About the Project
On April 8, 2004 the Savannah Sand Gnats kicked off their season in the South Atlantic League of the minor league baseball system. The 2004 season was special as it honored the 100th anniversary of professional baseball in Savannah, Georgia. As a local and graduate student in photography at the Savannah College of Art and Design, I approached the management of the team with the idea of documenting this historic time with photographs. The project would serve as my Master of Fine Arts in photography thesis.
Since minor league baseball began in Savannah, Georgia in 1904, it has functioned as a proving ground for young men hoping to advance to professional baseball's top tier. This quest to move up from short season ball and independent leagues through single A to triple A and on up to the major league is one of drama, sacrifice and struggle. My photographs of the Savannah Sand Gnats document the pitfalls and triumphs of the 2004 season, the 100th anniversary of minor league baseball in Savannah, Georgia.
By traveling on the bus and following the team through the rituals of daily summer league life, I was able to portray a side of minor league ball that spectators rarely witness: prayers in the dug out on Sunday, clubhouse card games during a rain delay, dominos games on the team bus and the training room routine before each game. The resulting visual chronicle honors the hopeful determination of the minor league team and documents their attendant hardships in pursuit of the highest level of sport.