Gulf Coast League Tigers in the Sun

20100807-34_PolancoThe Lakeland Flying Tigers aren’t the only professional team playing summers at Tigertown. Detroit Tiger rookies play a 60-game schedule for the Gulf Coast League Tigers. The games usually start at Noon in the heat and humidity we all love about Lakeland. Fans can get in free to watch the games, but don’t expect a beer and a hot dog. The team doesn’t operate concessions and games are usually held in one of the back fields of the complex. What do you want for free admission?

Gulf Coast League Tigers v. GCL Braves.Joker Marchant Stadium. Lakeland, Florida. July 26, 2010.The play isn’t at the level of the Flying Tigers. The players are usually fresh out of college or high school. They’re playing to learn the fundamentals of the pro game, and sometimes, to learn a new position. Still, they’re professional players and it’s your chance to say you saw some future all-star “back when.” There are a few home dates left in the GCL Tigers schedule. The next home game is Tuesday at Noon against the GCL Phillies.

Gulf Coast League Tigers v. GCL Braves.Joker Marchant Stadium. Lakeland, Florida. July 26, 2010.You have to be a true baseball fan to watch these games in the hot sun. Lakeland Local photographer Tom Hagerty is one such fan. This summer he’s found the time to watch a GCL game or two. Of course, he is never without his camera. Below are a few photos Tom took during this GCL season. Don’t neglect to take a look at his full set of 2010 GCL photos.

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20100807-31Jack Duffey (sitting left), Ariel Medina (pitching), Greg Sabat (sitting right). Gulf Coast League Tigers. Tigertown. Lakeland, Fla. August 7, 2010.

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Carmelo Jaime (hitting). Gulf Coast League Tigers. Tigertown. Lakeland, Fla. August 7, 2010.

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20100807-165Dixon Machado. Gulf Coast League Tigers. Tigertown. Lakeland, Fla. August 7, 2010.

Gulf Coast League Tigers v. GCL Blue Jays.Joker Marchant Stadium. Lakeland, Florida. July 19, 2010.
Samir Rijo. Gulf Coast League Tigers v. GCL Blue Jays. Joker Marchant Stadium. Lakeland, Florida. July 19, 2010.

Creative Commons License photos credit: Tom Hagerty for Lakeland Local