For baseball followers which can be 50 years previous or older (I for one am 61), these people will keep in mind among the previous stadiums that groups performed in that now are a distant reminiscence. Extremely, because the yr 2000, 16 of the 30 Main League Baseball groups have opened new stadiums. That’s greater than half!
If you happen to embody the Nineteen Nineties, one other seven groups debut in a brand new venue. The Toronto Blue Jays started to play in a brand new stadium in 1989, the Rogers Centre making it 24 of all the slate of groups in MLB dumping their previous enjoying grounds for brand new all since 1989. The opposite six groups nonetheless enjoying in previous stadiums are:
- Kansas Metropolis Royals (Kauffman Stadium, opened in 1973)
- Los Angeles Angels (Angel Stadium, 1966)
- Oakland Athletics (Oakland Coliseum, 1966)
- Los Angeles Dodgers (Dodger Stadium, 1962)
- Chicago Cubs (Wrigley Subject, 1914)
- Boston Purple Sox (Fenway Park, 1912)
The 2 oldest parks, Wrigley and Fenway are historic. In Boston, it’s the “Inexperienced Monster.” That’s as a result of the left-field wall stands 37 ft two inches. On the base of the wall is the scoreboard exhibiting the tallies from across the Nationwide and American Leagues impressively up to date by hand a course of that started in 1934. Whereas older and equally well-known stadiums like Yankee Stadium have been destroyed and changed, Fenway Park stays an icon that may nonetheless home a baseball sport 108 years and operating.
Out in Chicago, we discover a stadium simply two years youthful than Fenway Park that’s identified for its outfield partitions which can be lined within the Ivy plant. What else makes Wrigley Subject distinctive are the rooftop seats situated outdoors the stadium initially a free solution to see Cubs video games however that will finally give solution to being charged for a seat.
One irony concerning the Boston Purple Sox and the Chicago Cubs is their shared agony of not enjoying in a World Sequence or profitable one. For the BoSox, in 1918 they received the World Sequence. They might not make it again there till 1946 and lots of blamed this on the “Babe Ruth Curse.” That’s as a result of the “Nice Bambino” was a participant for Boston who was dealt to the New York Yankees and the remaining is historical past.
Boston would get again to the autumn basic in 1967, once more in 1975, and yet one more time in 1986 solely to lose all of them. So lastly in 2004 Boston received one other World Sequence making it 86 years between Main League Baseball championships. As for the Cubs…they suffered worse. A World Sequence title got here in 1908 for the Cubbies and after seven extra appearances in baseball’s championship spherical (1910, 1918, 1929, 1932, 1935, 1938, 1945) Chicago lastly bought off the snide with a championship victory in 2016 after 108 years of ready.
Mockingly, the Purple Sox World Sequence win in 1918 came visiting those self same Cubs. Just like the Purple Sox, the Cubs additionally had been supposedly “cursed.” Chicago’s black cloud got here within the type of a goat. A bar named “Billy Goat Tavern” owned by William Slanis had an actual goat as a mascot in 1945. He introduced the animal to the 1945 World Sequence in sport quantity 5 however was instructed he needed to go away Wrigley Subject due to it. So angered by his removing of himself and his pet, Slanis declared “Them Cubs, they ain’t gonna win no extra!”
True to his phrase, the Cubs by no means reached the World Sequence once more for the rest of Slanis’ life which ended together with his passing in 1970. In these subsequent 24 years from 1945, the Chicago Cubs performed .500 ball or higher simply seven occasions and completed as excessive as second solely twice and people seasons got here in 1969 and 1970. For historians of baseball, they are going to keep in mind Chicago’s storied collapse of 1969 once they blew a first-place lead in September and watched the New York Mets move them by and go on to win the World Sequence themselves.
Getting again to our matter right here, the Purple Sox and Cubs stay of their respective stadiums, the 2 oldest stadiums in Main League Baseball. Talked about prior was Yankee Stadium or higher often called “The Home that Ruth Constructed.” That as a result of Babe Ruth known as it dwelling and he’s maybe the best participant ever within the historical past of baseball. Now comes the half the place we glance again at among the baseball stadiums which can be lengthy gone, a few of which readers could acknowledge and others that may go away you saying “I’ve by no means heard of that stadium.”
The lads in pinstripes as soon as shared a stadium with the crosstown New York Giants enjoying within the previous Polo Fields (we’ll get to that venue forward) however on April 18, 1923, the Yanks christened their new home, Yankee Stadium. First known as “Yankees Park” in 1924 it formally took on the identify of the group adopted by the phrase stadium. Within the 1974 and ’75 seasons, the stadium underwent renovations as age began to meet up with the power. The Yankees would play their video games at Shea Stadium whereas building occurred within the previous stadium. Yankee Stadium stood for twenty-four extra years till in 2008 the brand new Yankee Stadium was constructed and prepared for utilization because the “Home that Ruth Constructed” was dismantled. A novel side of Yankee Stadium previous and new is their “Monument Park” which places on show plaques of nice Yankees gamers of the previous.
Whereas the Polo Grounds stadium is lengthy gone, there are in all probability many who have no idea this facility whereas conserving its identify the phrases Polo Grounds additionally utilized to 4 stadiums put to make use of. The very first Polo Grounds was constructed for polo groups to play in and the yr was opened in 1876. Nevertheless it opened its doorways to varsity soccer, baseball, and professional soccer. As a result of New York Metropolis was increasing its streets in 1889, their blueprint for the brand new avenues took it instantly by way of the Polo Grounds. Ignoring objections, New York Governor David B. Hill had the stadium dismantled.
The following Polo Grounds discovered itself within the Manhattan borough of New York in an space that was often called “Coogan’s Bluff.” The New York Giants of the Nationwide League known as the stadium dwelling nevertheless it was referred to extra as Manhattan Subject. Adjoining to Manhattan Subject was one other stadium that will develop into Polo Grounds III as Manhattan Subject turned a car parking zone. Polo Grounds III was initially named Brotherhood Park. After a raging fireplace on April 14, 1911, that destroyed many of the stadium, renovations occurred and the Polo Grounds was thought of to have undergone sufficient modifications that it must be known as “Polo Grounds IV.”
Probably the most well-known incident on the Polo Grounds occurred on August 16, 1920, when the Cleveland Indians’ Ray Chapman bought plunked within the head from a pitch thrown by Yankees moundsman Carl Mays. The power of the impression despatched Chapman to the hospital the place he later died changing into the one participant in Main League Baseball historical past to lose their life throughout an precise baseball sport incident. The stadium would stay standing till it was taken down in 1964 with the New York Mets having known as it dwelling however had been ready for Shea Stadium to be constructed.
Due to the Brooklyn Dodgers and their successes within the Fifties Ebbets Subject turned well-known because it showcased the debut of Jackie Robinson who’s attributed to breaking the colour barrier in Main League Baseball. However not simply Ebbets Subject however the Dodgers themselves had been doomed as calling New York Metropolis their dwelling as a result of not simply the Dodgers however the New York Giants as effectively bolted The Massive Apple for a west coast location the place they continue to be at present in San Francisco and Los Angeles. That left simply the Yankees on the town till the New York Mets got here alongside in 1962. As for Ebbets Subject, it’s partitions got here crashing down in 1960 gone forevermore.
While you consider baseball and the town of Philadelphia as of late you assume “Phillies.” Nevertheless, on the flip of the twentieth century, the Athletics had been Philly’s baseball group led by long-time supervisor and Baseball Corridor of Fame member Connie Mack. Shibe Park was the house for the Philadelphia Athletics, an impressive baseball group that performed on this stadium and would see it later to be often called “Connie Mack Stadium.” The venue opened in 1909 and would stand the take a look at of time till it closed with a remaining sport between the Philadelphia Phillies and the Montreal Expos on October 1, 1970. 62 seasons had been performed at Shibe Park and with it eight World Sequence performed inside its confines between the Athletics and Phillies. Shibe Park additionally hosted some nice boxing matches, worldwide soccer video games, and even political occasions in addition to live shows, spiritual occasions, and circuses. The property and land had been finally offered to the Deliverance Evangelistic Church and their facility stays on the location of Shibe Park to today.
In contrast to their cross-town counterparts the Cubs, the Chicago White Sox have seen their authentic stadium come to the bottom. “Comiskey Park” was conveniently named after its authentic proprietor, Charles Comiskey. The venue would final 80 years from 1910 till the ultimate sport was performed inside its confines in 1990. Comiskey Park was first known as “White Sox Park” however would then tackle the identify of the proprietor. It hosted soccer and soccer video games in addition to American League video games in baseball. One little bit of well-known historical past belongs to this stadium because the first-ever All-Star Recreation occurred at Comiskey Park in 1933. A number of the largest names in historical past performed in that first sport, for instance, Frankie Frisch, Peper Martin, Chuck Klein, Carl Hubbell, Pie Traynor, Paul Waner, Max Carey, Lefty Gomez, Lou Gehrig, Joe Cronin, Babe Ruth, Lefty Grove, Invoice Dickey, Jimmie Foxx, Tony Lazzeri, and the managers that day had been John McGraw of the Giants within the Nationwide League and the legendary Connie Mack representing the Philadelphia A’s for the American League.
Comiskey Park additionally held one of many largest and most disastrous occasions in any sport’s historical past, “Disco Demolition Evening” in 1979. An area radio DJ named Steve Dahl knew there have been many who hated disco at the moment and so he proposed a demolition evening the place disco information could be blown up. Anticipating a small crowd, it the truth is turned so effectively attended that followers had been sneaking into the stadium, and as soon as the information bought destroyed chaos erupted the sphere torn to shreds. The occasion occurred in between the video games of a doubleheader and the second sport was pressured to be canceled. Comiskey Park’s demise got here in 1991 with the development of a brand new stadium and but simply one other previous basic stadium fell by the wayside.
Earlier than the previous Montreal Expos (now the Washington Senators) moved into their Olympic Stadium in Canada, they performed in a smallish and odd venue known as “Jarry Park.” With a starting seating capability of simply 3,000 followers, it was expanded to seat 28,456 by 1969. I clearly recall watching video games being performed at Jarry Park after I was rising up and one reminiscence sticks in my thoughts that of the outfield “fence.” Sure, a fence and never an outfield wall. Including insult to harm (typically actually) is the very fact the fences weren’t very excessive so gamers chasing down fly balls may and did simply fly over the fence of their effort to make a catch. The truth is, the fences had been simply 5 ft in top.
What higher solution to wrap up this stadium overview then to return in time with a stadium from my hometown and a facility I had the chance to go to simply as soon as after I was 9 years previous, the previous dwelling of the Pittsburgh Pirates and Steelers amongst different groups. The previous Forbes Subject was a ravishing stadium within the previous basic types of sports activities amenities and it stood within the Oakland part of Pittsburgh. Nearly like Wrigley Subject, I can recall standing on the highest of my grandmother’s residence constructing and with the ability to simply barely see over the outfield wall at Forbes Subject. It was not akin to Chicago the place you can really watch the sport, however in Pittsburgh, the Forbes Subject outfield was partially seen from that constructing on North Craig Road.
After enjoying baseball at Exposition Park, the Pirates opened Forbes Subject for play on June 30, 1909. It could stay open till Pittsburgh adopted swimsuit of different cities by constructing a cookie-cutter stadium known as “Three Rivers Stadium” in 1970. However among the best Pirates gamers ever took the sphere at Forbes Subject together with the late nice Roberto Clemente, maybe the town of Pittsburgh’s largest star athlete ever and definitely probably the most beloved. Some followers protested the demolition of the venue in 1970 however to no avail, because it was taken down and the Pirates and Steelers moved into Three Rivers Stadium, a facility that in itself would solely final till 2001 when PNC Park and Heinz Subject had been erected.
Discussion about this post