With interesting descriptive captions written next to each ballpark, this poster features vivid images of Baltimore's Memorial Stadium, Comiskey Park, Cleveland's Municipal Stadium, Fenway Park, Griffith Stadium, Shibe Park, Tiger Stadium and Yankee Stadium.
Each ballpark from the game's golden era included on this poster was painted in strikingly rich detail by one of three renowned sports artists - Thomas Kolendra, Andy Jurinko or Bill Purdom - and their prints are arranged in random order under the heading of Vintage American League Ballparks.
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Each vintage American League ballpark in this poster was an original painting and next to their image is its title, artist and caption. Those details are listed below, along with a thumbnail of the ballpark.
Ten/Four/Sixty-One by Bill Purdom
Yankee Stadium opened in 1923 as the first triple-tiered ballpark and the first to be called a "stadium." "The House that Ruth Built" was necessitated by the enormous popularity of Babe Ruth, and the Giants essentially evicting the Yankees from the Polo Grounds. Home to more Hall of Fame players and more World Series than any park, it was remodeled for the 1976 season and remains the game's most awe-inspiring structure. Here, Whitey Ford has just struck out Dan Blasingame to open the 1961 Fall Classic en route to a 2-0 win.
Comiskey Twilight Diptych by Andy Jurinko
Chicago's South Side was where you went if you were a White Sox fan, but after the scandal of the 1919 World Series fix, lean times abounded and the team went 40 years until its next flag, and never won again while occupying Comiskey Park. Opened in 1910, the park got the "Bill Veeck touch" in the late '50s with an exploding scoreboard that was the talk of baseball. The park closed following the 1990 season. In this 1988 painting, Jack McDowell makes his big league debut with Carlton Fisk behind the plate.
Cleveland Municipal Classic by Andy Jurinko
Spacious Cleveland Municipal Stadium opened in 1932 as Lakefront Park, and was first used only for Sunday or holiday games, with its predecessor, League Park, the "regular" site. Not until 1947 were all games moved to this often cold and damp structure, sometimes called "The Mistake by the Lake." But the team won the pennant there in 1948 (this painting is a scene from that Series against the Boston Braves), and drew 2,620,627 fans, a record which stood for more than 30 years. The park closed in 1993.
Grand Old Griffith by Andy Jurinko
The Washington Senators high point of each season was usually the Presidential Opener, when all eyes would be on the first pitch from the U.S. President. After that, they usually settled quietly into the second division, although three World Series did emerge in the park, and the term "tape measure home run" originated there with Mickey Mantle. This is a 1953 scene with Mickey Vernon at bat for the home team, en route to a batting championship. The team was owned by Hall of Famer Clark Griffith, before his adopted son Calvin moved it to Minnesota in 1961. Griffith Stadium spanned 1911-1961.
Twenty-First and Lehigh by Thomas Kolendra
When it opened in 1909, it was the nation's first concrete and steel ballpark, the end of the wooden era at hand. Shibe Park would be home to both the Phillies and the Athletics, and in 1953 would be renamed Connie Mack Stadium - home to the Phils, with the Athletics soon to be departing for Kansas City. The elegant architecture belied the troubling baseball played within, as there was little to cheer for between the two teams. But until it closed in 1970, this was where ball fans congregated in what was once America's second most populous city.
Tiger Stadium Panorama by Andy Jurinko
First called Bennett Park after catcher Charlie Bennett (who lost his legs in a train accident), it became Navin Field in 1912 (for owner Frank Navin), and Briggs Stadium in 1938, (for owner Walter Briggs) before Tiger Stadium stuck in 1961. Home to Ty Cobb, Hank Greenburg, Al Kaline, Alan Trammel and Lou Whitaker, this scene from 1990 shows slugger Cecil Fielder about to become the first to homer over the left field roof. Fans fought hard to keep it going forever, but the last game was finally played there in 1999.
Fenway Park Gold by Andy Jurinko
Fenway Park has been home to the Red Sox since 1912, with its high "Green Monster" wall in left-field its most distinctive feature. Revered by purists and preservationists, it seats fewer than 40,000, but has added to the allure of the Boston franchise and is as much beloved as are the players themselves by the New England faithful. In this 1946 scene, Ted Williams bats against the "Boudreau Shift" of three infielders on the right. These were the days of advertising on the wall. The Sox won the pennant in '46, but haven't won a World Series since trading Babe Ruth to the Yankees.
Baltimore Memorial Stadium by Bill Purdom
Reborn in 1954, the Baltimore Orioles (a fabled 19th Century National League, and then minor league franchise) attracted one of the best fan bases in the game and was one of baseball's best run operations. Under manager Earl Weaver, the team ran off three straight pennants in 1969-70-71, led by Brooks and Frank Robinson, before the Cal Ripken Era unfolded in the next decade. Picturesque and majestic, the park eventually closed in 1991 having made the city of crabcakes truly "Big League."