401 East Jefferson St.
For ticket information call (602)
Opening: March 31, 1998
Construction began: November 16, 1995
Style: Convertible roof
Surface: Kentucky Blue Grass (1999); Anza grass (1998)
Playing Field: Bull's Eye Bermuda,
overseeded with Kentucky blue grass and perennial rye grass.
Architect: Ellerbe Becket
(Minneapolis), Bill Johnson (design principal).
Construction: Huber, Hunt & Nichols Inc. (Indianapolis).
Owner: Maricopa County Stadium District.
Cost: $354 million (some estimates
put the cost at $414 million).
Public financing: $238 million (68%), from a quarter-cent sales tax
in Maricopa County.
Private financing: $111 million (32%), from the Diamondbacks
This $354 million ballpark has become
one of the game's most recognizable landmarks. It is baseball-only,
which is nice, and the sight lines may be the best in the majors - 80 percent
of the seats are inside the foul poles, and there is no upper deck around
the outfield. Also, it proves that natural grass can co-exist with a
dome stadium - Miller Park went the same route in 2001.
Bank One has all the modern
conveniences - air conditioning, a retractable roof,and a signature swimming
pool behind the right field wall where the bikini-clad celebrate Diamondback
home runs. The 8,000 ton cooling system is the equivalent of
air-conditioning for more than 2,500 typical Arizona homes. A
parking and traffic circulation study conducted for the Maricopa County
Stadium District identified approximately 18,600 parking spaces within a
15-minute walk of the stadium.
But it also has a lot of
classic touches. Most visible is the dirt path between the pitchers
mound and homeplate, reminiscent of fields 100 years ago; but the quirky
angles around the foul poles and the towering, distinctive wall in center
are also classic touches. The traditional look of red brick and
green structural steel blends into its surroundings; many of the design
details are borrowed from the warehouse district that surrounds the
roof: The roof opens to various positions to make sure a proper amount
of sunlight hits the natural turf without heating the concrete and metal
within the stadium, thus allowing it to cool quickly and efficiently. With
the roof in the closed position, the minimum height over the playing
surface is 180 feet and the maximum height is 200 feet.
Even though more than half of the Diamondbacks' games are played with the
retractable room in a closed position, the turf receives sunlight at every
opportunity. Even on game days, the roof remains open into the afternoon
to allow maximum exposure. When areas of the field receive too little
natural sunlight, large incandescent growth lights provide a substitute.
Playing Field: After experimenting with other turfs The
Bank One Ballpark finally settled on Bull's Eye bermuda, which was
installed during the All-Star break in 1999. The 2000 season will feature
Bull's Eye Bermuda overseeded with Kentucky blue grass and perennial rye
The pool: In
recreating an upscale Arizona backyard, the Pavilion gives about 35 guests
the opportunity to see the Diamondbacks play while enjoying a swimming
pool, hot tub, fountains, catering and other amenities. The
Pavilion is located next to the outfield wall in right-center. With the
pool approximately 415 feet from home plate, home runs occasionally make a
splash. When a Diamondback homers, water cannons celebrate by firing
streams 30 to 35 feet into the air.
With an elevation of approximately 1,100 feet above sea level, Bank One Ballpark
is the second-highest facility in the major leagues, trailing only Coors Field
in Denver. Scientists have estimated that a fly ball will travel seven feet
farther for every 1,000 feet of altitude. When the hot desert air blows
in, the heat makes the ball travel even further.
That said, the park doesn't appear to boost run production significantly - in fact, it has
depressed home runs in three of the past four years, and played neutral as far as scoring runs is
concerned. The center field wall is a goodly 407 feet away, and the
25-foot wall there is hard to clear; in addition, the walls slope steeply away
from the already longish power alleys towards center field, so that the wall is
actually 413 feet away from the plate at its furthest points, about 20 feet to
the left and right of dead center.
In addition to the length of the lines, the roof is typically closed from
mid-May to nearly the end of the season, because of the summer desert
heat. The ball doesn't carry nearly as well at these times - in
1998, scoring and homers increased by 21 percent and 28 percent
respectively when the roof was open.
The quirky angles around the foul poles, where the fences angle away steeply by
about 30 feet, and the large distance from alley to alley makes for a lot of
The large outfield puts a premium on
outfielders with range. A center fielder who can chase fly balls,
and who gets a good jump on the ball, is a huge asset. The corner
outfielders have to be competent athletes, because the ball takes
difficult and quirky bounces around the oddly shaped foul pole fences.
The shorter walls in left and right field make it possible for a good
outfielder to leap and take away a home run.
The team is still struggling to make natural grass grow well in an
enclosed stadium. In 1998, the outfield grass didn't grow well,
making bad hops a concern, though the infield grass seemed to play
well. The strain of Bermuda grass was given to all kinds of dead
spots in the outfield and large divots late in the season. In 1999,
a new strain of grass seemed to grow better, and the outfield played
substantially better. Over the three years that the park has been
around, errors have actually been suppressed by almost 50% in the
benefits: Flyball pitchers
benefit the most when the ball isn't carrying well because they can feel free to get the ball up in the
strike zone, since hitters seem to have trouble clearing the distant walls.
Pitchers who change speeds and can force extreme pulls fare even better.
Curt Schilling, who gave up a league-leading 37 homers, fits the former
profile, but actually did better on the road: 11-2, 2.82 ERA on the road
vs. 11-4, 3.13 ERA at home. Randy Johnson also did marginally better
on the road - 9-3, 2.43 ERA on the road vs. 12-3, 2.54 ERA at home.
Luis Gonzalez hit .342 at home and .308 on the road, but hit 31 of his 57
HR on the road. Damian Miller hit .305 at home vs. .243 on the road,
with 9 of his 13 dingers at the BOB.
gets hurt: Power hitters
and home run guys, especially moderate ones, when the roof closes. Matt
Williams and right-handed hitters had the worst home-road splits of any
D'back hitter last season.
Arizona: In downtown Phoenix, on a site
bounded by Fourth Street to the west, Jefferson Street on the north, Seventh
Street on the east and the Southern Pacific railroad tracks on the south.
Batters will face north.
field: 330 ft.
alleys: 374 ft.
field: 407 ft.
left-center and right-center: 413 ft.
field: 334 ft.
2001 STATS, Inc.
home run and RHR in NL in 2001
- Second highest batting average, hit
and run factors in NL in 2001
- Third highest batting average
factor in the NL in 2000
- Second lowest walk factor in the NL
- Lowest walk factor in the NL in
- Highest triples factor in the NL in