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Coordinates: 27°57′25″N 82°47′29″W / 27.956994°N 82.791499°W / 27.956994; -82.791499

Clearwater Athletic Field
Former names Brooklyn Field
Closed 1954
Owner City of Clearwater
Surface grass
Capacity 3,000
Field dimensions Left - 340 ft.

Center - ft.

Right - 290 ft.
Tenants
Brooklyn Dodgers (MLB) (spring training) (1923-1932; 1936-1941)
Clearwater Pelicans (FSL) (1924)
Newark Bears (IL) (spring training) (1933-1935)
Cleveland Indians (MLB) (spring training) (1942 and 1946)
Clearwater Bombers (ASA) (1945-1954)
Philadelphia Phillies (MLB) (spring training) (1947-1954)
Clearwater Black Sox (FSNBL) (1952)

Clearwater Athletic Field was a stadium in Clearwater, Florida. It was first used by professional baseball teams for spring training in 1923 and had a capacity of close to 3,000. It was the spring training home of the Brooklyn Dodgers, Newark Bears (when the top minor league baseball teams held their own spring training), Cleveland, and the Philadelphia Phillies. The Florida State League's Clearwater Pelicans[1] and the Amateur Softball Association national-champion Clearwater Bombers played their home games at Athletic Field.[2] The Florida State Negro Baseball League Clearwater Black Sox played at the park in 1952. [3] The Baltimore Orioles team in the Winter Instructional Rookie League trained at Athletic Field in October 1959 and played their home games at Jack Russell Stadium.[4]

One of the largest crowds for a spring training game was on March 24, 1951 when the Phillies drew 3,851 for a game against the Boston Red Sox.[5]

It was replaced by Jack Russell Stadium in 1955 into which both the Phillies and Bombers moved after the 1954 season. Even after moving into Jack Russell in 1955, the Phillies continued to practice at the field.[6]

Name

The ballpark is often identified as "Clearwater Athletic Field" or "Clearwater's Athletic Field". It was renamed Ray Green Field in honor of Ray Green, mayor of Clearwater from 1935 to 1938,[7] who was instrumental in upgrading the facility during his tenure as mayor.[8] In a 1980 interview, Eddie Moore, director of Clearwater parks and recreation from 1938 to 1978, recalled that the ballpark was called "Brooklyn Field" during the Dodgers' tenure. [9] Indeed, a 1939 news article recounts the Clearwater Senior Softball League playing at "Brooklyn field".[10]

The North Greenwood Recreation and Aquatic Complex now stands on the site of ballpark. In 2003, the city opened the Ray E. Green Aquatic Center named in honor of the mayor.[11] Ray Green Field was also used for parking for games at Jack Russell Stadium.[12]

References

  1. ^ De Quesada, Alejandro M.; Larry Shenk (2007). Spring Training in Clearwater: Fencebusters and Fastballs from the Philadelphia Philles and the Clearwater Threshers. The History Press. p. 24. ISBN 1-596292-148. http://books.google.com/books?id=1gzZsGw2bP8C&pg=PA24&dq=%22Clearwater+Pelicans%22&client=firefox-a#PPA24,M1. 
  2. ^ Dailey, Lester R. (2008-02-20). "Bombers put Clearwater on the map: The home-grown softball team won 10 national championships". Clearwater Citizen. http://www.tbnweekly.com/content_articles/022008_cit-05.txt. Retrieved 2009-03-19. 
  3. ^ McLin, E.H. (1952-04-29). "Pelicans face Ocala in League Opener Sunday". St. Petersburg Times. pp. 24. http://news.google.com/newspapers?id=TEILAAAAIBAJ&sjid=H08DAAAAIBAJ&pg=4088,6471944&dq=clearwater+pelicans. Retrieved 2009-03-22. 
  4. ^ "Winter League Orioles Open Workouts Today". St. Petersburg Times: p. 5-C. 1959-10-08. http://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=888&dat=19591008&id=BfINAAAAIBAJ&sjid=BHcDAAAAIBAJ&pg=4887,3570919. Retrieved 2009-05-01. 
  5. ^ "Phillies Beat Red Sox; Goliat Clouts Homer". Reading Eagle: p. Section 4, page 27. 1951-03-25. 
  6. ^ "Boston Pitchers Wild, Ineffective". Sarasota Herald-Tribune: p. 13. 1955-03-17. http://news.google.com/newspapers?id=-tcbAAAAIBAJ&sjid=0GQEAAAAIBAJ&pg=4124,3582106&dq=phillies&hl=en. 
  7. ^ "Mayor & City Council: Frequently Asked Questions". My Clearwater.com: The Official Website of the City of Clearwater, Florida. http://www.clearwater-fl.com/gov/city_council/faq.asp. Retrieved 2009-03-19. 
  8. ^ Arnold, Lois V. (1993-08-17). "A stadium conjures up memories". St. Petersburg Times. pp. 2. http://news.google.com/newspapers?id=C_UNAAAAIBAJ&sjid=f3sDAAAAIBAJ&pg=6928,1649424&dq=green+field+clearwater. Retrieved 2009-03-20. 
  9. ^ Kouzmanoff, Tommy (1980-03-16). "Jack Russell Stadium Has Continued To Be Of Benefit To Clearwater". St. Petersburg Times: p. 4. http://news.google.com/newspapers?id=XQMMAAAAIBAJ&sjid=JFoDAAAAIBAJ&pg=5606,1085199&dq=phillies. Retrieved 2009-09-18. 
  10. ^ "Senior Leaguers to Resume Play at County Seat". The Evening Independent: p. 11. 1939-08-14. http://news.google.com/newspapers?id=nHoLAAAAIBAJ&sjid=p1QDAAAAIBAJ&pg=4407,3562660&dq=brooklyn-field. Retrieved 2009-09-21. 
  11. ^ Kennedy Wynne, Sharon (2003-04-13). "Metro Week in Review: Coming up this week". St. Petersburg Times. http://www.sptimes.com/2003/04/13/TampaBay/Teachers_get_richer_p.shtml. Retrieved 2009-03-19. 
  12. ^ Henry, Kaylois (1989-09-17). "Clearwater gets go-ahead on parking spaces, stadium". St. Petersburg Times. http://pqasb.pqarchiver.com/sptimes/access/50550567.html?FMT=FT&dids=50550567:50550567&FMTS=ABS:FT&type=current&date=Sep+17%2C+1989&author=KAYLOIS+HENRY&pub=St.+Petersburg+Times&desc=Clearwater+gets+go-ahead+on+parking+spaces%2C+stadium. Retrieved 2009-03-19. 

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