BILOXI, Mississippi — The outfield wall at Biloxi's MGM Stadium is being dropped two feet to save the city money.
It also increases the chances of a home run ball.
Dropping the height of the fence from 10 feet to eight feet means a $95,952 savings to the city
The Sun Herald reports (http://bit.ly/1BJVXfV ) the decision doesn't add any time to the construction schedule but lowers the contract price with W.G. Yates & Sons Construction to $29.4 million.
"It's basically a cost-saving measure," said Tim Bennett, co-owner of the Biloxi Shuckers minor-league baseball team, which will play in the stadium this year.
The reduced height could mean a few more balls will make it over the outfield wall, Bennett said.
Although the team isn't sure when the stadium will be ready for the first pitch, Bennett said an announcement could come in the next few weeks of a performance there July 4.
Construction is running ahead of schedule, he said, and the major work on the parking garage should be complete this week.
The first scheduled home game is April 20 with Jacksonville. Bennett said if the stadium isn't ready for play, the team will make other arrangements.
Pitchers and catchers will report to spring training in Mesa, Arizona, in late February and the rest of the team will report in March. Bennett said he will split his time between Arizona and Biloxi as he continues to oversee stadium construction.
The Huntsville (Alabama) Stars are relocating to Biloxi. The MGM Stadium is located across U.S. Highway 90 from the Beau Rivage Casino.
Information from: The Sun Herald, http://www.sunherald.com
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