Next weekend is Memorial Day weekend. As we say in my neck of the woods, summah’s heah! This means it’s time for that most delightful of summer excursions, the baseball road trip. Thanks to the league index of that invaluable hardball resource, Baseball Reference, I have spent many a happy hour fantasizing about just such a trip. In these fantasies, I visit every team from the Albuquerque Isotopes to the Casper Ghosts to the Lehigh Valley IronPigs. But in reality, at least this summer, I will probably be limited to teams in Delaware, Maryland, the Virginas, the Carolinas, and the very eastern tip of Tennessee. My Sentra and I have traveled through all these places several times before, but we’ve never actually stopped and watched a ballgame in any of them. I’m hoping that you, baseball lovers, will have some advice for me and my ride.
I have narrowed down my list of candidates to the following teams (and of course, I’m using “narrowed down” in the loosest possible sense). Any to definitely see? Or definitely avoid?
Delmarva Shorebirds (Salisbury, MD–A—South Atlantic League)
Greensboro Grasshoppers (Greensboro, NC—A—South Atlantic League)
Kannapolis Intimidators (Kannapolis, NC—A—South Atlantic League)
Hickory Crawdads (Hickory, NC—A—South Atlantic League)
Asheville Tourists (Asheville, NC—A—South Atlantic League)
Greenville Drive (Greenville, SC—A—South Atlantic League)
Richmond Braves (Richmond, VA—AAA—International League)
Norfolk Tides (Norfolk, VA—AAA—-International League)
Durham Bulls (Durham, NC—AAA—International League)
Charlotte Knights (Fort Mill, SC—AAA—International League)
Wilmington Blue Rocks (Wilmington, DE—A—Carolina League)
Lynchburg Hillcats (Lynchburg, VA—A—Carolina League)
Salem Avalanche (Salem, VA—A—Carolina League)
Winston-Salem Warthogs (Winston-Salem, NC—A—Carolina League)
Kinston Indians (Kinston, NC—A—Carolina League)
Myrtle Beach Pelicans (Myrtle Beach, SC—A—Carolina League)
Carolina Mudcats (Zebulon, NC—AA—Southern League)
Tennessee Smokies (Kodak, TN—AA—Southern League)
Chattanooga Lookouts (Chattanooga, TN—AA—Southern League)
I know nothing about the rookie-level Appalachian League, but does anyone want to put in a good word for any of the following Appy League teams?
Princeton Devil Rays (Princeton, WV)
Bluefield Orioles (Bluefield, WV)
Pulaski Mariners (Pulaski, VA)
Danville Braves (Danville, VA)
Burlington Royals (Burlington, NC)
Bristol Sox (Bristol, VA)
Kingsport Mets (Kingsport, TN)
Johnson City Cardinals (Johnson City, TN)
Elizabethton Twins (Elizabethton, TN)
Greeneville Astros (Greeneville, TN)
Leave comments or email me!
And let’s hope this trip doesn’t require as much duct tape as the last one.