PETCO Park Tickets
PETCO Park Seating Chart and Event Tickets
Events at PETCO Park
SAN DIEGO PADRES: Petco Park
Many new baseball stadiums try to emphasize the most modern luxury seating available. PETCO Park went in the opposite direction: designers HOK Sport created Park at the Park, an elevated park beyond center field where 2,500 fans can take advantage of lawn seating opportunities.
PETCO Park follows largely in the blueprint of most other retro parks (HOK Sport sparked the ballpark renaissance with the Baltimore Orioles’ Oriole Park in 1992) but has several unique touches. The historic Western Metal Supply Company Building was incorporated into the stadium’s design-the left-field foul pole is attached to its southeastern corner. PETCO Park seating is perhaps the most unusual part of the park: the facility still has sections, but the fractured design of the levels create what the Padres call “seating neighborhoods.”
There was a point during construction that people wondered if those neighborhoods would ever be inhabited. The park was scheduled to open in 2002, but construction delays and financing issues pushed the opening back two years. Padres fans believe the wait was worthwhile-they now boast one of the most modern stadiums in major league baseball, with clear sightlines (even with the upper decks built on top of the field, no seats are obstructed) and some of the widest aisles in the majors. Padres tickets were suddenly hot again, as attendance spiked by almost one million fans and the Padres drew more than 3,000,000 people for the first time in franchise history.
Players weren’t as quick to warm up to PETCO Park (including the homestanding Padres, who played just three games over .500 at home and nine over on the road). The culprit? The monstrous dimensions. The 400+ foot distances to the power alleys miffed sluggers during the park’s inaugural season, as homer-happy hitters watched what they thought were homers turn into long flyouts. The Padres considered moving in the fences for 2005 but ultimately decided hitters would have to adjust. The Padres did exactly that and played much better at home during the first half of 2005 than they did in 2004.
Year Built: 2004
‘12 attendance: 26,218 per game; 2,123,721 total
Dimensions: 334 to left, 402 to left-center, 396 to center, 411 to right-center, 322 to right
Hotels Nearby: Omni San Diego, Marriott San Diego Gaslamp Quarter, Hotel Solamar, Hilton San Diego Gaslamp Quarter, Horton Grand Hotel
Thrill of victory: April 8, 2004: The first official game is played at PETCO Park. 41,400 Padres tickets were sold and the home team accommodated the fans, posting a 4-3 victory over the San Francisco Giants.
Agony of defeat: Sept. 30, 2004: The San Diego Padres had stayed in playoff contention throughout much of 2004 despite their struggles at home. But their postseason prospects grew grim after dropping two of three games to the hated San Francisco Giants, including the series finale 4-1 on Sept. 30. The Padres mustered just four hits off the Giants’ Jerome Williams and ultimately finished four games behind the Giants and five games behind the Houston Astros for the National League wild card.
Padres Ticket Tips: If you’re a first-time PETCO visitor, at some point you’ve got to visit the Park at the Park. The elevated park in center field opens 150 minutes before each game, costs just $5 per fan, and even includes a sandy “beach.” If you want to sit in a regular stadium seat, try to score a lower level ticket, as the upper deck has drawn some criticism for being too high and too steep. Sections 117-120 are directly behind the visitor’s bullpen area (the Padres bullpen is hidden behind the left field fence). The Padres have two natural geographic rivals: the Los Angeles Dodgers and the San Francisco Giants. With all three teams contending in the NL West, games between any of them are always heated.