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24 Willie Mays Plaza, San Francisco, CA 94107, United States
Around the stadium are some of the statues of San Francisco Giants all-time greats such as Willie Mays, Willie McCovey, Juan Marichal, and Orlando Cepeda. Once inside AT&T Park there are many memorable spots inside the ballpark. First on the list would be the most prominent feature of the ballpark which is McCovey Cove in right field. The wall in right field is made of brick, with fenced off archways opening to the Cove beyond. Atop the fence are four pillars with fountains atop. These four pillars will burst jets of water when the Giants hit a home run, win a game, and at the end of the National Anthem.
In the past, rubber chickens put up by fans whenever a Giants player (especially Barry Bonds) was intentionally walked, would line the foul portion of the wall. The fans would do this to show that the opposing team is “chicken” for not pitching right to the Giants players. In recent seasons, as the team’s strength has shifted from hitting to pitching, fans will line up “K” signs with each strikeout by a Giants pitcher. Beyond right field is China Basin, a section of San Francisco Bay, which is dubbed McCovey Cove after famed Giants first baseman and left-handed slugger Willie McCovey, and into which a number of home runs have been hit on the fly.
Behind the scoreboard in center field there is a pier where ferries can tie up and let off fans right at the park. On game days, fans take to the water of McCovey Cove in boats and even in kayaks, often with fishing nets in the hope of collecting a home run ball. Splash hit is a homer that lands in McCovey Cove behind right field, unique among MLB stadiums. During every game, kayakers and fans in other watercraft jockey for position to fish one out of the salt water. Your best bet is to come during batting practice. For $49 (3 hours), rent a kayak from City Kayak at nearby Pier 40. You’ll probably be seen by friends at home watching the telecast, even if you don’t snag a ball. But bring a radio: you can’t see the field from out there. Down the outfield in Right-center is a real San Francisco cable car (retired cable car #4, formerly #504), with a label that states “No Dodgers Fans Allowed”. The Los Angeles Dodgers and the San Francisco Giants have had a long standing rivalry based on proximity and is the iconic cable car is perfect for those who want to share a picture with their friends and family.
At left field is the Fan Lot where a giant 80 foot long Coke Bottle and 4 finger “old school” Baseball Glove that hover over the outfield stands. There you can play games, take a picture in the photo booth, see a mini replica of the stadium, and also offers a great place to see the game. There are playground slides that will blow bubbles and light up with every Giants home run, and a miniature version of the stadium. “The Coca-Cola Superslide” is popular with children as is with adults, and the terraced levels of the slides is a fun way to catch the game. If one were viewing the outfield promenade from home plate, directly to the bottle’s right is another oversized representation of a ballpark stalwart, the “Giant 1927 Old-Time Four-Fingered Baseball Glove” — this particular one is made of steel and fiberglass. Behind and farther to the left is “The Little Giants Park” – a miniature baseball diamond — sort of a minor league tryout for Pee-Wee Ball.
AT&T’s signature food item is Gilroy Garlic Fries. It’s worth the wait in the inevitable long line, even if it also means no kissing for days. Gilroy (near San Jose) is nicknamed the “Garlic Capital of the World,” and you (and your honey) won’t soon forget the garlicky flavor. Find stands behind sections 103, 106, 118, 130, 311, 323 and 331. For Kids there is Barry Bonds Junior Park where kids can bring their bats and balls to play at this small field just across McCovey Cove from the big boys’ ballpark. Older kids can even crush “splash hits,” just like Barry once did, so bring old balls. There’s also a toddler-age playground on the opposite side of the stadium. To wash down those garlic fries beer at the Great House of Brews is a must. At this counter behind section 113, about 30 different bottled beers, including local crafts, sell for $9 to $10.25 each—the most variety anywhere in the ballpark, at a good price.
Fan Author: Ari Royals / Photo credit: Don DeBold
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