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Paul Walsh Field

New Bedford, MA

Home of the New Bedford Bay Sox

2.4

2.2

Paul Walsh Field (map it)
230 Hathaway Blvd
New Bedford, MA 02740


New Bedford Bay Sox website

Paul Walsh Field website

Year Opened: 1910

Capacity: 2,000

There are no tickets available at this time.

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Whaling City Sox

Dr. Paul Walsh Field, originally named Sargent Field, is located on the campus of New Bedford High School. It has been the home of the New Bedford Bay Sox since their inception in 2009. The field, which is part of a larger athletic complex, serves as home to New Bedford's high school and American Legion teams in addition to the Bay Sox. Dr. Walsh was a long-time member of the city's school board and was a strong supporter of the school's athletic department. He spearheaded many committees that developed and expanded the facility.

The Bay Sox have played in the New England Collegiate Baseball League since moving to the Whaling City in 2009 from Torrington, CT, where they played as the Twisters. While in Torrington, the team made the league championship series four times, losing each time. The Bay Sox have made the playoffs three times, losing in the opening round each time.

2.4

What is FANFARE?

The FANFARE scale is our metric device for rating each stadium experience. It covers the following:

  • Food & Beverage
  • Atmosphere
  • Neighborhood
  • Fans
  • Access
  • Return on Investment
  • Extras

Each area is rated from 0 to 5 stars with 5 being the best. The overall composite score is the "FANFARE Score".

Food & Beverage    3

The Bay Sox run a concession stand in the first floor of the press box building directly behind home plate. The Bay Sox offer all your ballpark basics. Hot dogs are sold with cheese or chili, as well as burgers (also offered with bacon), slices of Domino's pizza, nachos, and steak and cheese sandwiches. French fries and onion rings are also available, as are a variety of snacks. Thirsty Bay Sox fans can choose from a variety of Pepsi products. An additional stand is located down the right field line offering assorted snacks.

New for the 2016 season is a beer garden, located down the right field line. Bay Sox fans looking for an adult beverage can hang out in this roped off section and enjoy glasses of wine for six dollars or cans of Miller Lite and Harpoon IPA for five dollars.

There is a souvenir stand on the concourse offering a nice variety of Bay Sox t-shirts, hats, and other memorabilia.

Atmosphere    2

The Bay Sox have put a lot of effort into improving their game day experience, and the results have been positive overall. The team has increased its presence in the community, and as a result has attracted more sponsorship from local businesses. The team has beefed up their promotional schedule, offering deals and giveaways for several home dates.

The team has also attempted to make the in-game experience livelier. Music blares over the PA system between innings and batters, and the team involves the younger fans in attendance with some between innings contests. The mascot, a whale named Slamu, roams the crowd throughout the game, posing for pictures and engaging fans in some good-natured shenanigans.

As is the case at most summer collegiate games, the team runs raffles for items including Red Sox tickets, team card sets, as well as the standard 50/50 raffle. The area behind home plate has become a focal point for activity, including raffles and giveaways from local sponsors, a fast pitch cage, and on some nights, a dunk tank.

Neighborhood    2

Walsh Field is located in a residential area, without a whole lot of businesses or attractions in the immediate area. There are a few businesses and eateries on nearby Route 6, but to get the best bang for your buck while visiting New Bedford, head downtown, a few short miles away from the ballpark.

New Bedford is another New England city which has suffered through some hard times and is struggling to rebuild both their infrastructure and their reputation. Thanks to a great deal of investment from civic leaders and local businesses, downtown New Bedford has a great National Historic Park, a number of museums, shops, galleries, restaurants, and bars. It's a nice place to visit, and improving all the time.

Still, New Bedford isn't really considered to be a destination city, especially with popular tourist spots such as Cape Cod, Newport and Providence all close by. Still, New Bedford is not the dangerous wasteland it was once made out to be. Check it out, you will be pleasantly surprised.

Fans    2

For the 2016 season, the Bay Sox are averaging about 500 fans per game, which ranks the team in the middle of the NECBL attendance rankings. Many of the fans that show up are regulars, and are very enthusiastic and knowledgeable about their Bay Sox. You are also very likely to find many children running around the vast expanses around the ball field, playing catch or chasing foul balls around. Kids who shag down foul balls can cash in three balls for a Bay Sox t-shirt.

Access    2

Walsh Field is located in New Bedford's North End. Take exit 13 off of Interstate 195 (Route 140 South) to the traffic light located on Route 6. Follow Route 6 to Rockdale Ave, turn left, and then bear right onto Hathaway Boulevard. The athletic fields of New Bedford High School will be on your right.

There is ample parking available on street next to the ballpark or in a large parking lot across the street at the high school. Once inside the park, there is a large paved area behind home plate where the souvenir stand, a few games for the kids, and the concession stand are located. On either baseline is a large raised grandstand high enough to see over the fences that surround the field. Fans bringing their own chairs can camp out behind home plate or on grassy areas down either line. With the small crowds present at Walsh Field, spreading out is not an issue. There are rest rooms in a small building down the right field line.

Fans looking to use public transportation to a Bay Sox game will be disappointed to learn that SRTA's #2 bus only stops at New Bedford High School while school is in session. Driving is the best way to get to Walsh Field, as the closest bus stop is several blocks away.

Return on Investment    4

Admission to a Bay Sox game is $5 for adults, with tickets for children and seniors discounted by two dollars. Children under 6 years old are admitted free of charge. All seating is sold as general admission. In addition, the tickets come with coupons to a local Buffalo Wild Wings, local favorite Jerry Remy's restaurant, and a local Subway restaurant on them, meaning you can actually get back more money in coupons than you spent on the ticket.

There is no charge for parking in the high school's lot across the street from the ball field, and there is ample free parking on the nearby streets as well. On-street parking, while convenient, is not recommended, as your car may be hit by one of the many foul balls that leave Paul Walsh Field.

With inexpensive concession prices, a night out at a Bay Sox game is an affordable alternative to many other activities in the area.

Extras    2

Extra points are awarded for the improvements in the game day atmosphere here in New Bedford. The energy from the staff is a welcome change from past years, where everyone seemed to be going through the motions. Increased involvement with the community has resulted in more sponsorship, an enriched promotional schedule, and increased attendance. The Bay Sox seem to be growing roots in the community and are carving out their own niche in New Bedford.

Final Thoughts

While not boasting the most dynamic facility in the area, New Bedford is not necessarily a bad place to see a game. A Bay Sox game is very affordable, and the baseball being played is of a high level. Many players have gone on from the NECBL to professional and major league careers.

New Bedford's biggest drawback may be simply its location. The Bay Sox are surrounded on one side by the Cape Cod League, with the Wareham Gatemen located just 17 miles to the east, on the west by the Newport Gulls, who have become the flagship franchise of the NECBL and are consistently ranked as one of the top 10 summer college teams in the country, and to the north by the Future League's Brockton Rox, who play in a pro-level ballpark. Anything the Bay Sox do in undersized and plain Walsh Field simply pales in comparison.

Follow Paul Baker's stadium journeys on Twitter @PuckmanRI.

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Crowd Reviews

The Bay Sox of New Bedford

Total Score: 2.14

  • Food & Beverage: 4
  • Atmosphere 1
  • Neighborhood: 2
  • Fans: 1
  • Access: 2
  • RoI: 4
  • Extras: 1

Paul Walsh Field, originally named Sargent Field, is located on the campus of New Bedford High School. It has been the home of the New Bedford Bay Sox since their inception in 2009. The field, which is part of a larger athletic complex, serves as home to New Bedford’s high school and American Legion teams in addition to the Bay Sox. Dr. Walsh was a long-time member of the city’s school board and was a strong supporter of the school’s athletic department. He spearheaded many committees that developed and expanded the facility.

Whaling City Sox

Total Score: 2.43

  • Food & Beverage: 3
  • Atmosphere 2
  • Neighborhood: 2
  • Fans: 2
  • Access: 2
  • RoI: 4
  • Extras: 2

Paul Walsh Field, originally named Sargent Field, is located on the campus of New Bedford High School. It has been the home of the New Bedford Bay Sox since their inception in 2009. The field, which is part of a larger athletic complex, serves as home to New Bedford’s high school and American Legion teams in addition to the Bay Sox. Dr. Walsh was a long-time member of the city’s school board and was a strong supporter of the school’s athletic department. He spearheaded many committees that developed and expanded the facility.

The Bay Sox have played in the New England Collegiate Baseball League since moving to the Whaling City in 2009 from Torrington, CT, where they played as the Twisters. While in Torrington, the team made the league championship series four times, losing each time. The Bay Sox have made the playoffs twice, each time being eliminated by local rival Newport Gulls.

The Bay Sox had their first alumnus selected in the first round of the MLB entry draft in 2015 when Chris Shaw was selected at pick number 31 by the San Francisco Giants.

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