On March 24, the Crusaders’ baseball team got an opportunity to stand on land that is considered historic. They played West Bloomfield High School on Detroit Police Athletic League’s (PAL) new field, The Corner Ballpark, which is the former Tiger Stadium on The Corner of Michigan and Trumbull. This game was the grand opening of The Corner Ballpark.
“The Corner Ballpark is a historic site because it’s the land mark site of the old Tiger Stadium. Many baseball legends built their legendary career at the Tiger Stadium such as Al Kaline, and African-American ball players such as Willie Horton and Gates Brown, and the list goes on,” said Taylor.
In the 1920’s, Tiger Stadium was known as Navin Field. It was roped off and African-Americans could not go past the rope. They were only allowed on a hill close to I-75 in center field. In the late 90’s, African-Americans were able to sit in the bleachers when the stadium was called Briggs Stadium.
“It was a time where my mother, who is 93 years old, would tell me about when her and my dad used to go down to Navin Field when they were little and it was roped off and African-Americans could only be on the hill in center field. Then it became Briggs Stadium and African Americans were only allowed to sit in the bleachers. Then later on they were able to sit wherever they wanted,” said Taylor.
King’s catcher and senior Deyante Fossett feels that the two high school teams that played at The Corner Ballpark for opening day made history. Fossett believes it was an honor to play on the same field as legends.
“It was a wonderful and honorable experience. I am truly grateful to be able to play on the historic corner of Michigan and Trumbull. The field was beautiful and big. I wish I was old enough to see how it actually looked when Tiger Stadium was there,” said Fossett.