TORONTO -- When Major League Baseball visited Fort Bragg, N.C., three years ago for the first regular-season professional sports event held on an active military base, manager Aaron Boone was in attendance, wearing an earpiece and clutching a microphone as part of his broadcasting duties for ESPN.
Boone's vantage point will shift from the press box to the dugout when MLB heads to Dyersville, Iowa, for the Field of Dreams Game on Aug. 13, 2020, and he believes that the excitement level will be off the charts when the Yankees and White Sox pay tribute to the 1989 film.
"I had heard little whispers about it earlier this entire year, but I hadn't heard much about it lately," Boone said. 'To see it and see the Aaron Judge commercial, I think it's great. It's a special thing that they do, and I'm sure they'll do a great job of getting it ready and re-creating. It's such an iconic movie. To go there, I think it's something we'll all start to look forward to."
The contest will be a White Sox home game, with an off-day to follow before the clubs resume their series at Chicago's Guaranteed Rate Field. Boone hopes MLB can convince Kevin Costner and James Earl Jones, two of the film's stars, to attend the game and play catch on the field.
Later this month, MLB is scheduled to begin construction on a temporary 8,000-seat ballpark that will rise from the cornfield, located beyond left field of the diamond seen in the movie and paying homage to Comiskey Park, the home of the White Sox from 1910-90.
Boone said the blueprints remind him of the Fort Bragg ballpark, which hosted 12,582 for that 2016 game.
“Going back to Fort Bragg, it was small and intimate," he said. "It was all the people that lived on the base. It was a really neat experience. This will be different than that, obviously, but I would imagine it'll feel like a really big deal. It’s something that we’ll start to look forward to."
First baseman Luke Voit is not with the Yankees on this trip, but he exchanged text messages with Boone on Wednesday, expressing optimism that he will be able to return this season.
"He said he felt really good," Boone said. "I think he's really encouraged. I think he's excited about how he's feeling and where he's at, but as far as a decision for where exactly we're at, he would say not yet. He continues to be optimistic."
Voit is sidelined with a sports hernia that could require surgery; if Voit opts for the procedure, he is expected to need six weeks to recover.
"My understanding is that [surgery is] not inevitable," Boone said. "It could be something that he's able to get through."
In other updates, Gary Sanchez (left groin strain) is scheduled to catch in a Minor League rehab game for Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre on Thursday and could be activated as soon as Saturday. Right-hander David Hale (lumbar spine strain) threw a 30-pitch bullpen session on Thursday and said that everything went well.
Infielder Gleyber Torres (core pain) is considered day to day, though he was not thought to be available off the bench on Thursday. Boone said Torres had a light workday on Thursday and will increase activity on Friday, with hopes of returning to action this week.
This date in Yankees history
Aug. 8, 2000: With the Yankees trailing, 3-2, in the bottom of the ninth inning, Bernie Williams and David Justice homered on the first pitches they saw from the Athletics' Jason Isringhausen, lifting the Yankees to a 4-3 victory in The Bronx.