The Seattle Mariners, whose lack of home run power appears to derive from the quality of personnel just as much as the home confines, are bandying the idea around this season. Per Larry Stone of the Seattle Times:
[QUOTE]The question of whether the Mariners should move the fences in at Safeco Field is again a hot topic, and Wedge was asked about it before the game.
"Like I've always said, Jack (Zduriencik) and I talk every day. Jack talks to the powers that be on a daily basis. When the season's all said and done, we're going to evaluate everything. I mean, everything. Both on and off the field, both in regard to the field or anything else regarding that. I'll leave it at that.
"The longer I'm here — nothing's going to happen this season, that's obvious — but it does allow me to give it another four months to take a peek at it, too. I have my thoughts, of which I will not let you in on. Safe to say we will evaluate everything when the season's done."[/QUOTE]
Last month, the San Diego Padres, who have hit 166 home runs at home from 2009 through 2011 (in comparison, Toronto hit 146 at home in 2010 alone), acknowledged that they will be making a strong consideration to move their fences in at Petco Park:
[QUOTE]“We’re open-minded and we’re seriously considering it,” Padres interim CEO Tom Garfinkel said Tuesday.
“I do believe it is too extreme right now. It will still be a pitcher’s ballpark. But a hitter should be rewarded if he crushes it. And if a team is down 4-0, they should feel there is some hope. It’s just too extreme.”[/QUOTE]
This comes on the heels of the New York Mets’ decision to alter Citi Field’s dimensions this past offseason:
[QUOTE]Dave Howard, the Mets’ vice president of business operations, talked about the changes.
“We are bringing the wall in and lowering the height to eight feet from foul pole to foul pole with the intention of making the ballpark play more fair, more neutral,” he said. “Certainly we know that David Wright and Ike Davis and Jason Bay and Lucas Duda and the rest of our position players are excited about it. We think our fans are very excited about it, and we are looking forward to seeing how the field plays starting [tomorrow].”
The new dimensions in the outfield are 358 feet in left field (down from 371 feet last year), 398 in center field (previously 408) and 375 in right field (previously 378). The walls from last year — including the 16-foot high one in dead center field — will remain in their same positions, but the new, eight-foot wall will be placed in front of them, slashing the dimensions as well as making home runs more frequent since anything that clears that first wall will now be a home run.[/QUOTE]
How has the new configuration fared in Flushings? So far, the returns have not been that favorable as the Mets have hit just 8 home runs at Citi Field, the second-lowest home total in baseball. Clearly, simply moving the fences in is not a cure all for offensive woes.
So the Twins wouldn’t be alone in bringing the fences in. However, as we see with the Mets, just moving the fences in is not necessary a boost to the bats.
Edited by Parker Hageman, 24 May 2012 - 12:52 PM.