Ballparks Across America is a series of articles about baseball fields that have been forgotten, abandoned or demolished. Baseball was the backbone of America in the simpler days. Kids were gone all day playing baseball on any diamond they could find. Much of those fields are now part of a lost Americana. This is the second of several that I will present to you. If you know of one you would like for me to research, send to my email at the bottom of this article -Tom
Ballparks Across America- Hilltop Park
Ballparks Across America will feature Hilltop Park which opened in 1903. It was originally named American League Park but sine it sat on high ground it was renamed Hilltop Park.In 1902 the Orioles were sold for $18,000 and they moved to New York. The stadium was to be built on a rocky area and $20,000 was used to excavate the site. On April 30. 1903, The Ne Yotk Highlnders plsyf the Wahington Senator in the first game.
The it of the park was a poor choie from the beginning as the was a swamp in right field, the outfield had no grass and the grandstand was made of a single level wooden variety that wrapped around from third base to first base dugout. The grandstand was uncovered to both foul poles.
If you sat behind home plate, you had view of the Hudson River. The home of the New York Giants, Polo Grounds, burnt down and they moved into the Hilltop Park even though it was poorly built. The Giants changed their name to the Yankees and this was the first home of the might New York Yankees.
On October 5. 1912, the final game at Hilltop Park was played and in 1914 the place was demolished. Since 1928, the site has the Columbia-Presbyterian Medical Center sitting on it
The New York Highlanders and New York Giants played there and finally it was the first home of the New York Yankees. The stadium held 16,000 fans with a grass surface and it was built at the cost of $75.000.It opened in 1903 and closed in 1912 and was torn down in 1914. Left field was 365 feet, Center was 542 ft with right being 400 feet.
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