Los Angeles’ Wrigley Field, often overshadowed by its more famous Chicago namesake, holds its own unique place in baseball history. As the first home of the Los Angeles Angels and a key venue in the Pacific Coast League (PCL), this ballpark was a cornerstone of baseball in Southern California during the mid-20th century.
Stadium Facts about Wrigley Field (Los Angeles)
- Location: Los Angeles, California
- Opened On: September 29, 1925
- Closed On: 1969
- Home Team: Los Angeles Angels (PCL), briefly the Los Angeles Angels (MLB, American League) in 1961
- Stadium Nicknames: N/A
- Dimensions: Left Field – 345 feet, Center Field – 412 feet, Right Field – 345 feet
- Capacity: Approximately 22,000
- Attendance Record: Not available
- Surface: Grass
- Architect: Zachary Taylor Davis
- Owner: Philip K. Wrigley
Los Angeles’ Wrigley Field was built by William Wrigley Jr., the chewing gum magnate and owner of the Chicago Cubs. The stadium was designed as a smaller version of Chicago’s Wrigley Field and served as a vital part of the Pacific Coast League, particularly as the home of the Los Angeles Angels. In 1961, it also briefly hosted the newly formed Los Angeles Angels MLB team before they moved to Dodger Stadium and later to Anaheim.
The stadium was demolished in 1969, but its legacy lives on as an integral piece of Los Angeles’ rich baseball heritage.
Design and Features
Los Angeles’ Wrigley Field was known for its intimate ballpark feel and classic design. It featured a double-decked grandstand and a signature clock tower, making it an iconic structure in the city. The ballpark was smaller in size compared to many MLB stadiums, but it provided fans with a close-up view of the action, making for an engaging baseball experience.
The field’s dimensions were favorable for hitters, contributing to some high-scoring games and notable hitting achievements in its history.
Throughout its existence, Wrigley Field underwent various renovations to enhance the fan experience and maintain the stadium’s infrastructure. These included updates to the seating, improvements to the field, and expansion of facilities like locker rooms and concessions.
Despite these updates, the ballpark maintained its classic feel and remained a beloved venue for baseball fans in Los Angeles until its closure.
The facilities at Wrigley Field, while not as modern as those in newer stadiums, were adequate for the era’s standards. The concession stands offered classic baseball fare, and the seating areas, though not equipped with the comforts of today’s venues, allowed fans to feel connected to the game.
The stadium was known for its accessibility and proximity to the community, making it a popular destination for baseball fans in Los Angeles.
Memorable Moments at Wrigley Field (Los Angeles)
- PCL Games: Hosting numerous memorable Pacific Coast League games and events.
- First MLB Season in Los Angeles: Serving as the home of the Los Angeles Angels in their inaugural MLB season.
- Legendary Players: Hosting future MLB stars during its tenure as a PCL venue.
- Film and Television Appearances: The stadium was featured in various movies and TV shows, showcasing its iconic status.
Interesting Baseball History at Wrigley Field (Los Angeles)
- Role in the PCL: As a primary venue in the PCL, it contributed significantly to the development of baseball on the West Coast.
- Transition to MLB: The stadium played a role in Los Angeles’ transition to a major league city with the arrival of the Angels.
- Architectural Significance: Reflecting the design style of its era and its connection to the more famous Wrigley Field in Chicago.
- Cultural Impact: The stadium was an important part of the sporting and cultural landscape of Los Angeles during its operation.
In addition to baseball, Wrigley Field in Los Angeles hosted a variety of other events, highlighting its versatility as a multi-use facility. It served as a venue for football games, boxing matches, and was particularly famous for hosting film and television productions, including the classic TV show “Home Run Derby.” The stadium’s role in these diverse events underscored its importance beyond baseball, serving as a significant venue in the entertainment industry and in the community life of Los Angeles.