The baseball postseason that would never end has finally ended, fittingly enough with a late-inning Covid controversy as Los Angeles Dodgers third baseman Justin Turner had to be removed from the final game of the World Series in the 7th inning after receiving a positive test result, went back on the field without a mask to celebrate with his teammates, then complained that he “couldn’t be out there to celebrate with my guys.” Truly, the only way this could be more cringey would be if MLB chose this moment to bring back the ad slogan “Baseball Fever: Catch It!”
But even as we wonder how Turner contracted the coronavirus while supposedly in a bubble and why he then sat next to a cancer survivor with no mask on, let’s not allow this bizarro World Series to pass into history without enjoying the glimpse that it gave us of the Texas Rangers‘ new $1 billion stadium, about half a billion dollars of which came from Arlington residents so that the team would no longer have to suffer the indignity of playing in a stadium without air conditioning. We’ve already heard the few fans in attendance extremely inappropriately calling the place “breathtaking”; now ESPN has polled its reporters on the scene of what they think of the place, and the reviews (edited for length and maximum hilarity) are decidedly meh:
Alden Gonzalez: It’s a modern, bigger, more comfortable, yet less charming — and in my opinion, unnecessary — version of the old place.
Jeff Passan: It’s fine. … Aesthetically, there’s nothing particularly inspiring about it.
Jesse Rogers: It feels cozy, especially if you’re in the lower bowl, but the tradeoff was going straight up. If you have a fear of heights, this is not the park for you.
Gonzalez: My least favorite part is that it doesn’t feel intimate.
Passan: From above, the place looks like what would happen if a Costco and a barn had a baby.
Gonzalez: What’s better is that it has a roof.
Rogers: OK, it’s cool when it opens and closes, but this is Texas. Besides the occasional storm, what’s the need for a dome?
Okay, I left out a few nice things the ESPN trio had to say about Globe Life Field — apparently the fence height is “perfect,” according to Gonzalez, which is totally a reason to spend $1 billion to build an entirely new stadium — but the upshot is that they think this is a “middle-tier” stadium, not the best or the worst, with a “corporate” feel but some nice brick columns. That’s something that could be said of lots of modern stadiums, including the one it replaced, but I guess they had to come up with something to say beyond “it would have been more impressive if they’d kept the old stadium and set a billion dollars on fire in center field.”