this is a spin-off from a thread about the twins new ballpark in the midwest subforum.
since 1992, when baltimore's revolutionary camden yards stadium kicked-off the whole retro-park craze and in one fell swoop made the characterless concrete multi-use donuts of the 60s and 70s obsolete, 18 other teams have followed suit building themselves new single-purpose ballparks. that leaves only 11 pre-camden yards ballparks left in MLB. of those 11, two will be replaced in the near future, target field replacing the metrodome as the home of the twins next summer, and marlins park replacing landshark (pro-player) stadium as the home of the marlins in 2012.
so if we assume that all of the post-camden yards ballparks are gonna be around for decades to come (i haven't heard of any post-camden team whining for a new stadium yet), it doesn't seem like there are too many more candidates for new ballparks on the horizon. below is my analysis of the remaining 11 pre-camden MLB stadiums:
black = stadiums most likely safe for the time being
green = replacement stadiums already underway
red = stadiums BADLY in need of a replacement
- 1912 - fenway - given its age, pieces of it may have to be rebuilt periodically, but fenway as a whole ain't going nowhere. a true cathedral of the religion of baseball.
- 1914 - wrigley - given its age, pieces of it may have to be rebuilt periodically, but wrigley as a whole ain't going nowhere. a true cathedral of the religion of baseball.
- 1962 - dodger stadium - perhaps the best of the post-war era stadiums, aw hell, it is the best, now the 3rd oldest in the big leagues and a bonafide classic. with the millions they've spent on recent renovations, dodger stadium ain't going nowhere.
- 1966 - angel stadium - another one of the better post-war parks, and with major renovations in the 90s, they transformed it into a really nice stadium. it probably ain't going anywhere for a while.
- 1966 - oakland coliseum - now here's a team that needs a new home. this stadium, one of the last multi-uses left, has been so monkeyed around with over the years that it cannot be called a classic ballpark. the sooner the A's find new digs, the better.
- 1973 - kauffman stadium - another classic of its era, and with millions in recent renovations, kauffman will hopefully be around for generations of royals fans.
- 1982 - metrodome - awful, awful, awful. indoor baseball is a crime against all that is good and true in the universe. thankfully it is in it's last season of baseball misery. target field opens next summer so we can already put the metrodome out to pasture.
- 1987 - landshark (aka pro-player) - the marlins have worked out a deal for a new retractable roof stadium to be built with a planned opening in 2012. it can't come soon enough as this football stadium was never well suited to the game of baseball. no baseball fan will ever miss pro-player.
- 1989 - rogers center - it's multi-use, and that alone makes it less than ideal, but as the first retractable dome stadium, and the cost of its construction, i don't see the jays getting a new home anytime soon.
- 1990 - tropicanna field - everyone agrees, this is the worst stadium in MLB. its replacement cannot come soon enough.
- 1991 - US cellular field - the white sox have spent millions turning this former sterile ugly dump into an acceptable place to watch a ballgame. it was built just prior to the camden yards revolution, but they have done their best to "retrofy" this place so that it now feels like it's of the retro-park era. even though it missed the camden revolution by one year, it was saved by the fact that is was built as a single-purpose baseball stadium. i wouldn't exactly use the word "classic", but there's no reason that the white sox won't be playing baseball at the cell for decades to come.
so if we eliminate the true classics and others that are unlikely to see new stadiums in the next decade, along with the twins and marlins who are already building new homes for themselves, then it looks like only the A's and the rays might be in the market for a new home in the future, unless some kooky owner of a post-camden yards team actually thinks it's prudent to replace a stadium that's less than 20 years old (and that's gonna be a really hard sell politically just about anywhere).
so the past 2 decades of crazy new ballpark construction (a pace of about 1 new stadium per year) seems be winding down to me. anyone agree/disagree? will some massive new trend come along in the next decade that revolutionizes the sport yet again and forces all of the retro-park clubs to rebuild once again?