Last week, on my way home from Denver, I stopped in Dyersville, Iowa to check out the Field of Dreams, where Major League Baseball is building a “pop-up” ballpark to host a Yankees-White Sox game on August 12. The pandemic wiped out the plans for this to happen last year as originally scheduled.
On a date closer to the game, we’ll run a bigger piece about how this endeavor came to be. But in the interests of both timeliness and getting sufficient bang for our travel bucks, I wanted to share some photos I took to show where things stood last week in the construction as well as offer a glimpse of what the experience will look and feel like.
The original Field of Dreams, where the legendary 1989 movie of the same name was filmed, is quite modest. It’s certainly not large enough to hold a regular-season major-league game (although it will host a 14U game on August 11, as detailed here.
In fact, the only stands are these wooden bleachers in foul territory on both baselines. For me, when I see this structure, I think of Ray’s daughter Karin falling off of it, compelling Archie “Moonlight” Graham to leave the field, magically turn old again and save Karin’s life.
So MLB is building a bigger field, with a fan capacity of 7,911, across the way, through a cornfield naturally.
Here’s a shot of the new field from the original field:
This will be a White Sox home game — the two clubs will resume their series on Saturday, August 14 with a rain day built-in on the 13th — and just like Guaranteed Rate Field (worst ballpark name never), the White Sox’s dugout and clubhouse will be on the third-base side.
This structure here, on the first-base side, will be the Yankees’ clubhouse:
For now, yes, fans can come. The setup will allow for 4,000 cars. This land is across the street from the original field, which fans will pass en route to the pop-up field. The first light tower you see is closest to the street. Parking will go all the way back to the fourth light tower.
It’ll be a healthy walk from the farthest parking spot to the pop-up field, with of course some food and souvenir stands along the way. Golf carts will be available for those who require assistance.
The visit piqued my curiosity about how the final product will look. I’ll let you know when I return to Iowa for the game itself next month.
- This week’s Pop Quiz question comes from the late Jan Bottone of Wellesley, Mass.: In the sitcom “Everybody Loves Raymond,” Robert’s dog is named after a 1969 Mets player. Name the player.
- My longtime friend Chris Rose has a (relatively) new gig as host of “The Chris Rose Rotation,” featuring entertaining conversations with active players as guests as well as co-hosts. It’s part of the Jomboy Media empire.
- Your Pop Quiz answer is Art Shamsky. If you have a tidbit that connects baseball with popular culture, please send it to me at firstname.lastname@example.org.