Smokies Stadium

From BR Bullpen

Smokies Park
Location Kodak, TN United States
Building chronology
Built 2000
Tenants
Tennessee Smokies
Capacity
6,000
Dimensions
LF 330', CF 400', RF 330'
Surface
grass

Smokies Stadium in Kodak, TN, is the home of the Tennessee Smokies, the Chicago Cubs' Southern League farm team. It opened in 2000 as Smokies Park in the small town outside Knoxville.

The 2016 ballpark name change was to end confusion, particularly for search engine users, with Great Smoky Mountains National Park. No physical signage changed - just the big scoreboard's digital display - and the point will soon be moot: Knoxville businessman and University of Tennessee President Randy Boyd, who bought the Smokies in 2013, is designing a downtown stadium to return the team to Knoxville. Pre-construction demolitions got underway August 5, 2022.

However, the deal that came together in late 2021 is showing cracks. The following spring, rising cost projections associated with the Coronavirus pandemic and supply-chain problems pushed the planned debut from 2024 to 2025. In July 2022, the Knoxville Sports Authority Board proposed cutting thousands of square feet from the project.

Among the last clubs to flee its home city for a suburb, the Smokies currently play within 25 miles of the National Park, Dollywood, Gatlinburg and Knoxville's World's Fair Park.

Jimmy Buffett Tribute Night in 2017, featuring Jimmy Buffett stuff but no Jimmy Buffett appearance, drew a then-house baseball record: 8,164. 2015 was a very good year: The ballpark hosted its 4 millionth fan at a Smokies game, broke its one-game attendance record three times, and - via a day-night doubleheader - hosted 10,000 fans in one day.

It hosted an August 2018 Appalachian League game between the Greeneville Reds and the Johnson City Cardinals, the connection being that Boyd owned or operated all three clubs.

It also hosted collegiate baseball on April 12, 2022 - not very unusual for a minor league stadium, but this game had a twist: The Tennessee Volunteers and Tennessee Technological University Golden Eagles played with wood bats. Perhaps as surprising, the Eagles came from two runs down to upset the top-ranked Vols, 3-2, in front of a new house baseball record 8,813.


Current ballparks in the Southern League
North Division South Division
AT&T Field | Regions Field | Smokies Stadium | Toyota Field Blue Wahoos Stadium | MGM Park | Riverwalk Stadium | Trustmark Park