August 6, 2012 in City

Then and Now: The ol’ ball game

Tracking baseball’s history in Spokane since 1901
 

Early 1900s: Fans watch an Indians game at Recreation Park, which was built by the Graves brothers and featured Spokane’s first grass baseball infield.

Professional baseball in Spokane was first played at Twickenham Park, which was northwest of Boone and A Street in northwest Spokane. A brief history:

1901: The team moves to Natatorium Park’s field at the end of Boone Avenue along the Spokane River. 1903: The club picks up its new name, the Spokane Indians. 1905: New ownership moves the team to Recreation Park, near Regal and Boone in east Spokane. It was the first ballpark in Spokane with a grass infield. As baseball’s popularity booms, the grandstands at Recreation Field are expanded to 7,000 seats. 1921-1936: Interest wanes and Spokane has no professional team for 15 years.

1937: The Indians resume play at Ferris Field. 1946: Tragedy strikes when the team bus crashes on Snoqualmie Pass, killing nine men. 1958: The Indians begin play at their current home, now called Avista Stadium. 1970: Arguably the greatest team in minor league history wins the Class AAA Pacific Coast League as a Dodgers’ farm club, behind future Major League stars Steve Garvey and Charlie Hough and Coach Tommy Lasorda. 2012: Today’s Indians are a Northwest League Class A short season team affiliated with the Texas Rangers.

–Jesse Tinsley

Present day: Spokane Indians fans settle in before the start of the game with the Yakima Bears on July 27, 2012, at Avista Stadium.


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