On Sunday morning, Kelsie Heneghan, Sam Dykstra and myself will set our GPS coordinates for Dyersville, Iowa, home of the inaugural MiLB at Field of Dreams game. This mystical Midwest League contest will take place Aug. 9, two days before the Cubs and the Reds play the MLB
On Sunday morning, Kelsie Heneghan, Sam Dykstra and myself will set our GPS coordinates for Dyersville, Iowa, home of the inaugural MiLB at Field of Dreams game. This mystical Midwest League contest will take place Aug. 9, two days before the Cubs and the Reds play the MLB iteration of the event. Both of the Minor League teams involved are from Iowa, with the Quad Cities River Bandits hosting the Cedar Rapids Kernels.
In keeping with the nostalgia-soaked spirit of this cinematically inspired event, the teams will assume throwback identities. The River Bandits will play as the Davenport Blue Sox, with the Kernels suiting up as the Cedar Rapids Bunnies. The Blue Sox existed intermittently between 1913 and 1937, while the Bunnies called Cedar Rapids home from 1904-32.
Game story | Box score | Highlights | Gameday journal | Top prospects in game | Newsletter | Podcast | Early Minors in Iowa | Best players from Iowa | Best Iowa team | Best players to play in Iowa | Road trip
While I’m usually a solo traveler, this trip will be a group effort. The Heneghan-Dykstra-Hill crew will be journeying from New York City to Dyersville on Aug. 7-8, stopping at multiple baseball-related sites along the way. Stay tuned for plenty of material from what is sure to be a memorable Minor League Baseball event, and if you’re social media-inclined, then please join us on our travels!
Twitter: @MiLB, @bensbiz, @kelsie_heneghan, @samdykstraMiLB
Instagram: @MiLB, @thebensbiz
In the meantime, get excited! Learn more about the MiLB at Field of Dreams game and the teams involved here. And make sure to check out the latest edition of the "Show Before the Show" podcast. Cedar Rapids general manger Scott Wilson joined the program to talk about his team playing in the event, Cedar Rapids baseball history and the state of Iowa's relationship to Field of Dreams.
Interested in visiting Aug. 9's combatants in their home habitats? Check out Tyler Maun's Quad Cities River Bandits Ballpark Guide, which offers a thorough review of Modern Woodmen Park. This classic park, located in Davenport, Iowa, was built in 1931 on the banks of the Mississippi River. The Centennial Bridge, connecting Davenport and Rock Island, Ill., makes for one of the most beautiful backdrops in all of Minor League Baseball. The River Bandits are in their second season as a Kansas City Royals affiliate, following eight with the Houston Astros.
The Cedar Rapids Kernels have been affiliated with the Minnesota Twins since 2013. It is perhaps a bit ironic that they are playing as the Bunnies during the MiLB at Field of Dreams Game, as their primary identity is the Minors' most corn-centric. The Kernels play at Veterans Memorial Stadium, which opened in 2002 in the same locations as its predecessor ("old" Veterans Memorial Stadium). I last visited the Kernels in 2015. Highlights included massive pork tenderloin sandwiches, between-inning fish flings and, of course, meeting mascot Mr. Shucks. Looking forward to returning some day. Hope to see you there.
(This article is adapted from the latest Ben's Biz Beat Newsletter. New editions arrive in your inbox every Thursday. Subscribe here.)
Benjamin Hill is a reporter for MiLB.com and writes Ben's Biz Blog. Follow Ben on Twitter @bensbiz.