Some may not like it, but Progressive Field renovations are a good idea – Terry’s Talkin’ Guardians

CLEVELAND, Ohio – I nonetheless consider Progressive Field as “the brand new ballpark.”

When the renovations of what was as soon as Jacobs Field are completed by 2025, it can appear like new. But the actual fact is that the ballpark was opened in 1994. That’s 29 years in the past. It’s the eleventh oldest stadium amongst MLB’s 30 franchises.

I’ve heard some complaining from followers in regards to the deal between the state and native governments together with the Guardians. The value for the renovations is $202 million, with $67 million coming from the crew.

It was a part of the brand new lease settlement to maintain the Guardians right here not less than till 2036. There are provisions to take the deal till 2046.

I’m sufficiently old to recollect when there have been a number of instances the crew might have moved to different cities. The final was within the early Nineteen Nineties, earlier than the present ballpark was constructed.

Northeast Ohio followers do not like to listen to this, but Cleveland is the nineteenth media market within the nation – and the smallest with groups within the NFL, MLB and NBA.

This is not the late Nineteen Nineties in Cleveland when the Browns moved to Baltimore. The Cavs have been so-so. But the Tribe had a new dwelling on the “nook of Carnegie and Ontario,” as radio broadcaster Tom Hamilton likes to say on sport days.

Cleveland Guardians President of Baseball Operations Chris Antonetti (proper) and GM Mike Chernoff.John Kuntz,


Baseball refuses to have a actual wage cap and since a lot of the revenues for groups come from native media/cable TV retailers – small market franchises corresponding to Cleveland are penalized. That’s a reality.

Another reality is that it is reassuring that the Dolan possession needs to maintain the crew right here. It has taken steps to make that occur. There’s the brand new ballpark lease. There are the ballpark renovations. There is a office setting the place premier baseball folks Chris Antonetti, Mike Chernoff and Terry Francona wish to work.

Right now, I can hear some followers falling into the “Dolan is reasonable” mantra. Or they may exhibit the altering of the crew identify from the Indians to the Guardians.

I’ll counter with the Guardians having had 9 successful seasons within the final 10 years. They’ve been to the playoffs six instances, the World Series as soon as. The single shedding season in that span was 80-82 in 2021.

If a entrance workplace/coach for the Browns produced that form of report, followers would need statues constructed.

Winning for them is way tougher for the Guardians than the Browns or Cavaliers as a result of the foundations are stacked towards them.


Former Tribe broadcaster Herb Score watched a lot of video games at outdated Cleveland Municipal Stadium. That was when followers went to the sport to take a seat of their seats and watch the sport.


I got here to baseball within the early Sixties due to my father. We’d stroll down the West third Street Bridge. We’d purchase a dime scorecard with a little golf pencil – and hold rating.

We’d purchase common admission seats and generally crept into the field seats. Other instances, my father gave an usher a buck. He shortly shoved the invoice into his pocket and took us all the way down to some prime spots behind the Cleveland dugout.

This was once you went to a baseball sport to look at a baseball sport. There have been no video replays on the scoreboard. No cellphones to seize your consideration. Very little wandering round.

You sat there and watched the sport. When a Cleveland participant hit a homer and the fireworks erupted, it was a magical second. There was organ music between innings.

It was the sight of inexperienced grass, the odor of sizzling canines on the grill and distributors screaming, “GET YOUR BEER HERE!!!”

“It was like that for me, too,” stated Brian Barren, the Guardians’ president of enterprise operations.

I spoke with Barren at size Friday in regards to the adjustments coming to Progressive Field – and the way the fan expertise is totally different.

“Fans need the liberty to stroll round,” he stated. “It’s why our Corner Bar space has grow to be so widespread. Fans can purchase native meals and drinks. They can stand by the railings. They can go to totally different components of the park to look at the sport.”

I’ve watched followers there. They spend time on their telephone. They discuss to one another in individual. They try the sport sport on TV. It’s “an expertise,” nearly like going to a meals courtroom or sports activities bar – solely there’s a dwell sport occurring on the sector.


The Guardians on Thursday unveiled designs for enhancements to Progressive Field for 2024 and 2025.


You will not see a lot new this season.

“There will likely be a important distinction by opening day of 2024,” Barren stated. “We hope to have it completed by 2025.”

Other than opening day and a few postseason appearances, the higher deck in Progressive Field is often wasted house. I by no means understood what was the idea of ​​the transport containers in the best discipline. Supposedly, followers might stand there and watch the sport. Very few did.

This is an bold venture to revamp the higher deck, making it considerably like the nook bar space in some areas. You can watch the sport, eat, go to, textual content, take footage and revel in totally different eating places.

You may be pondering, “I assumed you have been going to the ball sport.”

For many followers, it is modified. Barren stated the crew analysis confirmed many followers “do not wish to be simply caught of their seats. Other than proper discipline (transport containers), nothing has modified within the higher deck because the ballpark opened in 1994.”

Why not strive one thing totally different? Why not enchantment to the informal and youthful followers?

Progressive Field Reimagined

The Guardians on Thursday unveiled designs for enhancements to Progressive Field for 2024 and 2025.


For the traditionalists, a lot of the seat ticket holders are within the decrease bowl. Barren stated new seats will likely be put in. But for many who sit behind dwelling plate and the dugouts, it will likely be the identical. As for bleachers … properly … it is old style bleacher seats.

The renovations are not about turning Progressive Field into one large sports activities bar. The veteran followers who wish to watch the sport as they all the time have earlier than can nonetheless do it.

The renovations additionally embrace upgrades to the clubhouses and the places of work the place the crew is headquartered. Those have not been touched for 29 years.

The backside line is baseball will likely be in a nicer ballpark with an possession dedicated to preserving a crew and a entrance workplace that is aware of the way to put a winner on the sector. Those of us of a sure age had none of that when rising up with the Tribe on the outdated Municipal Stadium.


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