It’s an all-Midwest League lineup for the Final Four round in the Low A Best of the Ballparks voting, as fans went for facilities in America’s heartland.
This came as a result of upsets, to be sure. First, fans chose Fifth Third Ballpark (West Michigan Whitecaps) over our #1 seed, Parkview Field (Fort Wayne TinCaps), by a very narrow 50-vote margin. Second (and perhaps with some Twitter assistance from Fifth Third), fans chose Fifth Third Field (Dayton Dragons) over NewBridge Bank Park (Greensboro Grasshoppers). Modern Woodmen Park, our #2 seed, made it through with no problems. One final upset saw Cubs Nation come out in force, propelling Four Winds Field (South Bend Cubs) over Fluor Field (Greenville Drive). That leaves us with a Final Four featuring an all-Fifth Third Bank lineup and a Quad Cities/South Bend matchup.
But that round is history. Below you’ll find a form for submitting your votes (desktop users see the entire slate; mobile users see one poll question at a time). The second round of voting generated more than 12,000 respondents. So vote!
We have seen some fans aggressively register their preferences for the Best of the Ballparks by voting over and over. Don’t bother: we filter by IP address, so only your first vote counts.
Voting ends Friday at 10 p.m., with the next round going up Saturday morning.
About Best of the Ballparks: we structured the voting by classification, so the competition is broken down into Triple-A, Double-A, High A, Low A, short season A and rookie. The summer collegiate and independent brackets will encompass what we consider to the top 32 ballparks in their classifications. And, of course, the MLB parks stand on their own.
We know from our marketing/user research a third of our readers work in the baseball industry, so we’re tapping into that collective expertise. And we know from our research that a third of our readers sell to the baseball industry, so that expertise will be valuable as well. The remaining third — fans, media, government — will certainly have a different view on things as well. We can’t wait to see what our readers — whom we consider to be the smartest folks in baseball — say about the best of the ballparks.
Here’s our ranking of Low-A ballparks, combining the Midwest and South Atlantic Leagues:
1. Parkview Field (Fort Wayne TinCaps; ML)
2. Modern Woodmen Park (Quad Cities River Bandits; ML)
3. Fluor Field (Greenvile Drive; SAL)
4. NewBridge Bank Park (Greensboro Grasshoppers; SAL)
5. Fifth Third Field (Dayton Dragons; ML)
6. McCormick Field (Asheville Tourists; SAL)
7. Fox Cities Stadium (Wisconsin Timber Rattlers; ML)
8. Dow Diamond (Great Lakes Loons; ML)
9. Fifth Third Ballpark (West Michigan Whitecaps; ML)
10. FirstEnergy Park (Lakewood Blueclaws; SAL)
11. Four Winds Field (South Bend Cubs; ML)
12. Joseph P. Riley, Jr. Park (Charleston RiverDogs; SAL)
13. Appalachian Power Park (West Virginia Power; SAL)
14. Whitaker Bank Ballpark (Lexington Legends; SAL)
15. Cooley Law School Stadium (Lansing Lugnuts; ML)
16. Perfect Game Field (Cedar Rapids Kernels; ML)
17. L.P. Frans Stadium (Hickory Crawdads; SAL)
18. Bowling Green Ballpark (Bowling Green Hot Rods; ML)
19. Fifth Third Bank Ballpark (Kane County Cougars; ML)
20. Classic Park (Lake County Captains; ML)
21. State Mutual Stadium (Rome Braves; SAL)
22. Perdue Stadium (Delmarva Shorebirds; SAL)
23. Dozer Park (Peoria Chiefs; ML)
24. Lake Olmstead Stadium (Augusta GreenJackets; SAL)
25. CMC-Northeast Stadium (Kannapolis Intimidators; SAL)
26. Ashford University Field (Clinton LumberKings; ML)
27. Community Field (Burlington Bees; ML)
28. Grayson Stadium (Savannah Sand Gnats; SAL)
29. Municipal Stadium (Hagerstown Suns; SAL)
30. Pohlman Field (Beloit Snappers; ML)
The results of the voting are shown in percentages.