The Red Sox have long wanted to expand the bullpens at Fenway Park. They are among the smallest in baseball and when two pitchers are warming up, particularly a righthander and a lefthander, space is scare.
But governmental red tape put at least a temporary halt to the project. The team released this statement today that was first on WEEI.com:
“The Red Sox recently sent a letter to the Secretary of State’s office withdrawing a request to consider expansion of the right field bullpen area this off-season. As we moved through the review process over the last several months, issues arose regarding implementation that required additional discussion and consideration of other design possibilities.
“Given the tight construction timeline we are operating on to have the ballpark ready for Opening Day 2011, and the fact that we’re already deep into the off-season, plus the impact any work on the bullpen area would have on other work currently being done on the right field seating bowl, we decided to take this project off the table for 2010-2011 off-season.
“We are going to review the feedback received during this process, and determine the next best steps. It is still on our radar screen, but there is no immediate timetable for this project and, as we do on an annual basis, we will review all potential off-season projects as we get closer to the end of next season.”
The general perception was the Red Sox wanted to increase home runs by moving the fences in. But there was a safety component involved that was the primary reason.