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Collegiate coaches named Baylor Ballpark the nation's No. 3 college baseball stadium in a 2003 Baseball America survey. Celebrating its 19th year in 2017, the park remains one of college baseball's finest stadiums and has ranked in the top 30 in both total and average attendance each year.
Baylor Ballpark is a beautiful facility constructed of red brick and exposed green steel beams, which complement the attractive architecture already found on the Baylor campus. The stadium was designed to ensure outstanding sightlines and comfort for fans, as well as meet the needs of the country's finest college baseball players.
Four entrances into the main grandstand, plus an additional ramp for disabled fans, lead to 3,200 chairback seats, including 650 field level seats in 42 separate boxes. Approximately 70 percent of the stadium seating is covered by an awning for protection from the sun or rain. New chairbacks were installed for the 2009 season.
New in 2014 was the addition of a 24'-7.5"-by-68'-7" videoboard from Floyd Casey Stadium to replace the Baylor Ballpark videoboard that was installed in 2003 next to the existing scoreboard. The Daktronics videoboard has the capabilities for instant replay, video highlights and more.
The two-level Jack Loftis Press Box is fully air conditioned and carpeted, with radio booths for both home and visiting teams, as well as a television booth. A VIP box with theatre-style seating for 12, two restrooms and a concession area also are part of the press box structure. Specially designed accordion-style windows allow a completely unobstructed view when open.
The Steve Macko Locker Room, which was renovated prior to the 2009 season, also is fully air conditioned and carpeted. The 1,200-plus square feet contain 35 custom-built ash lockers. The locker room is furnished with four center-ceiling, flat-screen televisions and additional electronic equipment. Located under the main grandstand, the locker room has direct access to the third base dugout.
The training room is located across the hall from the locker room, and is equipped with an ice machine, taping tables, and whirlpool areas. The equipment room is furnished with storage cabinets for uniforms and equipment and equipped with a washer/dryer area for on-site laundry.
Baylor Ballpark also houses the coaches' offices inside the stadium. Located on the third base side with windows facing the concourse, it houses the head coach's office, two offices for assistant coaches, a reception area, conference room and restroom.
The novelty store is located adjacent to the office suite with public entrance from the concourse. A beautiful glass entrance leads into the store, which carries authentic Baylor Baseball apparel and other items.
The Mickey Sullivan Room is a 1,200-square-foot room on the first-base side of the stadium used as a team meeting area and study lounge. It is equipped with a restroom of its own, as well as a countertop and sink area for food preparation. The room also serves as a trophy room and pre- and postgame meal area.
The indoor hitting cages are housed near the right field foul line. The large area (2,800 square feet) is completely surfaced, heated, and cooled. Two full-length cages are available for players' use.
Additional facilities within Baylor Ballpark include locker room facilities for both coaches and umpires, additional seating for 1,000 down the left field line and a beautiful elevated terrace down the right field line. The main concession areas and restroom facilities are located on the concourse just inside the main gate. Additional concessions are located on the third base concourse.
Despite being in just its first season and still under construction, Baylor Ballpark played host to an NCAA Regional and then an NCAA Super Regional in 1999.
The Bears took full advantage of playing at home, sweeping through the regional with wins over Eastern Illinois and Minnesota in their first two games. When the Golden Gophers fought through the loser's bracket to face Baylor again in the championship game, the Bears' bats came alive with one of the top performances in team history, scoring 22 runs to beat Minnesota and advance to the Super Regional.
Big 12 rival Oklahoma State came to Waco for that match-up. The underdog Cowboys took the first game in a slugfest, 18-11, but Baylor bounced back to claim the second game 17-7. The Bears then carried a lead late into game three before faltering and falling 6-2. Baylor Ballpark has hosted a total of four NCAA Regionals (1999, 2000, 2005, 2012) and three NCAA Super Regionals (1999, 2005, 2012).
Nine of Baylor Ballpark's top 30 crowds have come during NCAA postseason play. In 2012, Baylor Ballpark saw a record crowd of 5,911 for a Saturday night win against second-ranked Texas A&M. In 2012, a school-record 126,947 fans attended the Bears' 40 home games. Baylor Ballpark has ranked in the top 25 nationally or better in average attendance in 15 of 18 seasons, and has seen more than 1.4 million fans walk through its gates.
In the long history of varsity baseball at Baylor, the Bears have called only four fields home for any extended period of time.
Carroll Field was the baseball team's first home. Located on the Baylor campus approximately where the Student Union Building sits today, Carroll Field was home to both the baseball and football teams.
In later years, the Bears played their home games at a pair of city fields in Katy Park and Dutton Street Park. The Bears moved back and forth between the two fields, at times playing whole seasons at one field and at other years playing in both parks during the same season.
Beginning in 1960, Baylor played exclusively at Dutton Street Park. That field remained Baylor's home until 1977, when Baylor returned to campus with the opening of Ferrell Field. A 1,700-seat facility, Ferrell Field served as home for the Bears through the 1998 season.
Construction on Baylor Ballpark began following the 1998 season. The new structure was built around the existing field. As work ran behind schedule, however, it became apparent that the ballpark would not be completed in time for the start of the 1999 season. The Bears played their first four home games that season at McLennan Community College in Waco before moving into Baylor Ballpark for good. For the rest of the year, players and fans battled construction as the park continued to be worked upon. The park was completed in time for the 2000 season and was dedicated in 2001.
Baylor Ballpark quick facts
First Season: 1999
Largest Game Crowd: 5,911 vs. Texas A&M (April 21, 2012)
Largest 3-Game Series Crowd: 15,104 vs. Arkansas (June 9-11, 2012)
Largest Total Season Attendance: 126,947 (2012)
Largest Average Season Attendance: 3,255 (2012)
OF Wall Dimensions: 330-400-330
Best Season Record: 34-6 (2012)
NCAA Regionals: 4 (1999, 2000, 2005, 2012)
NCAA Super Regionals: 3 (1999, 2005, 2012)
NCAA Postseason Record: 14-8
From the north, drive south on I-35, take University Parks Drive exit and turn east (left) onto University Parks Drive. The Turner Athletic Complex is on your left before you reach the Ferrell Center.
From the south, drive north on I-35, take University Parks Drive exit and turn east (right) onto University Parks Drive. The Turner Athletic Complex is on your left before you reach the Ferrell Center.
From the west, drive east on Hwy. 84 to Hwy. 6/Loop 340. Turn east (right) and take Hwy. 6/Loop 340 to I-35. Turn north (left) on I-35, take the University Parks Drive exit and turn east (right) onto University Parks Drive. The Turner Athletic Complex is on your left before you reach the Ferrell Center.
From the east, drive west on Hwy. 84 to I-35. Turn south on I-35 (left), take the University Parks Drive exit and turn east (left) onto University Parks Drive. The Turner Athletic Complex is on your left before you reach the Ferrell Center.
From the northwest, take Hwy. 6 to I-35. Turn north (left), take the University Parks Drive exit and turn east (right) onto University Parks Drive. The Turner Athletic Complex is on your left before you reach the Ferrell Center.
From the southwest, take Hwy. 6 to Bus. 77 exit. Bus 77 become LaSalle. Turn west (right) onto University Parks Drive. The Turner Athletic Complex is on your right after you pass the Ferrell Center.