Nat Bailey Stadium was born "Capilano Stadium" in 1951. It replaced the aging Athletic Park which had been the base for all Vancouver baseball since 1913. The new concrete and steel ballpark was the jewel of Vancouver. It's sturdy construction and simple beauty were impossible to ignore and before long this ballpark was promoted from Short Season Single-A baseball to the Triple-A Pacific Coast League. It was immediately pressed into service upon its completion and served as the home ballpark for the
Vancouver Capilanos... a Northwest League (then known as the Western International League) franchise that was playing as a co-op team without affiliation. The Capilanos of 1951 were a fantastic team who posted a 94-51 record. The reason for their success had much to do with a pitcher by the name of Bob Snyder. With an ERA of 2.97, Snyder would pitch 303 innings for the Capilanos winning a Northwest League record of 27 games going 27-7 on the season. Snyder was joined by Pete Hernandez who would post an impressive 17-4 record with a 2.80 ERA and George Nicholas who went 15-7 with a 3.15 ERA. The hitting was pretty good as well, with former NY Giant Charlie Mead (21 2B, 7 HR .280), former Chicago Cub Bill Schuster (.299), Dick Sinovic (38 2B, 18 3B, 7 HR, .342) and John Ritchie (26 2B, 7 HR, .346). The Capilanos would finish the season just a 1/2 game out of 1st place and the WIL (NWL) Championship.