wrigley001

Wrigley Field for The Players’ Tribune

Posted on August 26, 2015

As a baseball photographer who has been shooting in the big leagues since 1987 I have worked thousands of games in dozens of venues. Years ago I shot games at stadiums like Riverfront in Cincinnati and Veterans in Philadelphia. Thankfully the concrete, artificial turf stadiums from the 1970’s like these are long gone, replaced by newer ballparks that harken back to the yards of yesteryear like Fenway Park in Boston and Tiger Stadium in Detroit – both parks I am thrilled to say I worked in. The one ballpark in the Major Leagues that architects have tried to emulate more than any other place, and the one cathedral that was missing on my roster of ballparks to have walked in was Wrigley Field in Chicago. For many reasons I had never had the chance to work a Cubs game at Wrigley, let alone attend one as a fan. This needed to change, and it finally did a few weeks ago when I spent four fabulous days shooting a series between the Giants and Cubs at the Friendly Confines on assignment for my good friend Nate Gordon at The Players’ Tribune.

My experience at Wrigley was beyond my wildest expectations. The sights, sounds, smells, and feelings you get when you enter the 101-year-old building at the corner of Clark and Addison can’t be duplicated anywhere else in baseball. The ballpark is a photographer’s dream and a fan’s paradise. The beauty of the green ivy and red bricks, combined with the old-school organ music and beer vendors made me feel like I was back in time. The warmth of the midwest fans made every game feel like a gigantic block party with 40,000 fans. When each game ended the fans didn’t want to leave, and neither did I. Having the chance to take pictures with my 35mm DSLR cameras and my iPhone at Wrigley Field was a dream come true.

Nate and the awesome folks at The Players’ Tribune did an amazing job releasing a fun photo essay from my trip Baseball Heaven yesterday. This piece was all Cubs all the time, and it needed to be. I wanted to show off a few Giants-related pictures I liked, as well as a few other photographs I thought were cool as it was tough to edit everything down to fit the story. That is why I have put together this selection of pictures from my trip.

Following is a chronological look at some of the favorite frames from my journey as I photographed bits and pieces of the four game series between the San Francisco Giants and Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field from August 6-9, 2015.

iPhone Instagram of the famous ivy-covered outfield wall before the game between the San Francisco Giants and Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field on August 6, 2015 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Brad Mangin)

Fans enter the ballpark before the game between the San Francisco Giants and Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field on August 6, 2015 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Brad Mangin)

Fans enter the ballpark before the game between the San Francisco Giants and Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field on August 6, 2015 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Brad Mangin)

A fan keeps score during the game between the San Francisco Giants and Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field on August 6, 2015 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Brad Mangin)

A beer vendor works the upper deck during the game between the San Francisco Giants and Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field on August 6, 2015 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Brad Mangin)

General overall interior view during the game between the San Francisco Giants and Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field on August 6, 2015 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Brad Mangin)

iPhone Instagram of a general overall interior view during the game between the San Francisco Giants and Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field on August 6, 2015 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Brad Mangin)

General overall exterior view during the game between the San Francisco Giants and Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field on August 6, 2015 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Brad Mangin)

A fan in the bleachers watches a replay on the new big scoreboard during the game between the San Francisco Giants and Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field on August 6, 2015 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Brad Mangin)

Fans in the bleachers pose for a picture during the game between the San Francisco Giants and Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field on August 6, 2015 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Brad Mangin)

Cubs fans celebrate a win after the game between the San Francisco Giants and Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field on August 6, 2015 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Brad Mangin)

The ball hawks were out early on Waveland Avenue behind the left field bleachers Friday morning during batting practice waiting for home run balls before the game between the San Francisco Giants and Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field on August 7, 2015 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Brad Mangin)

The ball hawks were out early on Waveland Avenue behind the left field bleachers Friday morning during batting practice waiting for home run balls before the game between the San Francisco Giants and Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field on August 7, 2015 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Brad Mangin)

The ball hawks were out early on Waveland Avenue behind the left field bleachers Friday morning during batting practice waiting for home run balls before the game between the San Francisco Giants and Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field on August 7, 2015 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Brad Mangin)

iPhone Instagram of photographers Brad Mangin and Jonathan Daniel before the game between the San Francisco Giants and Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field on August 7, 2015 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Brad Mangin)

Giants center fielder Angel Pagan makes a throw from the ivy during the game between the San Francisco Giants and Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field on August 7, 2015 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Brad Mangin)

Giants base runner Justin Maxwell is out at first base as Cubs first baseman Anthony Rizzo makes the putout during the game between the San Francisco Giants and Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field on August 7, 2015 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Brad Mangin)

Cubs batter Jorge Soler runs to first base during the game between the San Francisco Giants and Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field on August 7, 2015 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Brad Mangin)

Cubs fans sing “Take Me Out To The Ballgame” during the game between the San Francisco Giants and Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field on August 7, 2015 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Brad Mangin)

Giants base runner Matt Duffy scores a run during the game between the San Francisco Giants and Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field on August 7, 2015 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Brad Mangin)

Kris Bryant of the Cubs steals third base during the game between the San Francisco Giants and Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field on August 7, 2015 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Brad Mangin)

Buster Posey of the Giants takes a break at third base during the game between the San Francisco Giants and Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field on August 7, 2015 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Brad Mangin)

Cubs fans celebrate a win after the game between the San Francisco Giants and Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field on August 7, 2015 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Brad Mangin)

iPhone Instagram of Cubs fans wait for autographs after the game between the San Francisco Giants and Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field on August 7, 2015 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Brad Mangin)

iPhone Instagram of fans waiting in line for bleacher seats before the game between the San Francisco Giants and Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field on August 8, 2015 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Brad Mangin)

Cubs bats in the bat rack behind their dugout before the game between the San Francisco Giants and Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field on August 8, 2015 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Brad Mangin)

Buster Posey of the Giants enters the field before the game between the San Francisco Giants and Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field on August 8, 2015 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Brad Mangin)

This beam obstructed many views during the game between the San Francisco Giants and Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field on August 8, 2015 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Brad Mangin)

A beer vendor named Donald sells Goose Island in cans during the game between the San Francisco Giants and Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field on August 8, 2015 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Brad Mangin)

Buster Posey of the Giants is called out on strikes during the game between the San Francisco Giants and Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field on August 8, 2015 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Brad Mangin)

Kyle Schwarber of the Cubs tries to steal second base during the game between the San Francisco Giants and Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field on August 8, 2015 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Brad Mangin)

Instagram of Championship Blood co-authors Brad Mangin and Brian Murphy in the left field bleachers during the game between the San Francisco Giants and Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field on August 8, 2015 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Brad Mangin)

iPhone Instagram of the view from the center field bleachers during the game between the San Francisco Giants and Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field on August 8, 2015 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Brad Mangin)

Fans in the center field bleachers celebrate another win after the game between the San Francisco Giants and Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field on August 8, 2015 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Brad Mangin)

Fans leave the park after the game between the San Francisco Giants and Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field on August 8, 2015 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Brad Mangin)

iPhone Instragram of the pregame activities at Murphy’s Bleachers before the game between the San Francisco Giants and Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field on August 9, 2015 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Brad Mangin)

iPhone Instragram overall during the game between the San Francisco Giants and Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field on August 9, 2015 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Brad Mangin)

Kyle Schwarber of the Cubs bats during the game between the San Francisco Giants and Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field on August 9, 2015 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Brad Mangin)

Matt Duffy of the Giants chases a pop up during the game between the San Francisco Giants and Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field on August 9, 2015 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Brad Mangin)

Kris Bryant of the Cubs bats during the game between the San Francisco Giants and Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field on August 9, 2015 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Brad Mangin)

Chicago fire fighters watch on television from across the street during the game between the San Francisco Giants and Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field on August 9, 2015 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Brad Mangin)

Detail from the Chicago fire house across the street from the ballpark during the game between the San Francisco Giants and Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field on August 9, 2015 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Brad Mangin)

This was a trip of a lifetime and I need to thank three people who helped make it all happen. My good friend Tom Duffy was the spark that got me off my ass to book my flight and cash in my Marriott points so I could experience Wrigley for the first time. For all these years I had been waiting for someone to send me there. I needed to send myself. If it wasn’t for you Tom, I would have never been inspired to get off my ass to begin with! It was so much fun hanging out with you and your family in Chicago, helping to make this such a memorable weekend.

Longtime Chicago Cubs team photographer Steve Green is one of the coolest, most artistic, and classiest guys in the photo business. Period. When I first told Steve I was coming he couldn’t have been nicer in offering his help. He was there waiting for me before Game 1 of the series, four hours early, to walk me out to the ivy. It was magic from the beginning. Learning the nooks and crannies of his home for the past 33 years was a gift, and something I will never forget. His kindness was off the charts, and his coaching on shooting the light and staying away from the boring shit was incredible therapy.

Finally I need to thank my editor Nate Gordon, who I have worked with since 2001. When Nate heard I was ending myself to Wrigley he immediately jumped at giving me this assignment. He wanted to see what I would see upon my first ever visit to Wrigley. We had a few early phone calls, and all through the long weekend I kept hearing his voice coaching me in my head. “No baseball cards. Move around. Go upstairs. Have fun. Sense of place. Shoot wide.” Thanks for everything Nate. I hope I did you proud.

Thanks to everyone else who took the time to indulge me by looking at my pictures. I haven’t had this much fun shooting pictures in a long, long time. Hell my Giants got their asses kicked all four games and I still had a smile on my face!

What Others Are Saying

  1. Jean Fruth August 27, 2015 at 12:02 pm

    Outstanding Brad! Great blog, and beautiful photos. Thanks for sharing.

  2. Scott Henry August 27, 2015 at 3:21 pm

    From a guy who spent his formative fan years in this beautiful ballpark (when it was usually half-filled), thanks for bringing it all back…

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