¡Vamos Naranjeros!: Baseball in Mexico

Of all the sports that exist in this world, baseball is one of the few of which I can honestly enjoy. So, I fit in pretty well in Hermosillo then. Baseball is a popular game here, especially since the city boasts a wonderful stadium, Estadio Sonora.

Located a bit out of the way by the racetracks, Estadio Sonora is the home field of los Naranjeros de Hermosillo, which means literally ‘orange pickers’. Yes … slightly racist. stereotypical. I do not know. I did not get to choose the name. Oddly enough, their mascot is a wonderfully jolly coyote, not a giant orange, which I think is just a missed opportunity, but I digress.

And, here is the pitch! (Photo credits by PintsizedPioneer)

If you happen to be in Hermosillo for a game, I recommend ride sharing services instead of taking a taxi to the stadium. Cabs here do not use meters, so they can and will often overcharge, especially if one does not speak Spanish. Take an Uber, maybe? The stadium fills up quickly, so I suggest leaving early as well by about 30 minutes.

Playoffs start in the New Year (January) for the Mexican Pacific League or Liga Mexicana del Pacífico, so the holiday season is the perfect time to go. However, the league starts its general play in October, so go earlier too.

Driving up to the stadium, one would be remiss if he or she did not take in the glory of the giant red Tecate sponsor sign/sculpture. You have arrived at your destination.

Tickets range anywhere from 300 to 60 pesos. But, here is the catch, upon entering the stadium, one engages in the game of constantly changing seats to your advantage. Essentially, this aspect of the games means anyone can get seats behind home plate as long as the rightful owners are not sitting there.

Fight it out y’all! And, be nonchalant!

¡Quesadillas! Only about 100 pesos! (Photo credits by PintsizedPioneer)

Since Balba (Mexican Kween) has season tickets, we got behind home plate for both games we went to (rightfully). The only annoyance of the seats were the pinches matracas (loud-ass noise makers). Fans are devoted to their Naranjeros, and they are numerous especially around the field. However, if one wants to smoke, one will have to vacate to the cheap seats up top. So, my ears were hurting, not my lungs at least.

Of course, the food is the best part of the game. Many people come just for the ambiance, so of course, the hot dogs and alcohol flow. Also, if you are lucky, you might just happen across a local meme star as well. We did!

Drink runners wander between the stands and at request can bring an array of drinks – palomas (tequila and pineapple juice), beer, micheladas (beer, lime juice, and salsas), and whiskey with water – by the litre if desired!

Food venders sell peanuts (cacahuates), hot dogs, corn dogs, chips saturated in hot salsas, and of course, cotton candy.

Occasionally, someone will come around to take quesadilla orders as well! However, these babies take a little longer to processes and secure.

Got to get those chips! (Photo credits by PintsizedPioneer)

Be advised – drinks are paid as a sum at the end of the game and food by the order.

As for the players, which this is all about of course, get ready for some pompis and very American names thrown into the mix. A lot of players are from the US who did not make it into the major league there, so they come down to Mexico. And, depending on the team, they get paid quite handsomely.

That being said, if any of this sounds enticing – junk food, loud crowds, familiar names, and a dancing coyote – and if you find yourself in Sonora for a spell, definitely check out los Naranjeros!

Nothing is more authentic than rooting for a local team!

So, New Years is upon us! Time to celebrate. We will be soon back to Vancouver, which will be cold and busy. Meanwhile, expect one or two more Hermosillo themed posts including most likely, an instagram tour of the city! Happy New Years and travel safe!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *