We’re likely to see 2020 Oracle Park changes, including relocation of the bullpens from the field of play, but we probably won’t see Triples Alley eliminated, according to San Francisco Giants President and CEO Larry Baer.
Oracle Park is one of the few MLB ballparks left where the bullpens are in the field of play, in foul territory (trivia moment: the other two are Tropicana Field and the Oakland Coliseum), but there’s been plenty of concern expressed over the years about that location. If the Giants are to move the bullpens, they’re likely to move in the fences–something else that’s been discussed over the years. This isn’t a new move, to be sure: the Giants have been considering this for most of the 2019 season.
One Oracle Park feature not likely to change: Triples Alley in right-center field. This 421-foot area was explicit designed into the ballpark as a homage to the Polo Grounds (former home of the Giants), and the late Peter Magowan always rejected calls to eliminate it. It sounds like Baer will also continue to oppose changes to Triples Alley but will move forward with changes in the outfield dimensions, per the San Francisco Chronicle:
It comes down to architecture and design, and what we can do that we’re pleased with and feel is going to serve the team and serve the fans.
In terms of dimensions, I think some dimensions may change, but I don’t think the view is going to be, ‘Bring in the fences to make it a hitter-friendly ballpark’ and do anything in the extreme. There would be, as a result of some of the work that we do, some changes in the dimensions as well….
The triple is a spectacularly exciting play and it’s been a signature of the ballpark. I don’t think there’s any desire in our four walls to get rid of it. Whatever 421 (feet) become, if it changes, I think the major thrust of the ballpark will not change in that respect.