Chronological Tour: Stop 173

What if They Gave a Ballgame and Nobody Came?

Looking from the third-base line into the seating area, Jul-2000.

A smattering of fans enjoys the action from the third-base seats.

What you see from the grandstand, mostly without benefit of the protective screen.

Quick Facts: Rating: 2 baseballs
If you want baseball in an intimate setting, Quakertown is the place.

Honestly, if you want to get intimate with someone and not be hassled, you can probably do it at Memorial Park in Quakertown, the 2000 home of the Lehigh Valley Nomads, er, Black Diamonds of the independent Atlantic League. It’s a great old park, the home to who knows how many semi-pro teams over the years. More recently, its prime tenants have been the Quakertown Blazers of the Atlantic Collegiate Baseball League and a succession of high school and American Legion teams.

The operative word for the bleachers is “small”. You can’t put more than about 800 people into the grandstand, which is all wood, covered by a roof and enclosed with a fence. For big games, they rope off areas beyond the dugouts down the foul lines and have fans stand or sit behind them. That hasn’t been a consideration for the Diamonds, though. Through 3-Jul-2000, they were averaging 81 fans per opening; they drew 100 for the doubleheader I saw but reportedly have had as few as 2 paying customers. The biggest problem with their draw was the necessity to play mostly day games, as the Diamonds have a priority below the Blazers and the Legion teams on Memorial Park’s schedule.

I do give the ground crew a lot of credit: the field at Quakertown is maintained on a par with just about any minor league park and even some major league facilities. The park measures 335 down one line, 325 down the other, 390 straight away; the alleys are only posted in the 350s, however. The walls, which are wood, are straight lines from left and right, but with a cross piece in center so the outfield doesn’t come to a point. Foul territory down the lines is copious, although there’s less than usual behind the plate.

Game # Date League Level Result
404 Sun 2-Jul-2000 Atlantic Ind. Nashua 4, LEHIGH VALLEY 2, 9 inn, 1st
405 Sun 2-Jul-2000 Atlantic Ind. Nashua 7, LEHIGH VALLEY 5, 2d
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This page updated 12-Aug-2009