Comerica Park, Home of the
Comerica Park, home of the Detroit Tigers, is an open-air ballpark located in the downtown area of Detroit, Michigan. It replaced the historical Tiger Stadium in 2000 and is adjacent to Ford Field, the home football field of the National Football League's Detroit Lions.
The Detroit Tigers named the ballpark after its sponsor, Comerica Bank. Although Comerica Bank relocated its headquarters to Dallas, Texas, the financial institution still has a significant presence in the city of Detroit.
The Tigers set off bursts of water, aka Liquid Fireworks, behind center field whenever the Tigers score, and also between innings. You can also see the water show pregame and postgame, sometimes with music.
As you enter the main entrance to the stadium, you will see a large tiger statue, approximately 15 feet high. There are eight other large-sized tiger statues throughout the park, including two on top of the scoreboard in left field. After a home run of a Tigers’ victory, the tigers' eyes light up the sound of a growling tiger plays.
Ballpark Quick Facts
- Location of Comerica Park: 2100 Woodward Avenue, Detroit, MI
- Years: 2000-present
- Seating capacity: 45,010
- Surface: Grass
- Architect: Poplous
- Project Cost: $300 Million
Groundbreaking for Comerica Park occurred October 29, 1997. The ballpark did not officially open to the public until the year 2000. The scoreboard in Comerica Park, at the time of its construction, was the largest scoreboard in Major League Baseball.
The construction of this ballpark was one of many projects to revamp downtown Detroit, including Ford Field (home of the Detroit Lions).
Comerica Bank paid $66 million to the Tigers for the naming rights for the ballpark over a 30-year period. Upon its opening, there was some effort to try to find a nickname for the park. Often times, locals refer to the park as simply Comerica.
Tiger Stadium, former home to the Tigers, was considered a hitter-friendly ballpark. However, most say that Comerica Park is pitcher-friendly. With the exception of centerfield − 420 feet versus Tiger Stadium's 440 feet – Comerica is much bigger than Tiger Stadium. This has led to criticisms from players and fans alike who sarcastically call it Comerica National Park.
Although Ernie Harwell (former radio announcer) supported the ballpark's dimensions, in 2003 the Detroit Tigers moved the left-center field fence from 395 to 370 feet. This also removed the flagpole from the field of play, originally incorporated as homage to Tiger Stadium.
Two years later, the Tigers moved the bullpens from right field to an empty area in left field created when the fence was moved in. In place of the old bullpens in right field, the Tigers added 950 seats to increase the seating capacity to 41,070.
You will also find statues of every player whose number the Tigers retired at the left-center field concourse. They include Al Kaline, Charlie Gehringer, Hal Newhouser, Willie Horton, and Hank Greenberg. A statue of Ty Cobb is also there, but he does not have a number, as he played baseball before players began to wear numbers on their uniforms.
As well, don’t miss these players' names, along with the names of Hall of Fame players who spent a significant part of their career with the Tigers, on a wall in left center field. Included on the wall is Ernie Harwell, the team's long-time radio announcer. Harwell has a statue just inside the stadium on the first base side.
The field itself features a distinctive dirt strip between home plate and the pitcher's mound. This strip, sometimes known as the "keyhole", was common in early ballparks, yet very rare in modern facilities (the only other current major league stadium to feature this being Chase Field in Phoenix.)
Behind the stands from the third base line, in the North-East corner of the stadium, is a Ferris wheel with twelve cars designed like baseballs. In the North-West corner of the stadium behind the stands from the first base line is a carousel. The flagpole located between center and left fields was originally in play, as was the flag pole in Tiger Stadium. However, the Tigers moved the left field wall in front of the pole prior to the 2003 season. A ball that hits the pole is now ruled a home run.
The right field of the stadium features the Pepsi Porch where the fans can catch home runs from the best lefty batters in the majors. This area also features "Kaline's Corner", a seating area in honor of Hall of Fame right fielder Al Kaline.
In 2005, Comerica Park held the 76th annual MLB All-Star Game. It was the first All-Star game hosted in Detroit, Michigan since 1971. The American League won a close game over the National League. October 21st, 2006 was the date of the first World Series game hosted by