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Inside the dimension changes at Petco Park

Apr 25, 2013, 2:30 PM EDT

Petco Park

Corey Brock has a nice story up over at MLB.com today about the changes in dimensions at Petco Park.  The facts on the ground so far are interesting — Brock notes that three home runs — all by the opposition — would have been long outs before the fences were moved in.  The overall thrust of things seems to be that the dimension changes won’t be dramatic, buy will make things more fair.

I’m far more interested in the stuff he writes about climate in San Diego being the much bigger factor, which certainly sqaures with my experiences there. I’ve told this story before, but a few years ago my brother and I went to doubleheader of sorts at Petco. The day game featured the Lake Elsinore Dragons Storm [I don't know what I was thinking] the Padres’ high-A team, playing a “home” game there. The ball flew out of the park with multiple homers being hit by guys that were likely never to make the bigs. Then around 7pm-7:30 the marine layer rolled in and the temperature dropped and the ball just friggin’ died on everything hit up in the air.

The fences aren’t going to fix that. Nothing likely will given the geography of the place. But as someone rather partial to pitching, I’m not sure I care all that much.

  1. ramblingalb - Apr 25, 2013 at 2:44 PM

    The balls would have either been fly outs or extra base hits with the fences deeper. Ryan Braun’s HR the other night just cleared the wall, but would not have been caught in LCF regardless.

  2. jarathen - Apr 25, 2013 at 3:19 PM

    I loved going to see the Storm play growing up, parking in that pit behind the stadium.

  3. APBA Guy - Apr 25, 2013 at 3:39 PM

    I love how Petco is situated near the Gaslamp, and how pretty it is (of course my reference is the Mausoleum). But the marine layer is a fact of life on the West Coast: every open air stadium classifies as a pitcher’s park, some more than others depending on dimensions, but especially in April and May.

    • asimonetti88 - Apr 25, 2013 at 5:15 PM

      Petco is one of the better designed stadiums IMO (keeping in mind I’ve never been to a stadium east of Coors Field). It is located perfectly, right in downtown, in the Gaslamp which makes for a lot of great restaurants before the game, and great bars after. The outside of the stadium matches the building surrounding it (incorporating the Western Metal Supply building into the design was not only a creative compromise, but also aesthetically pleasing). The inside has an intimate feel to it, and they have a cool beer garden in the back. My favorite part about it is the park in the back though. When the Padres are playing, you can picnic and watch the game from the grass, which is neat. When they aren’t playing, it is open as a public park that anyone can use. This is really cool! It allows the whole city to use the park, and more than just 81 or so times a year.

  4. ptfu - Apr 25, 2013 at 4:21 PM

    If the Padres really want to change their hitting environment, they need to schedule more day games. That would increase offense a lot more than bringing in/lowering the fences.

    • gloccamorra - Apr 25, 2013 at 4:57 PM

      The park is downtown. There’s not enough parking for workers and fans during week days, and they get their biggest crowds on Saturday nights (there’s too much to do on weekends during the day) Their 1PM week day crowds were tiny, and when they moved them to 3:40 PM, it was no better. The players would be happy with day games, but the front office needs the ticket revenue. They should have built Petco in the Qualcomm Stadium parking lot and tore down Qualcomm, and built a football stadium for the Chargers on the site of Petco.

  5. olafisberserker - Apr 25, 2013 at 4:28 PM

    Wait until the air heats up in July/August. Then you’ll start to see balls really fly out of the park.

    And I was there opening day agains tthe Dodgers and saw Juan Uribe’s cheapy. Without the change to the fences, that would have been a lazy fly out.

    • pandorasdadca - Apr 25, 2013 at 6:09 PM

      Even in the middle of summer the ball will die during night games. Still there will be 10-20 or so HR at Petco that would have been outs last year.

  6. modellforprez - Apr 25, 2013 at 6:45 PM

    Lame. where is the story and insight on the Pi rats who just juxed 3 of 4 from the illies

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