Farewell Rosenblatt Stadium

I’m happy that I joined the Pacific Coast League just in time to see the venerable and historic old ballpark on near the border of Nebraska and Iowa, situated off I-80 and 13th Street near downtown Omaha, called Johnny Rosenblatt Stadium.  For many years, this ballpark has been the home of the College World Series and the home of the Omaha Royals, the Kansas City Royals’ AAA affiliate since 1969.  The Omaha Royals were successful in 1969 when they were in their first year of existence in the American Association and won the championship that year.  Over the years, many future Royals players have passed through this ballpark as well as many future major league stars in general, who were fortunate to play in the College World Series.

For the Nashville Sounds, this is their swan song for their final games ever to play at Rosenblatt.  The Sounds have won four of their first five games played here this season and even though this ballpark has seen better years, I enjoy the view from the broadcast booth and the field is still in great playing shape.  I enjoy the downtown view of Omaha from beyond the left field corner. 

Johnny Rosenblatt has been gone since 1979, but his impact on baseball in this town is just as big as the blazing fastball from an Omaha native, the Cardinals’ pitching great Bob GIbson, who has a street named after him right behind the left field wall.  Rosenblatt played semi pro ball and worked in a dairy during the off-season. He would become the dairy’s General Manager and instrumental behind the ballpark’s beginning, which was in 1948.

Starting next year, the O-Royals will move to a new ballpark in nearby Sarpy County and I heard nothing but great things and look forward to get to broadcast in it.  There will also be a new downtown ballpark in Omaha for the College World Series and other local amateur games.  For the Royals, it’s kind of a blessing since they won’t have to be on the road every year for almost three weeks.  I wish the best for both the Royals and Amateur Baseball and future College World Series classics.  It will be a nice transition for both.

Tonight is Game 2 of a 4-game series with the Sounds and the Omaha Royals at Rosenblatt Stadium. Broadcast is at 6:50PM on nashvillesounds.com.  Hope to see the Sounds make it two in a row after their thrilling come-from-behind, 10-inning win over the Royals here in Omaha last night.  Brendan Katin was the hero with his two-run homer that broke a 4-4 tie in the tenth.  Mat Gamel had an outstanding night at the plate with three hits including a three-run homer in the sixth inning to give the Sounds a 4-3 lead until the Royals came back to score a run and tie it in the eighth.  The Sounds are now 4-3 in extra inning games in 2010.  Keep it up, fellows.  Go get ’em tonight.

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