Corbett Field, a historic WPA ballpark now serving as home to the Souris Valley Sabre Dogs of the new Expedition League, won the 2018 Best of the Ballparks fan vote from Ballpark Digest readers for summer collegiate ballparks.
Corbett Field, the former Minot Municipal Ballpark, won in the final round over Homer Stryker Field, home of the Kalamazoo Growlers (Northwoods League). The Best of the Ballparks fan vote on Ballpark Digest began in May and encompassed MLB, MiLB, independent and summer-collegiate ballparks. Over 56,000 fans voted in the summer-collegiate rounds — a huge bump from the 33,000 fans voting for summer-collegiate ballparks in 2017. Overall, over 456,000 fans voted in the 2018 Best of the Ballparks vote, up significantly over the 350,000 fans voting in 2017.
“This is one of the great reasons why we love summer-collegiate baseball: a historic WPA ballpark like Corbett Field has been revitalized by the Sabre Dogs and the greater Minot community,” said Ballpark Digest Publisher Kevin Reichard. “The Sabres Dogs certainly have made an impact in Minot, and this fan vote shows it.”
“Corbett Field is such an amazing venue for summer collegiate baseball,” said Darrell Handelsman, Sabre Dogs general manager. “To win this competition is a huge honor.
“Our fans were awesome through this whole process and the voting turnout was tremendous this year,” Handelsman added. “To be named the best ballpark in our inaugural season shows just how special the partnership between this team and this community is.”
Corbett Field opened in 1947 and served as home of American Legion and high-school teams before the arrival of the Minot Mallards of the independent, integrated Manitoba-Dakota (Man-Dak) League in 1950. Satchel Paige played three games as a Mallard during his barnstorming days, and other Negro Leagues stars made appearances there. The Mallards carried over to the Class C Northern League in Minor League Baseball for the 1958-1960 and 1962 seasons. A revived independent Mallards team played for two seasons. Today, besides the Sabre Dogs, Corbett Field also hosts Minot State University baseball and was renovated prior to this season.
Here are the winners to date in the 2018 Best of the Ballparks fan vote:
Triple-A: Huntington Park, Columbus Clippers
Double-A: Dunkin’ Donuts Park, Hartford Yard Goats
High-A: LECOM Park, Bradenton Marauders
Low-A: Parkview Field, Fort Wayne TinCaps
Short Season-A: Gesa Stadium, Tri-City Dust Devils
Rookie: TVA Credit Union Ballpark, Johnson City Cardinals
Independent: Impact Field, Chicago Dogs
Image courtesy Minot State University.