Friday, August 19, 2011

Brooklyn Baseball: Unknown Treasures and Must See Attractions

I make 2 trips to NYC per year, and this year I had to explore some history of America's game that most may not know about. I'll also talk about some of the best things Brooklyn has to offer in terms of baseball history, even though MLB has not existed in the borough for 54 years.
I'll start with the unknown since that's how my journey began on the 4 train into Brooklyn from Manhattan.

1) Ebbets Field is hard to find. 
I spent a lot of time researching where Ebbets Field was, but no publication gave me a location of where the nearest subway stop was. I had to guess. It's marker is in the Crown Heights neighborhood at the corner of Sullivan Place and and Bedford Ave. I don't recommend going there at night. I switched to the 3 train at Atlantic Ave in Brooklyn and got off at President Street. Thank goodness I had a Brooklyn hat, a small amount of money, and some ID in case I was pillaged by locals. It was about 11 o'clock in the morning too. I wanted to cross this off first as I was unfamiliar with the area. Frank Sinatra's song There Used to Be a Ball Here is the perfect ballad to the rundown neighborhood and the grotesque high rise that exists at the former ballpark's location. I'll let you view for yourself.


2) There is little in the surrounding area of the former Ebbets Field honoring the team.
There is just this one small park on Sullivan Place that offers any reminiscence of the Dodgers. You want a shrine to Ebbets Field? Visit the adjacent borough of Queens and the Mets new Citi Field. That's how the original Ebbets Field looked. I will include that in these photos.




  This is the best replica of what Ebbets Field actually looked like. The Mets new ballpark Citi Field.



Now to the best Brooklyn has to offer for baseball:

3) Coney Island is a baseball hotspot, and a great place to take a baseball journey.
MCU Park, home of the Mets single affiliate Brooklyn Cyclones is sold out regularly, and is a hidden jewel not just in baseball, but of New York City. It's next to Nathan's, the holy grail for hot dog lovers. What could be better than a baseball game next to the beach in Brooklyn, with the world's greatest hot dog vendor in your reach? Nothing. Here are some images to look at during a long New England or NYC winter.








4) The "snap" is what makes a Nathan's hot dog great

 5) Green-Wood Cemetery has two of baseball's most important historical figures.
From Coney Island take the N train 25th street, and walk one block north to 5th Avenue and 25th street. Grren-Wood is the place where Charles Ebbets, the Dodgers' first owner is buried. It also the burial site of Henry Chadwick, the "Father of Baseball" and inventor of the scoring system baseball uses today. We all remember our fathers teaching us to keep score. Chadwick is the original father. Green-Wood is one of America's most historic and beautiful cemeteries. There was also a Revolutionary War battle there as well.








Finish your day with a Brooklyn '55 Pennant Ale honoring the Dodgers only World Championship in Brooklyn.  I recommend Pub One underneath the Brooklyn Bridge. Best thing to eat with your Pennant Ale? A Braised Short Rib Grilled Cheese. Delicious!!! Here are some images of my favorite Brooklyn and NYC landmark. Walk across it into Manhattan to finish your journey,



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