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Louisville Slugger Field is a baseball stadium in Louisville, Kentucky. The baseball-specific stadium opened in 2000 with a seating capacity of 13,131. It is currently home to the professional baseball team, the Louisville Bats, Triple-A affiliate of the Cincinnati Reds, and Louisville City FC, a professional soccer team in the USL Championship.

Louisville Slugger Field
Slugger Field
Louisville Slugger Field.PNG
Louisville Slugger Field, Kentucky.jpg
Location401 East Main Street
Louisville, KY 40202
Coordinates38°15′22.27″N 85°44′40.75″W / 38.2561861°N 85.7446528°W / 38.2561861; -85.7446528Coordinates: 38°15′22.27″N 85°44′40.75″W / 38.2561861°N 85.7446528°W / 38.2561861; -85.7446528
OwnerThe Metro Development Authority
Louisville Baseball Club, Inc.
OperatorLouisville Baseball Club, Inc.
Capacity13,131 (baseball)
8,000 (soccer)[1]
Field sizeLeft Field: 325 feet
Center Field: 405 feet
Right Field: 340 feet
Surface'Northbridge' Bermudagrass and HGT Kentucky Bluegrass
Construction
Broke groundNovember 13, 1998[2]
OpenedApril 12, 2000
Construction cost$40 million
($58.2 million in 2018 dollars[3])
ArchitectHNTB
K. Norman Berry Associates[4]
Structural engineerRangaswamy & Associates[4]
Services engineerCMTA Consulting Engineers[5]
General contractorTurner/Barton Malow[6]
Tenants
Louisville Bats (IL) (2000–present)
Louisville City FC (USLC) (2015–2019)

The unique design of Louisville Slugger Field includes a former train shed on the site which was incorporated into the stadium. The Ohio River and state of Indiana are visible from the park, as well as views of downtown Louisville. Naming rights for the stadium were purchased by Hillerich & Bradsby, makers of the famous Louisville Slugger baseball bat, and the Louisville Slugger Museum & Factory is located several blocks further down Main Street. The stadium is accessible from I-64, I-65, and I-71.

HistoryEdit

The Louisville Bats and the City of Louisville broke ground on Louisville Slugger Field on November 13, 1998. In front of an estimated crowd of 1,000, Mayor Jerry Abramson and Governor Paul E. Patton cut out the first home plate before they broke the ground with Bats President Gary Ulmer and other officials.[2]

The stadium hosted the 2008 Triple-A All-Star Game, in which the Pacific Coast League All-Stars defeated the International League All-Stars, 6–5, in front of a sellout crowd.[7][8]

On July 8, 2009, John Mellencamp, Bob Dylan, and Willie Nelson held a concert at the ballpark.[9][10]

In March 2015, Louisville City FC became the stadium's second major tenant. The team plays in the USL Championship (known before the 2019 season as the United Soccer League), which at the time occupied the third division of U.S. professional soccer but has now been elevated to second-division status. Louisville City will leave Slugger Field after the 2019 season, as the team is building the new Lynn Family Stadium several blocks to the east in Butchertown and plans to open it in time for the 2020 season.[11][12]

On August 1, 2008 a record crowd of 18,543 people attended a concert by Dave Matthews Band.

FeaturesEdit

The design of Louisville Slugger Field is a joint effort of HNTB Architects of Kansas City, Mo and K. Norman Berry Associates of Louisville. The field was financed through a partnership between the city, the Bats, Hillerich & Bradsby, the Brown Foundation, Humana Inc. and the Humana Foundation.[2]

The stadium includes 11,522 fixed seats with room for 1,609 additional spectators in the picnic areas and berm sections.[13] The ballpark also includes 32 private suites, 850 second-level club seats, a continuous concourse around the field, an outfield seating berm, extensive press facilities, concessions and restrooms, a children's play area, team and administrative offices and numerous retail amenities.[2] Spectators enter the stadium through the restored "train shed" building, which was formerly the Brinly-Hardy Co. warehouse.[2]

The Main Street side of the building includes exterior access to a microbrewery and restaurant located within the facility, as well as a statue of Louisville native and Baseball Hall of Famer Pee Wee Reese. The Witherspoon Street entrance, diagonally situated from Waterfront Park includes a statue of football Hall of Famer, Paul Hornung.

While the full capacity of the park is 13,131, the capacity for soccer matches is normally restricted to 8,000 due to less-than-optimal sightlines for that sport.[1]

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b "Feasibility Study: Professional Soccer Stadium" (PDF). Conventions, Sports & Leisure International. August 2016. p. 9. Retrieved August 30, 2016.
  2. ^ a b c d e "History". Louisville Baseball Club, Inc. December 15, 2005. Retrieved September 29, 2011.
  3. ^ Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. "Consumer Price Index (estimate) 1800–". Retrieved January 2, 2019.
  4. ^ a b "Architectual [sic] Awards". Masonry Magazine. June 2002. Archived from the original on August 26, 2011. Retrieved September 29, 2011. Cite uses deprecated parameter |deadurl= (help)
  5. ^ "Slugger Field". CMTA Consulting Engineers. Archived from the original on April 2, 2012. Retrieved February 15, 2013.
  6. ^ "Sports". Turner Construction. Archived from the original on December 21, 2010. Retrieved September 29, 2011. Cite uses deprecated parameter |deadurl= (help)
  7. ^ Cook, Josh (July 9, 2008). "An All-Star Comeback". The Courier-Journal. Louisville. p. V12. Retrieved May 15, 2014.
  8. ^ "Triple-A All-Star Game Results (2008–2012)". Triple-A Baseball. Retrieved July 7, 2017.
  9. ^ "Bob Dylan - Louisville, KY - Jul 8, 2009". Bob Dylan Official Website. July 8, 2009. Archived from the original on January 29, 1998. Retrieved September 6, 2009. Cite uses deprecated parameter |dead-url= (help)
  10. ^ "The Bob Dylan Show at Louisville Slugger Field (Louisville)". Last.fm. July 8, 2009. Retrieved September 6, 2009.
  11. ^ Bard, Jessica (June 28, 2018). "Soccer fans, officials help Louisville City FC break ground on new stadium". Louisville, KY: WDRB. Retrieved July 6, 2018.
  12. ^ Bard, Jessica (August 5, 2019). "Officials announce name of Louisville City FC's new soccer stadium". Louisville, KY: WDRB. Retrieved August 6, 2019.
  13. ^ Byczkowski, John (September 11, 1999). "Louisville Move a Winner for Reds". The Cincinnati Enquirer. Retrieved May 22, 2012.

External linksEdit

Events and tenants
Preceded by
Cardinal Stadium
Home of the
Louisville Bats

2000–present
Succeeded by
current
Preceded by
First stadium
Home of
Louisville City FC

2015–2019
Succeeded by
Lynn Family Stadium