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Major League Baseball decided to pay homage to one of the greatest baseball movies of all time and introduce MLB at Field of Dreams in 2021.
Last year’s inaugural contest was a monstrous success — in Iowa’s first MLB game, Tim Anderson hit a walk-off home run in a thriller to give the Chicago White Sox a 9-8 win over the New York Yankees, just 500 feet from the Field of Dreams and site of the movie of the same name.
This year, two more historic franchises will battle it out in the cornfields of Dyersville.
Here’s everything you need to know about this year’s MLB at Field of Dreams.
“MLB at Field of Dreams” was a concept that was derived in 2019 to honor the 1989 film, which tells the story of a farmer who builds a baseball field in his cornfield that attracts the ghosts of baseball legends.
The game was slated to be played in 2020. However, the COVID-19 pandemic halted plans, and the game wasn’t played until 2021. The game turned out to be MLB’s highest-rated regular season game, giving MLB an opportunity to try it out for at least another year.
What happened in 2021?
“What didn’t happen” is the better question.
As close to 8,000 people filed into the ballpark, the movie’s star, Kevin Costner, walked out of the cornfields with a baseball in hand, followed by members of the Yankees and White Sox walking side by side out of the fields, similar to the ghosts in the movie. Costner gave a speech, which included his famous line, “Is this Iowa?”
He answered his own question with, simply, “Yes it is.”
He was right. Both teams donned jerseys resembling what they wore in 1919, and while down 7-4 with two outs in the top of the ninth, two-run home runs by Aaron Judge and Giancarlo Stanton off the dominant Liam Hendriks gave the Yankees a late 8-7 lead. But Anderson had his own dreams and hit a walk-off, two-run shot off Zack Britton.
What’s happening this year?
MLB got two other historic franchises to lace up the cleats in the corn this year.
What makes it even sweeter is two division rivals will go at it — it’ll be the Chicago Cubs going up against the “home” Cincinnati Reds. Fans can watch the game on FOX at 7 p.m. ET.
There will also be a pregame ceremony that MLB says will “utilize the movie, its themes, and clips as inspirations for pregame elements and in-game presentation for both fans in the ballpark and watching.”
The Cubs will be wearing their uniforms from their NL pennant-winning 1929 season, while the Reds will don 1919-inspired uniforms.
Each team’s logo has been cut into the corn in between the MLB field and the site of the movie for viewing pleasure.
Reds’ Joey Votto and Cubs’ Ian Happ will also be mic’d up during the game.