Richmond County Bank Ballpark
Staten Island, NY
Review by Mike
Richmond County Bank Ballpark at St. George was the home of the Staten Island Yankees of the New York-Penn League. In this age of carbon copy minor league parks, here is proof that it's the little things that make the difference. RCB Ballpark looks at first glance to be in the mold of the contemporary crop of minor league parks; concourse above the seating bowl, luxury boxes above the concourse, but a closer examination shows that this park really stands out from the crowd.
The exterior sets the tone, with big sails over the main entrance that are really beautiful and different. The luxury boxes themselves have a different look about them, closer to the action and supported by very cool diagonal struts. The name of the park in big letters across the expanse of the roofline shows that there is at least one use for such a silly long name.
The seating bowl features two nice departures from the norm. The rows are rather steeply pitched so that the top of the head of the person in front of you is around the level of your chin rather than your eyebrows. This means no swaying back and forth to see the field. Every seat provides a clear view, even for kids and vertically challenged adults.
The bowl is one block of seats, without the aisle cutting across the middle which allows people in other parks to walk back and forth in front of the fans. The seats are also real close to the field and the missing aisle and steep pitch put you practically in the 1st and 3rd basemen's back pockets.
The location and atmosphere are unbeatable. This park is right by the water, open to New York Harbor and Lower Manhattan. The Staten Island ferry bustled back and forth all game, as well as big cargo ships heading into the waterway beyond left field. These monsters seem to loom over the park. It's all very active and interesting.
Even the scoreboard is awesome, featuring an artsy Verazzano Narrows Bridge on top of it. In short, I loved this ballpark. It's one of the best new parks I've seen and would have gotten five hot dogs if it weren't home to a Yankees farm team. (I'm a Mets fan...)