The 63rd College World Series starts later this week. Dennis Pope is the NCAA’s Vice President says what a difference a year can make. It was the first series, the first event period, to be held at the brand new TD Ameritrade Ballpark in Omaha. When the CWS started in June of 2011 the city of Omaha was battling the historic Missouri River flood and there were plenty of worries if the city could keep those waters from invading the new facility. Pope said he was concerned when saw water pouring out of a sewer and one parking lot covered with water but the CWS went off without a hitch and the stadium handled the situation well.
CWS Inc. President Jack Diesing Jr. says new this year – instant replays. He says this comes a year after a Florida player’s homerun hit a railing beyond the wall and bounced back last year. The replay will be used only on homerun calls. Diesing says this will be a great addition to the series.
Thursday is the Opening Celebration Day where fans can come out for autograph sessions with the players watch batting practice and enjoy a number of free activities. The opening ceremony itself is at 8:30 followed by fireworks. The Series itself starts Friday.
While those who come to Omaha enjoy the new facilities at TD Ameritrade Ballpark, the city’s original “Field of Dreams” will take its final curtain call. For five days, Thursday through Monday, Rosenblatt Stadium will be open from 10 am until 2 pm. Rosenblatt’s new owner, the Omaha Zoo Foundation is inviting the public to walk the field, run the bases, play catch or sit in the dugout for the last time. The stadium will be demolished later this summer.