Monday, July 5, 2010

The Old Ballparks

I've written before lamenting the loss of the old pre-World War I baseball fields. Only Wrigley Field and Fenway Park remain now that old Yankee Stadium (1923) has closed down. For those of you too young to remember them, I have put together a series of old pictures of the exterior and interior of these classic stadiums. Most of the newer parks have attempted to recapture the atmosphere of the old parks. (You don't want to see what kind of stadiums existed in between these two eras.) Here they are. I hope you enjoy them.



Tiger Stadium- (The right-field upper deck has been replicated by Atlanta's Turner Field.)




Tiger Stadium Detroit (also known as Briggs Field)This is where Lou Gehrig's consecutive game playing streak ended.



Comiskey Park Chicago




Chicago's Comiskey Park-home of the White Sox (and Chicago football Cardinals until they moved to St Louis) Site of the first All-Star game played in 1933.



League Park Cleveland- The brick section still remains today



League Park Cleveland-Home of the Indians into the 30s.





Cleveland Stadium-Home of the Indians (and Browns)Opened in the 1930s.


Cleveland Stadium held over 80,000 fans. This is where Joe DiMaggio's 56-game hitting streak ended




Sportsman's Park (later Busch Stadium) Field is now a playground.




Sportsman's Park St Louis, home of the Cardinals and St Louis Browns until the latter became the Baltimore Orioles.




Crosley Field Cincinnati-Note the raised outfield level at the walls, a feature replicated by Houston's center field.




Crosley Field Cincinnati




Forbes Field Pittsburgh home of the Pirates and the Steelers. Only the left center field wall remains. Home plate is encased in its original position in a University of Pittsburgh building.



Forbes Field Pittsburgh




Baker Bowl Philadelphia- Home of the Phillies 1895 into the 1930s when they began to share Connie Mack Stadium with the A's. Note the sign; "The Phillies use Lifebuoy". Someone wrote under it, "And they still stink."



Baker Bowl



Connie Mack Stadium Philadelphia-Note the classic facade and similarity to Brooklyn's Ebbets Field.





Connie Mack Stadium (Shibe Park until 1955)-Home of the Philadelphia Athletics and Phillies until mid-60s. Now the site of a church.


Braves Field-Boston




Braves Field Home of Boston Braves until their 1953 move to Milwaukee. The right field "Jury Box" (bleachers) still remains as part of Boston University's football field.




Griffith Stadium interior. Note the jagged center field wall that ended in someone's back yard. Mickey Mantle hit a 500 foot plus homer over that wall.




Griffith Stadium-Home of the Washington Senators until their move to Minnesota. Now the site of Howard University Hospital




Polo Grounds. Note the deep center field ending at the clubhouse. Willie Mays made his over-the-shoulder catch there in the 1954 World Series.




Polo Grounds-Home of the New York Giants to 1957. Later the original home of the Mets.




Ebbets Field Brooklyn




Ebbets Field-Home of the Brooklyn Dodgers to 1957. Note the classic facade. Now the site of an apartment building.




Yankee Stadium-opening day 1923




Old Yankee Stadium prior to its reconstruction in the 60s. Note the deep center field and short right and left field corners.



Wrigley Field in Los Angeles- Yes, there was a Wrigley Field in LA, the home of the Triple A Pacific Coast League LA Angels, owned by the Chicago Cubs and the Wrigley family. In 1961, it was the original home (for one year) of the LA Angels American League team. Note the similarity to Chicago's Wrigley Field even with ivy on the left field wall. It only held 22,000. Prior to its demolition in the 1960s, I played at this great little park in a LA city semi-pro championship game.


Wrigley Field in Los Angeles


They just don't make them like that anymore, folks. They are a long-lost piece of Americana. Enjoy Wrigley Field and Fenway Park while they last.

6 comments:

  1. Thanks Gary, that was beautiful. I would have like to see more of Wrigley Field, the one in Chicago I can still see riding the Red or Purple line elevated trains, with the little viewing stands on the roof of every surrounding building. By special arrangment, last time the Cubs were in the playoffs long enough for anyone to care, the owner of the building can sell half the seats, but the residents get the other half.

    Really appreciate the view of Ebbets Field too. I saw the apartment building once. I never saw the stadium.

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  2. As I was scrolling through I was thinking to myself, "I bet he doesn't have Braves Field." ...and low and behold there it was! My very first attendance at a major league baseball game. There was Warren Spahn, Johnny Logan, and my favorite at the time, Johnny Sain.
    Can't remember the others now for that was a long time ago; I was 10 or 11 at the time.
    About the same time frame I also went to Fenway Park where we used to razz The Kid...better known as Ted Williams...we missed Ted when he went to the Korean War to fly jet airplanes (the first war in which the Americans utilized jet airplanes).

    Norm

    Enjoyed the memories this post gave me...thanks!

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  3. Norm,

    Spahn and Sain and pray for rain. Remember that?

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  4. What about the Braves stadium in Milwaukee?

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  5. Absolutely beautiful Gary. I wish there was some type of rememberance of the former site of Crosley Field in Cincinnati, but unfortunately, there isn't.

    I would love to have your insight about your trips to some of the current ballparks at http://www.FromThisSeat.com.

    I want to see all 30 stadiums; bucket list.

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  6. Seat.com

    Here you go.

    http://garyfouse.blogspot.com/2008/04/baseball-parks-best-and-worst.html

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