Don't forget about Jingu (and Koshien)!

I find it hard to disagree with Sports Illustrated’s Tom Verducci that Fenway Park is the greatest venue in all of sports. I was even lucky enough to see Billy Hatcher steal home there on August 3, 1992 – a feat no Red Sox player has pulled off since.

Nonetheless, this part of the essay left me scratching my head:

Fenway and Wrigley are the last places standing where you can watch a big league game in the same ballpark where people saw Babe Ruth play.

The first thing that jumped to my mind was Yankee Stadium; after all, it’s the House that Ruth Built, right? But Verducci passes that idea off in a parenthetical statement:

Yankee Stadium is very different in its remodeled reincarnation, and will be wiped away entirely after this season.

Whatever. But when I really got to thinking, it occurred to me: Ruth played at both Jingu Stadium in Tokyo and Koshien, and both are very much still standing.

Are we splitting hairs over what counts as “big leagues?”

Babe Ruth in Japan

Babe Ruth in Japan

  • . . . Fenway is the greatest venue in all of sports. . .

    You do mean after Jingu, right?
    And you put Koshien in a headline.
    Do we need to send you back to the reeducation camp?

    Next thing we know, you’ll be pulling this “Hanshin Tigers are like the Red Sox of Japan” BS on us.

    Anyway, welcome, officially, to the Tsubamegun. (Chris, Dave, and I will vouch for you – you’re a rookie.)

  • Ken Worsley

    Piss off, mate…

    “Hanshin Tigers are like the Red Sox of Japan”

    They actually have to win the series again to get that tag. Then they have to win again.

  • Mate, it’s Red Sox fans pulling that Hanshin line out, not me. I care about the Red Sox about as much as I care about the food at Koshien.

  • Ken

    They have food at Koshien? Do they serve infield dirt?

  • I just stumbled upon the Jingu wikipedia page, and I never knew that the first homerun hit in the Stadium was by Biz Mackey of the visiting Negro League All Stars way back in 1927!

  • I didn’t know that, either. Cool to know. Thanks, Simon.

  • Kozo

    … and Kusanagi Sadium in Shizuoka which plays host to NPB games every year. The stadioum grounds even feature a statue of Ruth and Eiji Sawmura to commemorate the time the latter struck out the former in 1934.