NEW JERSEY - If you can look beyond the structural cracks and rusted bars of Hinchliffe Stadium in Patterson, New Jersey, Mayor Joey Torres says there is still hope.
Hinchliffe Stadium first opened back in the 1930s and was one of the first original Negro League stadiums. It was home to the New York Black Yankees. Several Hall of Famers played here, including Larry Doby, the first African American to play in the American League.
Then in the 1990s, the stadium closed and fell into disrepair. But then a glimmer of hope came in 2013 when it was the first baseball stadium declared a National Historic Landmark.
Brian LoPinto is with Friends of Hinchliffe Stadium, a volunteer nonprofit group. He says a recent donation of $300,000 from American Express means those rusty ticket booths can be restored. He hopes that prompts more donations.
There is a long way to go. A complete makeover that would remake interior and exterior walls and renovate the field will cost between $30 million and $40 million.