Fogel Field was a baseball stadium, located in Hot Springs, Arkansas. The site was also known as Fordyce Field and Holder Field. Fogel Field was built in 1912 as a spring training site for Major League Baseball teams. The field was named for Horace Fogel, President of the Philadelphia Phillies. Fogel Field hosted the Phillies (1912) and the Pittsburgh Pirates (1921–1923, 1926). The Kansas City Monarchs (1928), Homestead Grays (1930–1931) and Pittsburgh Crawfords (1932-1935) of Negro League Baseball also used Fogel Field as their spring training.
Several minor league teams from the American Association used Fogel Field as well: Indianapolis Indians (1926–1927), Milwaukee Brewers (1927–1931) and St. Paul Saints (1934–1935) . The Montreal Royals of the International League (1932) trained at Fogel Field.
|Former names||Fordyce Field; Holder Field|
|Location||847 Whittington Ave|
Hot Springs, Arkansas
|Coordinates||N 34° 30.905 W 093° 04.393|
|Owner||Arkansas Alligator Farm and Petting Zoo|
|Main contractors||Hot Springs Park Company|
|Major League Spring Training|
Philadelphia Phillies (NL) (1912)
Pittsburgh Pirates (NL) (1921–23, 1926)
Negro League Spring Training
Kansas City Monarchs (1928)
Homestead Grays (1930–31)
Pittsburgh Crawfords (1932-35) )
Minor League Spring Training
Indianapolis Indians (American Association) (1926–1927)
Milwaukee Brewers (American Association) (1927–31)
Montreal Royals (International League) (1932)
St. Paul Saints (American Association) (1934–1935)
Ray Doan Baseball School (1933–1938)
George Barr Umpire School (1935-1952)
Rogers Hornsby Baseball College (1939–1952).
Beginning with spring 1886, when the Chicago White Stockings' (today's Chicago Cubs) President Albert Spalding, the founder of A.G Spalding, and player-manager Cap Anson brought their players to Hot Springs, Arkansas, the concept was for players to have training and improved fitness before the start of the regular season. This move gave credit to Hot Springs being called the "birthplace of spring training baseball".
After the White Stockings had a successful season in 1886, winning the National League Pennant, other teams began bringing their players to Hot Springs. The St. Louis Browns, New York Yankees, St. Louis Cardinals, Cleveland Spiders, Detroit Tigers, Pittsburgh Pirates, Cincinnati Reds, New York Highlanders, Brooklyn Dodgers and Boston Red Sox were among the early squads to arrive in Hot Springs. Needing venues to play, Whittington Park, Majestic Park and Fogel Field (1912) were all built in Hot Springs specifically to host Major League teams. Later, Sam Guinn Field was built in 1933 at 497 Crescent Avenue to host Negro League spring training teams.
After the Hot Spring Baseball Grounds were used for other purposes, that left Whittington Park and Majestic Park as the only two fields in Hot Springs. Fogel Field was then built by the Hot Springs Park Company in 1912 to meet the demand. Philadelphia Phillies' president and owner Horace Fogel secured the field for his franchise and the field was named after him. The Phillies used the field for the 1912 season.
Located directly across the street from Whittington Park, Fogel Field had a small grandstand. Besides the Phillies and Pirates, the park was used by teams using Whittington Park, due to its convenient proximity. Hall of famers such as Babe Ruth, Cy Young, Honus Wagner, Grover Cleveland Alexander and Pie Traynor were among the roster of players to play at the site. Fogel was banned from baseball after the 1912 season for saying that umpires favored the New York Giants and were treating the Phillies unfairly. Thereafter, the park was called Fordyce Field for a time, renamed after the nearby Fordyce Bathhouse, just as Majestic Park had a namesake in the Majestic Hotel.
On St. Patrick's Day, 1918, Babe Ruth played the field for the first time in a spring training game. Playing at Whittington Park with the Boston Red Sox, Ruth hit a home run that traveled an estimated 573 feet. The home run sailed over Whittington Avenue, landing in the Arkansas Alligator Farm, which still exists, mostly unchanged. Fogel Field sits just adjacent to the Alligator Farm. At the time, Ruth had exclusively been a successful left-handed pitcher, but in part due to his home run that day, he soon switched to hitting. Today, the Alligator Farm has a marker recognizing the Ruth home run, near the marker for Fogel Field.
After the Phillies, with Hall of Fame pitcher Grover Cleveland Alexander, in 1912, the Pirates followed at Fogel Field in 1921, having utilized Whittington Park for many years. The Pirates (1921–23, 1926) trained with rosters that included Baseball Hall of Famers Rabbit Maranville, Kiki Cuyler, Charlie Grimm, Joe Cronin, Paul Waner, Pie Traynor and Max Carey.
Major League teams eventually migrated to the warmer climates of Florida and Arizona for spring training. Fogel Field became then the spring training site for Negro League and Minor League teams. The Negro League Kansas City Monarchs (1928), Homestead Grays (1930–31) and Pittsburgh Crawfords (1932–35) utilized the site. Later, Indianapolis, Milwaukee, St. Paul and Montreal were Minor League franchises that utilized Fogel Field for spring training. From 1938 to 1941 the Hot Springs Bathers used the field for batting practice and other practices, as their Whittington Park home field was just across the street.
The Pittsburgh Crawfords of the Negro Major Leagues utilized Fogel Field for spring training from 1932-35. The 1935 Crawfords team has been called one of the greatest teams ever assembled, eventually winning the 1935 Negro League World Series. With a roster full of stars and future Hall-of Fame players, the 1935 Crawfords were nicknamed "the best team money could buy," as many of their players came from other clubs. Their 1935 roster contained Baseball Hall of Fame Inductees Cool Papa Bell, Josh Gibson, Oscar Charleston and Judy Johnson.
The Negro League Homestead Grays, which represented the borough of Homestead, Pennsylvania, located 7 miles from Pittsburgh, held spring training at the Field in 1930 and 1931. On their roster were numerous Hall of Fame players: Cool Papa Bell, Josh Gibson, Oscar Charleston, Jud Wilson, Bill Foster, Judy Johnson, Smokey Joe Williams and Willie Wells. Franchise owner Cum Posey was also inducted into the Hall of Fame.
Among other minor league teams, the 1935 St. Paul Saints trained at the site. A pitcher for the squad was Monty Stratton. Stratton was portrayed by Jimmy Stewart in The Stratton Story. An All-Star pitcher for the Chicago White Sox, Stratton lost his leg in an accident during the height of his career and pitched afterwards with a prosthetic leg.
From 1933–38, the annual Ray Doan Baseball School was held in Hot Springs, with Fogel Field utilized as one site for the hundreds of campers. Doan's school drew hundreds of younger players annually, with 1938 drawing 450 players. Doan had many noteworthy players on his instructional staff, including Rogers Hornsby, Grover Cleveland Alexander, Red Faber, Dizzy Dean, George Sisler, Bob Feller, Tris Speaker and Burleigh Grimes. Legendary female athlete Babe Didrickson, attended in 1933. At the time Didrickson was the reigning Olympic Gold Medalist hurdler in the 1932 Summer Olympic Games and she went on to major success in professional golf.
In 1939, Rogers Hornsby took over for Doan in Hot Springs and created the Rogers Hornsby Baseball College which operated until the 1950s, continuing to utilize Fogel Field.
The first recognized Umpire School was held in conjunction with both baseball schools, starting in 1935. Drawing aspiring umpires, the George Barr Umpire School was the first of its kind and was operated by Major League umpire George Barr. Future Major League Umpires Bill McKinley and Scotty Robb were attendees, as was war hero Harry Ladner.
The National Baseball Hall of Fame library has a series of photos of the baseball schools and Cassidy Lent, Reference Librarian at the Hall of Fame, wrote the feature School Days in Arkansas, highlighting the baseball schools with mention of their use of Fogel Field.
Fogel Field is featured in The First Boys of Spring, a 2015 documentary on Hot Springs Spring Training produced by Larry Foley. The film is narrated by Hot Springs area native, actor Billy Bob Thornton. The documentary began airing nationally on the MLB Network in February, 2016.
The grass field still exists at the site and is used by the Arkansas Alligator Farm for overflow parking.
There are two plaques at the site. The plaques are part of the Hot Springs Baseball Historic Trail and recognize Fogel Field and Babe Ruth. The ballpark plaque reads:
The plaque for Babe Ruth says the following:
The Arkansas Alligator Farm and Petting Zoo is a privately owned zoo located on Whittington Avenue in Hot Springs, Arkansas.The farm raises alligators and has done so since it was founded in 1902. The farm includes a small museum with a collection of mounted alligators, a souvenir shop and a snack bar. It includes the mummified carcass purporting to be a "Merman", similar to ones held in Ripley's Believe It or Not! museums.The main alligator pit contains a small headstone, a memorial to somebody's fox terrier that was killed by alligators on that spot in 1906.Ban Johnson Park
Ban Johnson Park was a baseball stadium located in Hot Springs, Arkansas, within the Whittington Park Historic District, a "tree-shaded greenway" that is located along Whittington Creek, which runs down the center island of Whittington Avenue. The location of the ballpark was across from the still active Arkansas Alligator Farm and Petting Zoo (built 1902).Originally known as Whittington Park, the field served as a training site for many Major League Baseball teams, by hosting spring training games and serving as home for minor league teams. In 1918, Babe Ruth hit a 573-foot home run at the park, while a pitcher for the Boston Red Sox. The park was also home to the ever first Umpire School. In 1935, Ray Doan, the operator of a youth instructional camp at Whittington Park, renamed the park after Hall of Fame baseball pioneer Ban Johnson, founder of the American League.Chicago Cubs
The Chicago Cubs are an American professional baseball team based in Chicago, Illinois. The Cubs compete in Major League Baseball (MLB) as a member club of the National League (NL) Central division. The team plays its home games at Wrigley Field, located on the city's North Side. The Cubs are one of two major league teams in Chicago; the other, the Chicago White Sox, is a member of the American League (AL) Central division. The Cubs, first known as the White Stockings, were a founding member of the NL in 1876, becoming the Chicago Cubs in 1903.The Cubs have appeared in a total of eleven World Series. The 1906 Cubs won 116 games, finishing 116–36 and posting a modern-era record winning percentage of .763, before losing the World Series to the Chicago White Sox ("The Hitless Wonders") by four games to two. The Cubs won back-to-back World Series championships in 1907 and 1908, becoming the first major league team to play in three consecutive World Series, and the first to win it twice. Most recently, the Cubs won the 2016 National League Championship Series and 2016 World Series, which ended a 71-year National League pennant drought and a 108-year World Series championship drought, both of which are record droughts in Major League Baseball. The 108-year drought was also the longest such occurrence in all major North American sports. Since the start of divisional play in 1969, the Cubs have appeared in the postseason ten times through the 2018 season.The Cubs are known as "the North Siders", a reference to the location of Wrigley Field within the city of Chicago, and in contrast to the White Sox, whose home field (Guaranteed Rate Field) is located on the South Side.
The Cubs have multiple rivalries. There is a divisional rivalry with the St. Louis Cardinals, a newer rivalry with the Milwaukee Brewers and an interleague rivalry with the Chicago White Sox.George Barr (umpire)
George McKinley Barr (July 19, 1892 – July 26, 1974) was a professional baseball umpire who was a pioneer in Umpiring Instruction. Barr worked in the National League from 1931 to 1949. Barr umpired 2,757 major league games in his 19-year career. He umpired in four World Series (1937, 1942, 1948, 1949) and two All-Star Games (1937 and 1944). Barr was founder of the George Barr Umpire School, the earliest umpire training school and author of the first book on umpiring. Barr was a pioneer in using the inside chest protector.Hot Springs, Arkansas
Hot Springs is a resort city in the state of Arkansas and the county seat of Garland County. The city is located in the Ouachita Mountains among the U.S. Interior Highlands, and is set among several natural hot springs for which the city is named. As of the 2010 United States Census, the city had a population of 35,193. In 2017 the estimated population was 36,915.The center of Hot Springs is the oldest federal reserve in the United States, today preserved as Hot Springs National Park. The hot spring water has been popularly believed for centuries to possess healing properties, and was a subject of legend among several Native American tribes. Following federal protection in 1832, the city developed into a successful spa town. Incorporated January 10, 1851, the city has been home to Major League Baseball spring training, illegal gambling, speakeasies and gangsters such as Al Capone, horse racing at Oaklawn Park, the Army and Navy Hospital, and 42nd President Bill Clinton. One of the largest Pentecostal denominations in the United States, the Assemblies of God, traces its beginnings to Hot Springs.
Today, much of Hot Springs's history is preserved by various government entities. Hot Springs National Park is maintained by the National Park Service, including Bathhouse Row, which preserves the eight historic bathhouse buildings and gardens along Central Avenue. Downtown Hot Springs is preserved as the Central Avenue Historic District, listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The city also contains dozens of historic hotels and motor courts, built during the Great Depression in the Art Deco style. Due to the popularity of the thermal waters, Hot Springs benefited from rapid growth during a period when many cities saw a sharp decline in building; much like Miami's art deco districts. As a result, Hot Springs's architecture is a key part of the city's blend of cultures, including a reputation as a tourist town and a Southern city. Also a destination for the arts, Hot Springs features the Hot Springs Music Festival, Hot Springs Documentary Film Festival, and the Valley of the Vapors Independent Music Festival annually.List of Major League Baseball spring training ballparks
The following is a list of current and former Major League Baseball spring training ballparks.Majestic Park
Majestic Park (1908–18) was one of the first Major League Baseball spring training facilities and was located at the corner of Belding Street and Carson Street in Hot Springs, Arkansas. Today the site is still in use by Champion Christian College.
First built by the Detroit Tigers as a practice field in 1908, Majestic Park was the spring training site of the Boston Red Sox and their star pitcher Babe Ruth (1909–10, 1912–18), Cincinnati Reds (1910–11), Brooklyn Dodgers (1910) and St. Louis Browns (1911). The location later became the site of Dean Field (1935–47)/Jaycee Park (1947–present). Dean Field also served as home to the Rogers Hornsby Baseball College.
The Hot Springs Bathers minor league team and the Chicago White Sox (1948–51) minor league Spring Training were held at Jaycee Park. Jaycee Park hosted the 1952 Negro League World Series and a 1953 exhibition game featuring Jackie Robinson. The site can claim games featuring both All-time Home Run record holders, Babe Ruth and Hank Aaron as among those who have played at the site. In 1914, Babe Ruth was just beginning his career (as a dominant left-handed pitcher) for the Red Sox, while a young Aaron played in the 1952 Negro League World Series.Today, the site has four historical plaques, as part of the Hot Springs Historic Baseball Trail. Majestic Field, Rogers Hornsby, Jackie Robinson and Hank Aaron each have historical plaques on the site.
Along with Babe Ruth, Jackie Robinson and Hank Aaron, others who performed at the site include Ty Cobb, Honus Wagner, Jimmie Foxx, Gil Hodges, Harry Hooper, Cy Young, Rogers Hornsby, Grover Cleveland Alexander, Herb Pennock, Tris Speaker, and Walter Johnson. The Sporting News (1998) ranking of the greatest players ever listed: Babe Ruth (1), Ty Cobb (3), Walter Johnson (4), Hank Aaron (5) and Rogers Hornsby (9).Rogers Hornsby
Rogers Hornsby, Sr. (April 27, 1896 – January 5, 1963), nicknamed "The Rajah", was an American baseball infielder, manager, and coach who played 23 seasons in Major League Baseball (MLB). He played for the St. Louis Cardinals (1915–1926, 1933), New York Giants (1927), Boston Braves (1928), Chicago Cubs (1929–1932), and St. Louis Browns (1933–1937). He was named the National League (NL)'s Most Valuable Player (MVP) twice, and was a member of one World Series championship team.
Born and raised in Winters, Texas, Hornsby played for several semi-professional and minor league teams. In 1915, he began his major league career with the St. Louis Cardinals and remained with the team for 12 seasons. During this period, Hornsby won his first MVP Award and the Cardinals won the 1926 World Series. After that season, he spent one season with the New York Giants and another with the Boston Braves before being traded to the Chicago Cubs. He played with the Cubs for four years and won his second MVP Award before the team released him in 1932. Hornsby re-signed with the Cardinals in 1933, but was released partway through the season and was picked up by the St. Louis Browns. He remained there until his final season in 1937. From 1925 to 1937, Hornsby was intermittently his own manager. After retiring as a player, he managed the Browns in 1952 and the Cincinnati Reds from 1952 to 1953.
Hornsby is regarded as one of the best hitters of all time. He had 2,930 hits and 301 home runs in his career; his career batting average of .358 is second only to Ty Cobb, at .367, in MLB history. He also won two Triple Crowns and batted .400 or more three times during his career. He is the only player to hit 40 home runs and bat .400 in the same year (1922). His batting average for the 1924 season was .424, a mark that no player has matched since. He was elected to the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 1942 and the St. Louis Cardinals Hall of Fame in 2014.
Hornsby married three times, in 1918, 1924, and 1957, and had two children.
Known as someone who was difficult to get along with, he was not well liked by his fellow players. He never smoked, drank, or went to the movies, but frequently gambled on horse races during his career.Spring training
In Major League Baseball (MLB), spring training is a series of practices and exhibition games preceding the start of the regular season. Spring training allows new players to try out for roster and position spots, and gives established players practice time prior to competitive play. Spring training has always attracted fan attention, drawing crowds who travel to the warm climates of Arizona and Florida to enjoy the weather and watch their favorite teams play, and spring training usually coincides with spring break for many US college students.
Spring training typically starts with "truck day", which is when equipment trucks for each team leave their hometowns to drive down to spring training. This usually happens in the last week of January or the first week of February. In mid-February, pitchers and catchers report, and within a week of that, the rest of the team reports. Exhibition games start in the later part of February, and continues until just before Opening Day of the regular season, which falls in the last week of March, or the first week of April. In some years, teams not scheduled to play on Opening Day will play spring training games that day. Pitchers and catchers report to spring training first because pitchers benefit from a longer training period. A few days later, position players arrive and team practice begins. Exhibition games usually begin in late February.Whiz Kids (baseball)
The Whiz Kids is the nickname of the 1950 Philadelphia Phillies of Major League Baseball. The team was largely made up of rookies; The average age of a member of the Whiz Kids was 26.4 The team won the 1950 National League pennant but failed to win the World Series.
After owner R. R. M. Carpenter, Jr. built a team of bonus babies, the 1950 team won for the majority of the season, but slumped late, allowing the defending National League champion Brooklyn Dodgers to gain ground in the last two weeks. The final series of the season was against Brooklyn, and the final game pitted the Opening Day starting pitchers, right-handers Robin Roberts and Don Newcombe, against one another. The Phillies defeated the Dodgers in extra innings in the final game of the season on a three-run home run by Dick Sisler in the top of the tenth inning. In the World Series which followed, the Whiz Kids were swept by the New York Yankees, who won their second of five consecutive World Series championships.The failure of the Whiz Kids to win another pennant after their lone successful season has been attributed to multiple theories, the most prominent of which is Carpenter's unwillingness to integrate his team after winning a pennant with an all-white team.
|NL pennants (7)|
|World Series |
|League pennants (9)|
|Division titles (9)|
|Wild Card berths (3)|