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Friday, June 22, 2018

Taking Back the Ballparks - Arizona Diamondbacks

Following the lead of the Rangers, the Diamondbacks owners were in negotiations over the conditions of their 20-year-old ballpark, which I like to think of as Miller Park Southwest (I’ve only been to Miller, but they strike me as pretty similar. Their retractable roof set-ups look alike from my screen, and the Bernie-only slide in Milwaukee is countered by the pool built in the desert for inebriated Phoenicians and celebrating Dodgers). That issue appears to be settled. At least for now. You can never say never, since there’s no quit in extortionist.

I do have high hopes the name you guys come up with will be a good one. The Diamondbacks, while a little long, is a great baseball nickname, meeting my two main requirements (uniqueness and local relevance), and as a bonus, it’s got a baseball term tucked in. Along those lines, despite arriving on the scene much later than the rest of the major facilities, Phoenix’s Sky Harbor is the best-named airport in America, or at least the best since the tongue-tickling Idlewild became one of 11,232 things in New York to change its name to JFK in the mid-60s.

Of course, the club also represents one of the true sources of destruction of the American ideal. Our problem isn’t in the ability to name things, but nickname them. Two perfectly suitable diminutives exist for Diamondbacks, either Backs or Snakes, and Diamonds would do in a pinch. Instead, we get the thoroughly artless D-Backs. If the Pittsburgh club was born near the turn of this century, instead of the last one, we’d undoubtedly be eschewing Bucs for P-Rates. Blecch.

Ballpark History

Built: 1998

Capacity: 48,686

Name: Chase Field 2006-present. Formerly called Bank One Ballpark (2000-05). 
 
Other ballparks used by club in its current city: None, though the area is rife with spring training stadia given the Cactus League is now entirely a Valley production.

Distinctive Features:The skinny tie of dirt that connects the pitcher’s mound to home; swimming pool beyond right field; first retractable roof stadium paired with natural grass; like everything else in Phoenix, working AC. The Diamondbacks annually rank first in the Fan Cost Index, which estimates the average price for a family of four to attend a game. That’s a nice feature.


Ballpark Highlights:

On Oct 3, 1999, Jay Bell tripled and homered to lead the Diamondbacks to a 10-3 win over visiting San Diego, the 100th victory of the campaign for a team just one season removed from its first year of existence. Of the sport’s other 13 expansion franchises, only five (New York Mets, LA Angels, Seattle, Houston and Kansas City) have ever won 100 in any season.

On May 8, 2001, Randy Johnson fanned 20 Cincinnati Reds before exiting after nine innings of the eventual 4-3, 11-inning Diamondback win. Because the game lasted more than nine, even if the Unit didn’t, the feat isn’t listed in the record book alongside Clemens, Wood and Scherzer. 

Luis Gonzalez’s cued a single over the head of a drawn-in Derek Jeter off future Hall of Famer Mariano Rivera to cap a two-run ninth-inning rally and one of the best World Series of the last 30 years. The fourth-year Diamondbacks won their only title despite Bob Brenly’s dogged efforts to prevent that from happening.

In 2006, Jake Peavy and six relievers combined to shut out Mexico in the United States’ inaugural game of the World Baseball Classic.

In 2009, Opening Day starter Brandon Webb, who had placed first, second and second in voting for the three previous NL Cy Young awards, was lifted after four innings. He would never throw another pitch in the big leagues, thus retiring as the greatest Diamondbacks-only player in club history.

SoSH U at work Posted: June 22, 2018 at 08:00 AM | 44 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: diamondbacks, stadium names

Reader Comments and Retorts

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Statements posted here are those of our readers and do not represent the BaseballThinkFactory. Names are provided by the poster and are not verified. We ask that posters follow our submission policy. Please report any inappropriate comments.

   1. Lance Reddick! Lance him! Posted: June 22, 2018 at 10:17 AM (#5697738)
Maricopa Pavilion
Salt River Valley Park
Crotalus Field
Viperidae Park

Okay, that went downhill quickly.
   2. Nasty Nate Posted: June 22, 2018 at 10:24 AM (#5697742)
Capacity: 48,686
I didn't realize it was so large. As far as I can tell, it has the 3rd-highest capacity in the bigs.
   3. SoSH U at work Posted: June 22, 2018 at 10:26 AM (#5697744)
Valley Grounds.

I'm determined to get at least one grounds.

   4. Jose is an Absurd Force of Nature Posted: June 22, 2018 at 10:33 AM (#5697750)
I'm in favor of a "Grounds" but Valley Grounds doesn't do it for me.

Rattlesnake Field
   5. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: June 22, 2018 at 10:40 AM (#5697759)
The Snake Pit
   6. Lance Reddick! Lance him! Posted: June 22, 2018 at 10:55 AM (#5697774)
I'm determined to get at least one grounds.

The cool kids are ignoring masses and using Capitol Street Grounds.
   7. SoSH U at work Posted: June 22, 2018 at 11:02 AM (#5697778)
The cool kids are ignoring masses and using Capitol Street Grounds.


That vote was probably my biggest disappointment so far.
   8. Crispix Attacksel Rios Posted: June 22, 2018 at 11:10 AM (#5697783)
Other ballparks used by club in its current city: None, though the area is rife with spring training stadia given the Cactus League is now entirely a Valley production.


The longtime Phoenix AAA team played at... Phoenix Municipal Stadium and then at Scottsdale Stadium. Two stadiums that both still exist and have boring names that would be factually incorrect. No help there.
   9. Graham & the 15-win "ARod Vortex of suck" Posted: June 22, 2018 at 11:13 AM (#5697786)
The Snake Pit


Oooh, I really like this one.
   10. Lance Reddick! Lance him! Posted: June 22, 2018 at 11:20 AM (#5697793)
Ugh. Fish Tank Redux incoming, which I predicted at the time.
   11. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: June 22, 2018 at 11:28 AM (#5697798)
Ugh. Fish Tank Redux incoming, which I predicted at the time.

No, I think this is different. Snake pit connotes a dangerous place for the opponent to enter, i.e. "You're entering a snake pit".

This is not a negative commentary on the Diamondbacks. It's like teams playing "Welcome to the Jungle" and trying to get their fans to be load.
   12. SoSH U at work Posted: June 22, 2018 at 11:33 AM (#5697807)
I'm in favor of a "Grounds" but Valley Grounds doesn't do it for me.


Camelback Grounds

Or

Gila River Park
Saguaro Fields
Sonoran's Edge

I'm with Lance here. One Fish Tank was fine.

No, I think this is different.


It's still more a nickname than a name.
   13. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: June 22, 2018 at 11:46 AM (#5697821)
It's still more a nickname than a name.

True.

But the potential names are pretty uninspiring.
   14. Graham & the 15-win "ARod Vortex of suck" Posted: June 22, 2018 at 11:53 AM (#5697825)
It's still more a nickname than a name.


Why is this a negative? This whole project is based on the notion that names like "Chase Field" are more corporate advertisements than proper ballpark names. Plus, Arizona is a newer franchise. They should be less beholden to traditional ballpark names. They should embrace the opportunity to be more casual. The White Sox naming their ballpark the "Sock Drawer" is stupid. The Padres naming their park the "Monastery" is wacky and delightful.
   15. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: June 22, 2018 at 11:59 AM (#5697831)
The Padres naming their park the "Monastery" is wacky and delightful.

Given the history of the area, "The Mission" would be more apropos.
   16. SoSH U at work Posted: June 22, 2018 at 12:13 PM (#5697843)
Given the history of the area, "The Mission would be more apropos.


Given the voting that's already taken place, we'd tend to agree.
   17. SoSH U at work Posted: June 22, 2018 at 12:15 PM (#5697849)
Why is this a negative? This whole project is based on the notion that names like "Chase Field" are more corporate advertisements than proper ballpark names. Plus, Arizona is a newer franchise. They should be less beholden to traditional ballpark names. They should embrace the opportunity to be more casual. The White Sox naming their ballpark the "Sock Drawer" is stupid. The Padres naming their park the "Monastery" is wacky and delightful.


That sounds a lot like, "they're an expansion team, not a real franchise."

I think, in general, nicknames are what you use in place of the real name. Not the real name.
   18. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: June 22, 2018 at 12:18 PM (#5697854)
Given the voting that's already taken place, we'd tend to agree.

You expect me to remember stuff from last August? :-)
   19. RMc Has Bizarre Ideas to Fix Baseball Posted: June 22, 2018 at 05:37 PM (#5698156)
Phoenix Municipal Stadium.

It's so anti-cool, it's cool!
   20. . . . . . . Posted: June 22, 2018 at 05:46 PM (#5698163)
Why is this a negative? This whole project is based on the notion that names like "Chase Field" are more corporate advertisements than proper ballpark names.


Yes, those ballparks like Wrigley Field and Busch Stadium don't have proper names.

There is no good name here because Phoenix is so delightfully dystopian and there's no good local business to name it after.

That being said, I'd call it "The Boneyard" named after the aircraft storage facilities that are all over Arizona.
   21. Dog on the sidewalk Posted: June 22, 2018 at 05:51 PM (#5698166)
The Bob was a good name for a ballpark. Bring it back without any corporate connotations.
   22. Brian C Posted: June 22, 2018 at 06:39 PM (#5698186)
"The Snake Pit" is so tediously obvious, though. It's doesn't get away from a corporate feel because it sounds like something a corporate marketing guy would come up with, explaining with a PowerPoint presentation that it's "edgy" and "kids will think it's cool."

They should call it "Paradise Palms Field". Sure, it's meaningless, but it coheres with the generic we're-going-to-keep-fooling-ourselves-into-believing-that-a-giant-sprawling-metropolis-in-the-middle-of-the-desert-is-a-good-idea naming convention that pervades the Phoenix metro area.
   23. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: June 22, 2018 at 06:46 PM (#5698189)

Yes, those ballparks like Wrigley Field and Busch Stadium don't have proper names.


The major difference being the people who owned those corporations owned the team. The Wrigleys and the Buschs had long associations with the franchises.
   24. QLE Posted: June 22, 2018 at 07:13 PM (#5698200)
-The Roasting Grounds

-Southwest Park

-Don't You Wish You Were In Tucson Field

-The Vast Wasteland

Finally, given the association of the Diamondbacks to the Garagiola family, it would seem appropriate to name the stadium in honor of Curt Gowdy, Tony Kubek, Vin Scully, Jack Buck, Harry Caray, or a list of others in the sports-broadcasting field, for reasons that are public knowledge.
   25. Dag Nabbit at ExactlyAsOld.com Posted: June 24, 2018 at 10:15 PM (#5698930)
The Retirement Center

No, it's not a serious suggestion.
   26. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: June 24, 2018 at 10:30 PM (#5698934)
It's like teams playing "Welcome to the Jungle"
Which was of course by Guns n' Roses, featuring Slash, whose side project was called...Slash's Snakepit.
   27. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: June 26, 2018 at 08:25 PM (#5700196)
Who Cares Park?

(Still seething about 2001)
   28. Leroy Kincaid Posted: June 26, 2018 at 08:32 PM (#5700200)
The Grass.
   29. Infinite Yost (Voxter) Posted: June 27, 2018 at 10:07 PM (#5701202)
I think we should come up with a name that reflects the fact that it's liable to be in the middle of an enormous ghost town in 50 years.
   30. QLE Posted: June 27, 2018 at 10:41 PM (#5701231)
I think we should come up with a name that reflects the fact that it's liable to be in the middle of an enormous ghost town in 50 years.


Wouldn't Phoenix Municipal Stadium be enough to demonstrate that?
   31. Rusty Priske Posted: June 28, 2018 at 08:36 AM (#5701312)
Sonoran Reach

Reach was only because I liked the sound of it. Sonoran Grounds, Sonoran Park etc.

Name it after the desert it inhabits.
   32. Rusty Priske Posted: June 29, 2018 at 08:55 AM (#5702067)
This should really get pinned under Featured. It is too easily lost otherwise.
   33. Lance Reddick! Lance him! Posted: June 30, 2018 at 11:58 AM (#5702630)
Painted Desert Park. Sure, Phoenix isn't actually located there, but the name sounds good, they are the Arizona Diamondbacks, and imagine the fun that could be had altering the place's color scheme to match the name.


I consulted a friend, and based on BOB, he suggested the "Twin Peaks"-inspired Rosen Field. It's too jokey for me to advocate, but also too clever not to share.
   34. Baldrick Posted: June 30, 2018 at 12:18 PM (#5702635)
Sonoran is nice
   35. Jarrod HypnerotomachiaPoliphili (TeddyF.Ballgame) Posted: June 30, 2018 at 12:41 PM (#5702644)
Palo Verde Park: The palo verde, or green stick tree, is a ubiquitous sight in and around Phoenix. The hitters could swing green bats.

The Copper Kingdom: Named after the substance that built the state and also an early Arizona team, the Copper Kings. Think of the gleaming architectural possibilities.

Bonds Ballpark: Named after the greatest player to come out of (and nearly be thrown out of) Arizona State University. The initials and the heritage could lead to an increase in walk rate for the team.

Tillman Field: People in Arizona love Pat Tillman. I know a ten-year-old with the first name "Tillman."

Warren Ballpark: Bisbee, Arizona, just miles from the Mexico border, is home to the oldest multi-use sports facility in the country, having been used for baseball and football since 1909.

Coccidioidomycosis Field: When I was growing up in Phoenix, our TV cartoons were continually interrupted by PSAs warning about the dangers of Valley Fever, caused by inhalation of a fungus that grows in arid soil. I can still hear the voiceover: "Distant, dry, and dusty . . ."
   36. Lance Reddick! Lance him! Posted: June 30, 2018 at 01:29 PM (#5702658)
imagine the fun that could be had altering the place's color scheme to match the name.

Midway through the paint job.
   37. Lance Reddick! Lance him! Posted: July 03, 2018 at 12:03 AM (#5704357)
Saguaro Fields

I feel like anything Saguaro-related could use an addition of "Blossom."


The Copper Kingdom

Would simply naming it after one of the mines be out of the question? Copper Queen Park? The Lavender Pit?
   38. Steve Parris, Je t'aime Posted: July 03, 2018 at 08:57 AM (#5704415)
I like Palo Verde Park. It would work even better if green was a prominent part of the team's color scheme, although they do use a bright greenish color for the names on their uniforms, iirc.

Saguaro Grounds is also nice. This would be a good time to get ourselves a "Grounds."
   39. Greg Pope Posted: July 03, 2018 at 09:23 AM (#5704428)
Sonoran Reach

Reach was only because I liked the sound of it. Sonoran Grounds, Sonoran Park etc.

Name it after the desert it inhabits.


How is that pronounced?

Saguaro Fields

Same question.
   40. PreservedFish Posted: July 03, 2018 at 09:45 AM (#5704439)
suh-NORE-uhn

suh-WAHR-oh or suh-GWAHR-oh, depending on how much Spanish flare you muster.
   41. Greg Pope Posted: July 03, 2018 at 11:38 AM (#5704607)
Thanks. I'm slightly less in favor of hard to pronounce names. But I never know if it's just me that doesn't know the pronunciation.
   42. Ziggy's screen name Posted: July 03, 2018 at 12:18 PM (#5704632)
How about "It's an Egregious Misuse of Resources to Water a Huge Field of Grass in the Middle of the Desert Field".

But there are some pretty good suggestions here. 'Sonoran Grounds' is pretty good, so is 'Pheonix Municipal Stadium'.
   43. Rusty Priske Posted: July 10, 2018 at 09:48 AM (#5707572)
Has a voting thread gone up? I can't find it...
   44. SoSH U at work Posted: July 10, 2018 at 09:53 AM (#5707574)
Not yet. It will go up this afternoon.

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