Friday, March 20, 2009

Baseball Heaven...Mid-Atlantic

RT Staff Note: This is the final in our series on baseball heaven. Today we scoured the Mid Atlantic region for some of the best places to play colegiate ball. Actually, in our opinion, there isn't a place in this country that's a bad place...they are all good. We're just having some fun with some of our nations finest. If your son is playing collegiate baseball, then he is in baseball matter where it is located.

North Carolina

Cary C. Boshamer Stadium provides the Carolina baseball program one of the most beautiful home facilities in the nation.

Boshamer Stadium was a gift from 1917 Carolina graduate and textile industrialist Cary C. Boshamer of Gastonia, N.C. The Tar Heels have been playing at the current location since the late 1960s when Emerson Field was razed due to University expansion.

The Tar Heels have hosted 758 games at Boshamer Stadium and have a record of 568-188-2 (.751), including a 27-3 mark last year. Boshamer has been home to five Atlantic Coast Conference Tournaments, in 1973, 1975, 1981, 1982 and 1983, and the 1983 NCAA East Regional.

Carolina hosted the New York Yankees in exhibition games in 1977, 1979 and 1981 and Boshamer also played host to the 1987 U.S. Olympic Festival.

For five straight years, from 1989 through 1993, the Carolina Invitational brought some of the nation's finest programs to do battle with ACC competition just prior to the NCAA Tournament. In 1989, ESPN was on hand to televise two games live from Boshamer. That year, North Carolina upended No. 1-ranked Arizona 5-3 in 10 innings.

The stadium houses the Carolina baseball offices, team room, training room and dressing rooms. Tar Heel players take advantage of a private weight training and conditioning area which supplements the equipment found at the 8,000 square foot workout room at the Student-Athlete Development Center located at Kenan Stadium. Boshamer also has indoor pitching and hitting areas and outdoor cages which allow off the field work in all weather conditions.

Over the past several years, Boshamer Stadium has undergone a number of exciting renovations to keep it one of America's finest college baseball facilities. Among those things new to the stadium in 2000 are expanded dugouts, new awnings over the press box and office space, new field tarp and roller, new fencing and a new training room for the Tar Heels.

The University of North Carolina is fortunate to call home one of the finest all-around facilities in the nation. Boshamer has it all -- outstanding playing conditions maintained by a dedicated and knowledgeable grounds crew, excellent lighting, close to the field seating and purposeful training and relaxation environments for Carolina's players and coaches.

South Carolina

The University of South Carolina baseball program unveiled its new baseball facility Feb. 21, 2009. The $35-plus million Carolina Stadium has a capacity of 9,000 fans and is the crown jewel among baseball stadiums across the nations.

According to Ryan E. Sickman with HOK Sport Company, the firm responsible for designing Carolina Stadium, "I personally have taken great pride in giving the Gamecocks, what is no doubt in my mind, the best collegiate only baseball park in the nation. It is our hope that Carolina Stadium becomes the standard of what to expect from a premier Division I baseball program, and a class act athletics program like the University of South Carolina."

Baseball Stadium Facts
• Approximately 6,400 permanent chair-back seats with total capacity of 9,000-plus fans.
• Picnic Terrace down the left field line - Dining deck will hold approximately 120 fans.
• Suite & Club Level premium seating available - (5 suites and 2 clubs).
• ADA accessibility for handicap and wheelchair patrons.
• Larger concession stand menu with satellite portable setups on the Plaza and concourses.
• Cup holders at each permanent seat.
• State-of-the-art video scoreboard and sound system from Daktronics The top of the scoreboard is 86 feet above the field. The scoreboard measures 47 feet high x 44 feet wide. The video portion is 16 feet high x 28 feet wide.
• A wide concourse that runs completely around the stadium.
• TV-ready for live television coverage including six camera locations for television and video streaming.
• A first-class lighting system by Musco with 125-foot candles in the infield and 100-foot candles in the outfield.
• Sand-based field meeting USGA specs/draining system with 419 Bermuda Turf Grass.
• Field Dimensions - 325 down the lines, 390 to center field. Walls in the outfield vary from 8 to 10 feet in height. Batter's eye is 80 feet wide and stretches 40 feet above the field.
• Press Box with wireless internet capability and four TV/radio booths.

Additional Features for the Baseball Team
• 3,900 square-foot Weight Room
• (4) Indoor Batting Tunnels
• Home Team Locker Room
• Sports Medicine/Athletic Training Room
• Classroom/Media Room adjacent to Locker Room
• Coaches Offices


Doug Kingsmore Stadium, the home of Tiger baseball since 1970, has seen many changes and improvements over the years, but it has not lost its aesthetic beauty and unique feel on the west side of the Clemson University campus.

Doug Kingsmore Stadium has seen steady improvement since its first season in 1970, and is now one of the top facilities in the country. Just ask people at Baseball America, who released a coaches’ ranking that named Doug Kingsmore Stadium one of the best college facilities in the nation in 2003. And that ranking was done before any of the recent renovations were finished. Evidence of its rating among facilities across the nation has been demonstrated in recent years, when Doug Kingsmore Stadium was named as a site for a 1994, 1995, 1996, 1998, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2005, and 2006 NCAA Regional.

And during the 2002 and 2003 offseasons, Doug Kingsmore Stadium underwent radical renovations. Over $5 million was spent to make the facility among the best in the nation.

There is a patio area outside the press box that is above the existing stands along the first and third-base lines. It is used for receptions and other events throughout the year.

The players also realize improvements, as four batting cages have been constructed beyond the right-field fence. The dugouts have been almost doubled in length and width. And the players have a newly-renovated locker room and lounge.

Prior to 2005, PawVision, the replay screen that was used in the football stadium, was moved to Doug Kingsmore Stadium. Prior to the 2008 season, new lights were also installed.

The facility is also equipped with a “Super-Sopper,” which cuts down on rainouts. Clemson is one of a few schools with this machine that removes water from the field.
The stadium has 3,500 permanent seats, but it is capable of holding 6,217 fans thanks to a hill area down the left-field line that is popular with the Clemson student-body. In 2001, the ballpark shrank its dimensions. The fences are now 320 feet down the left-field line, 370 feet in left-center, 400 feet to straight-away center, 375 feet in the right-center alley, and 330 feet down the right-field line.


The Tennessee baseball program embarked on a new era in 1993 as the gates opened to the newly-built Lindsey Nelson Stadium for the first time on Feb. 23 of that year.
The $2.2 million facility gave UT one of the finest collegiate ballparks in the nation.

The main grandstand area in the stadium has a permanent seating capacity of 2,300, which includes 696 chairback seats and 1,604 bench seats. In 2003, a state-of-the-art scoreboard was installed with a video screen. Permanent grandstands, along with another fully-stocked concession stand are located down the right-field line. New left-field bleachers expanded capacity to 3,712 in 2006.

Among the features are a state-of-the-art press box which includes radio booths for both home and visitor, a television broadcast booth, an operations room and a hospitality area.

On the field, both the Vols and the visiting team benefit from spacious dugouts. The space beneath the seating area was renovated in 1994. It includes a spacious locker room for the Vols players and a locker room for the coaching staff. Also featured is an equipment room, a training room, a video room, a traditions room, a hitting tunnel, a mound and a team lounge area which has a flat-screen TV, pool table and ping-pong table.

Fans to UT baseball games benefit from elevated seating, which affords a clear view of the playing field from any angle. Spacious restrooms as well as a large concession area also help create an ideal atmosphere for fans.

Provided with excellent conditions in which to enjoy the games, Vols fans come out by the thousands each weekend as witnessed by the fact that Tennessee drew 81,801 spectators and ranked ninth nationally in 1995 after drawing 58,300 in 1994 and 44,704 in 1993. In 1997, a record average of 2,137 fans saw the Volunteers play, for a total of 64,107, the largest regular-season total ever.

To top it all off, Lindsey Nelson Stadium was the host site for NCAA Regionals in 1993, 1994, 1995, 2001 and 2005. In 1995, the Mideast Regional ranked fifth among the eight sites with 18,787 fans attending the games. Tennessee had three crowds among the top-10 largest to ever see a game at Lindsey Nelson Stadium. In the regional final, a record crowd of 5,086 saw the Vols earn a trip to the College World Series by defeating Oklahoma State, 3-1.

Coastal Carolina

Coastal Carolina University is a dynamic, public comprehensive liberal arts institution located in Conway, just minutes from Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. That’s always a plus when looking for your baseball heaven.

The Coastal Carolina baseball team calls Charles Watson Stadium/Vrooman Field home. The stadium has received significant upgrades for the 2008 season, making the field one of the best in both the conference and the Southeast. Watson Stadium/ Vrooman Field will have new seats and new turf outside of the bases and home plate for 2008. The clubhouse also has been renovated, with new lockers, a new lounge and a new training facility for the Chanticleers. Coastal also had five games at BB&T Coastal Field in 2007, including the 2007 NCAA Myrtle Beach Regional. Further improvements to the facilities include a brand new hitting complex beyond the center field wall.

RT Staff

"Is this heaven?"
"It's collegiate baseball."
"Collegiate baseball? I could have sworn this was heaven.."

"Is there a heaven?"
"Oh yeah. It's the place where dreams come true."
"Maybe this IS heaven."

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