FanDuel - WFBC

April 23, 2012

The Other Ballpark That Just Turned 100: Fenway Park wasn't the only ballpark whose 100-year centennial took place on April 20 of this month. Tiger Stadium opened on the same day as Fenway in 1912, but no one affiliated with the Tigers or Detroit marked the occasion. Today, a Google Maps flyover shows what remains at the storied corner of Michigan Street and Trumbull Avenue. "The only acknowledgment of the old ball yard is a small plastic sign," reports Eric Adelson of Yahoo Sports. A volunteer group called the Navin Field Grounds Crew keeps the lot mowed and chalks the lines once a week. The ghosts of baseball past take care of themselves.

posted by rcade to baseball at 05:10 PM - 12 comments

For now, the ghost of Tiger Stadium is kind of a sore subject. Asked about the place where he spent so much time frolicking as a little boy while his father played for the Tigers, Prince Fielder said Sunday, "It is what it is" and "Me being bothered won't bring it back."

You know what else is a sore subject for Prince Fielder?

His father.

Maybe not referencing dear old Cecil when talking to Prince might help the reporter get a better quote.

posted by grum@work at 05:17 PM on April 23

From the "what remains" link: with a tiny bit of scrolling, I can see a buddy's house in Corktown. Hey Matt!

When I cruised by the remains of the stadium a few years, it was a rather heartbreaking site; it was only half demolished. I went to a few games during my Little League years. Those were some awfully long days, driving down there in a school bus, watching the game and then driving back. Ugh. It was totally worth it though. I saw a Mark Fidrych game.

posted by NoMich at 05:40 PM on April 23

Wow. I literally gasped when I saw that Google Maps view. Just a shame that the site is not respected or commemorated. I know Detroit has more serious problems, but damn.

posted by Rock Steady at 06:59 PM on April 23

Google's street view catches Tiger Stadium partially destructed. That flagpole is visible through the ruins.

posted by rcade at 07:55 PM on April 23

Thanks rcade. I think it was a tad more intact when I saw it last. *sniff* There's something in my eye!

posted by NoMich at 08:19 PM on April 23

I'm apparently dead inside, since I don't get all weepy when things like this happen. So if your furnace quits this winter, you can start a fire with the lump of coal in my chest...

posted by MeatSaber at 08:33 PM on April 23

I can't remember what Tiger Stadium looks like. I suppose this lack of nostalgia fuels my indifference towards the current state of what is left of the stadium. I wonder, however, if keeping the stadium around would have really been a better option. It would have suffered from a slow decay, gradually falling into greater levels of disrepair.

It's hard to find uses for old stadiums. Most days out of the year the Pontiac Silverdome lies empty, simply taking up space. For some reason people don't have the same level of nostalgia with that place. I can't imagine why.

posted by Ying Yang Mafia at 12:19 AM on April 24

I think it's cool there is even a baseball field still remaining there. At least people can envision what was there years ago. Most cities just pave over these areas for parking or build shopping centers or something. Keeping the flagpole is rather cool. But with the field still outlined, I'm sure Tiger fans who once frequented the stadium can still easily see where everything was, and remember exactly where certain amazing moments took place.

Asking a hurting city like Detroit to find money to keep a large, old, decaying stadium up and running, just out of a sense of nostalgia, isn't realistic. I personally would like ALL old baseball stadiums to still be standing and in pristine condition, but it's just a sentimental dream not based in reality.

posted by dyams at 06:07 AM on April 24

I was upset when they renamed it Tiger Stadium from Briggs Stadium. A lot of memories.

But memories don't pay the bills, especially for a hurting city like Detroit. It would have been nice to keep the ballpark as a monument to the great games that went on there. And I was upset when they decided to tear it down rather than make something of it.

But Detroit has bigger financial problems than paying big bucks to keep an old stadium around. If you have to choose, well...

posted by roberts at 07:03 AM on April 24

I had the pleasure of attending a game there as a teenager back in the mid- to late-1950s. My sister had moved to Detroit, and my parents and I went for a visit. My brother-in-law treated us to the game, and our seats were in the 2nd deck on the 1st base line. These were the days of Kaline and Cash and Charlie "Paw Paw" Maxwell. With the connection through my sister, I've been a Tigers fan (as an alternate to Boston) ever since. My dream is that when I die and reach my ultimate destination, Ernie Harwell will introduce me over the radio broadcast as I enter the facility.

Keeping the old stadia may be nice for the nostalgia buffs, but it stinks for those who prefer a more comfortable place. My fervent hope is that al-Qaeda will blow up Fenway Park during the off season, killing no one but making sure that the only thing standing is the right field foul pole. Truly, if the politicians in the City of Boston and the People's Republic of Mass would ever get over the idea of lining their pockets, a new park might get done. Until then, the Red Sox are stuck with Fenway until it falls apart like the Deacon's Wonderful One-Horse Shay. Red Sox and Patriots could be playing in a sports complex next to the harbor almost within walking distance of downtown, but because no "palm grease" was forthcoming, that idea was never moved forward. If Fenway has to remain standing, deed it over to the several colleges in Boston that play baseball, and let them use it for a home field. If you are trying to build a college program, what better inducement than to tell a recruit that he would be playing in Fenway Park?

posted by Howard_T at 10:15 PM on April 24

My fervent hope is that al-Qaeda will blow up Fenway Park during the off season, killing no one but making sure that the only thing standing is the right field foul pole.

For a long time I was shocked when I read this type comment. I grew up loving Fenway, and when I get a chance to see a game there, even today, I'm a little kid again. But only over the past few years have I realized that a lot of people do not love Fenway, and a lot of those people are Red Sox fans. Hell, I think I'm the only Boston fan on Sportsfilter that would vote to keep Fenway.

Of course, I realize that I might feel different if I had season tickets and had to sit in those seats almost daily, but I doubt it. I don't want a Disney World version of Fenway like they've done in NY. Going to Epcot to see another country is easier, cheaper, and in many ways nicer than actually going, but it's not the same.

I have a lot of problems with the current ownership, but not their treatment of Fenway. I hope they ride Fenway until nothing can stop if from crumbling to the ground, even if that takes putting it under an air-tight dome. I'm all for it.

Also, Fucking Fenway.

If Fenway has to remain standing, deed it over to the several colleges in Boston that play baseball, and let them use it for a home field. If you are trying to build a college program, what better inducement than to tell a recruit that he would be playing in Fenway Park?

Nice thought, but if you think a college is going to spend the money it takes to keep Fenway playable I think you're living in a dream world.

posted by justgary at 10:14 AM on May 01

I'm not comparing Texas Stadium to Fenway, but when I was a kid I thought that place was a palace. In its final years, with all the exposed concrete, stink and grime it looked like the world's largest urinal.

As a baseball fan I do hope that Fenway and Wrigley keep the torch burning for the classic ballparks of yore.

Nice thought, but if you think a college is going to spend the money it takes to keep Fenway playable I think you're living in a dream world.

Most college athletic programs these days can barely afford to have baseball teams.

posted by rcade at 11:11 AM on May 01

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