What goes together almost as well as ice cream and apple pie - and are no less an American icon? How about hot dogs and baseball? July is National Hot Dog Month, and there’s no better time to sink your teeth into a good dog than at a baseball game.

Tampa is famous for many things, including the Tampa Bay Rays. Did you know that the Tampa Bay area is a baseball lover’s paradise? When you can’t catch a Rays home game or if you root for another team (don’t worry, we won’t tell anyone), there’s always another team to cheer for or another game to catch.

Spring Training

Image via Flickr by Jared

Thanks to our beautiful weather when many parts of the country are still buried in snow, Tampa Bay is home to several major teams during their spring training. The Chicago Cubs discovered us in 1913 and since then, we’ve been the go-to place for the MLB.

  • The Philadelphia Phillies train in Clearwater at Bright House Field. 
  • The Toronto Blue Jays train in Dunedin at Florida Auto Exchange Stadium (formerly Dunedin Stadium).
  • The New York Yankees train in Tampa at George M. Steinbrenner Field.

And that’s not all. Seven other teams train in Florida. The Baltimore Orioles, Detroit Tigers, Atlanta Braves, Boston Red Sox, Houston Astros, Minnesota Twins and Pittsburgh Pirates are often close enough to drive to a game or make a long weekend out of it. That’s a lot of baseball.

The Regular Season

Image via Flickr by Eric Kilby

Maybe you’re a hardcore baseball fan. You like the Rays well enough (or you’re a die-hard fan),  but you need more. We’ve got minor league baseball teams, too. All the teams are part of the Florida State League.

Each local team offers their own specials and fun stuff for kids. Baseball camps, ticket deals and more will help you enjoy your love of baseball without breaking the bank while including the whole family in the fun.

Tampa Bay Rays

Image via Flickr by Keith Allison

Of course, we have to mention our local team - the Tampa Bay Rays. They play at Tropicana Field in St. Pete when they’re at home, for now. The Rays have their sights on a new stadium. There’s no definite answer yet, but Oldsmar has stepped up as a major contender for the new location and Hillsborough County is working hard to be a contender as well. Wherever the Rays end up, at least fans and lovers of baseball in and around the Tampa area will always have plenty of opportunity to indulge their love of the game.

From February until October, you can watch as much baseball as you can stand. If you happen to enjoy a good hot dog while you’re at it, you’re not alone. When you head out to a game this month, grab an extra to celebrate National Hot Dog Month.