Comerica Park - Features

Features

Entrance to the ballpark is located across from the Fox Theatre and between two historic downtown churches, St. John Episcopal Church and Central United Methodist Church. Outside of the main entrance to the stadium there is a tiger statue that is approximately 15 feet (4.6 m) in height. There are eight other heroic-sized tiger statues throughout the park, including two prowling on top of the scoreboard in left field. These tigers' eyes light up after a Tigers home run or a victory and the sound of a growling tiger plays as well. The tigers were originally created by sculptor Michael Keropian and fabricated by ShowMotion Inc. in Norwalk, Connecticut. Along the brick walls outside of the park are thirty-three tiger heads with lighted baseballs in their mouths.

At the left-center field concourse there are statues of all of the players whose numbers have been retired by the Tigers (with the exception of Jackie Robinson, whose number was retired in every MLB park in 1997). They include Al Kaline, Charlie Gehringer, Hal Newhouser, Willie Horton, Hank Greenberg. A statue of Ty Cobb is also there, but he does not have a number, as he played baseball before players began to wear numbers on their uniforms. These players' names, along with the names of Hall of Fame players who spent a significant part of their career with the Tigers, are also on a wall in left center field, and to them is added Ernie Harwell, the team's long-time radio announcer, who is also in the Hall of Fame as a broadcaster. Harwell has a statue just inside the stadium on the first base side.

The field itself features a distinctive dirt strip between home plate and the pitcher's mound. This strip, sometimes known as the "keyhole", was common in early ballparks, yet very rare in modern facilities (the only other current ballpark to feature this is Chase Field in Phoenix).

In the northeastern corner of the stadium behind the stands from the third base line is a Ferris wheel with twelve cars designed like baseballs. In the northwestern corner of the stadium behind the stands from the first base line is a carousel where guests ride on tigers instead of horses. The flagpole located between center and left fields was originally in play, as was the flag pole in Tiger Stadium. However, the left field wall was moved in front of the pole before the 2003 season. A ball that hits the pole is now ruled a home run. The right field of the stadium features the Pepsi Porch, a picnic deck between the 100 and 200 level seating bowls. Also in right field, and part of the 100 level seating bowl, is an area of seats know as "Kaline's Corner" an homage to Hall of Fame right fielder Al Kaline who once played for the Tigers when the team played in Tiger Stadium.

An LED scoreboard was added to the right-center field wall, and the upper deck fascia for the 2007 season.

A giant fountain is located behind center field; playing displays during pre- and post-game activities, between innings, and whenever the Tigers score. General Motors sponsored the fountain from 2000 to 2008, and used the area to showcase GM manufactured vehicles as well. While GM dropped its sponsorship for the 2009 season due to financial issues, the GM branding was not removed from the fountain. Instead, signs for Chrysler and Ford were also added to the display, along with the message "The Detroit Tigers Support Our Automakers." In 2010, GM returned to sponsoring the display, now known as the Chevrolet Fountain

A completely redesigned and upgraded left field scoreboard debuted for the 2012 season. The serif "TIGERS" letters were removed, replaced by light-up cursive lettering. The tiger cats were taken down, sent for cleaning and polishing, and replaced in similar spots. The analog clock was removed completely. A high-definition LED display was installed, much larger than the three displays that had existed there previously. The previous scoreboard utilized light bulbs - still a popular scoreboard technology around the time the park opened, though they were quickly aging as LED displays became available and were installed around other Major League ballparks. The scoreboard was also raised 16 feet in an effort to address complaints that the scoreboard was too far left and thus obstructed by the left field upper deck. Along with the replacement scoreboard, all remaining bulb fascia scoreboards were also upgraded to LED.

Other features include:

  • After Friday and Saturday games, there is an on-field fireworks display for the fans to enjoy.
  • Whenever the Tigers score a run, the sound of a tiger growling is played through the public address system.
  • In total, there are 3,039 club seats and 102 luxury suites at the ballpark.

Read more about this topic:  Comerica Park

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