Boswell: Give RFK a "facelift"
In today's Washington Post (print edition only), Thomas Boswell suggests several modifications that could greatly enhance the aesthetics of RFK Stadium, based on the renovations to (soon-to-disappear) Busch Stadium that were made in 1996. To wit:
- Add four rows of box seats to reduce the excessive foul territory.
- Move the bullpens from the corners toward the power alleys, and fill in that space with added grandstand seats.
- Install true bench-type bleacher sections in deep left- and right-center fields.
- Tear out the upper level seats in the outfield upper deck, and put in a big wooden manual scoreboard and historical D.C. baseball display.
- Put in a grass slope ("sward"?) in center field, as a batter's backdrop.
He's definitely on the right track, especially with lower-level bleachers, but I don't think putting in seats around the foul corners would work. For one thing, it would make reconfiguring RFK for soccer games next to impossible. Since the front-row box seats are already fairly low, I think adding two rows along the foul lines is about as much as can be done without having to lower the field level, which would be very costly and difficult. Nonetheless, I agree wholeheartedly with his conclusion:
If the aesthetics of RFK can be improved half as much as the '96-to'97 transformation of Busch Stadium, the long-term value to the Washington francise and its owners may be huge.
White Sox win again
Even though I'm rooting for them to go all the way, I was kind of hoping the White Sox would lose tonight's game so that the Angels wouldn't be able to complain that the rather bogus way that Game 2 was won shifted the momentum in Chicago's favor. Paul Konerko is back in the hitting groove, but Vlad Guerrero and the other Angel sluggers were totally stymied by John Garland, who gave up only four hits in a complete game. Final score: 5-2.
The controversial bumbled call in Chicago Wednesday night by umpire Doug Eddings has sparked renewed interest in this idea. Just say no! Read about it at MLB.com, and cast your vote at foxsports.com. Right now, it's running
31% ALL THE TIME, and
23% IN PLAYOFFS ONLY.
To follow along with the heated argument over that bumbled call, see David Pinto's blog post at Baseball Musings.
Speaking of Chicago, thanks to Mario Vara for sending some great photos of a game between the Cubs and Cardinals at Wrigley Field from last August; I've added two of them to that page, and touched up the old ones. His photos can also be seen on the Cleveland Stadium page.