Dan Schlossberg's Winter Log: Naked Ballpark Gets National Opener • Latino Sports

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Dan Schlossberg’s Winter Log: Naked Ballpark Gets National Opener

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What do you say to the naked ballpark?

ESPN viewers might wonder what happened to Wrigley Field when they tune in to the ESPN Opening Night telecast on Sunday, April 5.

The hand-operated scoreboard and the ivy-covered walls might be there but the bleachers won’t.

After lavishing ridiculous amounts of money on highly-coveted free-agent lefty Jon Lester, the team sunk another $375 million into redoing the century-old stadium.

The left-field bleachers won’t be done before May 11, while the target date for right field is Memorial Day.

Say goodbye to those familiar bleaches

Say goodbye to those familiar bleaches

“We’re going to do it right,” said Crane Kenney, director of business operations for the ballclub. “If we miss the month of April, so be it.”

That’s only a dozen games, according to the 2015 schedule.

Wrigley has 5,000 bleacher seats, with less than half belonging to season ticket-holders.

Plans call for the club to finish left-field first and then work on the other side. But the popular center-field section will be off-limits during the construction as a precaution.

New video boards will be added to the ballpark, which opened in 1914 as a Federal League facility. “There are going to be inconveniences for everybody,” Kenney said. “We’re rebuilding a 100-year-old ballpark.”

The Cubs have not won a World Series since 1908 but are encouraged by the off-season additions of Lester, Jason Hammel, Dexter Fowler, Miguel Montero, and manager Joe Maddon, among others. Several blue-chip rookies are also expected to crack the lineup.

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About Dan Schlossberg

Former AP sportswriter Dan Schlossberg of Fair Lawn, NJ has produced 35 baseball books, including autobiographies of Ron Blomberg, Al Clark, and Milo Hamilton. Also a broadcaster, he is the host and executive producer of Braves Banter and Travel Itch Radio and a contributor to Sirius XM.

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