MLB The Show 21 incorporates the 30 Major League stadiums as well as Minor League and historical stadiums. Unique to baseball is that each stadium has its own unique dimensions, as opposed to other sports where the field has uniform dimensions regardless of stadium.
When selecting a stadium at which to play in The Show, there are many factors that can influence the decision: favorite team, hometown, notable memories, etc. This article will look at one main factor: the smallest ballparks, making it easier to hit home runs.
Some stadiums not listed might have smaller distances in certain parts of the field, but also have obstacles to overcome, namely high walls.
There are many stadiums to choose from, but this list will focus only on currently used stadiums. While some of the team-associated historical stadiums have their own nostalgia (such as the apple in Shea Stadium), most are pitcher’s parks and are bigger than those listed below.
The older stadiums were also generally much larger than today’s stadiums. While Polo Grounds was under 300 feet straight down either line, it measured nearly 500 feet in center. Some of these stadiums also had larger walls, another obstacle to navigate.
Minor League stadiums tend to be larger and fairly symmetrical from foul pole to foul pole. These stadiums typically have larger outfield walls as well, so you would really need to muscle them out in most Minor League parks.
The list will be in alphabetical order by stadium name with the name of the team that plays there in parentheses. Ballpark dimensions will be given in feet with the left field foul pole measurement first, then left-center, center, right-center, and right field foul pole.
1. Great American Ball Park (Cincinnati Reds)
Dimensions: 328, 379, 404, 370, 325
Widely considered the pre-eminent “bandbox” of Major League parks, the ball flies out of Great American Ball Park. While the wall in left field has a decent height, it pales in comparison to even the Crawford Boxes in Houston, let alone the Green Monster in Fenway Park. The walls beyond left field are short, making it easier to hit homers, and with the gaps not even measuring 380 feet, you can expect less balls to die on the track than in other stadiums.
2. Nationals Park (Washington Nationals)
Dimensions: 337, 377, 402, 370, 335
Similarly sized to the Great American Ball Park, Nationals Park does have extra distance down the lines. The high wall in right field reaches right-center, but that is also where the bleachers jut out and create an awkward angle. The other walls are standard in height, and like with the previous listing, the small gaps are ideal for power hitters.
3. Petco Park (San Diego Padres)
Dimensions: 334, 357, 396, 391, 382
Once considered a pitcher’s park, the walls were moved in several years ago to the point that even the furthest distance from home plate to outfield wall is under 400 feet. The walls are standard in height, but what really makes Petco Park stand out is the Western Metal Supply Co. building in left field that serves as the foul pole as well. With the right field line so short, bring a lineup of power righties and aim for the building!
4. Tropicana Field (Tampa Bay Rays)
Dimensions: 315, 370, 404, 370, 322
Tropicana Field has always stood out more for its negatives than its positives, namely the propensity for balls to be lost in the roof. It is a bland ballpark in terms of unique features and measurements, but that makes it good for homers. The walls are a bit higher than usual, but 400 to dead center is the deepest part of the park, and 315 makes left field tied for the second shortest in baseball.
5. Yankee Stadium (New York Yankees)
Dimensions: 318, 399, 408, 385, 314
Again, this is not the historical Yankee Stadium, but today’s edition. 408 to center is deep, sure, but 318 and 314 down the left and right field lines, respectively, are some of the shortest distances in baseball. In fact, 318 to left is only behind Tropicana Field, Minute Maid Park (Houston), and Fenway Park (Boston), the last two having stories-high walls to overcome. The short porch in right with second and third decks overhanging so close allows for left-handed power hitters to crank some upper-deck homers when hitting perfect flyballs.
Now you have a better idea of what stadiums present the least challenge for hitting home runs. Which one will you play first, and which one will be your go-to home run stadium?