ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — What’s old and new for Isotopes baseball, 2011:
♦ New to see: After adding life-sized likenesses of Marge and Homer Simpson inside the ballpark last year, the Isotopes now have added Bart and Lisa Simpson to the mix for those interested in new photo opportunities.
Where are they? In different places. We’ll let you find them.
♦ New to eat: While much of the cuisine at the Lab will remain the same, the Isotopes have announced a partnership with El Pinto Restaurant that will add some spice to a few of the menu items.
“Several of the items from El Pinto will be sold here at the park,” said assistant general manager Nick LoBue. “The salsa will be available, and several of the ingredients will be part of the recipes (in food sold at the concession stands).”
At various times during the season fans will be able to exchange ticket stubs for free food from El Pinto and salsa jar lids for free game tickets at the ticket office.
♦ New promotion: On Sunday, May 8, the Isotopes will let the dogs in. Yes, the inaugural “Bark in the Park” for a 1:35 p.m. start against Memphis will let spectators bring in their canines and sit on the berm ($6 ticket for humans, no charge for furry friends. That means dogs.). Seriously, all dogs must have rabies vaccinations, IDs and license tags.
♦ New around the league: Tonight’s opponent has a new name. The Storm Chasers are rebranded with a new name and home, having left historic Rosenblatt Stadium for the new Werner Park. Omaha is still an affiliate of the Royals, whose farm system appears to be loaded.
Other changes in the league include a Triple-A renaissance in Tucson, where San Diego has relocated its team from Portland. The Tucson Padres even will wear retro San Diego Padres-styled uniforms. Alas, they won’t make it to Isotopes Park this season.
Meanwhile Oklahoma and Round Rock essentially have swapped franchises the RedHawks are now an Astros affiliate; the Rangers now have their affiliate in Round Rock, owned by the Ryan family.
♦ Old: Ticket prices at Isotopes park remain the same as last year, with $6 berm seats, $12 reserved level, $14 box seats and $24 club seats. All but the berm seats are available at a $2 discount when bought in advance. The club also has numerous season and partial season-ticket plans.
♦ Really old: The not-so-popular $5 parking charge on lots the Isotopes share with the University of New Mexico remains in effect this year. The charge will be waived if there are four or more occupants in the vehicle. No word on whether credit will be given to canines May 8.
Photo Credit – creditline