Professional Baseball was once in Utica at McConnell Field. Could it return to Harbor Point?
Picture From the Howard Bushinger collection
McConnell Field in North Utica, circa 1945, the current site of the Red Roof Inn. As officials look for ways to draw more attention to the city’s harbor, one possibility includes moving Donovan Stadium at Murnane Field to the city’s waterfront off of North Genesee Street.
In the late 1930s, McConnell Field was home to the Utica Braves of the Canadian-American League, and, several years later, the Utica Blue Sox of the Class A Eastern League. The Blue Sox became an affiliate of the Philadelphia Phillies.
The Blue Sox won the Eastern League regular season title in 1945 and the Governor’s Cup as playoff champions in 1947. Several Utica players – including Ashburn, Granny Hamner, Stan Lopata, Jackie Mayo and Putsy Caballero — then joined the National League Phillies and became part of the 1950 “Whiz Kids.”
That team eventually lost to the New York Yankees in the World Series.