On this day in 1949 it had been nearly 50 years since Major League Baseball had been played in Milwaukee. The original American League Milwaukee Brewers left the city after just one MLB season in 1901, leaving a hole that wouldn't be filled until the Milwaukee Braves came to town in 1953. Sixty-four years ago today the city took a key step towards attracting the Braves when they selected the site for Milwaukee County Stadium.
The Story Quarry was selected as the site for the facility, which Wikipedia says was the first publicly-financed ballpark in American sports history. Work on the ballpark started in 1950 and the first MLB game wasn't played there until 1953, but after its slow start it had quite a run. The ballpark hosted games for the Milwaukee Braves, Chicago White Sox, Brewers and Packers, concerts featuring The Rolling Stones, Pink Floyd and Paul McCartney and the 1957, '58 and '82 World Series.
The ballpark was torn down featuring the Brewers' final game in 2000, with Helfaer Field replacing it in the Miller Park parking lots.
With help from the B-Ref Play Index, happy birthday today to:
- 2007 Brewer Greg Aquino, who turns 35.
- Longtime Brewer scout and executive Jack Zduriencik, who turns 62.
Today is also the fifth anniversary of the Brewers signing Mike Cameron as a free agent in 2008. We covered that event in this space last year.