Lee Jordan Field a friendly home for the Chinooks

Monday, July 2, 2018 - 10:15
  • Chugiak-Eagle River Chinooks fan Mark Corbin throws a homerun ball back onto the field during the Chugiak-Eagle River Chinooks’ 5-0 loss to the Peninsula Oilers on Friday, June 29, 2018 at Lee Jordan Field in Chugiak. “Too oily,” Corbin quipped of the homer hit by Peninsula’s Evan Berkey. The ball eventually made its way to a young Oilers fan visiting from the peninsula. (Star photo by Matt Tunseth)
  • Chugiak-Eagle River’s Jordan Wharton watches a pitch to teammate Danny Dopp during the Chinooks’ 5-0 loss to the Peninsula Oilers on Friday, June 29, 2018 at Lee Jordan Field in Chugiak. (Star photo by Matt Tunseth)

Though he lives up the road in Palmer, Mark Corbin is a dogged Chugiak-Eagle River Chinooks fan.

“I actually live within walking distance of the Miners’ stadium,” said Corbin, who Chinooks fans will recognize from his regular perch beneath a red tent on the hill behind left field at Lee Jordan Field.

Corbin has been a Chinooks fan since the team started playing its home games at the mountain-ringed diamond at Loretta French Park in 2011. He said the reason is simple.

“They allow dogs in the park,” he said as he kept his dachshund Lulu from barking with a bribe of corn chips.

Corbin is a die-hard fan, too: there’s a well-worn path to his normal spot a short distance up the 100-foot hill, where he spends most home games cheering on the home side and eating peanuts. His presence definitely lends a “friendly confines” vibe — especially when the visiting team hits a homer, as happened last week during the second inning of a game against the Peninsula Oilers. When the ball cleared the fence and landed at Corbin’s feet, he knew exactly what to do with the souvenir.

He threw it back.

“Too oily,” he quipped later.

The ball made its way to a young fan visiting from the peninsula. Corbin said tossing the ball back — as is tradition in big-league parks like Wrigley Field — was an easy decision.

“It just felt right to throw it back,” he said.

Games at Lee Jordan Field are free because the field (which is named after the founder of the Chugiak-Eagle River Star) is located inside a municipal park. There’s no alcohol at the games, which seems fitting since the Chinooks are sponsored by Athletes in Action, a national Christian-based athletics program.

The team plays in the Alaska Baseball League and has a big homestand coming, with five straight home games set for July 5-8. The field is located alongside the Old Glenn Highway across from Alice Mae’s.

As of Monday, July 2, the Chinooks were fourth in the five-team ABL with a 10-13 record.

For more information and up-to-date statistics, visit alasabaseballleague.org.

Email Star editor Matt Tunseth at [email protected]askastar.com

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