Which Old Ballpark? … Lights, Please

By Glen Sparks

Do you know where these pieces of baseball history happened? Hint: Every ballpark in this post opened before 1920. You’ll find the answers at the bottom.

1.  Night baseball in the Major Leagues debuts here on May 24, 1935. President Franklin D. Roosevelt flips a switch in the White House to turn on the lights.

2.  St. Louis Cardinals’ great Dizzy Dean is never the same after breaking a big toe while pitching at this ballpark on July 7, 1937.

3.  The Washington Senators steal a record eight bases in the first inning at this ballpark on July, 19, 1915.

4.  Cleveland shortstop Ray Chapman dies after being hit in the head with a pitch thrown here on Aug. 17, 1920.

5.  This ballpark has one red seat, located in the right-field bleachers.

This old ballpark is the answer to No. 3.

This old ballpark is the answer to No. 3.

1.  Crosley Field in Cincinnati, opened in 1912. Reds General Manager Larry MacPhail wanted to increase attendance during the Depression; 20,422 fans (about 15,000 more than usual) came out to watch the last-place Reds beat the Phillies 2-1.

2.  Griffith Stadium in Washington, D.C., 1911. The injury happened at the All-Star Game; the batter was Earl Averill of the Cleveland Indians.

3.  League Park in Cleveland, 1891. The weary catcher? Steve O’Neill.

4.  The Polo Grounds in New York, 1911. The Yankees’ Carl Mays threw the pitch, and Chapman died 12 hours later.  (The Yankees played at the Polo Grounds from 1913 through 1922.)

5.  Fenway Park in Boston, 1912. The seat marks the spot where Ted Williams crushed a 502-foot home run on June 9, 1946, the longest round-tripper ever hit at Fenway Park.

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