I didn’t see David Ortiz glaring in menacingly at the pitcher from the left-handed batter’s box, and the neon Citgo sign did not loom larger than life over the left field wall, but for those of us who have never been to Fenway Park we’re getting an idea of what that baseball shrine is all about.
Fluor Field in Greenville, the site of this week’s SoCon tournament and home of the Boston Red Sox Class A affiliate in the South Atlantic League, was designed specifically as a miniature replica of Fenway, complete with a 30-foot Green Monster in left. A hand operated scoreboard is located at the bottom of the monster with a set of eyes peeking out from under the visitor’s error total to watch the action.
We even got to hear the tell-tale clanging of baseball off metal when Joe Jackson doubled in his first at bat of the game (he would later turn in a much more dramatic hit about 50 feet to the right). The wall came back to bite The Citadel later in the game when Appalachian State’s Hector Crespo took advantage of its close proximity to tie the game with a two-run homer in the ninth.
The Green Monster isn’t the only reminder of the Boston landmark. The bullpens are situated beyond the low wall in left center, and the view of the pitchers warming up is completely obstructed. The Pesky Pole which wraps around the right field foul line is here as are the various nooks and angles that make Fenway a nightmare for opposing outfielders.
No word on whether the Greenville Drive, the park’s primary occupant, sells Fenway Franks or Sam Adams beer. But the Fenway anthem “Sweet Caroline” was dutifully played in the bottom of the eighth.
– Mike Hoffman –
Sports Information Director