Kansas City's Kauffman Stadium has always been one of our favorite big league ballparks.
With its majestic fountains and the lawn beyond the outfield fence, "The K" always seemed like a great traditional park without the faux-retro veneer that many of the newer stadia attempt to use to sell a nostalgia for a time that never was. So we were a little surprised and sad earlier in the season when we saw a Yankees-Royals game in the "New" Kauffman Stadium.
After getting a better look at it in last night's Jays-Royals game, we reluctantly understood what the team was going for and why they made the adjustments they did. There seems to be more of a party atmosphere beyond the outfield walls, and for a team that draws as poorly as the Royals have in recent years, causing some sort of commotion can't hurt.
(In fact, seeing the "Party Porch" beyond the outfield wall made us wonder for a second whether if this sort of thing would work at the Rogers SkyDome. And then we thought of all of the shenanigans that a bunch of lightweight douchebag frat boys could get into in such a venue, and perished the thought.)
Obviously, a team has got to maximize their income in those 81 home dates every year, and we don't begrudge the Royals for attempting to create a new atmosphere, replete with food and beverage and other revenue opportunities. (And from the sounds of things, the fans like it.)
We're sure that we'll come around and acclimate eventually to the new set up, and we admit that we are probably just being an old fogey. Still, we're going to miss the old K.