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BOSTON (CBS) – I will never, ever complain about Spring Training.
I have had the opportunity and the privilege to go and cover Red Sox Spring Training for the past 15 years or so, going back to the days of Winter Haven. I loved it back then (even though there was pretty much just a Checkers to eat at in Winter Haven) and I still love it now.
I have never had too much of a problem dealing with the fact that City Of Palms Park and the Sox minor league complex are two miles apart from each other. I will admit that it had to be hard for the fans because they had to park at City of Palms, hop on a shuttle bus, and go down the street just to watch workouts. Not too much fun.
However, that is all over and I love it.
The Red Sox broke ground on their new complex in Lee County on Friday, and it sounds like it will be beautiful. It is close to the airport (unlike the current facilities) where there are plenty of hotels, restaurants, shops, malls, movie theaters, etc, and most of them are fairly new. Meanwhile, if you want the beach, it’s still not too far to get there.
As far as the complex goes, what more could you want? It’s a new state-of-the-art stadium that will seat 11,000 and will have a look of Fenway, plus fields all around that will house the major and minor league players. So, you will have the opportunity to see a big league game yet also watch the minor leaguers….all in the same place.
It also sounds like there will be plenty of on-site parking.
Now, I’m sure there will be complaints. You know the food, drinks, and souvenirs will be expensive, but that’s the way of the world these days. Besides, the big key is the baseball. Take a walk around the Minnesota Twins complex which is right near the new one and you’ll quickly understand what I mean. The Twins stadium is nothing great, but you have the fields all around you.
So, if you love the Sox and/or baseball, start booking now. It should be just about as good as it gets from Feb 15th to April 1st down in the Red Sox/Fort Myers camp for many years to come.