Wilpon Baseball and Softball Complex: Ray Fisher Stadium
CAPACITY: 18,000 (1930-47); 3,000 (1948-85); 4,000 (1986-present)
RENOVATED: 1948, 1965, 1967, 1973, 1983, 1991, 2002, 2008
FIRST GAME: April 21, 1923
U-M 3, Ohio State 2 (5 innings due to rain)
Western Michigan 5, U-M 0
The 2008 campaign marked the inaugural season for the University of Michigan baseball program's new, modern home: the Wilpon Baseball and Softball Complex, home to historic Ray Fisher Stadium.
Baseball at the University of Michigan has been played on its current site since 1923. In 1967 the stadium was dedicated to Ray Fisher, head coach of the Wolverine baseball team from 1921-58, and a $9 million renovation to the stadium, thanks in large part to Fred and Judy Wilpon, was completed in 2008.
The architecture includes brick and stone, consistent with that of the central athletic campus. The stands are barrier-free and include 2,500 seats, of which 1,700 have seatbacks. A three-story addition includes administrative offices, a state-of-the-art press box, improved public restrooms, concession areas and a ticket office.
Adjacent to the stadium is a 1,600-square foot locker room that features 30-inch lockers, two plasma television screens and a lounge area. The locker room connects directly to the 5,750-square-foot indoor hitting facility that includes retractable doors for ventilation during the summer months and is heated for year-round use. The hitting facility includes two dirt mounds, pitching machines, three indoor batting cages and a state-of-the-art video hitting system. Along the leftfield line are three outdoor hitting cages, in addition to four down the rightfield line.
In addition to hosting Michigan's regular-season games, Fisher Stadium has also been the site of several Big Ten Conference Baseball Tournaments.
After moving from Regents Field in the early 1900s, the Michigan baseball team played on the site where Yost Ice Arena currently stands. During this time, the layout of the stadium was changed many times to adjust to the wooden stands that were brought over from Ferry Field. When construction of Yost Fieldhouse began in 1921, the baseball stadium was moved 150 feet west, replacing locker and shower facilities that had stood there since 1912.
Completed in 1923 under the Ferry Field name, the grandstands were originally constructed in 1948. Renovations in 1973 included steel stands that replaced wooden ones, and in 1983 new wooden bleachers were installed.
The ballpark was enclosed in 1967 when then head coach Moby Benedict installed the fence with the dimensions including 330 down the lines, 375 in the gaps and 400 to dead center. The fencing lasted 30 years before being replaced prior to the 1997 season. The Wolverines' old locker room was added under the stadium in 1965, and the coaching staff moved into offices in the stadium in the fall of 1991, which were then renovated in 2002.
Fisher led his teams to a 636-295-8 record, 15 Big Ten Conference titles and U-M's first College World Series title in 1953.
Fisher Stadium 1114 S. State St. Ann Arbor, MI 48104
From Detroit Metro Airport and points east: Take I-94 west to State Street (exit 177). Turn right. Travel north approximately 2 1/4 miles through two stoplights. Turn left just past Yost Ice Arena into parking lot. Ray Fisher Stadium is located to the west of Yost Ice Arena and south of the Ferry Field track.
From Chicago and points west: Take I-94 east to State Street (exit 177). Turn left. Travel north approximately 2 1/4 miles through three stoplights. Turn left just past Yost Ice Arena into parking lot. Ray Fisher Stadium is located to the west of Yost Ice Arena and south of the Ferry Field track.
From Toledo and points south: Take U.S. 23 north to I-94 west. Follow directions from Detroit Metro Airport.
From Flint and points north: Take U.S. 23 south to I-94 west. Follow directions from Detroit Metro Airport.