Hokkaido Nippon Ham Fighters mark completion of new baseball stadium

The Yomiuri Shimbun
A ceremony to mark the completion of Es Con Field Hokkaido is held Thursday in Kita-Hiroshima, Hokkaido.

KITA-HIROSHIMA, Hokkaido — A ceremony to mark the completion of the Hokkaido Nippon Ham Fighters’ new baseball stadium was held Thursday in Kita-Hiroshima, Hokkaido, and was attended by Samurai Japan manager Hideki Kuriyama.

The new stadium, dubbed Es Con Field Hokkaido, has a retractable roof and real grass on the field, as well as a glass wall behind center field.

The bullpen, which looks as if it is placed in the outfield seats, adds to the stadium’s unique design, distinguishing it from other stadiums in Japan. Other features include a spa area where fans can watch the game while relaxing in a sauna, as well as take a dip in a hot spring.

The Fighters are scheduled to face the Saitama Seibu Lions in a preseason game, the first to be played at the new stadium, on March 14.

The Fighters are also set to play host to the Tohoku Rakuten Eagles on Opening Day on March 30.