Results tagged ‘ Los Angeles Dodgers ’

Sydney Cricket Grounds Conversion for MLB Season Opener Underway!


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After 16 months of planning, the 2week  conversion  of  the Sydney Cricket Grounds ( SCG) pitch for MLB’s 2014 Season Opener began this week and is moving along very well.   We have stripped the  areas of the field  where the clay will be installed for the mound, baselines, infield and warning track.  Evergreen is the local contractor hired by Moore Sports to perform these duties.  This week we will begin the fencing, backstop, batters eye, foul poles, dugouts, bullpens and interior areas of the locker rooms.

scg layoutThe SCG field crew headed up by Tom Parker have been awesome.  They just finished the cricket season last weds and we began the grading of the field Thursday.   Over the course of the next couple weeks we will move about 1200 tons of materials on and off the field to build the playing surface.  The majority of these products including clays,warning track and rootzone  materials are locally provided.  Gail Materials has provided some infield clay products. They also provide clay products for the Padres and Dodgers.  Turface infield conditioners will be used to topcoat the field along with Covermaster providing all the padding.   Since we are unable to sink posts in the ground to support the fence structure, we will need to bring in over 100 tons of counter weights in order to secure the outfield fence.   Its a large project that has a lot of moving parts but if anyone can pull it off its the crew at the SCG and Scott Egelton with Pier Properties who is acting as PM.

IMAG5603The bermuda turfgrass also known as “cooch grass” is maintained just under 1/2 inch high during Cricket season. We are raising the cut to almost an inch so it is more in line to where the Dodgers and DBacks are currently training in Arizona.   Only 2 weeks after the MLB event is over the MRL takes the pitch so the field is actually going through 2 major conversions in over a month.   All the sod harvested from the pitch is being used at nearby venues.

More to follow as this project continues.

The SCG’s baseball history 1914-2014


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The SCG members stand is a beautiful building. The foundation of the stand was laid out by British soldiers in the 1850’s. In the photo you can see the construction of the DBacks dugout on the first base side. A lot of progress since our last site visit.

The Chicago White Sox and the New York Giants played NSW at the SCG in 1914. The members stand is at the Right in this old photo as the white sox take the field. The history of this venue and how it has brought our countries together over the years is pretty cool.

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MLB heads down under for 2014 opener


imageAfter multiple trips and site reviews to Australia we are finally bringing an MLB game down under!   Not only a game but an opening series.  One of the challenges of selecting a site for the games was finding a venue that could be transformed for the event.   After todays media frenzy that can be checked off the box. ( Photo above is looking from center field back to homeplate of the new seating section.)
The Sydney Cricket Grounds ( SCG)  in New South Wales is the spot!   With dimensions of 335 down the lines and 405 to center it meets the requirements and the cricket pitch has a history of playing baseball..even though it was 100 years ago.   Also the natural Bermuda over seeded rye grass that we will play on is common to spring training facilities and the SCG staff manicure it to the 9’s.    With a bit of grade tweaks and fencing design it will be just fine for an MLBfield.
20130613-132310.jpgHaving met with the head curator for the SCG , Tom Parker we came up with a sound strategy for making the pitch work. He has cricket until March 1 and that gives us a couple weeks to flip the field. Afterwards he has a week or so before the AFL league begins.
20130613-132359.jpgWe are making clays locally for the infield and shipping in mound clays.  A complete warning track will be installed along with bullpens, batters eye and backstop.    A lot of work for a couple weeks but the folks the SCG have  lot of experience with multi use venues so everything will be fine.   The venue will also be showcasing a new 170 million dollar grandstand behind homeplate.
The winningest ticket in baseball.  Not only the best venue in the world but the best beer.    Can’t wait to hear MLB’s  thunder down under!
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