Posted by: pyeager | June 24, 2009

The House that Bobby Mitchell Built

One of the chapters in my upcoming weather book (initially slated for a March 2010 release) is a chapter on how the weather has influenced–or defined–sporting events. Today’s post is more about how the weather doesn’t affect baseball games played in the Metrodome (in Minneapolis, Minnesota)–although we all wish it would.

The House that Bobby Mitchell Built

The roof inside of the dome is apparently painted a color similar to a baseball, so fly balls are not always caught, especially by players on the visiting team since they’re not used to trying to catch baseballs they can’t see.

The turf is as hard as a rock, so ground balls shoot through the infield as if they were shot out of cannons, and fly balls that land in the outfield bounce around like ping pong balls, including taking 90-degree turns because of how the spin on a ball interacts with the turf.

The outfield walls are made out of green plastic, which makes the stadium look like a giant garbage bag, and the air-supported fabric roof doesn’t do anything to make anyone think otherwise.

If the original Yankee Stadium was called The House the Ruth Built, then the Metrodome should be called The House the Bobby Mitchell Built (starting center fielder for Twins during the first year of the Metrodome–he batted a whopping .249).

It’s the type of building that makes a sports fan wish the weather would affect the game——–anything would be a big improvement.

–Paul Yeager


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