In this morning’s Enquirer, Paul Daugherty has an interesting article on the homer rate at Great American Ballpark:
At Great American Small Park – GASP! – home runs fly like cruise missiles to all fields. In the Moon Deck in right, every day is Ball Day. Marty Brennaman says, “There’s a drive . . .” so often during Reds home games, he could be a chauffeur.
Balls don’t just jump out of GASP. They leap, sprint, pirouette and salute. As recently as Sunday, 229 had breached the walls this year. That’s 15 more than Baseball’s second homer-friendliest park, something called Ameriquest Field, where the Texas Rangers play.
If you’re just talking about National League stadiums, games at GASP feature nearly two and a half more runs than average. Coors Field in Denver had been seen as the state of the art palace for pounding pitchers. Thin air, huge power alleys and traumatized home pitching staffs made Coors a freaky-bordering-on-fraudulent place to play.
Compared to Great American Small Park in 2005, Coors is pitchers’ heaven. Through Sunday, 156 homers had been hit there, 73 fewer than in Cincinnati.
Teams average three homers a game at GASP. That’s a full homer more than the Major League norm. What this means is that if the Reds brass hasn’t started scouting, signing, drafting and developing ground-ball pitchers, there oughta be an investigation.
Part of the reason for the high home run totals is because the Reds feature a slugging lineup that includes Adam Dunn, Ken Griffey, Jr., Wily Mo Pena, etc. Still, GAB is homer-friendly.
So, that being the case, why would Dan O’Brien have signed a couple of fly ball pitchers in the offseason?
Blame Chad for creating this mess.
Chad launched Redleg Nation in February 2005, and has been writing about the Reds ever since. His first book, “The Big 50: The Men and Moments That Made the Cincinnati Reds” is now available in bookstores and online, at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and wherever fine books are sold. You can also find Chad’s musings about the Cincinnati Reds in the pages of Cincinnati Magazine.
You can email Chad at firstname.lastname@example.org.