It’s something that will undoubtedly make you sad, but the Dodgers should be in the middle of a three-game series against the Angels here in Los Angeles.
To think that the Dodgers should be heading to Angel Stadium tonight… pic.twitter.com/bxCIB5FDkK
— Clint Pasillas (FRG) (@realFRG) March 22, 2020
After visiting Angels Stadium yesterday — something the cyber Dodgers virtually did — the series would be shifting to Dodger Stadium before ultimately giving way to opening day on Thursday.
However, after a quick overview of the stadium renovation project thanks to some drone footage shot by YouTube user John Kay, Chavez Ravine does not look like a ballpark ready for the pomp and circumstance of a baseball game.
The video claims that the imagery is from March 23 (today) and it shows an area beyond the playing surface that is far from ready.
Not that that wasn’t expected. Early in March, Dodgers Senior VP, Planning and Development Janet Marie Smith said that the club didn’t plan to have the pavilions open for the freeway series against Anaheim. However, the expectation was that the stadium would be ready to “safely seat 56,000 for opening day,” not that the new plaza would be completed in time for the season’s first game.
But with rain as a persistent fear for the construction crew, progress was also dealt a heavy hit as the Coronavirus pandemic led to concerns on whether the project should continue.
Fortunately for Dodger Stadium — but unfortunately for workers — construction was identified as essential work and the crews continued on with the project.
Even without the COVID-19 issue, the stadium plainly does not look ready for baseball on Monday. The outfield walls are incomplete — even if they have progressed nicely — and the bullpens don’t appear ready.
On more positive notes, the new concessions being built beyond the outfield in the new centerfield plaza are being put into place and the walkways at the top of the pavilions appear to be all connected.
In an online Q&A late on Monday, team president Stan Kasten spoke about the progress at Dodger Stadium and had this to say in regards to the park being ready for baseball on Thursday, if opening day was still on the schedule.
All the field spacings like the seating and the drink rails and the bar and all of that stuff is ready to go, would have been ready to go for our first game Thursday.
Moreover, Kasten confirmed that crew sizes have been reduced and that all safety requirements are being respected and met.
[Construction] has slowed down, but we are and everyone is fully compliant with all of the regulations of the county, the city, and the state; as well as the CDC and WHO all of those .
Sadly, there’s no telling when this ballpark in any condition will have baseball being played. There’s a hopeful date of some time in June being a possibility, but even that seems like a bit of a stretch. In the meantime, be patient and be smart. Stay inside and wash your hands.