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The Question:

What were the dimensions of the Polo Grounds in New York, especially the distance from home plate to the center-field wall?

The Answer:

The Polo Grounds was home field to the Giants (1911-57), Yankees (1913-22) and Mets (1962-63) at one time or another. It owed its name to the area of Manhattan north of Central Park where polo matches were held before baseball took over in the late 1800s.

The Polo Grounds you're referring to was actually the fourth building of the same name built on that site. The distance to the outfield wall from home plate was the following (measured in feet): 279 (left line), 447 (left), 455 (left-center), 483 (center), 475 (right-center), 440 (right), and 258 (right line).

It was a huge stadium built on a filled-in portion of the Harlem River. The last game played there was on Sept. 18, 1963 and it was demolished in 1964, using the same wrecking ball that leveled the Brooklyn Dodgers' Ebbets Field.

Today it is the site of Polo Ground Towers—four 30-story apartment buildings—and an asphalt playground called Willie Mays Field.

Here are links to more information on this topic: Baseball history; Ballparks and Arenas; and Ballparks, by Munsey and Suppes.

—The Editors


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