In a review of his experiences at Citi Field, Alex Belth of SI.com says that the Mets' new home has a theme park feel. That's a pretty accurate statement. It's full of love, but lacking in originality. Overall, Citi Field feels less like an organic ballpark design than a mish-mosh of notable features of a dozen or so other ballparks, and that robs it of some authenticity.
Nowhere is that more true than in the outfield, where the Mets and the stadium's designers went crazy with the bells and whistles. The fence jumps heights and distances, there are nooks and crannies galore and all sorts of signs that are either in play or out of play. It takes a while to explain, as this video, courtesy of MetsBlog.com, can surely attest.
Sandy Alomar fell on that grenade like a pro, but there's probably too much going on if it takes that long to explain when a ball is in play and when it is a home run. The quirks and eccentricities of ballparks are a great part of baseball history, but they came about because stadiums were plopped into the middle of congested neighborhoods. The Citi Field wall, the hill in Houston and the other new stadium's oddities are too manufactured to be as endearing as the ones at the old parks. .