Toronto

'A dream of mine': How a Toronto man visited every major-league baseball stadium in U.S., Japan

From Phoenix, Ariz., to Tokyo, one Torontonian has completed a journey to dozens of major-league baseball stadiums on a shoestring budget.

Russ Tiffin went to 30 MLB stadiums, 12 in Japan over 10 years

Toronto resident Russ Tiffin captured this balloon celebration at a baseball game in Hiroshima, Japan. (Russ Tiffin/Submitted)

When it comes to baseball, Russ Tiffin is willing to go the extra mile — well, several thousand of them, actually.

The Torontonian recently completed a longtime goal of visiting every major-league baseball stadium in the United States and Japan.

Tiffin said he went to 30 stadiums in the U.S. and 12 in Japan over a 10-year journey.

"I would say I just really love the atmosphere, the baseball experiences and the characteristics of every individual stadium," he said.

With each visit, Tiffin completes a tour of the stadium to dive deeper into its history, and documents the venue through photography and social media

Tiffin, 43, says he fell in love with baseball stadiums as a kid when he saw his first Tigers game in Detroit. (Talia Ricci/CBC)

On the trips south of the border, he grabbed a sample of the dirt from each field, which is now proudly displayed in his home. 

"I think they're all kind of unique in their own way and they all have their own special architectural details. I pay attention to that."

The 43-year-old says he doesn't have a favourite, but he considers Comerica Park his home stadium, growing up in Windsor, Ont., and attending Tigers games in Detroit. But still, he says nothing quite compares to watching a baseball game in Japan.

Tiffin says the Rogers Centre dirt sample was the toughest to collect because it's a turf field, but he got lucky when the stadium hosted an event where they were giving away samples to fans. (Russ Tiffin/Submitted)

"I fell in love with it right away," he said.

"Not to say the fans aren't passionate here, but they're just so into it in Japan. They sing along to every player when they're at bat. They have their unique customs they celebrate throughout the game. They have their own cheering sections for each team."

Tiffin said the decade long trip didn't come without its challenges. He did it all on a shoestring budget taking overnight bus rides across the border — sometimes being held up by bad weather or cancellations.

Tiffin also completes a 'hot dog report' at every stadium sharing the price of a beer and hot dog with his followers. (Russ Tiffin/Instagram)

After the long journey, he said, he's going to take a bit of a break from the baseball travel. 

"It was a dream of mine. I'm glad I got to accomplish it."

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