The city of Detroit and the Detroit Tigers may not give a darn, but a group of volunteers cleaned up and will maintain the old Tiger Stadium playing field — and as a bonus uncovered the Tiger Stadium home plate left behind when the team moved to Comerica Park.
A group, Navin Field Grounds Crew, was on hand to clear weeks, lay down lines and bases, and smoothed out the outfield with a lawn roller. In addition, the group planted sunflowers where the old home-run fence was located; later the group will plant corn a la Field of Dreams. And, of course, a ballgame was played.
A nice touch for the volunteers: they uncovered an original home plate from the ballpark left at the site, buried under a pile of dirt.
Ever since the Tigers moved to Comerica Park, venerable Tiger Stadium was treated like an annoyance by city officials: redevelopment plans were ignored, the place was allowed to rot, and finally it was torn down despite objections by fans and preservationists, who wanted to preserve the original Navin Field grandstand. The ballpark opened on the same day as Fenway Park, and it perhaps says something about each city to see where each ballpark landed.
Image of Tiger Stadium by John Moist.
RELATED STORIES: Detroit rejects redevelopment plan for Tiger Stadium site; Old Tiger Stadium Conservancy: Demolition of Tiger Stadium was unlawful, reckless; Tiger Stadium demolition resumes; Old Tiger Stadium Conservancy “shocked, dismayed” about decision to tear down Tiger Stadium; Detroit commission votes to tear down Tiger Stadium; Federal money for Tiger Stadium receives initial approval; Tiger Stadium preservation takes another step forward; Tiger Stadium preservationists: We have the money
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