In 2006, Helen and I spent a couple of days in “upstate South Carolina.” We stayed in Gaffney, and drove over to Greenville to attend a Greenville Drive baseball game. We are lifetime Red Sox fans, and the Drive became the Red Sox class ‘A’ league affiliate (South Atlantic League) a couple of years ago. Upstate South Carolina is the area in the northwest part of the state, near the North Carolina line. Gaffney and Greenville are about an hour south of Asheville and the Smokey Mountains. We think it’s a beautiful area with its rolling hills and southern charm.
When Greenville’s team became a part of the Red Sox organization, they rebuilt their baseball park to resemble Boston’s Fenway Park. The Drive’s website gives the following description of their park which is named “Fluor Field at the West End:”
–State of the art Mini Fenway park with interactive video screen, party deck, grassy berm seating, group picnic area, plus more
–Greenville’s own Green Monster is 30´ high with manual scoreboard; there is a Pesky Pole, same notch in center field fence, 310 down LF and 302 down RF.
-Fun new on-field entertainment and community events at each game
-Capacity: Holds over 5,000 – about 60% box and reserved and 40% general admission
-The farthest seat from the field is only 13 rows row back.
Fluor Field at the West End is a great place to watch a baseball game! Observing the attire of the folks at the game, it seems that many of the local baseball fans have become Red Sox fans. The weather was beautiful, the refreshments were reasonably priced, everyone was friendly, and we had great (behind home plate) seats. We had a very enjoyable afternoon, and look forward to visiting again.
The Drive’s opponents that day were the Asheville Tourists, a Colorado Rockies affiliate. Both teams have some good young players. I plan to hang onto the (free at the park) program for a couple of years to see how many of those young prospects make it to the “show” (major leagues.)
If you find yourself in upstate South Carolina, and you’re a baseball fan, you should consider a visit to West End Field in Greenville.
(Original posting June 24, 2006)
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