Progressive Field


Progressive Field

Infobox_Baseball_Stadium
stadium_name = Progressive Field
nickname = The Jake


location = 2401 Ontario Street
Cleveland, Ohio 44115
broke_ground = January 1992
opened = April 4, 1994
closed =
demolished =
owner = Cuyahoga County
operator = Gateway Economic Development Corp
surface = Kentucky Blue Grass
construction_cost = $175 million
architect = HOK Sport
former_names = Jacobs Field (1994-2007)
tenants = Cleveland Indians (MLB) (1994-present)
seating_capacity = 43,345 (1997)
dimensions = Left field: 325 ft (99 m)
Left-center: 370 ft (113 m)
Center field: 405 ft (123.5 m)
Right-center: 375 ft (114 m)
Right field: 325 ft (99 m)

Fence height:
Left field: 19 ft (6 m)
Center and right fields: 8 ft (2.5 m)

Progressive Field is a ballpark located in downtown Cleveland, Ohio, and is the home of the Cleveland Indians of the American League. Along with Quicken Loans Arena, it is part of the Gateway Sports and Entertainment Complex. It was ranked as Major League Baseball's best ballpark in a 2008 "Sports Illustrated" fan poll. [cite news |title=MLB Ballpark Rankings: Cleveland Indians |url=http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/baseball/mlb/specials/fansurvey/2008/indians.html |work=Sports Illustrated |publisher= |date=April 2008 |accessdate=2008-05-26 ]

The ballpark is informally referred to as The Jake, based on its original name, Jacobs Field (after former team owners Richard and David Jacobs). It was known by that name since its inaugural season in 1994, until it was changed to Progressive Field prior to opening day 2008.

History

1990s

In by|1994, the ballpark opened under the name Jacobs Field as the new home of the Cleveland Indians, which had previously shared Cleveland Municipal Stadium with the NFL's Cleveland Browns.

In May 1990, Cuyahoga County voters approved a 15-year sin tax on alcohol and cigarette sales in order to finance the new sports complex. In June 1992, the ceremonial first pitch was thrown at the site of the new Jacobs Field before construction of the building began. On April 4, 1994, the Indians played their first game at the new stadium. President Bill Clinton threw out the ceremonial first pitch, and the Indians defeated the Seattle Mariners 4-3 in 11 innings.

In by|1995, it hosted its first World Series, which the Cleveland Indians lost to the Atlanta Braves, and two years later was the site of the 1997 MLB All-Star Game and the host of the 1997 World Series, which the Cleveland Indians lost to the Florida Marlins.

Prior to the start of the 1997 season, two sections of seating were added onto the ends of the bleacher section, increasing the capacity by about 1,000 to its current 43,345.

2000s

In by|2004, its scoreboard, the largest free-standing scoreboard in the United States, was modernized with the installation of the largest video display in the world at a sports venue, built by Daktronics of South Dakota. The video board measures convert|36|ft|m high by convert|149|ft|m wide. Also in 2004, a center field dining area located behind the seating, formerly occupied by auxiliary bleachers, was replaced with a bar area called the Batter's Eye Bar.

In by|2007, the Cleveland Indians opened Heritage Park, a section honoring the Cleveland Indians Hall of Fame, the 100 greatest Cleveland Indians players, [ [http://www.clevelandmemory.org/indians100/ Top 100 Greatest Cleveland Indians Players] . Cleveland State University Library.] memorable Indians moments, and a memorial plaque for Ray Chapman that was originally installed in League Park. It is located behind the center field wall, shielded by plantings so it doesn't interfere with the batter's eye. [Briggs, David. [http://mlb.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20070329&content_id=1865167&vkey=spt2007news&fext=.jsp&c_id=cle Tribe cuts ribbon on Heritage Park] , MLB.com. 2007-03-29.]

On October 5, 2007, in the eighth inning of a playoff game against the New York Yankees, a swarm of insects (believed to be midges from Lake Erie) [http://blog.cleveland.com/metro/2007/10/midges_from_lake_erie_help_cle.html] enveloped the playing field, distracting relief pitcher Joba Chamberlain. Chamberlain walked Grady Sizemore who later scored the tying run on a wild pitch. [ [http://www.nydailynews.com/sports/baseball/yankees/2007/10/06/2007-10-06_bugs_irritate_joba_chamberlain_yankees.html Bugs irritate Joba Chamberlain, Yankees ] ] The incident became known as the "Bug Game".

In August 2008, the Indians extended their lease agreement for the stadium from 2013 to 2023. The agreement with the Gateway Economic Development Corp. also gives the team four five-year renewal options after 2023. [cite news |last=Gomez |first=Henry J. |title=Deal keeps Cleveland Indians at Progressive Field until at least 2023 |url=http://blog.cleveland.com/metro/2008/08/deal_keeps_cleveland_indians_a.html |work=The Plain Dealer |date=2008-08-06 |accessdate=2008-08-07]

Renaming

Named for former team owners the Jacobs brothers, the original naming rights expired at the end of 2006.Hoynes, Paul. [http://pqasb.pqarchiver.com/plaindealer/access/1041625261.html?FMT=ABS Tribe fielding offers to rename Jacobs Field] , "The Plain Dealer", May 24, 2006.]

On January 11, 2008, it was announced that naming rights to the park had been bought by Progressive Corporation, an insurance company headquartered in nearby Mayfield Village. Removal of the iconic Jacobs Field sign on the front of the building began the morning of January 18, 2008, [cite news | first=Robert L| last=Smith | pages= | title=Jacobs Field sign passes into history | date=2008-01-18 | work=Cleveland.com / The Plain Dealer | url=http://blog.cleveland.com/metro/2008/01/jacobs_field_sign_passes_into.html Includes video.] with the replacement sign installed on March 25, 2008. [cite news | first=Lonnie III | last=Timmons | pages= | title=The Cleveland Indians unveil new Progressive Field sign | date=2008-03-25 | work=Cleveland.com / The Plain Dealer | url=http://videos.cleveland.com/plain-dealer/2008/03/the_cleveland_indians_unveil_n.html Includes video.] Progressive agreed to pay $57.6 million for the naming rights for 16 years. [cite news |first=Bill |last=Lubinger | title=Goodbye 'Jake' |url=http://blog.cleveland.com/plaindealer/2008/01/goodbye_jake.html |work=The Plain Dealer |date=2008-01-12 |accessdate=2008-01-12] [cite news |first=Anthony |last=Castrovince |title=Indians find Progressive partner |url=http://cleveland.indians.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20080111&content_id=2343558&vkey=news_cle&fext=.jsp&c_id=cle |publisher=MLB.com |date=2008-01-11 |accessdate=2008-01-12]

Attendance record

The ballpark set a major league record between June 12, 1995 and April 4, 2001 by selling out 455 straight games. [cite news |title=Indians' record-setting sellout streak over |url=http://www.usatoday.com/sports/baseball/indians/2001-04-04-sellout.htm |work=USA Today |date=2005-04-05 |accessdate=2008-05-26 ] Demand for tickets was so great that all 81 home games were sold out before opening day on three separate occasions. The Indians "retired" the number 455 in honor of the sellout record. The Boston Red Sox later surpassed this record, when Fenway Park recorded 456 straight sellouts on September 9, 2008. [cite news |title=Fenway Park sellout for record 456th straight game |url=http://www.iht.com/articles/ap/2008/09/09/sports/NA-BBA-Red-Sox-Record-Sellout.php |work=International Herald Tribune |date=2008-09-09 |accessdate=2008-09-09 ]

Ballpark firsts

Photo gallery

References

External links

* [http://www.ballparkdigest.com/visits/jacobs_field.htm Ballpark Digest: Progressive Field (then listed as Jacobs Field)]
* [http://cleveland.indians.mlb.com/cle/ballpark/ Cleveland Indians: Progressive Field]
* [http://www.flickr.com/groups/jacobsfield/ Flickr Photo Group: Jacobs Field]


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