Steelheads played right here in Bremerton

Photo from nlbpa.com

If you watch tonight’s Seattle Mariners game, you’ll notice the team isn’t wearing its usual uniforms. In honor of African American Heritage Night, the Mariners are dressing as the Seattle Steelheads for the game, a team from the West Coast Negro Baseball League.

The Steelheads, it turns out, played some games right here in Bremerton at Roosevelt Field, the site of what is now a parking lot at Olympic College (the field was demolished in 1992). Aside from Seattle, the team also played in Bellingham, Spokane and Tacoma, according to Major League Baseball.

The league was short-lived, surviving less than a season in 1946, according to the Negro League Baseball Players Association. But tonight, the Mariners will pay homage.

The game starts just after 6 p.m.

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4 thoughts on “Steelheads played right here in Bremerton

  1. Was wondering if you could verify some information regarding Roosevelt Field. Any truth to outfield dimensions being the deepest on the West Coast at some point in time? Just wondering? Seems like I remember that as a little shaver growing-up and watching Connie-Mack games in the 70’s. Thanks!

    1. Hi Mike!

      I will check with our historian on this subject, Mr. Chuck Stark, and will get back with you!

      -josh

    2. Mike:

      From Chuck Stark:

      The dimensions were huge. I remember writing a column, quoting former sports editor John Jarstad, talking about Ted Tappe hitting a home run down the right-field line and it was 375 feet at the time (1947). Jarstad broadcast Bremerton Bluejacket games (1946-49) and he could only recall a few pros hitting balls over the fence although the Jackets had a player by the name of Bill Barishoff who hit 40 homers in 1946 and some of those had to have been hit at Roosevelt.
      When I played (babe ruth, connie mack, west high, olympic college, kitsap outsiders) from 1966-74 I can only recall two out of the park home runs. One by Mike Hultman, a gigantic 1B from WSU who was playing for the Outsiders, and another by some guy who played for the Cheney Studs. Hultman’s blast might have one-hopped the Sons of Norway.
      I’d estimate the fences were probably around 340ish down the lines when I played; 385ish to LCF and RCF and maybe 425 to dead center.
      Biggest stadium on the west coast? Can’t say for sure, but it was definitely one of them.

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