 local time. On Saturdays, it is not foreign for the Cubs to play a noon time game, with Milwaukee slating 6:10 for their start time at night.
I have done both scenarios, with liking the Saturday traffic better for the driving.
If it is a weekday, my advice to you is to park you car at the (MKA Amtrak Station), just a few miles from the Milwaukee (General Mitchell Airport).
Take a roundtrip train from MKA – to Union Station, for the game in Chicago. All you have to do is switch to the Red Line Exchange once you arrive. The time for leaving and arriving from MIL to CHI, is 815/934 AM, or 1110/1229 AM. Both have you in the ‘Windy City’ with time to spare.
After the game with the Cubs at Wrigley, if it is not over by 4;00 PM, you might want to think about leaving early enough to reach the Union Station to catch the train back.
You can take the Red Line back, or go like I did via ‘limousine or cab” on separate stints.
The departing train leaves CHI at 5:08 (better be there by 4:55 PM), and arrives at MKA at 6:28.
From the Amtrak Airport Station in Milwaukee (MKA), it is about a 20 minute drive to the yard using I-94, then turning at National Ave, to take all the way in.
Now, obviously, I am not telling anyone how to conduct their business in staying for games at the 1st contest of any 2 park quest. For world record purposes, I needed to see every pitch. Now that I don’t have to do that, 5 innings for a home team, is considered grounds for a game attended.
Anyways, if you were to park near Wrigley Field, consume 200 Miles worth of gas, and pay all of the tolls, you are looking at nearly $80 for the roundtrip, and the traffic is brutal.
By using the Amtrak method, it will cost you $48 – $50 for the train, and maybe another $5 in transit, and the same in parking at the Amtrak station in Milwaukee.
With the train, you bypass all of the garbage on the I-94.
Now, if you are dead set on driving in, the parking spots along W. Irving Park road, are the best places to have your car when watching a doubleheader such as this.
You may have to walk a mile before and after the game, but only one turn has you on the I-94 East after the game, which is paramount if you are going to make both ends of the doubleheader.
Saturday’s aren’t as bad for traffic out of Chicago, The Amtrak train times also don’t set up nicely for the Saturday game, having you make it to the MKA station at 6:28 for a 6:10 PM game time start at Miller.
You would likely miss a few innings if this would occur, however if you are more prone to want to see a full game at Wrigley, having an extra 1 hour and 20 minutes padded for a noon start, instead of 1:20, means you have a better chance to witness a full game, and not sweat the public transit ride back to Union Station.
I will always use the Amtrak option on the Friday, and the car ride to and from on the Saturday. However you go about your journey, your 1st trip to Wrigleyville should be an all day experience. Once you do that once, let the doubleheaders flow!
*** The views and opinions expressed in this report are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of mlbreports.com and their partners***
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