Surprise, Ariz. (Royals)

For 34 years, the Kansas City Royals had followed the MLB norm and held their spring training in Florida.

From 1969 to 1987, the team trained at Terry Park in Ft. Meyers, Fla., before moving to the new Baseball City in 1988.

In 2002 Surprise Stadium was completed in Surprise Ariz., and the Royals now call Billy Parker Field their spring training home. photo

The stadium holds approximately 10,500 people with both standard seating and luxury boxes. A concourse also surrounds the ballpark.

The stadium houses two 37,000-square-foot clubhouses that feature locker rooms, weight and training facilities, and even team kitchens. Not only that, but each team also has a practice infield and six full practice fields.

But the Royals are not the only team that holds their spring training in Surprise. The Texas Rangers have also been hosting their spring training at Billy Parker Field since ’03. Had the Royals remained in the A.L. West, Surprised Stadium would have been a great place for a preseason, inter-division matchup.

But there are also other “surprises” in the area as well.

There is an Aquatics Center and a splash pad to keep cool in the Arizona heat.  For nature lovers there is the White Tank Regional Park that features a waterfall trail.

For those of you that enjoy swinging something other than a baseball bat, there are eight golf courses in the area around Surprise.

Anna Ciesla

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