A few days ago, the Yankees played the Chicago White Sox (and ended up losing a close one). What made the game unique was that it was played in the middle of a corn field at the Field of Dreams stadium Dyersville, Iowa. The field was originally constructed for the 1989 Kevin Costner film, Field of Dreams, which was based on W. P. Kinsella’s novel, Shoeless Joe.
The movie has since become a classic baseball movie, and is a terrific film. The book is probably the best baseball novel ever written, one that I have gone back and read three times.
I imagine there were a lot of dads watching Kevin Costner emerge from the corn in center field with tears welling in their eyes. I admit I was one of them.
With a shortened baseball season in 2020 (thanks, COVID); with all kinds of ridiculous rule changes in order to speed up a game that by design has no clock; with the controversies stirred up by PEDs and, more recently, sticky substances in pitcher’s mitts, it was so refreshing to see Major League Baseball do something right, and hold a game in Iowa, in the midst of a corn field. It highlights the fun of the game and it’s rich history real and fictional.
Sometime before 1982, W. P. Kinsella wrote the words, “If you build it, he will come,” which appear on the very first page of the 1982 novel. Well, they built it in the late 1980s, and 39 years after the novel debuted, MLB finally came. It was wonderful to see. I only wish the Kinsella had lived long enough to see it for himself.
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