Sunday, April 19, 2009

New Yankee Stadium Is Apparently a Bandbox

The new Yankee Stadium is less than a month old (and just three regular season days old) but it already is getting a reputation.

Forget Coors Field or the Ballpark in Arlington. Go home Great American Ballpark and Minute Maid Park. New Yankee Stadium seems to be the new launching pad.

In the first three games of this Indians-Yankee series (the first regular season games played at the new yard), there have already been 17 home runs. Twelve of those were hit to right field. Counting the two preseason games played at the new digs, there have been a total of 25 home runs. Amazing.

It seems that the wind blows to right field. So a few warning track pops are turning into round-trippers. A few innings see 14 runs scored in them.

What sucks for the Yankees is that this isn't the team they built. In the old ballpark, you either hit it out in right field or you needed to hit the gaps. This ballpark won't hold many of the pops that were warning track shots across the street.

So what does this mean? Despite all the money thrown into the stadium, it is next to impossible to move the fences back. The outfield seats are up against the right field wall, so to move back the fence would mean eliminating some prime (read: moneymaking) seats. Unlike old Yankee Stadium, there isn't a bunch of foul ground behind home plate where you can move the infield back. This just may be the way it is for now on.

What it may do is totally disrupt their personnel. Pitchers don't like to sign with the Rockies, Rangers or Astros if they can help it. That could be the case at Yank-It-Out-Of-the-Park stadium.

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