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Places: First Base Lounge

August 20, 2010 12:38 AM

OK, here's the deal: I'm deep in the writing of my comprehensive review of TF, and it's coming along very well (I like the place), but it's a little like writing a book -- painstaking.

And speaking of books, I've just finished reading the new Target Field book by Steve Berg (which is spectacular, by the way -- go buy it) and I'm writing a full review on that at the same time.

Unfortunately, writing takes time. I have trouble tossing out half-baked ideas. That's just one of the reasons that I would make a terrible reporter -- I'd be missing deadlines left and right.

But I'm going to make it up to you by doing something of a photo dump over the coming days.

I've got literally thousands of pictures of TF that I haven't published yet, and I want you to see them. I've now poked into just about every nook and cranny of the place, and there are so many different gameday experiences to be had that it begs some elaboration.

Is there something you want to see but haven't? Put it in the comments. If I don't have pictures yet, I've got another opportunity scheduled next week.

We'll start today with the First Base Lounge.

The entrance from the service level corridor. (You have to pass the Twins clubhouse door to get there.)


Here's the entrance from the seating bowl. It's down the outer moat, just beyond the last of the Dugout Box sections.


I didn't check the menu too closely, but it looks like all the standard fare is available, and not much of the non-standard stuff.


You can get a hand-carved sandwich, or ice cream while pondering the career of Julio Becquer.


I never think of Rod Carew as a first baseman. But he was.


Besides making concessions and restroom breaks a breeze, a big draw is the shelter provided during a rain delay. Like the other such places (Third Base Lounge, Champion's Club, Legend's Club), this place is packed beyond belief when the rain starts.

I never think of Ron Jackson at all.


The Ron Coomer corner features a bar.




This is what it looked like during the first open house in March.


Here's the view as you step to the front of the outer moat beyond first base.


It's a great view of the action, though standing here is somewhat discouraged.

Many people do not realize that anyone can go down into this area of the park during batting practice. That includes the lounge itself. Ushers start checking tickets once both teams have finished their warm-ups.

Just for fun, here is the complete list of players who have ever started a game at first base for the Twins (and how many games, what era) through the end of 2009:

Kent Hrbek (1567, 1981-1994)
Harmon Killebrew (853, 1961-1974)
Justin Morneau (764, 2003-2009)
Doug Mientkiewicz (587, 1998-2004)
Rod Carew (452, 1970-1978)
Rich Reese (395, 1967-1973)
Don Mincher (373, 1961-1966)
Ron Coomer (281, 1995-2000)
Ron Jackson (275, 1979-1981)
Vic Power (247, 1962-1964)
Gene Larkin (241, 1987-1993)
Scott Stahoviak (234, 1995-1998)
Craig Kusick (158, 1973-1979)
Bob Allison (131, 1961-1970)
David Ortiz (124, 1997-2002)
Joe Lis (78, 1973-1974)
Jim Holt (74, 1970-1974)
Dave McCarty (71, 1993-1995)
Michael Cuddyer (64, 2001-2009)
Matt LeCroy (59, 2000-2005)
Mike Cubbage (58, 1980)
Greg Colbrunn (52, 1997)
Danny Goodwin (52, 1979-1981)
Mickey Hatcher (49, 1981-1986)
John Briggs (45, 1975)
Paul Molitor (38, 1996-1998)
Tom Kelly (36, 1975)
Randy Bush (35, 1983-1993)
Orlando Merced (34, 1998)
Dan Masteller (33, 1995)
Jeff Reboulet (24, 1994-1996)
Paul Sorrento (23, 1989-1991)
Pat Bourque (17, 1974)
Scott Ullger (17, 1983)
Jesus Vega (15, 1982)
Terry Jorgensen (14, 1992-1993)
Jerry Terrell (13, 1975)
Brent Brede (13, 1997)
Todd Sears (13, 2002-2003)
Tim Corcoran (11, 1981)
Pete Mackanin (10, 1980-1981)
Denny Hocking (10, 2000-2003)
Terry Tiffee (10, 2005)
Steve Dunn (9, 1994)
Greg Wells (9, 1982)
Steve Braun (9, 1975)
Jeff Cirillo (8, 2007)
Jerald Clark (7, 1995)
Butch Huskey (7, 2000)
Garrett Jones (7, 2007)
Brian Buscher (7, 2008-2009)
Mike Stenhouse (7, 1985)
Andy Kosco (6, 1965-1966)
Julio Becquer (5, 1961)
Jose Offerman (5, 2004)
Roy Smalley (5, 1979-1985)
Kevin Maas (5, 1995)
Mike Lamb (5, 2008)
Vic Wertz (5, 1963)
Mike Maksudian (4, 1993)
Dave Winfield (4, 1993)
Bobby Kielty (4, 2002)
Gary Gaetti (4, 1985-1990)
Phil Nevin (4, 2006)
Brent Gates (3, 1999)
Tim Laudner (3, 1987)
Graig Nettles (3, 1968)
Kelvin Torve (2, 1988)
Casey Blake (2, 2000-2001)
Brian Harper (2, 1990)
Frank Kostro (2, 1964-1968)
Chip Hale (2, 1994)
Mark Funderburk (1, 1985)
Terry Steinbach (1, 1997)
Cotton Nash (1, 1969)
Pedro Munoz (1, 1995)
Danny Walton (1, 1975)
Al Newman (1, 1991)
Joe Altobelli (1, 1961)
John Moses (1, 1989)

The information used here was obtained free of charge from and is copyrighted by Retrosheet. Interested parties may contact Retrosheet at www.retrosheet.org.

Tomorrow: The Third Base Lounge.

Comments


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I dont know, that first base "lounge" for high-falutin STH's looks like your typical Minnesota storage shed, with paintings in it.
They couldn't have finished off the ceilings or at least carpeted down there??

Posted on August 20, 2010 at 06:47 AM by luke Highlight this comment 1

I've never been impressed with those lounges. All it's good for is to get out of the rain and that's not something I care about at all. It's just water. For something that's only for certain ticket holders, it's pretty disappointing.

Posted on August 20, 2010 at 07:36 AM by AJ Highlight this comment 2

Looks like some kind of beer garden or eatery at the State Fair.

Posted on August 20, 2010 at 08:28 AM by Dr. X Highlight this comment 3

When are they going to make room for Michael Cuddyer's spot on the wall down there?

Posted on August 20, 2010 at 09:25 AM by Buffalo Highlight this comment 4

Luke and AJ - I think that you are missing the primary purpose of the Dugout Lounges. First and foremost they have bathrooms so that fans with the seats close to the field don't need to climb 42 sets of stairs every 2 to 3 innings. After that, everthing else is a bonus.

Posted on August 20, 2010 at 09:57 AM by clublevelfan Highlight this comment 5

Rick: How much was the Steve Berg book? Do you happen to know if they are still selling it exclusively at Target Field and/or the Pro Shops?

Posted on August 20, 2010 at 09:57 AM by Max Highlight this comment 6

The Steve Berg book is available only at the ballpark (and maybe the pro shops) for now. This is the commemorative, hardcover version, and I've seen it priced at $50, $46, $43, and $40.

A paperback version will be available in November. It's listed for preorder on Amazon. Despite the different cover (which may have been just a mock-up anyway), it's the same book.

Posted on August 20, 2010 at 10:15 AM by Rick 7

Forgot to say that the Amazon price is $26.40.

Posted on August 20, 2010 at 10:16 AM by Rick 8

Rick do you mean they have a variable pricing structure on the book depending on where you buy it in the ballpark? That seems extremely odd. I understand the vast price difference from hard cover to paperback...

Also, congrats to our own "Jax" for winning the Michael Cuddyer signed game-used spikes. Even better the kids at the Courage Center will have a brand new 200K field to play on in the near future...

Posted on August 20, 2010 at 10:25 AM by Max Highlight this comment 9

clublevelfan-
Yeah, I guess I could miss that point. I haven't gone to the bathroom at TF yet...probably never will since I don't eat or drink there.

Posted on August 20, 2010 at 12:41 PM by AJ Highlight this comment 10

Max,

I don't think it's different pricing in different places, but it appears to be different pricing on different days. It makes sense that they would test different prices.

AJ,

So...you fast for eight hours before games and then go just before leaving home?

I've never felt compelled to say this before, but TF accommodates such bodily functions rather well. At lease I've never felt the urge to wash my knees before returning to my seat.

Posted on August 20, 2010 at 12:48 PM by Rick 11

Rick-
Hahaha, no. I don't have a fear of going to the bathroom other places. I just don't have to go. I think I went once at the Dome, ever. I do go before I leave for the game though.

Posted on August 20, 2010 at 1:11 PM by AJ Highlight this comment 12

From looking at these pictures I don't know if this can be considered a lounge. A lounge to me is something that looks inviting, comfy, a place you might want to hang out for a bit and chat with friends.

The function it serves seems great. The convienence of being able to grab a quick bite to eat, something to drink, or a quick trip to the bathroom, is really nice. I would just like to see some more nooks with relaxing chairs to sit in or booths lined up against a wall just to give. It just needs that extra charm to make it into a more welcoming place to be. All the other clubs or lounges look first class, but not this one.

They should keep the exposed ceiling, but change the hanging light fixtures. Looks like my 40 year old highschool gym with those lights. It looks as though they could add a few more TV's or a scroll board with game time and league information on it.

Also I would like to see the white portion of the walls painted. Its very displeasing to look at when you have the nice mural paintings of the players on the lower portion of the wall.

These are just my opinions.

Posted on August 20, 2010 at 1:45 PM by Jeff Highlight this comment 13

At the end of the post above, I just added the complete list of players who ever started a game at first for the Twins.

Posted on August 20, 2010 at 2:25 PM by Rick 14

And I just added the era as well because a bunch of those names didn't mean anything to me.

Posted on August 20, 2010 at 2:46 PM by Rick 15

It's definitely not a plush lounge, but it's very convenient for the dugout box seats. There's almost never a wait for the restrooms in between innings, and I've never missed a pitch when leaving for food after the 3rd out in these seats.

Posted on August 20, 2010 at 3:00 PM by tom (aka tcmark) Highlight this comment 16

Rick-
Why are all the comments in italics? Or is there something screwed up with my browser?

Nice pictures. Too bad your subject wasn't more photogenic. I know people have already said this, but that lounge looks more like my high school (Mpls South) cafeteria...with some decently painted walls. It looks terribly sterile. And not that I really care all that much because I'm mostly just a poor upper-decker non-sth, but what's especially strange to me about its appearance is how seemingly little attention they paid to design down there - which is in stark contrast to the rest of the ballpark which seems to have had significant attention paid to design.

One thing that's been on my mind lately is that new (or relatively new) radio commercial that (I think) debuted about two weeks ago..."where hawks perch on foul poles...fast moving third basemen attack ground balls, and fast moving squirrels attack third basemen..." etc. I remember a conversation we were having on this site several months ago, and it was also a conversation that the Twins announcers had amongst themselves during some early season broadcasts, asking the question, "when will Target Field begin to feel like home, to the players, the fans, etc?" Some of them suggested that it would be when the Twins won a real big game in a dramatic way, perhaps a late inning comeback or walk-off homerun. Well, Thome's homer on Tuesday certainly did lots to make Target Field feel like home, but for me, it was when I first heard this commercial. It instantly made me realize that already, the ballpark has built up a considerable about of personality and stories to be told. I can't think of anything that could make a ballpark feel more like home than such reasons, stories and personality, idiosyncrasies that play out in the game, quirks, strange unpredictable occurrences, and of course, now, big walk-off wins in playoff chases while playing your division rival. Is there any question anymore? Does anyone still feel like TF isn't quite home yet?

Posted on August 20, 2010 at 7:49 PM by theloniousjoe Highlight this comment 17

Italics? What italics? (I fixed it.)

Posted on August 20, 2010 at 7:58 PM by Rick 18

: ) lawl

Posted on August 20, 2010 at 8:04 PM by theloniousjoe Highlight this comment 19

Wow, those "lounges" are nothing special at all. I thought I was missing something, but I guess not. I hope the Champions Club is better, or those that paid the exorbitant amounts for seats got hosed. As for waiting for the biffy, I have not had to wait yet at the "common man" urinals yet, and I've been to about 10 games so far. Love my seats in 215.

On another note -- I've noticed that they are not painting the dirt circle around home plate lately. Anyone have idea on what the criterioa is for when it is painted vs. when it is not?

Posted on August 20, 2010 at 8:06 PM by antifire Highlight this comment 20

Rick,
what are your thoughts both the sterility or blandness of design of that 1st base lounge, and the "is TF home yet?" topic?

Posted on August 20, 2010 at 8:07 PM by theloniousjoe Highlight this comment 21

I'm glad to see those pictures of the lounge. I am in Legends Club, and that is much more inviting that the understadium lounges. At only $48/seat, I think it's a decent deal. I'm sure Rick has pictures coming, but there's more atmosphere and the wooden murals of the Legends is pretty cool. For the most part, if somebody asked me the benefits of the Legends Club, I'd say, comfortable leather padded seats that are extra-wide, no wait for restrooms, no wait for concessions, and access to air conditioning. The other things are irrelevant to me.

Posted on August 20, 2010 at 8:14 PM by mhalv68@gmail.com (aka Twins2010WSChamps) Highlight this comment 22

How close to reality is the Champions Club to the original plans on the Twins site? Click name for the plans from Seat Selection

Posted on August 20, 2010 at 9:48 PM by TK Highlight this comment 23

Yeah, I visited the 3rd base lounge at open house and just assumed it wasn't finished yet. Not that I wouldn't enjoy having the use of it for a game or two; and thanks for the information that it is accessible during batting practice. I had no idea that was the case.
I passed on the dugout seats during seat relocation for price reasons and think the Legend Club is a better deal for premium priced sections. I would like to get the dugout box or even champion club some time. Maybe a rainy day where the price is reasonable.

Posted on August 20, 2010 at 10:34 PM by robin Highlight this comment 24

wtf?

Posted on March 17, 2011 at 10:35 PM by bulldog Highlight this comment 25


This page was last modified on August 20, 2010.



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