February 16, 2006
The Stadium statistics page has been reformatted, showing the year of contruction and demolition, in addition to the first and last years of use in Major League Baseball. There are a number of other small enhancements on that page as well, such as indicating which stadiums were built next to their predecessors. The distances to the power alleys are no longer shown on that page, however, because those figures -- officially marked versus my estimates of the true distances -- will be a main focus of the soon-to-come Dimensions page. Power alley distances are notoriously unreliable, and the Stadium statistics page aims to be purely objective.
The Shibe Park revisions are nearing completion, but I need to get a few things straight before I post the new diagrams. In the mean time, I did a quick rotation of Jarry Park, which I'll post very soon. Tennis, anyone?
Jay Roberts brought to my attention a discussion thread (from 2002) at japanesebaseball.com in which a guy named Robert Whiting says he counted only 42,761 seats seats at the Tokyo Dome several years ago. Since then, one thousand seats have been removed, and standing room capacity is said to be 3,000. Nevertheless, the Yomiuri Giants routinely claim 55,000 in attendance. Sounds pretty "sushi" to me.
Dave Tucker suggested that I do a page and diagram for Scottsdale (Arizona) Stadium, since it will be one of the venues for the World Baseball Classic. It's unlikely that I would branch out in that direction, certainly not in time for the WBC. My "plate" is full of long-overdue revisions to existing diagrams and pages the way it is.
Sammy Sosa has declined the offer of a $500,000 non-guaranteed one-year contract with the Nationals, and may not play at all this season, or perhaps ever again. He apparently wanted more money than Jim Bowden was willing to pay him. See MLB.com. Like Jose Canseco, his performance as a slugger took a nosedive late in his career, before he was ready to call it quits. It's too bad, in a way, it might have been interesting to see him try to regain his past glory and cross the 600 home run threshold in Washington.