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Posts Tagged ‘Yankee Stadium’

When are things going to turn around for Yankees?

Posted by ZA on May 15, 2009

It’s been a tough start for the new era of the New York Yankees.  Before training camp even started they had to deal with the Alex Rodriguez steroids controversy.  Since then they’ve struggled on the field, handing out home runs like the dentist hands out free toothpaste samples.  They’ve been blasted by fans and media for their overpriced premium tickets.  And they’ve discovered potential flaws in the design of their stadium that are the cause of all of the home runs.  If they could take a mulligan on 2009, I think George Steinbrenner definitely would.

Today’s latest Yankee bashing comes from the Wall Street Journal.  The WSJ chronicles some of the problems that are plaguing new Yankee Stadium and what the team can do to overcome them.  There are some good quotes in the article from John McHale Jr. who was an executive with the Detroit Tigers when they opened Comerica Park in 2000.  McHale Jr says a team must, “…sit and watch and determine whether something unusual is built in.”  Doing that with the Tigers convinced them to shorten their outfield fences, which made the park more friendly to home run hitters.  That move is part of what helped the Tigers win a World Series in 2006.

Will the Yankees brass have the balls to make changes to their $1.5B baseball palace? It takes a big man to admit when he’s wrong, hopefully the Steinbrenners won’t be afraid to make changes.  They already lowered prices on their premium seats, which is a good start.  But there are other changes they probably need to make to get the Yankees back at the top of the heap.

For the record, my prediction is that the Yankees will make the playoffs this season.  I even think they have a good shot at making a run to the World Series if their pitching comes together.  Of course I’m the same guy that picked a Yankees versus Chicago Cubs World Series in 2008, so maybe my biases are overshadowing my good judgement.

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Yankees caught with performance enhancing substance?

Posted by ZA on April 20, 2009

The New York Yankees have been caught red handed providing a performance enhancing substance to members of their team.  The result has been an overabundance of home runs at new Yankee Stadium.  Yankee home games are averaging 4.5 home runs per game, which translates to approximately 350 home runs over the course of a season.  The current rate of home runs is more than 3x greater than the 1.35 home runs per game average at Camden Yards and US Cellular Field, which shared the top two spots in 2008.

The performance enhancing substance being provided by Yankees brass?  Wind.  The design of new Yankee Stadium is causing a wind tunnel that has caused the rash of home runs.  Darren Rovell at CNBC was first to report on the story and said the Yankees are examining the “wind tunnel” effect causing all of the home runs.  Then a Accuweather story said that the angle of the seating in the new stadium “could have an effect on wind speed across the field”.  Accuweather went on to say that the “wind tunnel” conditions are most prevalent now and in late Fall, so the homers presumably would not keep up at this pace.

I’m sure this story will continue to evolve as it is investigated by the team, league and media.  But there is one thing that I’m already sure, that the Yankees are not happy at the thought that their $1.5 billion dollar stadium has a flawed design.  And if that turns out to be true, then I expect Populous, the architects who designed new Yankee Stadium, might be looking to change their name back to HOK Sport to hide from this embarrassment.

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