The Boedeker Diaries: Looking Back

You hear all about the popular Spring Break destinations — Daytona Beach, Cancun, Breckenridge, etc.

But to me, there is none greater than the greater Phoenix area.

My family and I returned from our trip to Texas Rangers Spring Training on Sunday night and now I have some tips for anyone wanting to attend either this week or next year.

First off, there are a few things you need to know.

All of the Cactus League stadiums are basically within a 45-minute drive of each other, and many are much closer than that. Traffic can be pain and it might take 40 minutes to go 12 miles, but they're pretty much all within that time.

So if you so desire, it'd be easy to hit up other stadiums and get a good taste of what other teams have to offer.

Second, when you go to Surprise Stadium, eat the breaded pork tenderloin sandwich from the Chicky's stand. Just trust me here. Do it.

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Third, don't be afraid to eat Mexican food in Phoenix. We ate a pretty famous place called Valle Luna. I knew New Mexican food was a thing (oh, was it a thing!) but wasn't really aware Arizona had its own style — what I was told is called Sonoran Mexican food. If you go to Valle Luna, get the fundido. Do it.

Fourth, if you're an adult and you want autographs, be cool about it. Don't barge to the front of crowds and try to fight kids for autographs. It's not a good look. If you're getting them for your kids, get there early. Practice fields open at 9:30 a.m. and by 10:30 a.m., pitchers start coming off the field with position players following about 30 minutes later or so. 

If you want to go on a day when there's a game at Surprise Stadium, expect a large crowd. If you want lighter crowds, go on a day when they play "on the road."

Most of all, soak it all in. It's really a great atmosphere and super laid back. If you can, go to a night game and sit on the lawn. It's beautiful.

Have fun, and see ya there next year!

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