Drillers Stadium

Last updated
Drillers Stadium
Former namesRobert B. Sutton Stadium (1981–1982)
Tulsa County Stadium (1982–1989)
Location15th and Yale, Tulsa, Oklahoma
Owner Tulsa County
Capacity 10,997
Field sizeLF: 335
CF: 390
RF: 340
SurfaceGrass
Opened1981
Tenants
Tulsa Drillers (TL) (1981–2009)
The Bedlam Series baseball
Tulsa Athletics (NPSL) (2013–2017)

Drillers Stadium was a former [1] minor league baseball stadium located in Tulsa, Oklahoma. From 1981 to 2009, Drillers Stadium was home to the Tulsa Drillers, of the Double-A Texas League. For a number of years Drillers Stadium also hosted one of the regular season baseball games played between Oklahoma State University and the University of Oklahoma in the Bedlam Series. Drillers Stadium is located on the southwest corner of Yale Avenue and 15th Street, in the Tulsa State Fairgrounds complex that also includes Expo Square Pavilion, the QuikTrip Center and Golden Driller, a racetrack, a waterpark, and the sites of the former Bell's Amusement Park and of Oiler Park, where Tulsa's professional baseball teams had played since 1934.

Stadium place or venue for (mostly) outdoor sports, concerts, or other events


A stadium is a place or venue for (mostly) outdoor sports, concerts, or other events and consists of a field or stage either partly or completely surrounded by a tiered structure designed to allow spectators to stand or sit and view the event.

Tulsa, Oklahoma City in Oklahoma, United States

Tulsa is the second-largest city in the state of Oklahoma and 45th-most populous city in the United States. As of July 2016, the population was 413,505, an increase of 12,591 over that reported in the 2010 Census. It is the principal municipality of the Tulsa Metropolitan Area, a region with 991,005 residents in the MSA and 1,251,172 in the CSA. The city serves as the county seat of Tulsa County, the most densely populated county in Oklahoma, with urban development extending into Osage, Rogers, and Wagoner counties.

The Tulsa Drillers are a minor league baseball team based in Tulsa, Oklahoma. The team, which plays in the Texas League, is the Double-A affiliate of the Los Angeles Dodgers major-league club.

Contents

Baseball

After the Tulsa Oilers, a Triple-A team, left Tulsa in 1976 due to the continuing deterioration of Oiler Park, followed by the partial collapse of the Oiler Park grandstand during a 1977 exhibition game, Tulsa County's long-delayed efforts to build a new stadium were accelerated. The new 8,000 seat stadium was completed in 1981 and named Robert B. Sutton Stadium, in honor of its chief benefactor, a local oil executive. However, Sutton was convicted in 1982 on obstruction of justice charges, and the ballpark was renamed Tulsa County Stadium. [2] The stadium received the name Drillers Stadium in 1989. The stadium eventually seated 10,997, making it the largest stadium in Double-A baseball. [3] Originally a multi-purpose stadium with an artificial surface playing field, it later acquired a Prescription Athletic Turf (PAT) grass surface. Though it primarily served as a baseball stadium, monster truck rallies and concerts were also held there.

The Tulsa Oilers, located in Tulsa, Oklahoma, were a minor league baseball team that existed on-and-off in multiple leagues from 1905 to 1976. For most of their history, they played at Oiler Park, which opened on July 11, 1934, and was located on the Tulsa County Fairgrounds at 15th Street and Sandusky Avenue.

Triple-A (baseball) Minor League Baseball competition level representing highest level of play

Triple-A or Class AAA is the highest level of play in Minor League Baseball in the United States and Mexico. Before 2008, Triple-A leagues also fielded teams in Canada. A total of 30 teams play in the Triple-A International League (IL) and Pacific Coast League (PCL), with 14 teams in the IL and 16 in the PCL. The MLB-independent Mexican League fields 16 teams. Triple-A teams are typically located in large metropolitan areas that do not have Major League Baseball teams, such as San Antonio; Austin; Columbus; and Indianapolis.

Multi-purpose stadium type of stadium

Multi-purpose stadiums are a type of stadium designed to be easily used by multiple types of events. While any stadium could potentially host more than one type of sport or event, this concept usually refers to a specific design philosophy that stresses multifunctionality over specificity. It is used most commonly in Canada and the United States, where the two most popular outdoor team sports – football and baseball – require radically different facilities. Football uses a rectangular field, while baseball is played on a diamond and large outfield. This requires a particular design to accommodate both, usually an oval. While building stadiums in this way means that sports teams and governments can share costs, it also imposes some challenges.

On December 19, 2008, construction began on ONEOK Field, a new ballpark in downtown Tulsa. The Drillers played their final game in Drillers Stadium on September 7, 2009, [4] and moved to the new ballpark before the 2010 baseball season. The University of Tulsa conducted a formal study in 2009 to consider whether the school might use the empty stadium to restore its baseball program, which had been terminated in 1980; but the university concluded that the financial demands of adding a new sport were more than it could accept. [5] In 2011 the stadium was used as a location for a faith-themed baseball film entitled Home Run. [6] [7]

Downtown Tulsa is an area of approximately 1.4 square miles (3.6 km2) surrounded by an inner-dispersal loop created by Interstate 244, Highway 64, and Highway 75. The area serves as Tulsa's financial and business district, and is the focus of a large initiative to draw tourism, which includes plans to capitalize on the area's historic architecture. Much of Tulsa's convention space is located in downtown, such as the Tulsa Performing Arts Center and the Tulsa Convention Center, and the BOK Center. Prominent downtown sub-districts include the Blue Dome District, the Brady Arts district, and the Greenwood Historical District, Owen Park Historical Neighborhood, the site of ONEOK Field, a baseball stadium for the Tulsa Drillers opened in 2010.

University of Tulsa

The University of Tulsa (TU) is a private research university in Tulsa, Oklahoma, United States. TU has a historic affiliation with the Presbyterian Church and the campus architectural style is predominantly Collegiate Gothic.

Soccer

Beginning in May 2013, it is the home stadium for the Tulsa Athletics of the National Premier Soccer League. [8] In 2014, the stadium was renamed Athletics Stadium after further renovations were complete to make the stadium more soccer friendly for the Tulsa Athletics. [9] Notable changes include the demolition of the former first-base side bleachers, in order to lengthen the soccer field's length to 110 yards, as well as the removal of Drillers' signage and a coat of green paint. [10]

National Premier Soccer League sports league

The National Premier Soccer League (NPSL) is an American soccer league commonly recognized as being a fourth tier league although it has been given no official designation by U.S. Soccer. Although the league is officially affiliated to the United States Adult Soccer Association (USASA) and qualifies for the U.S. Open Cup through USASA channels, the league is generally considered to be at the fourth tier of competition in the United States soccer pyramid, behind Major League Soccer (MLS), the USL Championship (USLC), USL League One (USL1), and roughly equal with USL League Two (USL2). It is the successor of the Men's Premier Soccer League, a regional league originally based in the Western United States, which has now expanded nationwide to encompass teams from 29 states. The league's motto is "A National League with a Regional Focus". Some of the clubs are former USL clubs.

Planned demolition

On April 5, 2016, Proposition 3 of the Tulsa "Vision 2025" initiative was approved by Tulsa voters, paving the way for the demolition of Athletics Stadium as the new site of the USA BMX "Epicenter" facility. The stadium was to be replaced by a multimillion-dollar indoor BMX arena, but those plans hit a snag in mid-2017 when a disagreement over soft drink "pouring rights" derailed the negotiations and saw the BMX project move to an alternate location on a parcel of city-owned industrial property, northwest of downtown. [11]

As of March 2019 the stadium and the adjacent offices have been demolished leaving nothing of the former stadium remaining.

Related Research Articles

Texas League baseball league operating at Class AA level of Minor League Baseball in Texas, USA

The Texas League is a Minor League Baseball league which operates in the South Central United States. It is classified as a Double-A league. Despite the league's name, only its four South Division teams are actually based in Texas; the four North Division teams are located in surrounding states of Oklahoma, Arkansas, and Missouri. The league maintains its headquarters in San Antonio.

Cox Business Center

Cox Business Center is a 310,625 square foot facility in downtown Tulsa, Oklahoma with 102,600 square foot column-free exhibit hall space, Oklahoma's largest ballroom, and 34 meeting rooms. Cox Business Center (CBC) is managed by SMG-the world leader in venue management, marketing, and development and owned by the City of Tulsa. In the fiscal year 2015-2016, the economic impact of events held at the CBC was more than $33 million. The facility won the 2017 Venue Excellence Award from the International Association of Venue Managers, along with being chosen as the 2017 Top New or Renovated Meeting Site by Convention South and Best Event Center by Tulsa People readers.

KOTV-DT CBS affiliate in Tulsa, Oklahoma

KOTV-DT, virtual channel 6, is a CBS-affiliated television station licensed to Tulsa, Oklahoma, United States. The station is owned by Griffin Communications, as part of a duopoly with Muskogee-licensed CW affiliate KQCW-DT. The two stations share studios at the Griffin Communications Media Center on North Boston Avenue and East Cameron Street in the downtown neighborhood's Tulsa Arts District; KOTV's transmitter is located on South 273rd East Avenue in Broken Arrow. On cable, the station is available on Cox Communications channel 6 in standard definition and digital channel 1006 in high definition.

Kathy Taylor American politician

Kathryn Louise Taylor was elected the 38th Mayor of Tulsa, Oklahoma on April 4, 2006, in the city's largest voter turnout for a mayoral election. She defeated Republican incumbent Mayor Bill Lafortune to become Tulsa's second female mayor, after Susan Savage first filled the post in 1992. Taylor is married to Bill Lobeck, CEO of Vanguard Automotive Group. Taylor served as Oklahoma Secretary of Commerce and Tourism in Governor Brad Henry's administration from 2003 to 2006. She resigned from that post in order to run for Mayor.

Oneok

ONEOK, Inc. is a diversified Fortune 500 corporation based in Tulsa, Oklahoma. ONEOK was founded in 1906 as Oklahoma Natural Gas Company, but It changed its corporate name to ONEOK in December 1980. It also owns major natural gas liquids (NGL) systems due to the 2005 acquisition of Koch Industries natural gas businesses.

Tulsa Revolution

The Tulsa Revolution was a professional indoor soccer team from Tulsa, Oklahoma, which began play in the Professional Arena Soccer League with the 2013–14 season then segued to the Major Arena Soccer League for the 2014–15 season. The team was co-owned by Adam Mellor and Shannon Clark.

Tulsa Expo Center

The Tulsa Expo Center, from 2007 to 2012 also called the QuikTrip Center, is the center of the Tulsa State Fair and one of the largest clearspan buildings in the world. The Expo Center provides 354,000 square feet (32,900 m2) of column-free space under a cable-suspended roof. The building spans 448,400 total square feet on two levels, connected by side ramps and stairs, allowing for a variety of show floor plans.

Oneok Field baseball park in Tulsa, Oklahoma

ONEOK Field is a baseball park in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Located in the historic Greenwood district adjacent to downtown Tulsa, it is the home of the Tulsa Drillers of the AA Texas League. The stadium is named for ONEOK, a natural gas utility.

Double-A (baseball) Minor League Baseball competition level between Class A and Class AAA

Double-A is the second highest level of play in Minor League Baseball (MiLB) in the United States after Triple-A. There are thirty Double-A teams in three leagues at this classification: Eastern League, Southern League, and the Texas League. The modern Double-A classification was created in 1946 with the renaming of Class A1, which then contained the Texas League and the Southern Association. After the Southern Association disbanded in 1961, the Eastern League and the original South Atlantic "Sally" League were bumped up to Double-A in the 1963 minor league reorganization. The SAL changed its name to the Southern League in 1964.

Oiler Park was a stadium located in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Located on the Tulsa County Fairgrounds, it was primarily used for baseball and was the home of the Tulsa Oilers until that team was moved to New Orleans and replaced by the Tulsa Drillers after the 1976 season. The ballpark had a capacity of 4,000 people when opened in 1934, and increased to 7,200 in 1948.

Tulsa Athletic

Tulsa Athletic is an American soccer team and are based in Tulsa, Oklahoma, United States. 2013 was their inaugural season in the National Premier Soccer League (NPSL), which is a national league at the fourth tier of the American soccer pyramid. They compete in the NPSL's Heartland Conference. The team maintains amateur status under NPSL rules, allowing college players to participate without losing their collegiate eligibility. The club currently plays at Veterans Park after making the move in 2018. Their #PartyinthePark draws thousands of fans each home game. They played at LaFortune Stadium in 2017 and previously played at Drillers Stadium, the former home of the Tulsa Drillers baseball team. Tulsa Athletic drew an average attendance of 3,439 in their 2014 season.

Tulsa Roughnecks FC American soccer team founded in 2013

The Tulsa Roughnecks FC is an American professional soccer team based in Tulsa, Oklahoma. They compete in the USL Championship, starting in the 2015 season. Jeff and Dale Hubbard, co-owners of the Tulsa Drillers minor league baseball franchise, were announced as co-owners on December 18, 2013. The team calls itself the Roughnecks after the name received nearly 50% of the votes in a "name the team" contest held in February 2014.

Sonny Dalesandro American soccer player and businessman

Vincent "Sonny" Dalesandro is a retired professional soccer player and current restaurateur. He resides in Tulsa, Oklahoma. He is also co-owner of the Tulsa Athletics of the National Premier Soccer League.

Lucas Cordeiro is a Brazilian professional footballer who plays as a forward.

References

<i>Tulsa World</i> newspaper in Tulsa, Oklahoma

The Tulsa World is the daily newspaper for the city of Tulsa, Oklahoma, and primary newspaper for the northeastern and eastern portions of Oklahoma. Tulsa World Media Company is part of BH Media Group, a Berkshire Hathaway company owned by Warren Buffett. The printed edition is the second-most circulated newspaper in the state, after The Oklahoman. It was founded in 1905 and locally owned by the Lorton family for almost 100 years until February 2013, when it was sold to BH Media Group. In the early 1900s, the World fought an editorial battle in favor of building a reservoir on Spavinaw Creek, in addition to opposing the Ku Klux Klan in the 1920s. The paper was jointly operated with the Tulsa Tribune from 1941 to 1992.

Coordinates: 36°8′22.73″N95°55′25.20″W / 36.1396472°N 95.9236667°W / 36.1396472; -95.9236667