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Capacity: 40,000
Comerica Park

Area of fair territory: xxx,xxx sq. ft.

Area of foul territory: Small

 

Fences: N.A.

Elevation: 585 feet

 

TICKETING
Infield box $30
Lower outfield box $25
Upper box $20
Mezzanine $15
Pavilion $14
Upper reserved $12
Fan stands $8
General Information

Address:
East of Woodward Avenue
Detroit, MI 48216
For ticket information call: (313) 963-2050

Who Plays Here: Detroit Tigers (AL)
First Opened: April 11, 2000 (against the Seattle Mariners)
Surface: Grass

Architect: HOK Sport (Kansas City); SHG Inc. (Detroit)
Construction: Hunt-Turner-White (a group consisting of firms Huber, Hunt & Nichols Inc., Turner Construction Inc. and White Construction Co.)
Owner: Detroit-Wayne County Stadium Authority

Cost: $300 million
Public financing: $115 million, or 38 percent, from 2 percent rental-car tax and 1 percent hotel tax, and money from Indian casino revenue
Private financing: $185 million, or 62 percent, from Tigers owner Mike Ilitch



Milwaukee County Stadium

 

History

     Detroit is an urban disaster.  Ask the next person whom you meet who says he or she is "from Detroit" about where exactly they are from, and most likely they will tell you that they are actually from one of the suburbs - Farmington Hills, Mt. Clemens, Auburn Hills, Sterling Heights, Dearborn, Southfield, etc.  The metropolitan area has lost almost a third of its population since 1970.  In 1997, the city gave out 86 permits for new construction and 8,432 for housing demolitions. 

     As a last ditch effort to reverse the omnipresent, post-industrial urban decay, voters approved a referendum to build a new ballpark/football stadium complex.  The idea has been tossed around in the mid 1980s; in retrospect, building a new ballpark at that time would have left them with a ballpark like New Comiskey or SkyDome, and a wholesale revitalization of the downtown core would have been unlikely.  The recent, much more successful, trend towards retro parks offers hope.

 

     Comerica Park is part of a $300 million urban village, which hopes to do for the rotting city of Detroit what Jacobs Field did for the rotting city of Cleveland.  The ballpark includes a carousel, Ferris wheel, and a enormous water feature in center field that can be choreographed to music. Aesthetically, it's pleasing enough; the vastly improved sightlines are the most noticeable change from Tiger Stadium: Comerica has no upper-deck outfield seats, so there are no obstructed view seats, and the park offers a gorgeous view of a downtown skyline over the right field wall.  Fans also have more room - although the ballpark takes up more land than Tiger Stadium, its 40,000-seat capacity over than 12,000 less.  Seats are 19-inches wide, and seats in the "club" section are cushioned; at the old Tiger Stadium, the seats were 16 inches across.

     The park's opening year was a modest success.  Despite a losing year, the Tigers drew a staggering 2,533,752 fans, which was the second largest total in team history - the team record was set in 1984, when they started off 35-5 and went on to win the World Series.  After that banner year, attendance at Tiger Stadium dipped dramatically, hitting 1.5 million in 1990 and falling below 1.2 million in 1995 and 1996.  Attendance had foundered below 1.5 million in recent years.

     The park includes 70,000 square feet of retail space and another 36,000 square feet of offices.  It will soon be joined in the neighborhood by Ford Field, the new home of the Detroit Lions football team.  In December 1998, Comerica Incorporated, a Detroit-based financial services company, agreed to pay the Tigers $66 million over a 30-year period for naming rights at the new ballpark.



Comerica Park Firsts
Game - April 11, 2000
Pitch - Brian Moehler
Batter - Mark McLemore
Hit - John Olerud
Double - John Olerud
Triple - Luis Polonia
RBI - Gregg Jefferies
Home run - Juan Gonzalez
Stolen base- Mark McLemore
Victory - Brian Moehler
Save - Todd Jones
Error - Deivi Cruz

 

 

Analysis

 

     The left-center alley is 398 feet away - only Yankee Stadium has a longer alley (399 ft) - and the wall goes out quickly from the foul pole.  Right field is a little more reasonable; the alley is deep, at 380 feet, but reachable.  The outfield is so big that a lot of bloop flyballs and flares drop in for hits; the park actually boosted batting average by 1% last season, while suppressing home runs by 39%.

     The Detroit Tigers are woefully ill-equipped to handle this park.  They need a National League system, one modeled on the St. Louis Cardinals franchise built by Sparky Anderson.  For one, the center fielder here has to be a Gold Glover - the deep alleys require tremendous range, and Juan Encarnacion simply will not do.  The Tigers would love to have a Gary Pettis back.  Instead of a lineup filled with speed players who can hit line drives and find holes in the spacious playing field, they went with an array of right-handed sluggers: Juan Gonzalez, Dean Palmer, Juan Encarnacion and switch-hitter Tony Clark.

 

Defense: The infield at Tiger Stadium was well-known for its long grass that ate up ground balls and forced infielders to charge frequently.  Comerica Park appears to be more standard, so infielders with strong, quick arms aren't as important.

     The outfield is very large, so flychasers here have to have great range; it also helps to have infielders who can relay long throws from the outfield.

 

 

2000

2001

Error Index: 113 106
Infield-error Index: 108 116

 

Who benefits: Pitchers, especially those who give up a lot of flyballs.  Left-handed pitchers also derive benefits because they can challenge right-handed power hitters without consequence.  The deep gaps result in a larger amount of doubles and triples, giving base runners with speed an edge because they can take advantage.  A good example of this is Deivi Cruz - in 2000, he hit 9 of his 10 HR and 26 of his 46 doubles on the road, but got all 5 of his triples at Comerica.

     Hitters who slap and drive the ball into the deep gaps also benefit.  Lefty Bobby Higginson hit .317 at home but .239 on the road, though he it just 7 of 17 HR at home. Roger Cedeno hit .311 at home and .273 on the road. 

 

Who gets hurt:  This is a right-handed power hitter's nightmare.  This park single-handedly almost ruined the career of Juan Gonzalez: in 2000, the two-time MVP hit just 22 HR (14 of them on the road) and complained loudly about the power alley in left.  After leaving for Cleveland's Jacobs Field, which boosts right-handed home run power by about 15-20% (as opposed to depressing it by 50%), he hit 35 HR last year (22 in Cleveland and 13 on the road).

     Because of his ability to go the other way with power, Dean Palmer didn't suffer nearly as much - he did about as well on the road as at home.  Juan Encarnacion hit 10 of his 14 dingers on the road in 2000, but just 4 of 12 at home last year.

     

 

 

Park Factors

 

  Run HR Avg L-Avg R-Avg L-HR R-HR H 2B 3B
2000 89 61 101 107 97 72 52 101 107 105
2001 90 69 98 106 92 96 46 96 84 208

 

 

2000

2001

Walks: 98 110
Strikeouts: 88 87

 

 

 

Location

 

Detroit, Michigan: Home plate (N by NW), Montcalm; 1st base/right field (W by SW), Whitherell; center field (S by SE), Adams; 3rd base/left field (E by NE), Brush.


Seating Chart

Dimensions

Left field: 346 feet

Left-center: 402 feet

Center field: 422 feet

Right-center: 379 feet

Right field: 330 feet

Foul territory: Small.

Fun Facts

  • Lowest home run factor in AL in 2000, 2001

  • Lowest RHR factor in AL in 2000, 2001

  • Lowest strikeout factor in AL in 2000, 2001

  • Highest triple factor in AL in 2001

  • Second highest walk factor in AL in 2001

  • Second highest infield error factor in AL in 2001

 

  • All throughout the main concourse, guests may enjoy the Tigers' Walk of Fame, a historical display that envelops the circumference of the lower level. Historical elements and memorabilia celebrating the Tigers' rich history from the 1880s to the present take fans on a trip through time. The Walk of Fame is punctuated by six large "decade bats" that denote each era in Tigers baseball with artifacts, photos and display cases.

 

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