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Vikings Stadium: Baseball Compromise Reached

A couple of weeks ago, we mentioned that the Minnesota Vikings were in a bit of a tussle with some of the other folks that will be using the new stadium. That argument involved the dimensions of a baseball diamond that a lot of teams, from the Minnesota Golden Gophers to various high schools, will need to use with the Metrodome going away and the new stadium going up.

According to the Minneapolis Star-Tribune, a compromise has been reached on the dimensions of the field for the baseball teams that will fit into the stadium configuration.

Under the agreement, finalized Friday by the authority and team, the right-field foul line will be 300 feet from home plate, with the power alley 341 feet away. To make it more difficult for batters to hit a home run to right field, a 35-foot wall or tarp will extend from the foul line to the power alley.

"Three hundred feet is not the greatest distance in the world for a foul line," said Tink Larson, a longtime amateur baseball coach in Waseca who has been close to the issue. "But it's livable and it's certainly better than what the Vikings were proposing. At least it's now a legitimate baseball field."

The Vikings, meanwhile, will still be able to put the first row of football seats 44 feet from the playing field when NFL games are played. Only one other recently built NFL stadium - Lucas Oil in Indianapolis, which was also designed by HKS - puts ticket holders that close.

The tarp in right field sounds as though it will be a lot like the "baggie" at the Metrodome that teams have had to deal with all along. The Vikings were proposing a right-field distance of 285 feet, which would have been a pretty ridiculous dimension, baggie or not.

The article also says that a schematic of the new stadium is due to be released next month.