January 1, 2010 [LINK / comment]

Bowl games in baseball stadiums

On Tuesday this week, the second annual Eagle Bank Bowl was held at good old RFK Stadium in Washington, as UCLA Bruins beat the Temple Owls, 30-21. It was nice to see video clips of an American sport being played in Our Nation's Capital. (Sorry, soccer fans. smile) Prior to that, the St. Petersburg Bowl was played at Tropicana Field, the Emerald Bowl was held at AT&T Park in San Francisco, and tomorrow, the International Bowl will be held at Rogers Centre in Toronto.

Now seriously, how many people pay much attention to those minor bowls, other than the students and alumni of the respective universities? I remain dubious of all proposals to "reform" the BCS and come up with some kind of college football national championship system. Unlike basketball, and to a lesser extent baseball, there are simply not enough regular season college games among nationally-ranked rivals to determine a clear-cut playoff system. Har-r-rumph! Why, back when I was young there was a small number of important bowl games that almost everybody watched, and if you ask me, they ought to go back to the good old days:

Inspired by memories of grand sporting events of the past in Washington, I spent some time editing several of the photos on the RFK Stadium page, enhancing their quality and making their sizes more consistent.

Hockey in baseball stadiums

This afternoon the NHL Boston Bruins will host the Philadelphia Flyers at the Winter Classic hockey match at Fenway Park, and to mark the occasion I have added a hockey version diagram to that page. Last year the same event was held at Wrigley Field. With the recent blizzards and freezing temperatures, they could probably play hockey at half the major league ballparks in America right now, if they wanted to. frown

In addition, I added a "hypothetical temporary" diagram version of Fenway Park, in response to a recent fan request. It shows how they could rearrange the field with the diamond moved to the right field corner, which would allow them to do major construction work on the main grandstand behind home plate, with a large upper deck. After the renovations of the past few years, however, it became clear that such a rearrangement wouldn't be necessary, which is why I had deleted that version. It's still interesting to contemplate, nevertheless.

Happy New Year!

At the stroke of midnight, the baseball blog page automatically began displaying the countdown clock showing the number of days remaining (94) until Opening Day, which will be Monday, April 5 this year. Chances are, there will be a nationally-televised game on the evening before, however.