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Outfield Dimensions Are Not The Problem

Metsblog posted a story this morning about alleged internal discussion within the Mets organization regarding changing the color of the outfield wall at CitiField to the same blue color that the outfield wall at Shea Stadium had. Though I’d like to see this as well as some adjustment of the outfield dimensions (though not as severe a change as many other fans may want to see) I think the Mets have bigger things to focus on.

I don’t think the Mets are not winning because of the colors or the dimensions. They’re not winning because they don’t have the right team to play in their home field. If you have a park that is hard to hit home runs in you go out and get a team that plays small ball well. Build on the model of the Cardinals of the early to mid 1980s.

Moving the fences in makes it easier for your marquee stars such as David Wright and Jason Bay to hit home runs. But it will also make it easier for opposing players. If you have a unique park, as the Mets have, build the right team to play there. Get a bunch of singles and double hitters who hit for average and have speed. Get some ground ball pitchers capable of keeping the ball in the infield.

Sure it’s an old fashioned approach to the game. But when you build a throwback stadium you may need to build a throwback team to win there.

(The opening of this post is not a bash of Metsblog. It’s just a citation of the post that set off this thought.)

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