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Why Do Stadiums Have Different Dimensions?

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  • Why Do Stadiums Have Different Dimensions?

    I am curious as to why all ballparks are built with different dimensions for the home run walls, foul area, and even different pitcher's mound heights at one point. Is there a story behind this? Couldnt the early pioneers of baseball agree on consistent outfield like they did with the consistent distance between bases and from the pitcher to home plate? It just seems weird to me. Imagine in basketball if some coutrs had a higher basket, or a longer court. Some may think this gives ballparks added 'personality'..but I think it would be easier to equally judge how good a player is if all the stadiums were exactly the same dimensions, turf, etc (except coors field of course). It doest seem too difficult to change at this point.

  • #2
    All of the stadiums would have to be domes to control the various weather conditions (wind, temperature, etc).

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    • #3
      So the first concern with any stadium development plan should be player statistical analysis?

      Really?
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      • #4
        Stadia used to be crammed onto whatever parcel of land the owners could get their hands on, often an odd shaped city lot. Often times, the OF would start out being wide open and slowly become hemmed in by stands over time. Owners were trying to get more seats to sell without spending too much of their own money, and weren't going to let anything like standard dimensions get in their way.
        What would the Red Sox do to make more standard dimensions at Fenway? You've got Lansdowne Street and the Mass Pike behind the LF wall...don't think that they're going anywhere. Wrigley is also hemmed in by city streets.
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        • #5
          As to why they have different dimensions, I could not say, but I am a proponent of these styles of stadiums. I like the uniqueness that each stadium brings to a city and their players. There's the short porch for Ruth in NY; the inclined CF in Minute Made Park; the ocean in right Field in SF; coors field and Arlington Stadium being gigantic; the pool in Arizona; the fan shaped dome in Milwaukee; small parks like GAB and then ultimate pitchers parks like PetCo.

          All of them unique in their own way, which makes the sport better IMHO.
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          • #6
            As mentioned above the primary reason in the old days was to fit a ballpark onto a particular plot of land.

            At one time when we went thru the stadium boom of the 70's we had a lot of stadiums that looked alike and had very similar dimensions. And we didn't realize how much we hated them until Camden Yards was built.
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            • #7
              Originally posted by KCGHOST View Post
              At one time when we went thru the stadium boom of the 70's we had a lot of stadiums that looked alike and had very similar dimensions. And we didn't realize how much we hated them until Camden Yards was built.
              I did. I always hated them.
              Those astro turfed monstrosities fueled my still strong obsession with photo's of old ball parks.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by The Dude View Post
                All of them unique in their own way, which makes the sport better IMHO.
                Agreed. They'd be boring if they were all the same.
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                • #9
                  IMHO baseball became sterile in the '70s due to the cookie cutter stadia . I heard Yogi say that in the old days you had to pitch the ballpark - when Williams came to YS they pitched him very differently than they did in Fenway. I love the strategy and wish we had a Polo Grounds and Ebbets field again
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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by willshad View Post
                    I am curious as to why all ballparks are built with different dimensions for the home run walls, foul area, and even different pitcher's mound heights at one point. Is there a story behind this? Couldnt the early pioneers of baseball agree on consistent outfield like they did with the consistent distance between bases and from the pitcher to home plate? It just seems weird to me. Imagine in basketball if some coutrs had a higher basket, or a longer court. Some may think this gives ballparks added 'personality'..but I think it would be easier to equally judge how good a player is if all the stadiums were exactly the same dimensions, turf, etc (except coors field of course). It doest seem too difficult to change at this point.
                    I think the different dimensions are part of what makes baseball great. I do think that it has gotten out of hand during this era, with stadiums built for the ball to carry out of short yards. But it's up to people like us to put numbers into proper perspective.

                    A couple articles you might like.

                    http://baseball-fever.com/showpost.p...2&postcount=49

                    http://baseball-fever.com/showpost.p...0&postcount=51

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