Veterans Memorial Park
Little Falls, NY
Review by Mike
Dwight Gooden played here. Take a look at these photos and read that sentence again. Dwight Gooden played here. Veterans Memorial Park in Little Falls, NY is the former home of the Little Falls Mets of the NY-Penn League, and current home of the Mohawk Valley DiamondDawgs of the Perfect Game Collegiate Baseball League.
This unassuming little ballpark in a pretty, but small upstate New York town was the short-season affiliate of the Mets for ten years, just when a number of the players who would play on their 1986 World Series championship team were starting their journey. Humble beginnings, indeed.
It really isn’t much of a ballpark at all. There is a press box / equipment shed behind home plate. Or perhaps it is a clubhouse, I could not tell as it was closed up during my October visit, well after the season had ended. A decent-sized erector set grandstand stretched down the first base line while there was only standing room along 3rd base.
Interestingly, since the dugouts stand alone and are not part of any larger structure, all of the seating is down the line quite a bit. There is no place to sit near home plate. I don’t recall ever seeing an arrangement such as this before, as though the grandstands were an afterthought.
Another odd thing is that the scoreboard is in right field. Since all of the seating is along 1st base, this means the fans need to swivel their heads from left (to see the action) to right (to check the score and count). It must look like they are watching a tennis match.
There is a wooden deck between the press box and first base dugout, but it’s intended use was unclear as this was not a game day Perhaps it was a luxury box of sorts. Regardless, the field itself was nicely maintained and the location was lovely, nestled in a tree-filled park. It’s a nice little community field, but the bare minimum for even collegiate summer league ball.