Indianapolis loses 5-2 to Iowa Cubs as fans celebrate July 4th

Walking through the gates of Victory Field ahead of a July 4th game with 100% crowds and post-game fireworks, the thrill of America’s Passtime is guaranteed.

What is no guarantee is which jerseys will fill the seats each day – a common occurrence in minor league stadiums without a local major league team.

Sunday was no exception as fans came in to watch Iowa defeat Indianapolis 5-2 while sporting all kinds of players, teams and leagues.

Listening to the show and sitting right behind the plate, you’ll see a father-daughter duo dressed in their Mike Trout Angels jerseys at home and away.

A few rows back, standing in the lobby sipping a beer during Christian Bethancourt’s home run in the fourth inning, is Cory Dillman on the south side of Indianapolis wearing the iconic Yankees stripes.

As tradition has it, there is no name on the back of this Yankees jersey, just number 2. This jersey dates back to Mark Koenig in 1929, when the Yankees became the first team to regularly wear numbers, but we all know who this jersey represents.

Dillman represents one of his all-time favorite players, Derek Jeter, who wore this No.2 jersey for 20 seasons. It was retired in 2017.

“Just a class act,” Dillman says of Jeter. “I wear his jersey every summer just because I love the game, and it represents the game very well.”

Harlow Martinez, 8 months, sits in the front row behind home plate with her father, Brian Martinez, both of Indianapolis, for his first game of baseball in a Minor League Baseball game on Sunday, July 4, 2021 , at Victory Field in Indianapolis.

LILY: He was working on a golf course when the pandemic shattered his dreams. Then he got the call from MLB.

Jeter was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame last year, which sparked Dillman’s interest in purchasing the jersey.

Dillman is an IHSAA referee as well as the various tournaments he officiates across the country. Dillman umpired a 12-year-old national tournament at Cooperstown Dreams Park for a few years, and he played there as a child.

“The whole experience is like baseball in heaven,” Dillman said.

Spending a week with the kids in Cooperstown, New York – home of the Baseball Hall of Fame – only heightened Dillman’s passion for the game. As Jeter made his way to the HOF, he knew he needed a jersey and he needed it to be genuine Cooperstown.

Not far behind Dillman was Lukas Stoutenout, who speaks to his father – a member of the staff at Victory Field. Like the rest of the fans in attendance, Stoutenout saw Cubs wide receiver Tony Wolters sent to the right field lawn and forced a search team for his ball on S. West St.

But what sets Stoutenout apart is a jersey that no one else in the stadium probably wears – a vintage No. 40 Bill Laimbeer Detroit Pistons tank top.

After watching the ESPN 30 for 30 on the “Bad Boys” Pistons, Stoutenout realized that although being a Pacers fan, he had a passion for this Pistons era and needed a jersey.

“I was like ‘(Expletive) I love the way these guys play,’” Stoutenout said of his reaction after watching the documentary.

The jersey is blue with red and white stripes along the cropped sleeves, making it the go-to outfit for Independence Day.

There was an assortment of Anthony Rizzo and Javier Baez jerseys in the seats with the Iowa Cubs in town for the first time since 1997, but Chicago rivals were also featured.

Lifetime Cardinals fan Evan Coler walked the hall dressed in his mighty blue Yadier Molina Cardinals jersey, while others wore Joey Votto Reds jerseys. The White Sox and Tim Anderson were also represented.

Some jerseys had nothing to do with the teams playing as one fan looked in his David Price Blue Jays jersey while another wore an Andrew Benintendi Red Sox jersey.

The hometown pro teams were well represented in the t-shirt department, with one fan sporting a TY Hilton Colts shirt while another wore what appeared to be a Yuengling-sponsored Pacers.

One fan stepped out of the loop with a Birds Aren’t Real tie-dye shirt. Others went with an assortment of American shirts in honor of the holidays.

Whatever their dress, what these fans shared was a love to attend baseball games that was taken away from Indianapolis fans in 2020 due to the cancellation of the minor league season forced by the pandemic. of COVID-19.

With a match and two fireworks after the match, it reminded fans like Dillman that life is starting to return to pre-coronavirus normal – meaning people watching and looking at the jersey are from return.

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