*Editors Note: This was published in early April 2014. If you visit a stadium and discover that our info is no longer accurate, please comment and let us know. You can also tweet @SocialSignIn with updates, feedback, questions or a picture from the game once you connect to the WiFi!
The 2014 MLB season has officially begun, and with it, thousands of fans around the U.S. are flocking to their favorite teams stadium for a taste of America’s pastime. Many teams have recently invested into building new, top of the line stadiums, with all the amenities a fan could want. Did they remember to include free WiFi? Keep reading to find out if your mobile connectivity will be a blazing fastball or a slow changeup when you visit the ballpark.
Ahead Of The Curve
The National League West is the most tech savvy division in baseball, with four of five teams offering free WiFi in their stadiums. In 2004, The San Francisco Giants became the first professional sports venue to provide WiFi at their home field, AT&T Park. In doing so, the Silicon Valley sluggers became one of the world’s largest public wireless hotspots.
Fans of the San Diego Padres (PETCO Park), LA Dodgers (Dodger Stadium) and Arizona Diamondbacks (Chase Field) are also treated to free WiFi at their respective stadiums, with the Colorado Rockies (Coors Field) being the outcast of this tech-friendly group.
The National League East also features four WiFi friendly stadiums, which is good news for fans of the Washington Nationals (Nationals Park), Atlanta Braves (Turner Field), Philadelphia Phillies (Citizens Bank Park) and Miami Marlins (Marlins Park).
Citi Field, home of the New York Mets, does not offer free WiFi despite being built in 2009 with amenities like Shake Shack.
(UPDATE: On 8/8/14 we were notified that Citi Field DOES offer WiFi by a Mets fan at the game)
The National League Central may be home to the St. Louis Cardinals (Busch Stadium), last years World Series representative from the NL, but only two of their teams offer free ballpark WiFi. The Cincinnati Reds (Great American Ball Park) and Chicago Cubs (Wrigley Field) offer free WiFi, but the Milwaukee Brewers (Miller Park), Pittsburgh Pirates (PNC Park) and aforementioned Cardinals aren’t there yet.
UPDATE (2/12/15): The Cincinnati Reds are working with MLB to make the Great American Ball Park WiFi even stronger.
All things considered, 10 of 15 National League stadiums offer WiFi to their fans. Teams like the Reds are doing their best to make the most of their offering, unveiling the Social Media Zone at the Great American Ballpark this season to generate more buzz and steam around the team.
The American League East is widely considered the most challenging and competitive division in baseball, and home to the reining World Series champion Boston Red Sox. Despite playing in the 100+ year old Fenway Park, the Sox have updated their classic field with WiFi so that fans can share the on-field memories with their friends online. That being said, the New York Yankees (New Yankee Stadium), Toronto Blue Jays (Rogers Centre), Tampa Bay Rays (Tropicana Field), and Baltimore Orioles (Camden Yards) do not offer WiFi in their stadiums. That makes the AL East the least tech-friendly division in all of baseball, tied with…
UPDATE: The Toronto Blue Jays offer WiFi at Rogers Centre as of 4/12/2015
The American League West recently accepted the Houston Astros (Minute Maid Park) into their division. While they haven’t proved very competitive on the field, they are the only team to offer WiFi to their fans. Unlike the NL West, this group of teams hasn’t proven to be early adopters. That means fans of the LA Angels (Angel Stadium), Oakland A’s (Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum), Seattle Mariners (Safeco Field) and Texas Rangers (Rangers Ballpark in Arlington) are out of luck.
UPDATE: The LA Angels offer WiFi at Angel Stadium as of 10/1/14
Coming down the stretch, our final division is The American League Central. If you’re a fan of the Chicago White Sox (US Cellular Field) or Minnesota Twins (Target Field), you can enjoy hi-speed free WiFi next time you go to a game. You won’t be so lucky if you root for the Cleveland Indians (Progressive Field), Kansas City Royals (Kauffman Stadium) or Detroit Tigers (Comerica Park).
The American League may have won the World Series, but in the battle of stadium WiFi, the National League has them beat. Of the 14 MLB stadiums offering WiFi, 10 of them belong to National League teams. That’s a home run!
Thanks to Mobile Sports Report for making the research process a bit easier. Comment on this post to share your WiFi stadium experiences or If you visited a stadium with WiFi and we need to update our list. Visit SocialSign.in to learn how we turn free WiFi into a new way of communicating to your fans, guests, shoppers and customers…and learning something in the process.
If you offer WiFi in your business and want to learn how it can be used as a highly effective marketing channel, contact us today.