SAN FRANCISCO – Out of the most innocuous environment, Giants shortstop Brandon Crawford created controversy.
It happened at the end of a youth baseball camp he held on a sunny day in late July at Rancho San Ramon Community Park. The day was a success. Kids laughed and had a good time while receiving personal instruction from a two-time Gold Glove Award winner. The last event on the schedule was a Q&A session. The campers were aged 5 to 14. It was going to be breezy and fun.
But between the question about when Crawford started playing baseball and the one about who has the most fun personality in the Giants clubhouse, there was this:
How big are major league fields?
“They vary in size,” Crawford told the kids. “Ours is one of the bigger ones, 421 feet to right-center, which should be changed…”
Crawford’s response appeared in his blog, which is hosted by MLB.com, and while it never truly went viral, it attracted enough attention to result in some blowback.
The Giants have played 18 seasons at AT&T Park. They have never altered the dimensions. They have no plans to alter them now. And they tend to bristle at the suggestion.
“We do not anticipate changing the dimensions of the ballpark for 2018,” Giants CEO Larry Baer said via text message.
“It’s a non-starter,” Giants executive vice president Brian Sabean said.
But should it be? Does it merit consideration, at least? Does the ballpark play intolerably unfair? And if the Giants were to entertain altering the dimensions, how should they go about it?
A recent anonymous poll of 12 current Giants hitters yielded two solid yet seemingly conflicting…
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