Take me to the ball park: The LA Dodgers practise at the SCG for the first time on Tuesday.

Take me to the ball park: The LA Dodgers practise at the SCG for the first time on Tuesday. Photo: Wolter Peeters

There was no doubt the Sydney Cricket Ground looked a picture as a ball park, but on Tuesday it was given the ultimate stamp of approval by Los Angeles Dodgers and Arizona Diamondbacks players.

Having touched down in Sydney on Tuesday morning, the two teams got their first look at the iconic ground when they held their first practice sessions in the afternoon.

After checking out the SCG's incredible transformation, which has been likened to the Oakland Coliseum, both the Dodgers and Diamondbacks were drawn to the iconic members' stand.

"I had the privilege of growing up in Tiger Stadium (Detroit), one of the most historic ball parks in the United States, and had an opportunity to play in Fenway (Boston Red Sox) as well," Dodgers manager Don Mattingly said.

"When you get here and you see the history, all the dents in the wall and the cracks in the wall and all the different players that have come through with the plaques on the wall, it makes you feel like a part of that history. We're excited to be here."

However, the hallowed turf will provide a unique experience when games get under way on Thursday when Team Australia take on the Dodgers in an exhibition game.

The centre square, which only a few months ago played host to Australia's Ashes series whitewash against the old enemy England, raised a few alarm bells.

"It's a little hard there," Diamondbacks outfield coach Dave McKay said.

"But we can't do anything about it. We have to work around it. The ball will get to you harder, it will bounce a little bit. It will make it feel like an in-fielder. You don't go through that ball if you don't have to. We did some work on it and we'll do some more. We showed the guys how it bounces higher off that area there.

"No one really thought about that, but there's nothing we can do about it. We know they can't dig it up and replace it, there's so much history there. It's something special that area, so we'll just work around it. It's unique. Every stadium will have something in the dimensions that you have to concern yourself about and that is this one's."

Apart from the centre square, there is another characteristic of the ground that differs to all Major League Baseball stadiums.

Well, not quite all.

The Oakland A's home ground is renowned for its large foul territory, but the SCG might just have it covered.

"I think the foul territory will be a big difference to what both teams are used to," Diamondbacks first baseman Paul Goldschmidt said.

"There's a ton of foul territory, especially in the infield and behind home plate. All the baseball stadiums are different in the States. It's just another little adjustment."

Joining the Diamondbacks on their tour Down Under is Craig Shipley, special assistant to Arizona general manager Kevin Towers.

In 1988 Shipley became the first Australian to play in the Major League since the 1800s when he debuted for the Dodgers.

Having watched several rugby league games and even played schoolboys' rugby union at the SCG, Shipley described the renovation as ''outstanding''.

"What an incredible transformation from a cricket field to a baseball stadium, it's outstanding," Shipley said.

"It's pretty special. As a kid, I never would have imagined there would be a Major League baseball game on the SCG. Having left when I was 18 at a time where nobody had made it to the big leagues, it's been a long journey. This is a special week.

"I remember sitting on the old hill when I was too young to have a beer. I remember coming to rugby league games. I actually played a rugby union game here in my last year [at Epping Boys High School]. Our Waratah Shield team was pretty good, we had Brett Papworth and Ian Williams in our team. That was a good memory."