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June 27, 2012 5:00 am
If you want to make Petco more friendly to hitters, it's not enough to move the fences in.
There’s a story that has been told about Petco for years. It’s about a ballpark that was built too darned big. In this story, all the long fly balls get caught at the warning track. “You have to change completely there,” said Ryan Klesko at the beginning. “You have to take the loft out of your swing. Will they admit that they were wrong? No. Will they bring in the fences? No.” This is the story. This story may take a twist next year, as the team explores bringing the fences in. That should fix it!
Quietly, though, there has been another story playing out at Petco. It goes like this: the Padres’ hitters this year are the second-worst in the National League on balls hit on the ground. The Padres’ pitchers this year are the third-best in the National League on balls hit on the ground. This has been going on for years, and Ryan Klesko never said a freaking word.