Which of the 10 Never Before Seen Facts on T-Mobile Park Seattle Will Impress You the Most? Those 10 Facts on T-Mobile Park are…
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10 Never Before Seen Facts on T-Mobile Park
T-Mobile Park is one of Major League Baseball’s best west coast stadiums every sports fan has on their bucket list. In fact, the Mariners venue opened in 1999 and will host the All-Star Game in 2023. Any Seattle fan that bleeds Mariners Northwest Green will know every information possible, from the team playing in three Championship Series (1995, 2000 & 2001) to Felix Hernandez throwing a perfect game in 2012. However, there are new T-Mobile Park facts that many baseball supporters never knew or never heard of in their lives. For details on what facts baseball fans rarely knew about, please refer to 10 Never Before Seen Facts on T-Mobile Park below!
10: A Man’s Cremated Ashes Accidently Fell on Then-Safeco Field
In some stadiums, they come with interesting stores that fans have never heard of. One example is that a Red Sox fan buried a David Ortiz jersey in the cement for the New Yankee Stadium. In addition, a fan saved another fan’s life during a Nationals game in Washington D.C. Chase Field even saw a unique moment as Umpire Jim Joyce saved a stadium employee’s life. But perhaps the most interesting story to come from a big league stadium came from T-Mobile Park. Unintentionally, a man’s cremated ashes fell on the Mariners stadium.
In May 2002, a guy on a small plane was flying across Seattle. Originally, he was trying to spread his family member’s ashes throughout the sky. However, one area from the plane had a malfunction and the guy wasn’t able to hold on to the boxed ashes. The container filled with cremated ashes fell from a plane window and fell onto the retractable roof of the then-Safeco Field. Luckily, no one was injured and the investigation later declared that anyone involved on the plane would have faced penalties if the item drop was intended to hurt anyone.
9: Mariners Ballpark Previously Hosted a College Football Bowl Game
College bowl games can be a great asset for baseball stadiums when it comes to making additional revenue. In fact, there are multiple MLB parks across the country that have experience in hosting December bowl contests. During the 2010s, LoanDepot Park in Miami and Oracle Park in San Francisco used to host the Miami Beach Bowl and the Fight Hunger Bowl (respectively). As of today, Yankee Stadium is hosting the Pinstripe Bowl and Fenway Park is serving the Fenway Bowl. But for the Mariners, the formerly-named Safeco Field hosted a college bowl game only twice in its 20-year history.
In late 2001, the Seattle Bowl made its debut at the Mariners venue with Georgia Tech upsetting #11 Stanford 24-14. One year later, Wake Forest defeated Oregon in blowout fashion 38-17. However, the Seattle Bowl did not come without controversy. Following the 2002 contest, the organizers behind the annual bowl faced lawsuits from the Mountain West Conference due to unpaid fees. Another thing to add was that both teams for each game had to share the same sideline. Therefore, the Seattle Bowl was discontinued in 2003 and T-Mobile Park has not hosted a football contest since.
8: T-Mobile Park has Seen the Most MLB No-Hitters Since 2010 with 6
The Mariners stadium has hosted many exciting baseball events since it opened in 2001. For instance, T-Mobile Park was the site for two American League Championship Series in 2000 and 2001. Also, the ballpark hosted the 2001 All-Star Game and will be doing the same honors in 2023. The retractable roof facility even saw some amazing award winners in Ichiro Suzuki (2001 AL MVP), Felix Hernandez (2010 Cy Young), and Kyle Lewis (2020 Rookie of the Year). But believe it or not, T-Mobile Park has seen the most MLB no-hitters out of any other ballpark since 2010.
In fact, the Mariners ballpark has witnessed a total of six no-hitters since its opening in 1999. Beginning in April 2012, White Sox right-hander Philip Humber threw a perfect game against the Mariners. A couple months later, the Seattle club accomplished a combined no-no in the interleague matchup vs. Dodgers. Then, in August of that year, Mariners ace Felix Hernandez threw the team’s first perfect game in franchise history against the Rays. Hishashi Iwakukma is the latest Seattle pitcher to throw a no-no vs. Orioles in 2015. During the 2021 season, T-Mobile Park saw two no-hitters in John Means (Orioles) and Spencer Turnbull (Tigers).
7: Mariners Stadium did not have its First Public Concert Until 2013
Commonly, it is good practice for MLB ballparks to host live musical events. In fact, there are teams that previously hosted big-name shows. Those teams were the following: Mets, Guardians, Red Sox, Phillies, Blue Jays, Yankees, Tigers, Angels, and many more. Concerts can vary with either a post-game event or just a stand alone performance during the off-season. But did you know that T-Mobile Park did not have its first public concert until 2013? And that doesn’t count singing at National Anthems or having themed nights.
British rock star Paul McCartney was the first artist to play a live concert at the Mariners venue. In addition, Seattle-native rock groups have taken the stage at T-Mobile Park like Foo Fighters and Pearl Jam. Of course, rock-and-roll shows were not the only music genre to play at the Mariners stadium as the ballpark hosted country music by Zac Brown Band and hip-hop by Jay-Z. Just like any other baseball-oriented venues, the main stage is usually situated in centerfield.
6: Florida Marlins were the “Home Team” at Then-Safeco Field in 2011
Over the last couple of decades, home clubs were forced to play somewhere else due to things they couldn’t control. One example was that the Blue Jays played as the “home” club against the Phillies at Citizens Bank Park due to a G20 Summit in Toronto. Another example was that the Orioles were the home team vs. Rays at Tropicana Field due to the 2015 civil unrest in Baltimore. One final example saw the Astros playing a home series vs. Cubs in Milwaukee because of Hurricane Ike in Houston in 2008. But did you know that the Florida Marlins were the “home” team at then-Safeco Field in 2011?
Originally, the Marlins/Mariners series in 2011 was meant to be played at Sun Life Stadium (now Hard Rock Stadium) in Miami. However, the series was moved to the Pacific Northwest due to a U2 rock band concert taking place at the Marlins’ park. Because of this rare change, Safeco Field had to follow the rules of the Marlins being the home team. That meant a pitchers’ at-bat was applied instead of the designated hitter rule since Florida was a National League club. Also, the Marlins batted in each contest of the series in the top innings and not the bottom innings.
5: Mariners Stadium was the Home of WrestleMania XIX in 2003
T-Mobile Park has a distinction for hosting events that do not involve Mariners games. For instance, the stadium is the home for many live concerts either during or after the baseball season. In addition, T-Mobile Park hosted two college football games during the early 2000s. But believe it or not, the then-Safeco Field served as the site for WrestleMania XIX in 2003. And by the way, professional wrestling only happened once in the stadium’s 20-plus years of history.
In Spring 2003, WrestleMania XIX took place at the Mariners ballpark in front of thousands and thousands of fans. Many big-name wrestling professionals have appeared at the event like Hulk Hogan, Brock Lesnar, and Vince McMahon. The introduction stage was situated in centerfield, while the main ring sat between home plate and the left field foul line. For the record, this would be the only time that WrestleMania has ever taken place at not only Safeco Field, but also in Seattle.
4: The Retractable Roof for T-Mobile Park is Unlike Any Other
Retractable roofs can provide a nice atmosphere for fans and teams alike. They can protect fans from downpour rains and lightning storms. In addition, those features can help with climate control to avoid humid weather during the summer months. So far, only eight teams play in a stadium with a retractable roof/dome: Rays, Astros, Rangers, Blue Jays, Marlins, Diamondbacks, Mariners, and Brewers. But for the Mariners, their retractable roof is unlike any other.
Why’s that you ask? T-Mobile Park’s roof does not provide climate control such as air conditioning. Therefore, the retractable roof is rather used as an “umbrella” to shield the field from wet weather. This unique feature is necessary since Seattle experiences much cooler weather than other cities that have roofs. Perhaps the only thing T-Mobile Park’s retractable roof can be compared to other stadiums is that the feature can slide back-and-forth. Here’s an interesting note: Mariners ballpark had a rain delay in a 2000 game against the Rangers when the roof stuck open.
3: Mariners Ballpark is the Only MLB Venue to have Grand Opening DURING the Season
Normally when sports teams try to build their new stadiums, they aim to have them open before the season starts. On the other hand, their old venues would have either gotten ready for demolition mode or redeveloped to another business opportunity. But sometimes, unforeseen situations can force a team to postpone their move into their new home to later in the season or next year. Well, that was the case for the Mariners as they didn’t move into the then-Safeco Field until summer time.
In July 1999, the new retractable roof stadium opened to the public after 20-plus years at the Kingdome. The reason behind the decision to push back the opening date from April was due to high construction costs. In order for the Mariners to pay off all their debt from construction, they remained at the Kingdome for the first half of the 2001 season. Once all the money was paid off, the Mariners finally moved into Safeco Field. Best of all, the current stadium had something in common with the Kingdome: providing shelter for fans from weather delays.
2: T-Mobile Park Used to have a Fan Section Called King’s Court
Fans and teams love to cheer on their favorite players at various ballparks across the country. In fact, they would either chant the player’s name or wear a specialized t-shirt for his support. For example, spectators at Tropicana Field would chant First Baseman Ji-man Choi’s name with “Ji-man Choi…Ji-man Choi” in a similar style as “MVP…MVP.” Another example is that former Red Sox hitter Kevin Youkilis used to receive “Yooooo” chants from the Fenway Park faithful. But did you remember that Felix Hernandez used to have his own cheering section called King’s Court?
The once-in-a-lifetime fan section made its debut in 2011, just a season removed from Hernandez winning the Cy Young. Spectators sitting in the area wore yellow t-shirts and waved yellow “K” strikeout cards whenever King Felix took the mound in Seattle. The fan section was located on the first base side of the ballpark. Perhaps King’s Court’s favorite moment took place in 2012, when Hernandez threw a perfect game against the Tampa Bay Rays. Unfortunately, the spectator section came to an end following the King’s final season with the Mariners in 2019.
1: Mariners’ Top-Selling Food Item is a Cup of Grasshoppers! No, Really!
Whenever fans go to any stadium, they look to grab a bite to eat before or during the games. No matter if it’s for baseball or any other sport, spectators would rely on concession stands in the concourse. Those stands traditionally serve hand-accessible foods like pizzas, burgers, and hot dogs. But there are some teams that go crazy and out-of-the-box in regards to providing the best culinary experience possible. For the Seattle Mariners, they have the most popular treat for fans and critics alike: the Toasted Grasshoppers.
For those who don’t know, a toasted grasshopper is an odd but delicious take on a baseball classic. The treat comes with several pieces of grasshoppers heated in a toaster and then seasoned with chili lime salt. When the toasted grasshoppers debuted in 2017, the dish immediately created a cult following. Where are those tasty treats sold at? The grasshoppers can be found in Edgar’s Cantina (named after Mariners legend Edgar Martinez) in the bullpen level at left field. The whole concept was developed as part of a partnership with a local restaurant that sold grasshoppers often.