The San Francisco Giants have revealed plans to install California’s biggest video board at AT&T Park, with the project designed to enhance the gameday experience at the ballpark and give fans another reason not to solely watch games on television.
The $10m (£7.9m/€8.8m) project represents the most that the Major League Baseball (MLB) franchise has spent on a single stadium improvement since the ballpark opened in 2000. The new video board will debut on March 25, when AT&T Park stages a spring training game against the Oakland A’s.
The Giants have retained current partner Mitsubishi for the new board in centre field, which will replace the current one installed in 2007 and at 10,700 square feet will be more than three times its size.
Bill Schlough, the Giants senior vice-president in charge of the project, said the new board will be the third largest in MLB, behind Cleveland and Seattle, and the biggest at any California sports venue. “It’s going to blow people away,” Schlough told the San Francisco Chronicle newspaper.
The Giants are one of the leading teams in MLB attendance stakes, ranking fifth last year with more than 3.16 million tickets sold. However, the Chronicle noted that paid attendance was down around 150,000 from 2017 and more than 220,000 from an AT&T Park record 3.39 million in 2011.
“Our biggest battle is with the couch,” Schlough said. “We need to give fans another reason to come to the park when they’ve got an 80-inch TV on their wall. We’ve got to continue to rival that experience at the ballpark as well.”
Image: Amy K Posner