Have a baseball-and-beach family vacation of a lifetime, with this Grapefruit League guide to ballparks, best beaches and hotels, family outing ideas, and even the latest pre-season inside baseball on the Baltimore Orioles from Sports Illustrated.
The Schedule: 35 games, with 17 home games (see schedule and buy tickets here).
The Field: Like Camden Yards, was built in throwback style, swapping Baltimore’s industrial brick for classic Sarasota architecture. The stadium seats were originally installed in Camden Yards, and fans can snack on Maryland crab cakes and Esskay hot dogs, making this truly “Birdland South.”
Inside Baseball: None of Baltimore's moves are in and of themselves problematic. The issue is that a team that needed to make a bold decision instead treaded water. For more on the Baltimore Orioles, go here at si.com.
Best Beach: Whatever your seaside pleasure, Sarasota has you covered: Kayak through the mangrove “tunnels” of South Lido Park on Lido Key, explore the shops and restaurants of Siesta Key Village, or find a secluded stretch of sand to call your own on Longboat Key, which has 10 miles of beaches accessible only by boat.
Family Outings: The Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Circus recently announced that it would shut down, but the circus lives on at the , which delights with a circus museum, fine-art exhibits, and live performances at the historic Azolo Theater. Visitors can also stroll the lush grounds of the 66-acre Bayfront Gardens and tour Ca’ d’Zan, the Venetian Gothic home of the Ringlings. Come one, come all!
More Teams and Locations: To find more fun baseball and vacation information on each of Florida’s Grapefruit League teams, click on the links below:
Atlanta Braves: Lake Buena Vista
Baltimore Orioles: Sarasota
Boston Red Sox: Fort Myers
Detroit Tigers: Lakeland
Houston Astros: West Palm Beach
Miami Marlins: Jupiter
Minnesota Twins: Fort Myers
New York Mets: Port St. Lucie
New York Yankees: Tampa
Philadelphia Phillies: Clearwater
Pittsburgh Pirates: Bradenton
St. Louis Cardinals: Jupiter
Tampa Bay Rays: Port Charlotte
Toronto Blue Jays: Dunedin
Washington Nationals: West Palm Beach