Baseball Gazette
July 2013
Welcome to the July edition of Baseball Gazette, the e-newsletter of the Tampa Baseball Museum at the Al Lopez House. Each month, we deliver news and updates about our progress toward opening.

Renovations underway

The former home of Al Lopez at its new home, 2003 N. 19th Street. Photo credit: Tony Scaglione Photography

The Tampa Baseball Museum at the Al Lopez House has been undergoing renovations since the move from its original location in mid-May.

The Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) is making improvements to preserve Al Lopez’s former home before it becomes a museum that celebrates local baseball heritage. FDOT is working to construct a new foundation, piers and rafter tails, and replace a damaged soffit. Additionally, the existing shingle roof will be replaced with a 5-V crimp galvanized steel roof.

Construction is scheduled to be completed in mid-July. Once complete, FDOT will release the home to the City of Tampa, which will then transfer the home to the Ybor City Museum Society.

The Tampa Baseball Museum looks forward to receiving the home in August.

Al Lopez Field seats pledged

A local baseball fan’s lifelong interest in baseball will become a key piece in the Tampa Baseball Museum at the Al Lopez House. Jill Literaty has pledged to donate three adjoined and signed seats from Al Lopez Field as a way to honor her late husband Dick.

A baseball and local history enthusiast, Dick was assigned to work with the Florida Suncoast Dome (now known as Tropicana Field) during its construction, and he became involved with the push to acquire the Tampa Bay Devil Rays. For his support and team spirit, Dick is recognized on the Rays Wall of Fame.

Al Lopez Field was the home of the Tampa Tarpons, and served as spring training grounds. Photo credit: BallparkReviews.com

Demonstrating his love of the game and pride in local history, Dick collected items relating to baseball and the Tampa Bay community. The trio of seats from Al Lopez Field is just one piece from his extensive collection.

Al Lopez Field opened in March 1955 at the northeast corner of Dale Mabry Highway and Tampa Bay Boulevard in Tampa. It served as a spring training and Minor League ballpark for the Chicago White Sox, Cincinnati Reds and Tampa Tarpons.

After the White Sox and Reds moved to different spring training sites, the revenue from the Tampa Tarpons alone could not cover the ballpark’s operating expenses. Tampa Sports Authority closed the ballpark after the 1988 season, and demolition of the park in March 1989. Today, Raymond James Stadium sits where Al Lopez Field once was.

In remembrance of Lopez, a community park has been built across the street from the field’s original location.

We appreciate your support and look forward to keeping you up-to-date about the Tampa Baseball Museum at the Al Lopez House.
In This Edition

Call for Artifacts
The Tampa Baseball Museum at the Al Lopez House is accepting artifacts and memorabilia for the museum’s permanent and rotating exhibits.The donated items will comprise more than 125 years of local baseball heritage through permanent and rotating exhibits.

With an emphasis on West Tampa, Ybor City and Tampa baseball, the museum is considering two- and three-dimensional items related to local Major, Minor, Negro, Inter-Social and local leagues, local fields, locally raised players and local youth baseball.
To learn more about the types of items that may be of interest, and/or to submit items for consideration, download this flyer (PDF).

Preserving Heritage
The Tampa Baseball Museum at the Al Lopez House is being developed by the Ybor City Museum Society, a nonprofit organization that preserves and promotes Ybor City’s cultural heritage and supports the Ybor City Museum State Park.


Tampa Baseball Museum at the Al Lopez House
2003 N. 19th Street | Tampa, Florida 33605
(813) 247-1434

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