‘It’s too sad’: Las Vegas baseball fans bid farewell to Cashman Field

Updated September 4, 2018 - 12:11 am

Gripping her handwritten scorecard on a clipboard, Jean Vaughan settled under an Elvis Presely umbrella, her only shield from the unforgiving sun, on Monday and prepared to watch her final game at Cashman Field.

Vaughan, 73, has watched the Las Vegas 51s play here since 1983, their first season at the 9,300-seat ballpark, and she was battling her emotions as she waited for the players to take the field one last time.

Back then, her beloved team was called the Las Vegas Stars.

“It’s too sad,” said Vaughan, a retired 311 operator for the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department. “It’s just another chapter in my life, and hopefully it’s not the last chapter.”

Vaughan was among the 5,353 fans who gathered on Labor Day to say goodbye to baseball at Cashman Field. Next year, the ballpark will be transformed into a soccer stadium, and the 51s will get a rebranding and a new stadium, the Las Vegas Ballpark, in Summerlin. Team spokesman Jim Gemma said the announcement of the team’s new name will come soon, possibly in the next week. The Aviators is a leading option, he said.

Gemma said the Triple-A club also will get a new parent team, possibly the Oakland A’s, Milwaukee Brewers or Washington Nationals, after the end of its six-year partnership with the New York Mets.

He said the loyal fans who supported the 51s at Cashman deserve a new ballpark, but Vaughan, who was joined Monday by her 16-year-old granddaughter, isn’t sure how she feels about the new Summerlin facility.

“It’s all just flat. It’s one-dimensional on paper,” Vaughan said. “I haven’t gotten my tickets yet because I want to see the ballpark as a ballpark and not a piece of paper.”

Team officials said the new park’s capacity is 10,000 people including the seats, suites and lounging areas. The Las Vegas Ballpark’s design will allow fans to be near the action, just as Cashman Field did.

For some residents, the end of baseball at Cashman Field was the start of something new.

Las Vegas native Micalanne Williams brought her 4-year-old son, Caleb, to his first baseball game Monday. Sporting a mohawk and munching on popcorn, he said he was excited to see the players “hit the ball.”

“It’s great to share this with him,” said Williams, 35. “It’s nostalgic. That’s why we came.”

Lifelong Dodger fan Peter Roterdam said watching Triple-A baseball in Las Vegas gave him access to the game’s biggest stars, both before they made it to the Major Leagues and sometimes in the later years of their careers.

“We watch the story in the beginning,” he said, “and watch the story in the end.”

Cashman Field likely welcomed its 12 millionth fan at its final ballgame on Labor Day, team officials said.

Among them were Cirque du Soleil crew workers Melissa Neal and Will Wood, who donned competing jerseys for the Cashman farewell. Neal, a Chicago native, wore a Cubs jersey, while Wood showed off his Red Sox gear.

“I’m excited for the new place, but I’m going to miss the intimacy of this place,” Wood said. “You’re right on top of the field and close to the action.”

Clark County Commissioner Larry Brown said Monday that he had mixed feelings watching the sun set on Cashman Field.

The lawmaker played baseball here in 1983 and said the experience inspired him to move to Las Vegas.

“This park played a huge part in not only my gaming career, but my wife and I fell in love with the community,” Brown said. “And now this is home.”

More 51s: Follow all of our 51s coverage online at reviewjournal.com/51s and @RJ_Sports on Twitter.

Contact Ramona Giwargis at rgiwargis@reviewjournal.com or 702-380-4538. Follow @RamonaGiwargis on Twitter.

ad-high_impact_4
Local
Clark County Wetlands promotes 2019 Wetland Walker Program
This year the park will be celebrating the Northern Flicker. The program is designed to teach about that bird, and encourage people to visit the Wetlands and walk the same distance the bird migrates each year.
Poet’s Walk Henderson introduces storytelling
Residents enjoy a storytelling activity.
Downtown Summerlin hosts its annual Festival of Arts
People crowd to Downtown Summerlin for the 23rd annual Summerlin Festival of Arts in Las Vegas, Sunday, Oct. 14, 2018. (Caroline Brehman/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Clark County educators debate alternative grading systems
Spring Valley High School principal Tam Larnerd, Spring Valley High School IB coordinator Tony Gebbia and retired high school teacher Joyce O'Day discuss alternative grading systems. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @marcusvillagran
Grandparents on the fire that killed three family members
Charles and Doris Smith talk about the night an apartment fire took the lives of three of their family members. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @marcusvillagran
New York artist Bobby Jacobs donated a sculpture to the Las Vegas Healing Garden
Bobby Jacobs, an artist from upstate New York, has spent much of the past year creating a sculpture of two separate angel wings. He donated the sculpture to the Las Vegas Healing Garden. (Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @bizutesfaye
Weather will cool slightly through the end of the week
The weather will cool slightly through the end of the week., but highs are still expected to be slightly above normal for this year. (Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @bizutesfaye
Mayor announces new public-private partnership
Mayor Carolyn Goodman announced the creation of the Mayor’s Fund for Las Vegas LIFE, a public-private partnership that will allocate money to the city’s neediest.
Fremont9 opens downtown
Fremont9 apartment complex has opened in downtown Las Vegas. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @marcusvillagran
Fall fairytale gets cozy at Bellagio Conservatory
Bellagio Conservatory introduces its fall-themed garden titled "Falling Asleep." (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @marcusvillagran
What the house that Ted Binion died in looks like today
Casino heir Ted Binion died in this Las Vegas home in 1998. Current home owner Jane Popple spent over $600,000 to restore and modernize the home. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @marcusvillagran
Rescue Mission employees terminated
Don James, a former employee for the Las Vegas Rescue Mission, talks about the day his team was terminated. (Erik Verduzco/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Raiders Cupcakes at Freed's Bakery
Freed's Bakery will have Raiders-themed cupcakes available in store and for order during football season. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @marcusvillagran
51s fans say goodbye to Cashman Field
Las Vegas 51s fans said goodbye to Cashman Field in Las Vegas, Monday September, 3, 2018. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @marcusvillagran
51s owner Don Logan's last weekend at Cashman Field
Don Logan, owner of the Las Vegas 51s, gives a tour of Cashman Field before the team's final weekend using the field. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @marcusvillagran
TOP NEWS
News Headlines
ad-infeed_1
ads_infeed_2
Local Spotlight
Add Event
Home Front Page Footer Listing
Circular
You May Like

You May Like