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Yankees Beat Writer Forced to Drive to Iowa for ‘Field of Dreams’ Game

In Thursday’s Hot Clicks: one reporter’s travel nightmare, an epic lightning display in Philadelphia and more.

He’s doing the Field of Dreams road trip in reverse

In his famous monologue in Field of Dreams, James Earl Jones (as Terence Mann) talks about the mystical pull that the baseball diamond in an Iowa cornfield will have on visitors: “They’ll turn up your driveway, not even sure why they’re doing it.” By the time MLB.com Yankees beat writer Bryan Hoch arrives at the movie site in Iowa, he’ll probably be in a similar kind of trance, but not because of the magic of baseball. He’ll be in a trance because he will have driven 1,000 miles through the dead of night to get to Iowa.

The Yankees are playing the White Sox on Thursday night at a field constructed adjacent to where the movie was filmed in the small town of Dyersville, Iowa. It isn’t a long trip for the Yankees after their trip to Kansas City earlier this week, and it shouldn’t have been too difficult a journey for Hoch. He was supposed to fly from Newark Liberty International Airport in New Jersey to Chicago. From there, it’s a three-hour drive to Dyersville, or you can catch a connecting flight to Cedar Rapids and make the 75-minute drive to Dyersville.

But after he had two flights canceled, Hoch ended up renting a car and buckling up for the 992-mile drive.

Hoch posted his rental car photo at 9:22 p.m. ET, which means he had about 22 hours to make the 16-hour drive if he wanted to get to Dyersville in time for the first pitch. Forget getting there early to get some quotes during batting practice.

Hoch has been posting periodic updates from the road on his Twitter and Instagram pages. Lots of snacks, coffee and energy drinks.

“This may be the stupidest thing I’ve ever done or the greatest thing. I don’t know,” Hoch said in a video on his Instagram story right after picking up his rental car.

So far, though, he appears to be in good spirits. He got a bit of sleep at a rest stop in Amherst, Ohio, (about 90 minutes, he told Sports Illustrated’s Matt Martell from somewhere near the Indiana-Illinois border) and was back on the road at daybreak. His most recent update came at 8:57 a.m. ET from somewhere in Indiana, 375 miles from his destination. That leaves him with about six hours of driving left to do.

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If this was just any other Thursday series opener, Hoch probably would have just gotten some sleep and hoped he could get to the next city in time for Friday’s game. But how many times are you going to get to cover a baseball game played in a cornfield?

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