AL, NL, all around the game: the West Coast is a barren landscape for hitters in Major League Baseball.
I’m most acutely aware of the offensive struggles of the San Francisco Giants, the defending world champions who rank last in runs, 28th in hits and 25th in home runs.
The Giants play a lot of games against the San Diego Padres, ranking 27th in runs and hits and dead last at 30th in homers.
I was expecting that when I checked out MLB’s team stats tonight, and I figured the Seattle Mariners were likely company in the lower offense echelon. But I was surprised to find that the Oakland Athletics, Los Angeles Dodgers and even the Los Angeles Angels are for the most part in the nether regions of hitting statistics.
I thought the Pacific Coast stood for (Wally) Moon-shot power. For the Bash Brothers. For Barry Bonds. No more.
Since we can’t bring back steroids, I do suggest that some of these clubs reconfigure their stadiums. I recall way back in my childhood that the Indians moved in their fences to try to stoke some run production at Cleveland Municipal Stadium.
Given how the outfield walls of modern parks like AT&T and Petco are integral parts of the fields, it’s unlikely clubs will want to tinker with those designer dimensions. But I’d like to see what would happen.
I love a good 2-1 pitchers’ duel as much as the next guy, but every few days I’d like to see the local nine rake the walls the way the Yankees and Red Sox do.