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  • Joe Molski

Hayden Field - Xavier Musketeers


Photos by Joe Molski, Stadium Journey


Stadium Info FANFARE Score: 3.00

Hayden Field 3701 Victory Pkwy Cincinnati, OH 45207

Year Opened: 1935 Capacity: 500

 

Xavier's Hayden Field

Hayden Field has been home to the Xavier University baseball team since the team started playing there in the 1920s. There were many renovations to get it to its current dimensions (left field: 310 ft, center field: 380 ft, right field: 310 ft). The major work took place in 2010 when a new playing surface, brick backstop, and dugouts were added to the home of the Musketeers.


The stadium is named after J. Page Hayden after a donation was made to its construction. It has a capacity of 500 spectators. The Cincinnati Steam also plays home games during the summer in the Great Lakes Summer Collegiate League since 2006.


Food & Beverage 3

Due to Covid-19, there was a limited selection of food and drink at Hayden Field. If you saw Subway, McDonald’s, or Starbucks in the stands, it was brought from the outside, which is allowed. The small concession cart carried Pepsi products, along with bagged chips and Gatorade. Those 21 and older could enjoy alcoholic beverages like Budweiser and WhiteClaw.


Atmosphere 3

As my first ever college baseball game, I loved the rowdiness from the fans and the dugouts. The shouting after a strikeout or the benches-clearing after a home run was awesome, and it added an element missing from the professional level. The limited fans there would have been the most passionate, as only players on Xavier got tickets to give away. Students sat on the hill across a noisy parkway, so their impact was limited.


The view of the Xavier campus brightens the somewhat vapid ballpark along with lush green colors of a nearby lawn and trees that serve as the batter’s eye in dead center field. A campus building is directly behind the right-field wall where championship banners are proudly displayed. A simple scoreboard is also located near this area of the field.


Neighborhood 4

Hayden Field sits directly across from the Xavier main campus on Victory Parkway in Cincinnati, Ohio. Right near Dana Ave and I-71, the neighborhood around the campus has been transformed in the past few months. Right in between Avondale and Evanston, you can enjoy a walk around before the game.


Fans 3

With a limited amount of tickets to be given out, there were only friends and family at this game. Still, the limited sets of fans provided plenty of noise. Students sat on the hill across busy Victory Parkway, with an occasional chirp or jeer heard between breaks in traffic.


Access 4

Easy access from I-71 and Dana Avenue makes this field and the campus very easy to get to from any highway or part of town. Sitting right next to the university’s soccer field, a nice parking lot, and parking in the university across the street, make a game very easy to attend.


Return on Investment 5

An adult ticket is $5, a youth ticket is $3, and a student gets in free with ID (I did not test my University of Cincinnati ID card). And you can bring your food, getting to see Division 1 games for almost for free can not be beaten.

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Extras 2

There is a fence beyond the left field line protecting the busy street, which is Victory Parkway. I wonder how many times that has been hit in a game? An extended warning track has a little incline in the final feet to the wall. It seems like an unnecessary hazard to have in left field, but nothing like a little home-field advantage.


Final Thoughts

There was a collision between the shortstop and second baseman chasing a pop-up and pausing the game for some time in the first inning. The benches were yelling at each other after every strikeout or an extra-base hit. Some Xavier players signed a baseball and gave it to one of their professors in the stands. This game had all of it. Hayden Field is the perfect college baseball stadium. The sound of the bats and the yells from the dugouts will have me coming back for more baseball soon.

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