Tagged: Washington & Jefferson College

Ballfields of PA: Washington Park

Recently, I visited a ballfield that I used to play on quite a bit.  When I attended college at Washington & Jefferson, I would often drive to Washington Park to hit some baseballs.  I hadn’t been back to this field since 2003, so since Amy, Olivia and I were in the area – we decided to pay a visit.

Washington Park is a pretty big park, and the baseball field is near the main entrance, behind the tennis courts.

This is the view from behind the left field fence.  Not much had changed here in 8 years except for a newer fence.

Here is a view from behind the pitchers mound:

You can see that there are trees behind the plate and also in foul territory, thereby making it possible to lose your foul balls.  The park is surrounded by a small cliff though, which should help in narrowing down the areas that you’ll have to search.

By the way, have a look at the dugouts.  Meh:

Rather than doing a panorama, I took a picture of each field from home plate.

Looking out towards left field:

To center field:

And to right field:
The field has some decent dimensions.   However, they aren’t marked, so I brought a tape measure to make sure that I could get an accurate reading.

Left Field is 305 feet.  Center field is about 340.  Right field is 305.

It was time to hit and see if I could still take one out of here.  The goal for the day was to smash one off of the scoreboard beyond the left field fence:

I used to do that on occasion back in the day and scare the heck out of tennis players who were standing several feet away.  It makes a loud bang similar to a gunshot.

Amy and Olivia stood nearby and took some great action photos.

I’m not sure if it’s because I have been visiting these parks and hitting more frequently, or because I’ve been hitting the gym on a regular basis – but I was launching balls today.

Ball after ball sailed over the left center field fence.

Here is a video that Amy took of a home run that clears the scoreboard in left field.  If you watch it on full screen, you’ll see it land and basically stay put since the grass was so soft.  I also say, “Scoreboard! Scoreboard!”  Anticipating the loud boom – but the ball cleared it.  Olivia offers some color commentary at the end.  If you have 11 seconds, here you go:

The only balls that didn’t go out today, were line drives that I slightly got on top of.

I ended up taking twenty swings.  Eleven of those swings resulted in home runs being hit over the left field fence.  What a round!

And, by the way, I did hit one of the eleven off of the scoreboard.  On my third to last swing.  Mission accomplished.  Here’s the ball:

Condition:  C
Dimensions: A
Location/Surrounding Area: C+
Parking/Access: A

The field isn’t exactly in a picturesque location, but parking is easy.  You just have to walk a little ways around the tennis courts to the field.  The only way into the field is to walk the whole way down to the dugouts and enter by the on deck circle, as the entire field is encircled by a fence.  I like the dimensions of the field, but it appears that the field isn’t extremely well taken care of.  Granted, its the fall – but even if the grass was well manicured and the infield had been dragged, the field just wouldn’t look that great to me.

By the way, prior to going to Washington Park, Amy took me to the Washington Animal Shelter to volunteer.  We were going to take a dog on a walk.

We went back into the cages and looked at all of the poor homeless dogs.  There was a lot of barking and noise, but Olivia didn’t seem to mind.

Finally, we selected Shadow, a 10 year old German Shepherd whose family had to give her up because they lost their jobs and home.

Here were are taking a walk.

It brought back memories of my two German Shepherds that I had when growing up.

Links to other fields that I’ve hit at and reviewed for the Ballparks of PA Series:
Riverfront Park, Boston
Wylie Park, Elizabeth
Peterswood Park, Peters Township