Jeff Francoeur‘s been quoted in several news outlets as saying that he feels bad for right handed hitters in general and David Wright specifically who have to play at CitiField. The main target of his derision, not surprisingly, is the deep right center field wall and tall wall along left field.
“I’m not saying to make a bandbox like Philadelphia. But, I mean, poor David hits the ball to right-center so well. And there it’s an out or it’s deep, and to me, that’s when you start trying to pull the ball. You start getting in habits. And I know it’s been frustrating for David playing in that park.”
“You hit some balls to right-center and it’s an out or it’s off the wall [and] it’s pretty devastating to a player. It is. Especially when you turn on ESPN at night and you see someone flipping one [at Yankee Stadium] 320 [feet] in the first row and it’s a home run. It’s tough man, it really is.”
Though it shouldn’t be coming from Francoeur I think the remarks are dead on. CitiField is definitely a pitchers park. There have been many articles backing this up since the park opened. This was by design.
At the same time you have to wonder what ownership was thinking when they configured the field to the detriment of their franchise hitters. Changing the field dimensions wouldn’t necesarily change the outcome of the games played there but would definitely help the team’s big hitters like Wright and Jason Bay. Want a good way to sell more tickets? Give your power hiters a better chance to hit the ball in your home park.