Newport, RI has a rich tradition of sports. From America’s Cup racing and Jai Alai to High School powerhouse Rogers HS and Sunset League games, Newport has been a popular destination for a wide range of sporting events. And, in terms of baseball, Newport is also home to Salve Regina University, the Newport Gulls Summer College baseball team, and of course the Newport Little League.
The Newport Gulls play their home games at historic Cardines Field, which is one of the oldest ballparks in the United States. I played many games as a first baseman and pitcher at Cardines when I was in High School playing for North Kingstown and Rhode Island travel teams. It has the look and feel of a traditional, old school ball field with a short porch in right field abutting a popular local restaurant, playground just off of left field, and bleachers seats that give you the perfect view of the game action, no matter where you sit. But, did you know, that nestled in Kings Park just outside the main drive of downtown Newport is another iconic baseball field?
Harry G. Hogan Memorial Field is located just off Wellington Ave, off what I call “Lower Thames” St. in Newport’s Kings Park Playground. I did some digging online and found an article written about Hogan Field by the Newport Daily News. Here is an excerpt from that article:
“Incidentally, the Fifth Ward Little League field at King Park is named for one of Martin’s baseball team-mates, Harry Hogan who died in action in World War II. Harry, a basketball star and a baseball catcher, also was one of the Old Fifth’s best athletes and one of its most highly regarded men.” Newport Daily News, April 17, 1958
Hogan Field is home to the Newport Little League, which recently hosted their Opening Day ceremonies for the 2018 Spring Season. It features two baseball fields (Hogan and Marine Fields), concession stand, plenty of seating, and a gorgeous view of Newport Harbor. I can only imagine the foul balls that become fish food, because the sea wall sits on the other side of the bleacher seating. I don’t recall ever playing here as a youth baseball player, but I’m sure it would have been an incredible experience.
Harry Hogan Memorial Field is just one more stop in my journey to promote baseball here in Rhode Island. If you have an interesting story and would like me to write about it on the RIBBE, send me a message at firstname.lastname@example.org or fill out the contact form and I will get back to you.