New ballpark something to behold
All I can tell you is that PNC Park is a very, very special ballpark. Everybody who comes into this ballpark, whether you are a player or fan, you will say the same thing. It's very hard to put into words unless you actually are on the field or sitting in the stands.
This place simply is unbelievable.
We got back into town Friday night and headed right to the ballpark. When we came through the tunnel, I looked to the left to see where Three Rivers Stadium used to sit. The last time I was here was the morning of the implosion and it was a mess.
When I looked over there, I got sad a little bit. But then, I looked to the right and saw the ballpark all lit up and said, 'Whoa, maybe not.' The other word that kept coming to mind was 'Wow!'
I liked Three Rivers. I'm one of the few guys who really liked it, but there is NO comparison to PNC Park. This IS a ballpark.
The first thing I did when I got here Friday was check out the field. A lot of players came into the clubhouse first. But I hung a right because I wanted to see the field. I think I was the first one out there. I walked around home plate, got down and checked it out. Then, I sat there in the dugout for a few seconds and got goosebumps. It was really neat.
This is our new home and nobody could be happier. Everybody on the team had a reaction that was similar to mine - - Wow, this is the most beautfiul ballpark in the game.
I went home that night and could hardly sleep. Keith Osik and I were the first ones here for the game. I think we left at 6:45 a.m. so we could get here and hang out.
One thing I noticed during the game was that the fans are right on top of you. They really are a part of the game. I think they can see how quick the game is and it puts everything into perspective.
There isn't one thing I've found wrong about it. You can see the ball well from the batter's eye. The background for catching is good. It looks like it's going to be a fair park for hitters and pitchers.
We have our second game here today. Don't take this the wrong way, but it will be nice to get it over with. We're excited to play here, but we also know we have to concentrate Tuesday when we open the season in Cincinnati.
I think everybody's ready to go. Everybody wants to end this portion of spring training and get the season started. I know, I'm ready to go. I've started hitting again. Last week, I was having a hard time, but I feel a lot better at the plate.
Even though I wasn't going well for a while, I wasn't worried. That happens to me a lot in the spring, but then, I get going in the final week or two and everything is OK.
I like how this team is coming together. One thing this team has had is injuries, but I think for the first time in a while everyone is on the same page.
We're not going to sit here and worry about this or that. We can't afford to do that; we have to step up and get the job done. When those injured guys come back, they'll help us improve. But, for now, I like what I see.
I know people aren't picking us to do much this year, but I think we'll prove them wrong. My goal every year is to get to the World Series and win it, and that's not going to change now.
With the start of a new season, though, means an end to my spring training column. I've had a lot of fun doing this column for the Trib this year. I hope you've had fun reading it, and I hope I can come back and do it again next year.
Pirates catcher Jason Kendall's column appears exclusively in the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review each Sunday during spring training.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Cubs’ Arrieta, Pirates’ Cole leave batters with little margin for error
- How the Pirates put together another postseason contender
- Fans connect with their beloved Pirates through homemade signs
- NL wild-card game notebook: Pirates understand hype surrounding Cubs
- NL wild-game game players to watch
- Rossi: Time for Pirates to take next step
- Maddon, Hurdle are the models for modern major-league managers
- Cubs’ youth movement pays dividends, leads to postseason berth
- Starkey: Searage, Pirates ultra-confident
- Pirates will play NL wild-card game at PNC Park after shutting out Reds
- Pirates notebook: Huntington weighs whether wild-card round should be expanded