While preparing our listing on 25th Street in the Mission, we discovered that Garfield Square Park, located across the street, is the former location of San Francisco’s first official professional baseball park, “The Recreation Grounds”. It served as a baseball park from 1868 – 1884. Our interest was piqued and we started to dig around for more information about the history of baseball in San Francisco.
Ok, ok, I’ll admit it, I geeked out in a big way and spent more than a few hours researching and reading. I found that baseball has a rich history in San Francisco dating back to the 1860’s and there have been several stadiums and ballparks built all over the city in honor of the Game. Much to our good fortune, San Francisco’s baseball lineage has been very well researched and documented by local blogging historians at Burrito Justice, FoundSF and Curbed SF. With a tip of the hat to those folks, we’d like to share what we found.
On the eve of the Victory Parade for our beloved SF Giants, 2012 World Series Champs, this is exactly what you need to read for tomorrow. Think of this as a crash course in the history of baseball in San Francisco. You’ll be dropping knowledge bombs left and right while hanging out with throngs of fans along the parade route. You’ll be impressing your friends at many cocktail parties to come with your in-depth knowledge of the old-time baseball teams that called SF home. For example, here’s a tidbit to share — use it wisely: the SF Giants only played 2 seasons at the old Seals Stadium (located at 16th and Potrero where Safeway, Ross, etc are now) after moving to SF from New York: 1958 and 1959. The 1960 season was played at Candlestick. And, boy oh boy, is there a story to tell behind the building of Candlestick Park !
For your reading pleasure :
Be prepared to spend a good amount of time with the fantastic post about the history of baseball in the Mission neighborhood at Burrtio Justice. Even the comments are packed with information, not to mention the other baseball related posts.
Alex Bevk of Curbed SF chronicles the locations and dates of the myriad baseball parks and stadiums built over the years in San Francisco.
These two words best describe the FoundSF website : treasure trove. In fact, I just learned something about the poem “Casey at the Bat”. The poem refers to the “Mudville” nine and according to FoundSF, Mudville “was a commonly-used derisive term for Stockton, one of the four teams in the California League.”. Awesome!