Sportress of Blogitude

Garish home run sculpture at Marlins Park takes a licking during batting practice

One of the more intriguing stories during the MLB off season were the unique features that would be part of Marlins Park in Miami as construction was completed and the final touches were added. Backstop aquariums received heavy play and discussion. But perhaps more than anything, curiosity and for some, abject horror, were the feelings expressed when news came out that the team was adding a straight up nightmare fuel home run celebration sculpture in center field for the tidy sum of $2 million.

During an informal, “soft opening” of the ballpark Tuesday prior to the Marlins playing a game against the University of Miami, Marlins players reportedly unleashed a barrage of balls upon the home run sculpture during batting practice.

Via the Miami Herald:

With the roof open and the wind blowing out, the Marlins peppered the “home run sculpture,” the $2 million centerpiece of their new ballpark, with one metal-denting blast after another. That was batting practice, and it prompted catcher John Buck to remark that “it felt like you hit your dad or grandpa on the arm with a ball” — inflicting pain unintentionally, in other words.

Metal-denting? That doesn’t sound good. How long will the garish monstrosity be able to withstand batting practice if it is in fact being dented? Will they have to drape some kind of padding over it during batting practice to protect it? That is unlikely to happen, as I suspect once people saw that it could be covered up there would be little chance anyone would be willing to be the one responsible for unleashing that thing upon peoples’ psyches again.

But in all seriousness, I cannot wait until that things gets started up for the first time during an actual, live game. It’s going to be surreal.