HAVERFORD, Pa. – Haverford College's baseball team opened the 2012 season with a new look. The new and improved baseball facility has been named Kannerstein Field in honor of Haverford's beloved former athletic director and head baseball coach, Greg Kannerstein '63, who passed away in 2009. Renovations and enhancements to the field and its facilities began in the summer of 2011 and were completed prior to the start of the 2012 season.
A dedication ceremony is scheduled for Saturday, April 21, prior to the Fords' Centennial Conference doubleheader against visiting Gettysburg College.
"Greg Kannerstein was an icon at Haverford College and the modern-day father of our baseball family," says head baseball coach Dave Beccaria. "It's an extremely fitting and meaningful tribute to put his name on our baseball field. This renovation ensures that we'll have the kind of top-quality facility that is worthy of Greg's name."
Renovations for the facility begin with expanded seating behind home plate for fans, and stretch outward to new outfield fencing and a new scoreboard.
Previous seating capacity for Class of '16 Field and Roy Randall Diamond was for approximately 250 patrons but the renovated seating plan added a new front row while also extending the stands nearly to each of the dugouts. The plan added another 100 seats for fans of the Fords.
The entire backstop area also underwent a redesign. The metal fencing behind home plate was replaced with netting and a padded knee(-high) wall stretches from dugout to dugout. The changes around home plate resemble many minor league baseball parks.
Players now enjoy a new surface as the entire field was re-graded after new irrigation and drainage systems were installed. New sod topped off the improvements.
Beyond the new outfield fencing is a new scoreboard which bears the Kannerstein Field placard. Along with normal game totals, the 27-feet wide scoreboard includes inning-by-inning run totals.
Outside the right-field fencing just beyond the Fords' dugout is a roofed hitting facility which, at 50-feet by 90-feet, is large enough to house three turfed batting cages. The structure utilizes skylights to add natural lighting in the cages which use the same Fieldturf installed at the Swan Field outdoor facility.
"It's an exciting project that certainly gives us one of the very best Division III baseball facilities in the country," states Beccaria.
Clark Companies of Dehli, N.Y., the same contractor that handled the Swan Field construction, performed the renovation project at Kannerstein Field.