Aug 12, 2021 - Sports

The Field of Dreams game

White Sox outfielder Eloy Jiménez
White Sox outfielder Eloy Jiménez. Photo: Ron Vesely/Getty Images

MLB built it, and tonight the White Sox, Yankees and 8,000 fans will come.

Driving the news: The town of Dyersville, Iowa, (population: 4,543) will host tonight's Field of Dreams Game at a newly-constructed field just steps away from the site of the iconic 1989 film.

  • First pitch: 7:15pm ET (Fox)
  • Starters: CWS RHP Lance Lynn (10-3, 2.04 ERA) vs. NYY LHP Andrew Heaney (7-8, 5.45 ERA)
  • Tickets: The average price was about $1,400, with some going for much as $4,000.
Field of Dreams stadium
Courtesy: MLB

Details: Construction began in 2019 for the planned (and later postponed) August 2020 game, with the ballpark connected to the original movie site by a corn maze in the shape of MLB's logo.

  • To enter the field, players will walk through a removable section of outfield fence hidden in the corn — just like in the movie.
  • The design, down to the color of the grandstands and location of the bullpens, resembles Comiskey Park, where the White Sox played from 1910 to 1990. Same with the dimensions, which measure 335 feet down the lines, 380 feet to the alleys and 400 feet to center.
  • The broadcast will be more like a playoff game, featuring countless cameras, microphones and drones, while various other flourishes — like hand-painted signage, a retro score bug and throwback uniforms — will give the game an old-school look and feel.
Field of Dreams stadium
Photo: Quinn Harris/MLB Photos via Getty Images

Between the lines: "We want to embrace what the movie 'Field of Dreams' is all about," said Fox Sports executive producer Brad Zager. To that end, it's not just baseball stars who'll make tonight special.

  • Kevin Costner and Dwier Brown, who played Costner's father, will be in attendance, and other cast members may join, as well.
  • With that in mind: If Costner doesn't throw out the first pitch to Brown, à la their climactic catch in the movie, Rob Manfred must be fired on the spot.

Looking ahead: There are no plans yet for this to become a recurring event, but MLB would be wise to consider adding marquee games to its annual slate akin to the NHL's Winter Classic.

  • 162 games is a ton. The con is there are few must-see regular-season matchups. The pro is the abundance of inventory with which to work.
  • As MLB searches for ways to attract a younger audience, events like this may be just the ticket. Not that movies must inspire every future one-off, but who wouldn't watch a "Sandlot" MLB game?

The bottom line: Tonight should be one to remember, and if you're fortunate enough to be able to watch with your father or son, might I suggest going outside to have a catch during the seventh-inning stretch?

🎥 Watch: Grand slam into the corn (Twitter)

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