Located in Pittsburgh, PNC Park is one of the premier MLB parks in the state of Pennsylvania. What is special about this particular stadium is that it is fairly modern, yet it has a distinctive old-school style, which might remind you of the golden age of baseball parks. This is the fifth home of the local MLB team, the Pittsburgh Pirates.
The Pirates started in 1887, although their legacy goes even further back in time, as they were previously known as the “Pittsburgh Allegheny.” The team had a shaky start. It struggled significantly during the first two decades of its existence, performing poorly. However, things took a turn for the best in the following years. By the early 1900s, the team was already one of the best in the league, and it didn’t take long before it acquired the legendary status that it still enjoys to this very day. Most notable, the Pirates took part in one of the most famous games in the World Series history, winning against the New York Yankees in 1960.
PNC Park, the team’s latest home, has been active ever since its opening in 2001 when it replaced the city’s previous MLB park, Three Rivers Stadium. The previous stadium was demolished using a controlled implosion, an event witnessed by quite a lot of people, who watched as a little piece of history went away to make room for something new.
Although the stadium finally opened to the public in 2001, talks of a new facility started as early as 1991. It took quite some time to finalize the project and secure the necessary fund. The new stadium was not only going to be a functional space: it was also going to be an example of great architecture and pleasant aesthetics, which would indeed bring something special to the city and not just a run-of-the-mill baseball stadium. In addition to that, logistics needed to be improved as well. The Three Rivers Stadium was quite difficult to get to, as it was located in a portion of the city that was deemed hard to access. The new ballpark accounted for this shortcoming as well, going for a more accessible layout. The first official game played at the new stadium featured the local team versus the Cincinnati Reds. The stadium experienced some alterations through the years. Most notably, 2006 saw the implementation of a tribute to the former Negro league baseball teams, celebrating the earliest African-American baseball players through a permanent exhibit featuring seven statues. The artworks depict players from local teams such as Homestead Grays, as well as Pittsburgh Crawfords. Josh Gibson and Satchel Paige are two of the most iconic players that are featured in the exhibit. This section of the stadium is also home to a relatively small theatre, with 25 seats. The theatre broadcasts a movie, which tells the Negro leagues in Pittsburgh and elsewhere in the United States.
Throughout the years, PNC park hosted a wide variety of side events. Most notably, artists such as Me First and the Gimme Gimmes (featuring Fat Mike of NOFX) and Bruce Springsteen, The Rolling Stones, Dave Matthews, and Ed Sheeran performed this particular location. Movie buff might remember this stadium as one of the locations featured in the movie Jack Reacher, starring Hollywood actor Tom Cruise.
To this day, PNC is widely considered one of the foremost baseball parks in the United States. It offers a breathtaking view of the Pittsburgh skyline and the river nearby while also treating the audience to a very timeless design. Each seat is optimized for perfect viewing, leaving the audience satisfied with their experience!