View Full Version : question about the Richmond Roosters
05-18-2005, 09:30 PM
Are Roosters games worth checking out? Living in Dayton its all about the Dragons but with the sell outs and lawn seating going for $7 (General admission Clipper tickets are cheaper, its actual seating, and they're a AAA Yankees affiliate) a couple of buddies of mine and I were thinking about Roosters games. I was just curious about whether the ballpark was cool, if tickets were hard to comeby, or if the talent level was comparable to Single A. I've never seen an indy ball game. Plus Richmond is like a 20-30 minute drive so it's not too far out of the way.
05-18-2005, 10:48 PM
While I've never been to a game in Richmond, I have been to Frontier League games before. I would put the level of play at the "AA" level. That's just my opinion and other may (& probably will) disagree. I can say that, last summer on consecutive days I seen a Kalamazoo Kings game (Frontier League like the Richmond Roosters) and a Battle Creek Yankees game (now the Southwest Michigan Devil Rays - Midwest League like the Dayton Dragons). Between the 2 over that weekend, I would have to say I had a better time in Kalamazoo. The play was a little better and the atmosphere was more fan friendly in general. In my opinion, the Indy leagues try to put on a better all around show. Since they are not subsidized like the affiliated leagues, they depend on their gate more than the affilaiated teams. Sure, some of it is gimmicky, but I think it makes it more fun. Bottom line, check it out. You might be pleasantly surprised.
06-02-2005, 03:05 PM
My travels over the weekend took me to see games at the MLB, Triple-A, Double-A, Low-A and FL levels. Like many of us, I have seen hundreds of games at various levels in my time on this terrestrial spheroid, so I like to think I have a decent judgement of the quality of baseball being played before me. I have also seen about six FL games, all within the past four years.
Now, we would all agree that it would be tough to judge the quality of a league based upon seeing two teams play one game in one night. (Not that this fact stops us, but still.)
Having said that, as much as I enjoy the Frontier, it ain't Double-A. But it is a very respectable level of ball. I would put it at the level of Low-A, perhaps a slight smidgen below, but certainly above the overall ability of at the Short-A level. I would slot it right between the New York-Penn and Midwest Leagues -- closer to the MWL than the NYPL.
Over the Memorial Day weekend I checked out games in Louisville (IL), St. Louis (NL), Gateway (FL), Fort Wayne (MWL) and Erie (EL). The MLB is the best there is (obviously). The IL is a very high caliber of ball (obviously). The EL is full of players who will someday at least sniff the Show. The MWL and the FL are virtually indistinguishable, except that perhaps there are a few more players in the MWL with raw talent still on their way up, passing through the Low-A level. Not that the FL doesn't have their share of overlooked talent which will catch an eye and wind up at the Double-A level -- there's just a bit more of such talent already at the Low-A level.
If you want to see an independent league with genuine Double-A level talent, that is (in my opinion) what the Atlantic League is all about.
I had the good fortune of attending two Rooster games in previous seasons, and have been around to many ballparks in several independent leagues, including a couple now defunct.
It is my belief that the calibre of play is secondary to the enjoyment of visiting the ballpark. If the two teams are roughly equal, you can have a great time whether watching major leaguers or T-ballers. The Frontier League is, like another person responding to the original question said, probably a bit below the Midwest League in talent overall.
The ballpark in Richmond is more quirky than most, as it was built in the 1930s and has mostly been used for amateur baseball until the Roosters came to town.
It is small with rows of seats very spread out from the rows in front and behind. NBA players would have plenty of leg room at McBride Stadium.
They have a surprisingly large varieity of souvenir items available and the staff is friendly if not always super effecient. A game we attended was rained out in the third inning. On exchanging tickets at the box office for the next day, we were first told "You have to get the identical seats that you had for yesterday's game." Not the identical priced tickets, mind you, but the man told us we had to sit in the identical seat locations that we had for the rained out game the night before. Only when I asked what would happen if those tickets had already been sold was he willing to sell me seats in a different location (I wanted some under the roof, not in the bright summer sun).
If you like a more relaxed atmosphere than in Dayton, just a place to relax and watch good baseball, with several between-innings contests for fun, Richmond might be a great choice for you.
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