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Final Four time in 2023 Best of the Ballparks, Summer Collegiate fan vote

Ballpark Digest squareAfter an exciting Elite Eight contest in the 2023 Best of the Ballparks, Summer Collegiate fan vote, we’re now at the Final Four round.

Three of the four brackets saw blowouts in heavy voting; in the remaining bracket Centennial Field (Vermont Lake Monsters) edged Warner Park (Madison Mallards) by four votes. Receiving the most votes in the Elite Eight round: Seaman Stadium (Okotoks Dawgs), Jackson Baseball Stadium (Jackson Rockabillys, in an unfortunate matchup), Alumni Field (Keene Swamp Bats), Cardines Field (Newport Gulls, in another unfortunate matchup) and Robin Roberts Stadium (Springfield Lucky Horseshoes). We have four different summer-collegiate leagues and two country represented in this pentultimate round: Futures (Vermont), NECBL (Keene), Prospect (Springfield) and Western Canadian (Okotoks).

To say summer-collegiate baseball is still in a growth cycle would be an understatement, as new teams pop up every summer. Because of timing and resources, we’re limiting this particular vote to 32 teams. Running this competition is a much more daunting task than one would assume, mostly due to the sheer number of summer-collegiate teams and leagues. We began with a master list of 116 contenders, a list that could have been much larger had we included the 16 summer-collegiate ballparks in the two leagues with direct MLB ties, the Appalachian League and MLB Draft League. We trimmed that master list to 32 strong contenders, based on what ballparks and teams successfully combined top ballpark aesthetics, history and current offerings to create a top fan experience, as well as performances in past fan votes. From that list we randomly generated the brackets, resulting in this lineup.

Is this a perfect list? No. If your favorite summer-collegiate ballpark did not make the cut, our apologies in advance; given how many fine facilities are out there, inevitably tough decisions needed to be made, but rest assured we agonized over the 32-ballpark final list. We will revisit the parameters of this particular competition in 2024.

Last year’s top two ballparks in the fan vote–Robin Roberts Stadium, home of the Springfield Lucky Horseshoes, and Cardines Field, home of the Newport Gulls—are the top two seeds, but the rest of the seeds were randomly generated. So ignore the seedings and vote for your favorites:

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