Tuesday, June 25, 2024

Blue Jays to move fences in at Rogers Centre, but raise walls

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As part of ongoing renovations to their home ballpark, the Toronto Blue Jays are moving in the outfield fences at the Rogers Centre, which figures to make the venue even more accommodating for power hitters. 

On Friday, the Blue Jays officially announced the new outfield dimensions along with the wall heights around the ballpark. They look to be the following: 

  • Left field line: 328 feet with a 14-foot, four-inch wall
  • Left center: 368 feet with an 11-foot, two-inch wall
  • Left center power alley: 381 feet with a 12-foot, nine-inch wall
  • Center field: 400 feet with an eight-foot wall 
  • Right center power alley: 372 feet with a 10-foot, nine-inch wall
  • Right center: 359 feet with a 14-foot, four-inch wall
  • Right field line: 328 feet with a 12-foot, seven-inch wall

In terms of raw distance from home plate, those are decent changes, notably in right center where the wall was previously 16 feet further from home plate. However, those alterations will be partly offset by an increase in fence height of varying dimensions. For example, in right center the wall will be four feet, four inches taller now.   

According to Statcast, Rogers Centre over the last three seasons has played basically neutral when it comes to run-scoring levels. However, at the same time, it’s inflated home run rates by roughly 8 percent. More specifically, it’s notably benefited right-handed power hitters while actually working against those who hit from the left side. The far more friendly dimensions in the right-center power alley should be of particular benefit to offseason additions like Daulton Varsho, Brandon Belt, and Kevin Kiermaier — all of whom bat lefty.

The Jays’ lineup last season, while potent overall, was too right-handed, and those additions above have added much-needed balance to the attack. Presumably, those lefty bats will now benefit from cozier conditions at their home ballpark. 

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