While baseball is back, there’s no question it looks, and feels, quite different without stadiums full of fans.
As Major League Baseball moves forward with its abbreviated 60-game season, it got us to thinking — which MLB stadium has the most golf courses within a 5-mile radius (as the crow flies)?
After all, the vast majority of stadiums are built close to major metropolitan areas, which usually also have a wealth of golf options.
The answer, according to NGF’s U.S. Facility Database, is Target Field in Minneapolis, home of the Minnesota Twins, which opened in 2010. There are eight golf courses, all of which were built before World War II, within five miles of the ballpark. That group includes four municipal facilities in Hennepin County, the oldest of which — 27-hole Theodore Wirth Golf Course (1916) — is less than 2 1/2 miles from Target Field.
So, what’s the closest golf course to a Major League Baseball ballpark?
Philadelphia and Milwaukee both have courses less than a mile away, but the closest — by about the length of a par 5 — is the 9-hole Sydney R. Marovitz Golf Course in Chicago.
Among the city’s eight Chicago Park District golf facilities, that municipal course dates back to 1898 and sits along Lake Michigan, just over a half-mile away from the Cubs’ Wrigley Field.
That same 5-mile circle around Wrigley Field is also home to a healthy 63,000+ golfing households.
But the MLB park with the most total golfers within a 5-mile radius would be Yankee Stadium. There are more than 115,000 in total, according to the NGF’s Golf Market Analysis Platform (GolfMAP), with a reach that extends from the Bronx into Manhattan and Queens, as well as across the Hudson River to parts of northern New Jersey.
There are two city-run courses about five miles north of Yankee Stadium: Mosholu Golf Course and Van Cortlandt Park Golf Course, the latter of which opened in 1895 as the nation’s first municipally owned, public-access layout and initially didn’t even charge greens fees to play its original nine holes.
In looking at the 106 golf courses within a 5-mile radius of MLB’s 30 ballparks, the facility makeup mirrors that of the national supply in terms of access, with just over 75% open to the public. More than half (60) are municipal golf courses, which stands to reason as many stadiums are close to major metro areas where muni golf traces its U.S. roots.
(Top photo is courtesy of the Links by Callaway at PetCo Park in San Diego.)
The National Golf Foundation is a community of individuals and golf businesses committed to being the most well-informed advocates for the growth of the industry. With the world’s largest research team dedicated to golf, NGF provides members with the most accurate and objective insights on the game. We help golf businesses better understand their market and grow their businesses. The NGF is the only association for everyone in golf, and we advocate for growth by educating and connecting our members.
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With the world’s largest research team dedicated to golf, NGF is committed to providing members with the most accurate and objective insights on the game.