Notre Dame’s 12-year-old Frank Eck Stadium has taken its place alongside some of the finer baseball facilities in the nation.
Upon its opening in 1994, the 2,500-seat stadium became the latest jewel among Notre Dame’s ever-expanding athletic facilities. Located on the southeast corner of campus, Eck Stadium has become a favorite with the.
Plans to build the stadium were announced June 7, 1991, thanks to a generous gift to the University by alumnus Frank Eck and his company, Advanced Drainage Systems, Inc., of Columbus, Ohio. Eck is the firm’s chairman and chief executive officer. He graduated in 1944 with a degree in chemical engineering and later endowed a collection in that field at Notre Dame’s Hesburgh Library.
Eck also has underwritten construction of the Eck Tennis Pavilion, an on-campus indoor tennis facility completed in 1987. His most recent campus project was the much-anticipated Eck Center, a multi-use facility that opened in 1999 and houses a greatly expanded Hammes Notre Dame Bookstore, headquarters for the Notre Dame Alumni Association and the campus visitors’ center. The Eck Center is located near the south-central edge of campus, adjacent to the Morris Inn.
Eck Stadium includes spacious home and visitor locker room areas, meeting rooms and coaching facilities for each team. The stadium also houses a beautiful press box overlooking home plate and the 2,500-seat grandstand. The stadium is illuminated by a state-of-the-art lighting system, allowing for night play.
Several Stadium renovations and additions have been completed since the end of the 1999 season, with more plans in the works for coming years. Most notably, a spacious indoor pitching and batting cage facility – outfitted with clay mounds in two of the three batting tunnels – was completed prior to the 2000 season. The stadium sound system was upgraded with the latest technology while an enclosed, sound-resistant radio booth is being constructed within the Eck Stadium press box and a full-function message board was added in 2001.
“We’re blessed to have such a beautiful facility,” says Irish coach Paul Mainieri. “It’s truly a first-class place to practice and a wonderful place to play. Our program takes great pride and care in the fact that we have one of the finest home fields in college baseball.”