Originally written on Larry Brown Sports  |  Last updated 11/8/14

The Mariners are planning to move in the fences at Safeco Field for the 2013 season to make it less of a pitcher’s park and more hitter-friendly.

Here are the changes they plan to make, according to the Seattle Times:

- The biggest change will be from left-center to straightaway center, where the wall will be moved in anywhere from four to 17 feet.

- From the left-field corner to the left-center power alley, the wall will come in four feet. Also, the hand-operated scoreboard that currently makes for a 16-foot-high wall to clear will be moved elsewhere, leaving the wall 8-feet-high.

- The distance to the left-center power alley will decrease from 390 to 378 feet.

- Straightaway center will decline from 405 to 401 feet.

- From straightaway center to the right-center power alley will change four feet from 385 to 381.

Safeco Field opened in July, 1999 as the Mariners’ new home ballpark. Unlike the Mariners’ previous home — the Kingdome — Safeco Field quickly gained a reputation as a pitcher’s park.

Safeco Field currently ranks last in ESPN’s Park Factor ratings which measures the stats of a team at home versus on the road to determine whether its home park favors hitters or pitchers. In every year ESPN has measured Park Factor since 2001, Safeco Field has rated as a pitcher’s park. Safeco Field’s Park Factor has never been higher than 18th in a season, according to ESPN’s stats. The Mariners ranked last in the AL in home runs from 2009-2011.

If you look at the splits for many current Mariners players, you’ll see that many of them have an OPS about 200 points higher on the road than at home. That’s just an absurd amount.

Safeco Field has long had a reputation for being such a pitcher’s park that they’ve had trouble attracting right-handed power hitters. Since the Mariners began playing full-time there in 2000, the highest home run total for one of their hitters is 41 by Alex Rodriguez in 2000. Rodriguez hit 13 of his home runs at home that season and 28 on the road. Adrian Beltre clubbed 48 home runs for the Dodgers in 2004 before signing with Seattle. He never topped 26 home runs in a season with the Mariners, but he’s hit at least 28 in every season since leaving Seattle.

Here’s a look at the home run totals for the player who led the Mariners each season since they moved into Safeco Field:

2000 – 41 A-Rod, 37 Edgar Martinez

2001 – 37 Bret Boone

2002 – 25 Bret Boone, Mike Cameron

2003 – 35 Bret Boone

2004 – 24 Bret Boone

2005 – 39 Richie Sexson

2006 – 34 Richie Sexson

2007 – 26 Adrian Beltre

2008 – 25 Adrian Beltre

2009 – 31 Russell Branyan

2010 – 15 Russell Branyan

2011 – 19 Miguel Olivo

About the only player whose power stats were not affected by the park were Richie Sexson’s, who was one of the biggest power hitters in baseball. For nearly everyone else, what would have been home runs elsewhere turned into fly ball outs. Doubles off the wall elsewhere became outs.

It’s awfully tough to win when your park is that big. The Mariners have finally learned that lesson and that is why they’re bringing in the fences. Hopefully that evens things out for their hitters.

For reference, here’s how Safeco Field’s current dimensions look:

Image via Baseball Field Dimensions

Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Chip Kelly: Tim Tebow is here to compete for a job

Report: Nigel Williams-Goss transferring to Gonzaga

Philly store offering Eagles 'jersey insurance'

Chris Paul listed as questionable for Game 1 vs. Rockets

Pacquiao had injured shoulder, considered postponing fight


Mayweather beats Pacquiao by unanimous decision

Did Evan Mathis respond to Chip Kelly's slight with barb?

WATCH: American Pharoah wins Kentucky Derby

Report: Rams trade RB Zac Stacy to Jets

Falcons draft pick's house burned down during draft

Packers trade up to draft Brett Hundley

WATCH: Tony Allen walks through children performing, gets booed

Lindsey Vonn and Tiger Woods have broken up

WATCH: Two games end with baserunners hit by batted balls

WATCH: Damian Lilliard delivers great graduation speech

Jets do not envision Bryce Petty starting in 2015

Clippers beat Spurs on Chris Paul shot in Game 7

Jimmy Kimmel's Manny Pacquiao T-shirt goes viral

Big fight packs airport, leaves no room for planes

Pete Carroll discusses Russell Wilson's contract status

Jim Harbaugh not happy Lou Holtz is out at ESPN

Cubs fans want Harry Caray video for seventh inning stretch

Winners and losers from the NFL draft

MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Kelly: Tebow here to compete for job

Tony Allen booed for being rude?

Lindsey Vonn, Tiger Woods break up

Pacquiao fought with injured shoulder?

Winners and losers from the NFL draft

Report: Zac Stacy traded to Jets

Hardy apologizes for joke about 9/11

Jerry Jones sends letter to Pacquiao

Mayweather bans Beadle, Nichols

WATCH: A-Rod fights back tears

A-Rod hits 660th home run, ties Willie Mays

Mayweather vs. Pacquiao: Celebrities make their picks

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.