5 Ways You Didn't Think of to See Baseball in Georgia
Stop in Rome, Savannah and many points between to catch all of the best baseball sites in Georgia.
The Atlanta Braves have a new home at SunTrust Park, surrounded by shops, restaurants and hotels at The Battery Atlanta. Kids will love the Hope & Will's sandlot at the new Braves stadium, and everyone will love exploring the stadium's exhibits from the Braves Hall of Fame to artwork and statues.
But there is a whole lot of baseball fun in Georgia outside Atlanta. If you are a true fan, or even just a casual one, we have a great line up for you.
Unlike football that mostly recruits from colleges, baseball has historically used the farm team system. Players are recruited for feeder teams and work their way into the majors. Georgia has several farm teams. The Rome Braves, play at State Mutual Stadium, and the Gwinnett Stripers (formerly Gwinnett Braves) play at Coolray Field. Both teams feed the Atlanta Braves. The Augusta Greenjackets, named after another famous sporting event held in Augusta, are a class A feeder for the San Francisco Giants. Catch a game at these parks, and you could be watching the next big MLB star.
For an inexpensive outing, catch a game at any of the colleges in Georgia. The University of Georgia Diamond Dawgs have been to the College World Series six times and played in 82 NCAA Tournaments, winning 50. A game at Foley Field in Athens has all the elements of a big city experience in an intimate 3,291-seat setting. Kids can run the bases, play catch in the outfield and watch mascot races in-between innings, and then experience all that Athens has to offer.
Summer Collegiate Leagues
This is where the fun really begins. Collegiate leagues are non-profit summer baseball leagues where games are played with wooden bats and showcase some of the top college talent in the nation, and the names are hysterical. Macon Bacon and the Savannah Bananas are in the Coastal Plain League. The Bacon play at Luther Williams Field, which was used for filming in “42,” the movie about Cairo, Georgia, native Jackie Robinson. Everyone in Savannah knows Bananas owner Jesse Cole for his bright yellow tuxedo and top hat that he wears around town. And grabbing a cold one at a Bananas game means a slightly banana-flavored beer from Service Brewing Co.
Several of baseball's greats are from Georgia. Learn about the life of the hall of famer they called the Georgia Peach at the Ty Cobb Museum in Royston. Mark your calendar in May for the once-a-year vintage baseball game hosted by the museum. Jackie Robinson was born in Cairo, Georgia, and a historical marker in town tells about his early life as a sharecropper's son. Johnny Mize played on five World Series teams. Learn more about "The Big Cat" at the Johnny Mize Athletic Center and Museum at Piedmont College in Demorest, Georgia.
And then there is Little League, where anything can happen, and usually does. Lakepoint Sporting Community in Emerson is one of the most comprehensive state-of-the-art sports complexes in the state. After the game, head to the wake park for some water fun, catch a sand volleyball game, or head into Cartersville to the The City Cellar And Loft for some authentic Southern cuisine. The specialty of the house is an untraditional version of shrimp and grits.