The (Turf) Field of Dreams


Jack Meyer

Chaminade has many great sights to see on the campus nowadays, including Skip Viragh Center for the Arts and the brand-new statue of Christ the Teacher.  Next, you may notice one of the nicest gyms in Missouri, one of the greatest pools, or the tennis courts and football field. However, if you are looking for a true sight, you have to visit the turf baseball field.

The new turf field, which was completed prior to the 2018 baseball season, is used for all of Chaminade’s baseball games in the spring, and also for the Chaminade team that plays in the summer. Although the field was a huge investment, it will add so much value to the Chaminade athletic program; we can now host district games because of the increased fan seating, and very few games get rained out.

I caught up with the Athletic Director at Chaminade Mr. Fernandez and asked him some questions about the Baseball field. “We decided to build the field in 2017,” Mr. Fernandez told me.  The year before they had decided to build the turf field, there were 36 games that had either rainouts or they had to be moved because of rain. The old field was a dirt field, which was not able to drain water well, leading to many cancellations of games at Chaminade.  This decision made sense for other reasons, too.  “We are planning to build a dorm soon, and we need the space and that would be the old baseball field,” Mr. Fernandez added.

The field was made by the Bryne and Jones Construction company. They started early in the 2017-2018 school year and finished the field just in time for Varsity’s first home game on March 29, 2018, against Liberty high school.  Everyone agrees that the field is beautiful, and now that we’ve played two full seasons on the new field, it has also stood up to the test of time.

The Field is all turf even to the warning track in the outfield. Nowhere on the field is there dirt, which makes it easier to play even if there is rain. The only way that a game may be canceled would be due to a lightning storm in the area.

Even behind the field, Chaminade added things to help the players improve. They added to the batting cages allowing players to get in extra swings before, during, or after a game. They added a turf pitching mound behind the field so a player could warm up in the bullpen, or if they want to up a pitching machine in, a player can hit in there too. The dugouts are open with a black fence in front so no one can get hit by a foul ball. The accents of the dugouts include red benches and Chaminade’s name on the walls. Right behind home plate, there is a large CCP in red to show pride for our school. There is a press box so, that a student on CSPN could call the game, and so one of the players can do the scoreboard which is out in left field.

I was interested to see how the new field has changed the baseball program at Chaminade. Mr. Fernandez said, “We are able to host district playoffs at the stadium because we have a gate outside the field now, and it is a more fan-friendly stadium to come and watch the game at.” Mr. Fernandez is right; since the new stadium has been built, I have seen more fans at the games and there have been attendance events for baseball games now.

In the past there were few students that went and watched the game at the old field. Now since we have the new field, we have seen more students show up to the games and cheer on Chaminade’s baseball team. In 2018 the year the stadium was built the baseball team made it to the district finals, at that game the red army showed and cheered on the team.

The baseball team does much more than just serve the purpose for the baseball team. The soccer team practices on the turf so they can get ready for a game they have coming up next. I was able to catch up with Senior Graham O’Neal the manager of the soccer team. I asked him what he thought of the baseball field. Graham said, “The baseball field has impacted many other sports besides baseball like basketball and soccer.”  I then went on to ask Graham if this has helped the sports community, and Graham said, “Yes, people do club activities down there including spike ball and track field does stuff on the field.”

There are many great memories that have happened on that old field over the years, including two state championship teams.   There have been great players to play on that field such as Austin Allen that is playing for the San Diego Padres now, and many other players.  We will miss the old field, but the future also looks great.  Be sure to see the baseball field the next time you are up at Chaminade.