The Western Metal building is one of the signature features of Petco Park, the new downtown home of the San Diego Padres. For years, we enjoyed watching them play in Jack Murphy Stadium (later called Qualcomm Stadium), which was conveniently located in Mission Valley with plenty of parking and easy access. The new stadium is right in the middle of the city, near the waterfront just north of the rail yards. Some of the historic buildings that existed long before the stadium was built have been preserved; they add "atmosphere" to the place and make it unique. The Western Metal building has been incorporated into the new stadium as part of the left field wall. The gift shop downstairs has a place where shoppers can walk right out onto the field and watch the game, or batting practice through a fence in left field. There are a few seats on the second and third floors of the building, and bleachers up on top, where you see us here.
Ever since the new stadium was built, I had thought it would be nice to sit atop the Western Metal Building. Now that I've been up there, I realize that it's the view of the Western Metal building that makes Petco Park unique. Sitting on top of the building, you can't SEE it! The stadium, therefore, becomes rather ordinary. They're great seats, giving you a bird's eye view of the field from a unique vantage point, but there are some drawbacks in addition to the absence of the ambiance created by the view of a building right there in the outfield. First, it's windy and cold up there! Granted, it's early April, but the breeze off the bay hits these seats first and it was chilly. Second, it's difficult to see anything in deep left field. On this evening, that's where all the interesting plays occurred. Third, it's a little hard to see the scoreboard. Yes, it's right next to us, but at this angle, it's difficult to read the lineup and other details. Aside from those complaints, which, after all, aren't that important, it was great to be at the game with Matt and the seats were fine. Scott was at the game too, but he sat with some other people out in the right field bleachers.
The day ended with the Padres losing to the Dodgers twice. They completed the 9th, 10th, and 11th innings of the previous night's game (which had ended in a tie after almost nine innings of play), and the full regularly-scheduled game. We (and Scott) were among the few Padres fans who stayed until the bitter end. Matt and I left before the fireworks, which, Scott reported, were pretty good. We would have preferred to have seen more "fireworks" on the field from the Padres.