It’s tribe time, Indians fans! After 68 years, a World Series win is finally within reach again. That’s why you’ve got to be the most fanatic fans you’ve ever been this season! The Cleveland Indians were 94-67 going into the postseason and haven’t had that good of a record since 2007 when the team was 96-66. Since this article is about hitting the long ball, it’s good to know that designated hitter Carlos Santana and first baseman Mike Napoli lead Cleveland with 34 home runs this season. You can bet that you’ll see them hit a few more during the series. Aside from the power behind the plate, watch out for the mound as well; Corey Kluber has produced a 3.14 ERA in 32 games this season.
New and Improved Progressive Field
Located in the heart of downtown Cleveland, Progressive Field was opened in 1994 and originally named Jacobs Field. The Indians stadium is one of the newest stadiums in baseball. Before Progressive Field was built, the Indians played at the Cleveland Municipal Stadium where fans were scarce. The team wasn’t that great, and the stadium was no match to other stadiums in the game.
In 1985, David and Richard Jacobs saved America’s favorite pastime for Cleveland by buying out the Indians in hopes of turning the team around. In 1990, the Gateway Economic and Development Committee was formed to oversee the construction of the new Indians and Cavaliers stadium after a bond was passed by voters to do so. After being known as Jacobs Field for 13 seasons, the naming rights were sold to Progressive Insurance in 2008 for $3.6 million a year for the next 16 years. However, the ballpark has hosted a couple of World Series games since 1994 – one in 1995, when the Indians lost to the Atlanta Braves, and one in 1997, when the Indians lost to the Miami Marlins. The stadium also hosted the All-Star Game in 1997.
If you haven’t been to Progressive Field, you should consider it. The stadium has been newly renovated over the past few years. A new wall was just added this year in the outfield, along with a 59-foot-by-221-foot HD video/scoreboard. You can have nosebleed seats and still see pitcher Corey Kluber throw a no-hitter or watch Francisco Lindor make spectacular plays at shortstop.
If you’re one of the lucky ones to have a ticket to this year’s World Series at Progressive Field, you won’t want to miss the opportunity to catch a home run ball. Catching a ball hit over the fence by someone like Mike Napoli takes skill, knowledge and a lot of determination. You might have to forfeit your beer to catch one of these guys. We can’t provide you with good hand-eye coordination or buy you a new beer, but we can provide you with the knowledge of the best places to sit in the park.
Obviously, you can’t sit just anywhere to catch a home run. We’ve determined that most of the long balls are sent to sections 180, 181, 109, 111, and 113. You’ll also have a great spot hanging on the Home Run Porch in left field. If you can grab a ticket in one of these sections and sit as close to the field as you can, you’ll put yourself in the best position possible. If you’re serious about snagging a ball, we suggest doing a few squats so you can get your legs ready for the jump. Catching a home run ball is no joke. Now go grab one!
Progressive Field’s biggest hitter during the postseason has been Francisco Lindor. His longest home run was 413 feet! However, the holder of the longest ball this season goes to Mike Napoli, who had a shot that went 467 feet – well exceeding the league average of 398.3 feet.
If we had to put our money on it, we’d say that when Mike Napoli steps to the plate, you better keep your eyes on the ball. Don’t forget to head over to Fanatics to grab your Cleveland Indians gear because if you catch a home run without your jersey on, does it even count?