Great American Ballpark, Home of the Cincinnati Reds
Located in Cincinnati Ohio, the Great American Ballpark opened in 2003 as the home of the Cincinnati Reds. It replaced Cinergy Field, also known as Riverfront Stadium, which was the Reds’ home from 1970 to 2002.
Prior to the Great American Ballpark, both the Reds and the Bengals (NFL) shared Cinergy Field. However, Cinergy Field was rapidly aging and lacked the modern enhancements and amenities of other major league ballparks.
Hamilton County residents voted in 1996 in favour of a sales tax increase of one-half percent to fund the construction of new stadiums for both professional Cincinnati franchises (Cincinnati Bengals and the Cincinnati Reds).
The Reds built their new home on a land plot called "the wedge," which is located between the U.S. Bank Arena and Cinergy Field. Unfortunately, space limitations forced the Reds to demolish parts of Cinergy Field. Cincinnati did discuss another location − Broadway Common − but land costs were too high.
Ballpark Quick Facts
- Location: 100 Joe Nuxhall Way, Cincinnati, OH
- Years: 2003-present
- Seating capacity: 42, 271
- Surface: Perennial Ryegrass
- Architect: GBBN Architects and Populous
- Project Cost: $290 Million
The ballpark’s original address was 100 Main Street. However, in honor of the youngest player to play in major league baseball, Cincinnati changed the name of the street to Joe Nuxhall Way. Joe Nuxhall, who also broadcasted Reds games, died in 2007.
The Reds display Jon Nuxhall's signature catchphrase, "Rounding third and heading for home" behind third base on the northern part of the Great American Ball Park.
Although the name of the ballpark is highly patriotic in nature, the Great American Ballpark’s name comes from the Great American Insurance Group, who owns the naming rights.
Carl Lindner, Jr., the chief executive officer of American Financial Group, owned the majority of the Cincinnati Reds until 2005. The current owner is Robert Castellini, a local Cincinnati, Ohio businessperson.
The first Major League Baseball game held at the Great American Ball Park was March 28, 2003 between the Reds and the Cleveland Indians. The first official Cincinnati Reds Major League Baseball game took place three days later against the Pittsburgh Pirates.
MLB great, Ken Griffey, Jr., hit the first double in the Great American Ball Park, and former U.S. President, George Herbert Walker Bush threw the opening pitch. Former Vice President Dick Cheney threw the opening pitch the following season and former president George W. Bush threw the opening pitch in 2006. The 2004 and 2006 regular season games were both against the Chicago Cubs.
In 2009, the Great American Ball Park hosted a "Civil Rights" game against the Chicago White Sox who defeated the Cincinnati Reds 10-8. The following season on May 15, 2010, the Cincinnati Reds held another Civil Rights game, this time winning the game 4-3 against the Saint Louis Cardinals.
The Reds made a few modifications to the ballpark after the 2007-2008 season including replacing all of the scoreboards with brand new HD, or high-definition displays.
Daktronics signed a 10-year contract with the Cincinnati Reds to install production equipment and HD video cameras. The previous supplier of video displays, Trans-Lux, filed for bankruptcy. Thus, the
Great American Ballpark
had to find another company.