Editor’s Note: This the story originally ran on August 10, 2021 before the first-ever MLB game at Field of Dreams. It has been updated to reflect details from this year’s game between the Chicago Cubs and Cincinnati Reds on August 11. FOX’s pregame coverage begins at 6 p.m. ET, and the first pitch is scheduled for 7:15 p.m. ET.
Turns out “Field of Dreams” was right – if you build it, they will come. This week, Major League Baseball travels to Dyersville, Iowa for the second straight year for the “MLB at Field of Dreams” game, a nostalgic tribute to baseball and the power of storytelling.
The 2021 game between the Chicago White Sox and New York Yankees marked the first time an MLB game was played in the state. This year’s event, like last year, will bring together some of the league’s best in a new park built north of the still-standing field and farmhouse made famous by Kevin Costner’s 1989 film.
But the Reds and Cubs aren’t the only players in town. For years, Dyersville’s Field of Dreams movie site has hosted the Ghost Players, an organization of local former baseball players who perform at the legendary field on a free, family-friendly show “Harlem-Globe-Trotters-meets- baseball”.
DYERSVILLE, IA – AUGUST 25: A ‘ghost player’ in a vintage Chicago White Sox baseball uniform emerges from a cornfield as he re-enacts the scene at the baseball diamond created for the movie ‘Field of Dreams’ on August 25, 1991 in Dyersville, I
About “Ghost Player”: If you run it, they will come
Combining comedy and America’s Pastime, the Ghost Players entertain locals and tourists alike with an exuberant live show that begins with an iconic image: players in vintage Sox uniforms, emerging from the corn. Yet even if you can’t travel to Iowa to see the Ghost Players in person, you can still experience the magic first-hand thanks to Joe Scherrman’s 2010 documentary. “Ghost Player”, which is currently streaming for free on Tubi.
WATCH FOR FREE ON TUBI: “Ghost Player”— get the app
The 48-minute documentary explores the history of the team and gives viewers a chance to see the Field of Dreams site as locals see it. But the best reason to watch the doc is to get a chance to understand the community created by the classic 1989 sports film – a community that has since traveled the world, entertaining audiences and teaching kids the basics of the game.
Indeed, baseball fans wanting to see players around bases at the actual film site should consider streaming “Ghost Player” ahead of the second annual MLB game at the Field of Dreams. While the game itself will feature many beautiful aerial views of the film’s site, the action will take place in the new stadium, which, unlike the Field of Dreams film site, is MLB-compliant.
RELATED: ‘If you build it, they will come’: Cubs take on Reds in historic Iowa ‘Field of Dreams’ game
About MLB at Field of Dreams Game
The Reds will play as the “home team” during the game, taking over from last year’s home team, the Chicago White Sox – an honor bestowed due to the team’s prominence in the game. classic 1989 sports film. In the film, Ray (Costner) builds the field after hearing a mysterious voice whisper, “If you build it, it will come.”
After Ray creates his cornfield diamond, “Shoeless” Joe Jackson (played in the film by the late Ray Liotta, who died in May at age 67) arrives with other “ghost players” from the infamous team of ” Black Sox” from 1919, one of several moments of magical realism in the film.
RELATED: Ray Liotta: One of his best performances was also one of his first
Dyersville’s ghost players, some of whom were extras in the movie, don’t need magic to appear. “The Greatest Show on Dirt” returns to the Field of Dreams movie site on September 3, but you can watch the fun for yourself at home, thanks to Scherrman’s gripping documentary.
Field of Dreams game: when is it?
The MLB at Field of Dreams game airs Thursday, August 11 on FOX and can be viewed nationwide. FOX’s pregame coverage begins at 6 p.m. ET with the first pitch scheduled for 7:15 p.m. ET.
WATCH FOR FREE ON TUBI: Ray Liotta in “Corrina, Corrina”
About the writer: Allison Shoemaker is a Chicago-based pop culture critic and journalist. She is the author of “How TV can make you smarterand a member of the Television Critics Association and the Chicago Film Critics Association. She is also a producer and co-host of the podcast network Podlander Presents. Find her on Twitter and instagram at @allisonshoe.
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