SBD/April 1, 2011/MLB Season Preview

MLB Facility Notes: Rockies Spent $2.5M On Coors Field Upgrades For This Season

New Rockies bar features open-seating area, tequila and nachos vendor
In Denver, Jordan Steffen notes the Rockies spent $2.5M on updates to Coors Field for this season, including “the addition of a new bar and improvements to restaurants and other concession stands.” Among the additions is Camarena Loft, an "open-air bar on the northwest side of the ballpark.” The bar, which “required the removal of three rows of seats, features an open-seating area, tequila and a nachos vendor.” Also, the new Wazee Market “will offer fans brick-oven pizza and gelato.” Rockies Owner Dick Monfort said that the “price of some concessions will increase 25 to 50 cents” (DENVER POST, 4/1).

DIRECT CONNECT: In Minneapolis, Michael Rand noted the Twins are “adding a free Wi-Fi network throughout Target Field that is expected to be fully functional on Opening Day” on April 8. The club is also “improving infrastructure that enables cellphone providers to beef up service to customers within the ballpark.” Target Field “will have more than 100 access points that cumulatively should handle up to 4,000 fans on the Wi-Fi network at once.” Rand wrote the Twins are “trying to keep up with the changing times, and seem to be ahead of the curve among most MLB teams.” Twins Corporate Communications Manager Chris Iles said that the Giants and AT&T Park “are the standard by which the Twins are measuring themselves” (Minneapolis STAR TRIBUNE, 3/30). Meanwhile, in Atlanta, Margaret Newkirk noted AT&T is “installing Wi-Fi capability” at Turner Field after putting new antennas at the ballpark a few months ago. AT&T Corporate Communications Dir Dawn Benton said that the service is “free to everyone” (AJC.com, 3/29).

I CAN SEE CLEARLY NOW: The Mariners on Thursday unveiled new Mitsubishi Electric Diamond Vision LED video boards in Safeco Field that are on the wall of the Wells Fargo Terrace Club stretching from the Press Box down the first and third base lines, and above the Lower Outfield Reserved seats in right field. The new LED boards along the first and third base lines are over four-feet high, and total more than 734 feet in length. The video screen above the Outfield Reserved seats is 160-feet wide by six-feet high, combining the three previous static, lighted sponsor signs and matrix boards into one video display (Mariners).

YEARLY UPKEEP: In Pittsburgh, Michael Machosky notes PNC Park “has a number of tweaks and small changes this year.” There is a “new vendor, the Memorabilia Store by Hunt Auctions, which has an array of game-used jerseys, autographs, vintage baseball cards, programs and tickets.” Flat-panel HDTVs “have replaced all the boxy old tube TVs throughout the stadium, and new energy-efficient lights help the park save energy” (Pittsburgh TRIBUNE-REVIEW, 4/1).
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