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Changes on tap for Gary’s U.S. Steel Yard

Gary Southshore RailCatsAs part of planned capital spending on ballpark maintenance, a new berm and a new playing field are on tap for U.S. Steel Yard, home of the Gary-SouthShore RailCats (American Association).

The total cost of the changes will exceed $750,000, with the new playing field accounting for the majority of that price tag: $495,000. Fans will probably pay more attention to the reconfigured outfield, where bullpens will be moved inside the home-run fences and seating removed to make way for new berm. From the Chicago Tribune:

Rieth-Riley Construction Co. Inc. was tapped to perform the demolition of section 115 to 117 for the berm. Van Enterprises will install the berm at a cost of a little more than $23,000 and the wall pad installation for $73,180. Van Enterprises also will install the new bullpens for a cost of $120,360….

As part of the work, the bullpens will be moved from the first and third base warning tracks into right field, where new outfield fencing and wall pads will be installed as a continuation of work done in 2020. [Brian Lyter, president of Salvi Sport Enterprises LLC] said Major League Baseball took the steps a few years ago to require bullpens be moved from the playing field, which he expects will become industry standard soon.

Three seating sections also will be removed to create a family-friendly berm area where visitors can enjoy the games from their blankets.

The changes should be place for the 2021 American Association season.

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