Today, the Washington Post published a story revealing that the outfield dimensions were not exactly as advertised. This is something the players had suspected all along, and the spacious confines have really frustrated them. It's even gotten into their heads, which I think has caused them to swing for the fences more.
Frankly, the Nats need to forget about home runs. RFK is what it is, and it's the same for both teams. We should be using the field to our advantage, and focus on making contact and driving balls into the gap, legging them out for doubles and triples. Stop thinking about home runs, guys!
But that got me thinking even harder. What should the dimensions look like at the new park?
Many of may know that the dimensions at Griffith Stadium, home of the original Washington Senators, were very wacky. The left field fence was extremely, extremely deep, while the right field fence was fairly short. In center field, the fence zigzagged to avoid the property of a homeowner.
So how about putting a modified version of Griffith's dimensions in the new ballpark? I overlaid RFK's fences on a drawing of Griffith's fences. Then I drew in fences for the new park.
As you can see, the left field pole would be in the same place as RFK, rather than the ungodly 388 feet of Griffith. I'd extend the left field fence along a similar path as Griffith to a point in center field slightly closer than RFK's 410 feet. After a Griffith-esque jag in center field, the fence would angle toward the right field pole at 320 feet, the same right field dimension as Griffith Stadium.
In addition, the fence height would not be uniform along the whole outfield. I'd have the fences a little higher along the closer power alleys, while keeping them lower in the deep gaps in center. I'd also raise the right field fence a little higher near the pole to compensate for the shorter porch.
The result would be a Griffith-style assymetrical set of dimensions. Straightaway left and right field would be reachable for hitters with power, but there would also be no cheapie homers, especially to center field.
I'm off this weekend, traveling to the first of many wedding-related parties and functions. The big day is less than three months from now. Hopefully I come back Monday to a team that's playing a little better.