Sections

Cyclones’ MCU Park replaces real grass with synthetic turf

Cyclones will play on artificial turf!

GREEN AS … WELL …: The sod at MCU Park, home of the Cyclones, has been replaced with synthetic turf.
The Brooklyn Paper
Share on TwitterTweet
Share on Facebook
Subscribe

Get our stories in your inbox, free.

Like Brooklyn Paper on Facebook.

The Brooklyn Cyclones will play home games on artificial turf this year, and the grass at the city-owned ballpark in Coney Island has already been ripped up and replace with the synthetic kind, the team announced today.

The grounds at MCU Park was switched from natural grass to artificial turf as part of the stadium’s post-superstorm Sandy repairs — defying a 20-year trend in professional baseball toward natural grass fields.

Clones spokesman Jason Solomon said the single-A team decided on the change-up as a precaution against another storm like Sandy — which swamped the field, along with the rest of the People’s Playground — and because it would allow the stadium to host more off-season events.

“Heaven forbid we get hit with another Sandy, the FieldTurf would hold up better,” said Solomon. “And it opens us up to possibly holding more events during the year without having to worry about whether the grass would be dead.”

Solomon said the decision to make the switch was made by Cyclones and Mets brass. The Mets own the Cyclones.

The move makes MCU Park the only professional baseball field in New York to play games on something other than grass. Calls to find out if the field on far-off Staten Island where the hated Staten Island Yankees play games at a bay-side ballpark that also was battered by Sandy will be switched to fake grass were not returned in time for our online deadline.

In the Major Leagues, all National League teams play on grass, and in the American League, only the Toronto Blue Jays’ Rogers Centre and the Tampa Bay Rays’ Tropicana Field use synthetic turf. But for years starting in the 1960s, many pros played on the fake stuff, which traditionalists complain change the game for the worse by speeding up batted ground balls, and is considered by many to be harder on players’ bodies than natural grass.

Those points were made clear by fans who fear the new surface will make going out to the ballpark a less-enjoyable experience.

“I hope the artificial turf is only for a year,” said legendary Brooklyn Cyclones columnist Ed Shakespeare. “A grass field is aesthetically pleasing, better for the players’ bodies, and gives a traditional bounce to a baseball. The trend is to go away from artificial turf.”

Shakespeare, a bard of baseball who has covered the Cyclones since the team’s inception in 2001, is an unabashed purist who questions the very idea of synthetic grass.

“If artificial turf is so nice, why don’t more people have it instead of lawns,” he said.

The scent of grass is also one of the hallmarks of the National Pastime.

In fact, Cyclones Assistant General Manager Kevin Mahoney claims on the team’s webpage that his favorite smell is fresh-cut grass — something he won’t be able to find at work this year.

Tickets go on sale May 11 for the 2013 season that gets underway June 18. The Clones will take on their bitter rivals, the Staten Island Yankees — who will appear to be restoring their Sandy-swamped field with actual grass.

Reach reporter Will Bredderman at wbredderman@cnglocal.com or by calling (718) 260-4507. Follow him at twitter.com/WillBredderman.

Today’s news:
Share on TwitterTweet
Share on Facebook
Subscribe

Get our stories in your inbox, free.

Like Brooklyn Paper on Facebook.

Reasonable discourse

Windsor Terrace Guy from Windsor Terrace says:
They want to make more money hosting events. This is a lie that this is Sandy related.
May 6, 2013, 5:07 pm
jay from nyc says:
ummm flooding will make astoturf rot and mold, so more hilarity from the Muts. Not too mention this probably will raise injury rates for players, which will mean the Muts will continue to stink even more than the already do
May 6, 2013, 6:31 pm
Barry from Flatbush says:
Sell the team to someone who likes baseball, Fred!
May 7, 2013, 4:06 pm
Joe from upstate says:
I've seen one of these so-called "fields" .... It's garbage, the infield (dirt, base paths etc.) is actually plastic turf colored brown to look like dirt. What a joke. Total CRAP .... LEAVE THE GAME ALONE, will ya??????????????
May 10, 2013, 2:57 am
VT from Bensonhurst says:
I have a better idea since I hate the Mets and the Yankees. How about selling the club to another MLB Organization, including the Yankees. Doing this will clean out the current vermin that runs MCU Park including the GM and the true Cyclones fans (not Mets fans disguising as Cyclones fans) remain faithful to the team!
May 10, 2013, 4:01 pm
SA from Windsor Terrace says:
Im also from Windsor Terrace. This is awful! Turf has no place in baseball. All the major league teams are moving away from it. Even the Blue Jays have plans to go to natural grass in a few years. This is going to ruin the baseball experience.
May 12, 2013, 12:08 am
VT from Bensonhurst says:
Here's another thought. What possible events could that dope Steve Cohen schedule between the months of November to March that would attract any sports fan to MCU Park. Football? Soccer? Lacrosse? Are you kidding me? How are they configurate the stands to make it look like a Football field, soccer field? He doesn't know what the hell he's talking about and he and others in the Cyclones side of this decision should lose their jobs, if the Cyclones as a business, fail in 2013!
May 16, 2013, 10:49 am

Enter your comment below

By submitting this comment, you agree to the following terms:

You agree that you, and not BrooklynPaper.com or its affiliates, are fully responsible for the content that you post. You agree not to post any abusive, obscene, vulgar, slanderous, hateful, threatening or sexually-oriented material or any material that may violate applicable law; doing so may lead to the removal of your post and to your being permanently banned from posting to the site. You grant to BrooklynPaper.com the royalty-free, irrevocable, perpetual and fully sublicensable license to use, reproduce, modify, adapt, publish, translate, create derivative works from, distribute, perform and display such content in whole or in part world-wide and to incorporate it in other works in any form, media or technology now known or later developed.

First name
Last name
Your neighborhood
Email address
Daytime phone

Your letter must be signed and include all of the information requested above. (Only your name and neighborhood are published with the letter.) Letters should be as brief as possible; while they may discuss any topic of interest to our readers, priority will be given to letters that relate to stories covered by The Brooklyn Paper.

Letters will be edited at the sole discretion of the editor, may be published in whole or part in any media, and upon publication become the property of The Brooklyn Paper. The earlier in the week you send your letter, the better.