It’s the rumbling of the trains that makes the Syracuse Chiefs‘ NTB Stadium unique. It’s not the gut-shaking roar of jets flying over Shea Stadium, but it’s a more subtle, subsonic thunder that happens ever 30 minutes or so as freight and passenger trains pass by. I was there on Sunday, June 10 to see the Chiefs take on the Pawtucket Red Sox.
The stadium evokes Wrigley Field, with its overhanging upper deck and its sideline bullpens. It doesn’t have the same steel pillars breaking up the sight lines, but it has the same old school sort of feel. The trains are more often hear than seen; you can catch glimpses of them through the tree line in right field, but it’s impossible to miss the low rumbling and the occasional blaring of diesel horns.
Pawtucket was in their usual form, getting 15 hits though surprisingly that only scored 5 runs. Syracuse only managed 3 runs, and lost the game. It was impossible not to compare the game to our usually IronPigs experience. It was a subdued game, with perhaps a third of the attendance of your average IronPigs game, and that audience evenly split between Chiefs and Red Sox fans. The presentation was also more subdued; there was no dugout dancing by the team mascots and very little of the end-of-inning shenanigans and fan games you see at your average IronPigs game. This isn’t a complaint; it’s more of an observation; I know plenty of folks who prefer the more streamlined presentation, and if so, the Chiefs will be right up your alley.