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  • Ryan Norris

Klein Family Field – Pacific Tigers

Photo Courtesy of Pacific Tigers

Stadium Info FANFARE Score: 3.29

Klein Family Field

Pershing Avenue At Larry Heller Drive

Stockton, CA 95204

Year Opened: 2006

Capacity: 2,500


The Klein Family’s Gem

Klein Family Field has been home to UOP (University of Pacific) baseball since 2006 when they moved from the longtime and former home of the Stockton Ports, Billy Hebert Field. The Ports played at Billy Hebert Field from 1953 until 2005 when they moved into their new home, Banner Island Ballpark.

Bud Klein, the namesake of the Stanford Cardinal’s Klein Field at Sunken Diamond, is also a member the honored family in Stockton. His father, Sol Klein, began many Stockton youth leagues and the baseball club that would eventually be known as the Ports. Many members of the Klein family have been Tigers and their support continues with the donation of this beautiful new facility for the baseball program.

Food & Beverage 3

There are two concession stands, one serving the main items like hot dogs ($3), polish sausages ($4.50), baked potato ($4), burger ($4.50) and various sides like cookies ($1.50), peanuts ($2.50), bottled water and soda ($3), and malts ($3). The other concession stand only serves the side items.

There is a third mini area that serves bottled beer and glasses of wine. It is in a section sort of separated from the rest of the seating area. It was unclear to me whether you needed a special ticket to enter this lounge area or some sort of wristband acknowledging you are of age.

Atmosphere 4

Klein Family Field is a great place to watch a game. There are lots of seating options that you can choose from that include chair back seats, grass seating, high tops under canopies, and lounge chairs near a fireplace.

Fans aren’t terribly loud but do have a good turnout. At this game, the energy level certainly dipped when Cal State Fullerton started the game by scoring 7 runs in the first 2 innings.

The sight lines are great all around the park and there is plenty of room for the little ones to run around and keep themselves occupied. Klein Family Field and the surrounding scenery provides a top atmosphere for college baseball.

Neighborhood 3

Klein Family Field is adjacent to the home of Pacific basketball, the Spanos Center.

The area surrounding the ballpark is largely upscale residential, including parts of the UOP campus. There isn’t much in way of good hangouts in the immediate area but you can be sure you’re in a safe neighborhood, unlike the perception of other parts of Stockton.

Though bars and restaurants within walking distance to and from the venue aren’t very available, downtown Stockton, as well as the Miracle Mile, is not far away.

I’d recommend going to Valley Brewing Co about two miles away. They serve their own micro brews, good pub food, and you can take in sports memorabilia from all over Northern California as well as Stocktonians who made it to the big leagues.

Lastly, the Stockton Ports play two and a half miles away on the Stockton waterfront.

Fans 3

At the game of this review, much of the wind was taken out of the fans’ collective sail because of the onslaught by the visiting Titans. They were however engaged with the ballgame throughout.

It certainly feels like a community of friends in the stands as I would imagine many of them go to all of the games together, much like the experience across the way at the Spanos Center.

The Pacific Tigers also must compete with Stockton Ports and their new ballpark as well. On this particular day, baseball fans needed to choose between the two teams as the Ports were in town playing the Lancaster Jethawks.

Access 4

Klein Family Field is located just a few blocks from highway 5 and two miles from 99. Getting from the freeways is easy through safe city blocks.

Take main drags Pershing or Alpine to the convenient (and free on weekends) parking lot.

You enter the ballpark between Klein Field and the Spanos Center where you’ll pass mementos of past donors to UOP athletics and through the charming gates to the field. Once inside, the promenades are plenty wide and the restrooms are clean and spacious enough for the field’s capacity.

Return on Investment 4

General seating starts at just $6 for this 80 degree May afternoon. With parking free and concessions affordable and plentiful, Klein Family Field provides a great value to fans.

Unfortunately Ed Sprague’s squad has struggled the last few years and is currently in last place in the Big West Conference. On the flip side, I got to see the top team in the conference in Cal State Fullerton, who has plenty of tradition beyond their successful 2012 season.

Extras 2

The Spanos Center showcases all the banners for all sports at Pacific so there aren’t many acknowledgements of baseball successes at Klein Family Field.

Extra points go to the array of seating you can choose from as well as the fireplace (yes, fireplace) down the right field line. The fireplace has lounge style chairs to kick back in.

Final Thoughts

I really enjoyed my trip to Stockton and would recommend a trip to Klein Family Field. I didn’t know what to expect as I had only been to the snazzy Banner Island Ballpark and couldn’t imagine that the UOP ballpark could measure. It measured up very nicely.

Note: The University of Pacific will be joining the West Coast Conference (WCC) for the 2013-14 academic year.

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