Hammond Stadium

Hammond Stadium is a baseball field located in the CenturyLink Sports Complex in South Fort Myers, Florida, United States. The stadium was built in 1991, and underwent major renovations in 2014[3] and 2015.

The spring training home of the Minnesota Twins saw its seating capacity increased from 7,500 to 9,300 in the spring of 2015.[4] Class A Advanced affiliate, the Fort Myers Miracle, of the Florida State League finished out their 2014 season and FSL championship at JetBlue Park (Spring home of the Boston Red Sox, also in Fort Myers) in order to get the renovations done in time for catchers & pitchers to report in 2015. The renovations will also increase the amount of walkable area, provide more shaded areas for sunny games[5] and an expanded gift shop, among other amenities for fans and players.[6]

Field at Hammond Stadium
Field at Hammond Stadium

The Twins' Rookie League affiliate, the Gulf Coast League Twins also play in the CenturyLink Sports Complex, however, not usually at Hammond Stadium, but rather at the fields within the surrounding complex.

The stadium is named in honor of retired Lee County Deputy Administrator William H. Hammond, Jr., who was instrumental in getting the Lee County Sports Complex (the name it was given prior to its renovations) built to draw the Twins from their previous Spring home, Orlando. Hammond Stadium's outer facade was designed with Churchill Downs in mind. The parking rows all feature streets signs named to honor former Twins greats—including Bert Blyleven, Kirby Puckett & Kent Hrbek. There is also a waterfall fountain near the stadium's entrance.

Hammond Stadium Scoreboard
Scoreboard

The Twins won the World Series following their first spring training in Hammond Stadium. Their agreement with Lee County for use of the complex runs through 2012. The Florida State League held the 48th annual Florida State League All-Star Game at Hammond Stadium in June 2009. The previous time the league held their mid-summer classic in Fort Myers was 2003.

Hammond Stadium & JetBlue Park are two of four spring training facilities in Fort Myers. City of Palms Park and Terry Park Ballfield (also known as the Park T. Pigott Memorial Stadium) in East Fort Myers are currently not in use. City of Palms Park is the former spring training home of the Boston Red Sox, and Terry Park Ballfield is the former home of the Philadelphia Athletics, Cleveland Indians, Pittsburgh Pirates and Kansas City Royals.

Hammond Stadium in South Fort Myers
Hammond Stadium during 2007 Minnesota Twins spring training.
Hammond Stadium
Hammond Stadium
Home of the Miracle
Location14100 Six Mile Cypress Parkway
Fort Myers, FL 33912
Coordinates26°32′18″N 81°50′31″W / 26.53833°N 81.84194°WCoordinates: 26°32′18″N 81°50′31″W / 26.53833°N 81.84194°W
OwnerCity of Fort Myers
OperatorLee County
Capacity9,300
Field size330' to Left Field
405' to Centerfield
330' to Right Field
SurfaceGrass
Construction
Broke groundMay 15, 1989
OpenedMarch 7, 1991
Construction cost$14 million
($25.8 million in 2018 dollars[1])
ArchitectLescher & Mahoney
Ellerbe Becket
Populous (renovation)
Structural engineerBliss & Nyitray, Inc
General contractorCase Contracting Company[2]
Tenants
Minnesota Twins (MLB spring training) (1991–present)
Fort Myers Miracle (Florida State League) (1992–present)
GCL Twins (GCL) (1991–present)

Field Dimensions

Hammond Rainbow
As rain covers the field, a rainbow fills the sky over Hammond Stadium

Hammond Stadium's dimensions compared to Target Field are:[7]

Left Field    9 feet shorter    330' vrs. 339'
Left-Center    _ feet shorter    ___' vrs. 377'
Deep Left-Center    _ feet shorter    ___' vrs. 411'
Center Field    2 feet longer    405' vrs. 403'
Right-Center    _ feet shorter    ___' vrs. 365'
Right Field    2 feet longer    330' vrs. 328'

References

  1. ^ Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. "Consumer Price Index (estimate) 1800–". Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Retrieved January 2, 2019.
  2. ^ Knight, Graham (June 2, 2009). "Hammond Stadium". Baseball Pilgrimages.
  3. ^ David Dorsey (January 10, 2014). "Hammond Stadium $48 million makeover a hit". News-Press. Archived from the original on January 17, 2015.
  4. ^ David Dorsey (December 19, 2014). "Hammond Stadium set to be finished end of January". News-Press.
  5. ^ Joe Roetz (December 17, 2014). "Hammond Stadium renovation project enters final phase". WorldNow & ABC 7 WZVN.
  6. ^ Seth Soffian (December 31, 2014). "Best, brightest of Southwest Florida sports in 2014". News-Press.
  7. ^ "Target Field Facts". Minnesota Balpark Authority.

External links

1912 Washington Senators season

The 1912 Washington Senators won 91 games, lost 61, and finished in second place in the American League. They were managed by Clark Griffith and played their home games at National Park.

1914 Washington Senators season

The 1914 Washington Senators won 81 games, lost 73, and finished in third place in the American League. They were managed by Clark Griffith and played home games at National Park.

1926 Washington Senators season

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1937 Washington Senators season

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1941 Washington Senators season

The 1941 Washington Senators won 70 games, lost 84, and finished in sixth place in the American League. They were managed by Bucky Harris and played home games at Griffith Stadium.

1951 Washington Senators season

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City of Palms Park

City of Palms Park is a baseball stadium in Fort Myers, Florida. It served as the spring training home of the Boston Red Sox from its opening in 1993 to 2011. The stadium was built in 1992 for that purpose and holds 8,000 people. It was also the home of the Red Sox Rookie team, the Gulf Coast League Red Sox, from June through August. The stadium's name is taken from the city's official nickname. The City of Fort Myers occasionally uses the venue for concerts.

A crew of six is on hand during spring training to groom the Ballfields/Common grounds. Since Lee County Parks and Recreation has taken this facility over from the City of Fort Myers in 2003, the Grounds Crew has won the Ground Crew of the year award for the Red Sox Gulf Coast League in 2005 and 2007.

City of Palms Park is one of four spring training facilities in Fort Myers. The Minnesota Twins train in Hammond Stadium on the Southern end of Fort Myers. Terry Park Ballfield (also known as the Park T. Pigott Memorial Stadium) in East Fort Myers is not in use, however, it is the former home of the Philadelphia Athletics, Cleveland Indians, Pittsburgh Pirates and Kansas City Royals. In February 2012, the Boston Red Sox moved their spring training operations into the newly constructed jetBlue Park at Fenway South located on County Road 876 (Daniels Parkway) in Fort Myers. It is also located close to Southwest Florida International Airport.

Continental League

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Florida State League

The Florida State League is a Minor League Baseball league based in the state of Florida. It is one of three leagues currently classified as Class A-Advanced, the third highest classification of minor leagues. Each team in the league is affiliated with a Major League Baseball team, and most play in their affiliate's spring training facility.

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Fort Lauderdale Yankees

The Fort Lauderdale Yankees, based in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, was an American minor league baseball franchise that existed from 1962 through 1992. The team was a member of the Florida State League as an affiliate of the New York Yankees and won seven FSL championships during its 31 years of existence.

The team was formed when the Yankees moved their spring training base from St. Petersburg, Florida, to Fort Lauderdale Stadium after the 1961 season. Its last championship team, in 1987, was managed by Buck Showalter and featured future Major Leaguers Jim Leyritz, Kevin Maas and Dave Eiland.

When the Yankees left Fort Lauderdale for their current spring training home in Tampa, Florida, in 1993, the parent club maintained its other High-A affiliate, the Prince William Yankees of the Carolina League, and left the FSL for one season — returning in 1994 with the Tampa Yankees. The Boston Red Sox transferred their Winter Haven club to Fort Lauderdale Stadium for 1993 as the Fort Lauderdale Red Sox.

When the spring training relationship with Winter Haven ended, Boston tried to move its FSL franchise to its new spring training stadium, Fort Myers' City of Palms Park, but the shift was blocked by the established Fort Myers Miracle, a Minnesota Twins FSL affiliate that plays in nearby Hammond Stadium. While the Red Sox and the Miracle ownership tried to resolve the impasse, Boston needed a 1993 venue for its displaced Winter Haven franchise. Fort Lauderdale Stadium was available.

As events turned out, the Red Sox/Miracle territorial dispute never permitted Boston to place its FSL team in Fort Myers. Instead, Boston moved the Fort Lauderdale Red Sox to Sarasota, Florida — ironically a former longtime BoSox spring training site — in 1994 and operated the Sarasota Red Sox there for eleven seasons before departing the Florida State League in 2005. The Red Sox' parent company, Fenway Sports Group, now owns and operates its own High Class A farm club, the Salem Red Sox, in the Carolina League.

The Red Sox' one year in Fort Lauderdale was an artistic and economic disappointment. The team, managed by DeMarlo Hale (later the Red Sox' bench coach), compiled the worst record in the FSL at 46–85 (.351), ​32 1⁄2 games out of first place. It drew 28,000 fans, second last in the league and almost 73,000 fans fewer than the 1992 Fort Lauderdale Yankees team. (It still out-paced the 1992 Winter Haven Red Sox entry, which attracted only 16,000 fans in its lame-duck season). Of the 40-plus players who suited up for the Fort Lauderdale Red Sox, only Shayne Bennett, Alex Delgado, Peter Hoy, Ryan McGuire and Lou Merloni would see Major League service.

Fort Lauderdale has not been represented in the Florida State League since 1993. Although the Baltimore Orioles eventually replaced the Yankees as Fort Lauderdale's spring training tenants, they never placed an FSL franchise in the city.

Fort Myers Miracle

The Fort Myers Miracle is the Class A Advanced Minor League Baseball affiliate of the Minnesota Twins Major League Baseball club, based in Fort Myers, Florida. Home games are played at the CenturyLink Sports Complex in Hammond Stadium, which has a capacity of 7,500, and opened in 1991. The park is also used as the Minnesota Twins' spring training facility. Prior to Twins Spring training and the 2014 Florida State League season, Phase I of a two-part renovation was completed with the addition of an outfield boardwalk. The second phase of the renovation, which includes new sky suites, concessions, wider concourses and new offices for the Miracle staff, was completed before Spring training in 2015. Due to the start of construction on Phase II in August 2014, the Miracle played the final 10 home dates, including playoffs, at JetBlue Park.

The majority owner is Kaufy Baseball, LLC, a privately held company managed by Andrew Kaufmann, who purchased a controlling interest in the club from Jason Hochberg of SJS Beacon Baseball, LLC in January 2019. Musician Jimmy Buffett and actor Bill Murray were minority owners of the team.

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