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Ballpark Game Plan: Tampa Bay Rays & Tropicana Field

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Field: Tropicana Field

Official Site:

Year Completed: 1990 (open to baseball in 1996)

Capacity: 42,735

Covered: Yes

Mascot: Raymond the Ray (a furry blue creature that is officially described as a seadog)

The Game We’ll See: Sunday, August 13: Cleveland Guardians vs. Tampa Bay Rays (see all 30 here!)

Parking & Transportation:

Tropicana Field offers free parking to anyone with four or more people in the car. However, on Sundays, it is limited to the first 100 cars. While some lots accept credit cards, prepayment is recommended.

Tailgating is allowed and parking lots open three hours before the game. However, there are some restrictions. No charcoal is allowed, and you may not carry beer as you walk to the ballpark.

Oversized vehicle: Buses can park for free on 2nd Avenue S between 9th and 10th Streets, subject to availability. Parking for RVs, campers and large vans is twice the general parking rate for each game. Overnight parking is prohibited.  

The Baseball Looper Trolley provides free shuttle service from two stops in St. Petersburg directly to the field. Service begins 90 minutes prior to the game, and lasts until 1 hour after the game has ended. Shuttles pick up passengers every 10 minutes.

Stadium Tours:

Tropicana Field is not currently offering tours.

General Information:

Bags: Citi Field prohibits backpacks, coolers, and bags exceeding 16” x 8”. Personal bags that are smaller than 16” x 8” are allowed, as are diaper and medical device bags. No storage is available.

Food & Beverages: Outside food is NOT permitted into Tropicana park. However, fans may bring in one sealed, “personal-sized” bottle of water per person.

Cashless transactions: As with other stadiums, the Trop no longer accepts cash.

Signs: Tropicana permits fans to bring in signs if they are baseball-related, don’t block views, interfere with the game, contain advertising, or contain offensive materials.

Foul Balls: There are no written policies in the A-to-Z Guide. Presumably, fans may keep foul balls, as long as they don’t interfere with play or enter the playing area to retrieve them.

Umbrellas: While Tropicana Field allows umbrellas into the park, they must remain under the seat.

Gates: Gates open 90 minutes before first pitch Monday through Friday, and 2 hours before first pitch on Saturdays and Sundays.

Cameras: Tropicana Field allows cameras and video recorders into the ballpark, but tripods are prohibited. Lenses may not be longer than 12”.

Where to Sit:

Baseball Road Trop recommends rows R and above of any 100 section. The Ultimate Baseball Road Trip suggests sections 101 and 102, if you can get them. Otherwise, anyplace on Sections 101 to 126 in the single letters, Sections 141 to 146 in the Outfield to catch foul balls, Infield Press levels 203 to 216, or Rows G through M in Sections 300 to 310 for the cheapest seats.

According to fans on the Facebook Ballpark Chasers Group, the Tropicana carefully monitors seat hopping. While $10 will get you in the door, you’ll have a hard time moving to a better seat. Instead, they recommend buying lower-level tickets, which are generally quite reasonable. In particular, they recommend sections 129 or 131. Odd sections are on the third base side and have a better view of the video board in right field. Prices go up within two hours of the game.


  • The Ultimate Baseball Road Trip says that the spiced ham, pork, and salami Cuban Sandwich is the trademark food at Tropicana Field. You can find them at Cubanos in the Third Base Food Hall and Section 146.
  • The field’s signature hot dog is the Kayem Hot Dog, an all-beef dog that comes in a footlong version or in a “heater” edition with chili and cheese. Find them at Home Run Hot Dogs in section 121.
  • Tropicana Field offers mobile ordering through the MLB ballpark app.
  • While it’s not at the Field, Facebook Ballpark Chasers group fans raved about Ferg’s Sports Bar.

First Time Visitors:

The website does not indicate that the Rays offer any special services or certifications for first time visitors.


There is nothing on the official site. However, fans on the Facebook Ballpark Chasers group suggest arriving early and heading toward the dugouts to try for autographs.

Other Stadium Tips & Highlights:

Tropicana Field is the only baseball park to have 8 foul poles.

Inside the main gates, the Ted Williams Museum and Hitters Hall of Fame includes exhibits on the Rays, Cy Young, and the Negro and Women’s Leagues. The Rays Museum, located in the four Left Field alcoves on the Field Level, highlights the history of the Rays since its inception.

Near Gate 1 at Center Field Street, you can “pet” the namesake animal, the ray. This is always a hit with kids!

The Rays have two retired numbers:

  • 2 – Wade Boggs
  • 42 – Jackie Robinson (retired by the MLB)