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More room means more fans in Fenway

More room means more fans in Fenway

The Boston Red Sox will be able to squeeze several hundred more fans into Fenway Park for each game this season.
The team was able to increase the 95-year-old baseball stadium's legal capacity after another winter of improvements.
Although some of the changes won't be visible to Fenway patrons, the improved access and code compliance would allow the team to increase its legal capacity from just over 36,000 and sell "a couple hundred more" tickets, Red Sox president Larry Lucchino said on Wednesday. The team isn't adding seats, although there will be new designated spots along railings for standing room.
The Red Sox have sold out 307 consecutive games since 2003 and had an average attendance of 36,180 in 2006. Eventually, they hope to be able to sell as many as 39,928 tickets per game.
The oldest and smallest ballpark in the major leagues, Fenway has been upgraded each offseason since the team was sold to a group led by John Henry in 2002. The most visible changes have been new seats above the Green Monster wall, behind home plate, and in the right field upper deck.
This offseason, changes involve a new concourse behind the third base grandstand and renovations to 26 luxury suites.
"We are well over $100 million in terms of investments we have made at Fenway Park," Lucchino said. "And we're still not finished."
It's not just the fans who will see an improvement: Visiting players now have their own batting cage off their clubhouse that will allow them to take some swings during the game without walking across the field to the old one under the center field bleachers.
The Red Sox got a batting cage off their own dugout in 2005. The visitors' cage will be separated by a window from one of the restaurants embedded in the ballpark, and the restaurant will have access to the cage when there's no game; when there is, diners will be able to watch players hit from their tables.
That also raises the possibility that Red Sox fans might not be so welcoming to opponents.
"It's not the fans we're worried about," said Janet Marie Smith, the lead Red Sox official on ballpark renovations. "It's the players we're worried about."


Updated : 2020-12-06 07:01 GMT+08:00