From the diamond to the bullpen: MPEV update

The brown dirt on the downtown diamond is about to become green grass.

From the diamond to the bullpen: MPEV update
The brown dirt on the downtown diamond is about to become green grass. (Source: KFDA)

AMARILLO, TX (KFDA) - If you're driving downtown, there's a good chance you've seen the on-going construction at the MPEV.

As the site continues to evolve, we went on the field to see how construction is racing around the bases to meet an April deadline.

The last time we visited the MPEV in July, dirt was beginning to outline the field.

Now, it’s getting ready to field ground balls as the city prepares to place sod down.

From the diamond to the bullpen: MPEV update

“In fact, several of the new major league stadiums are taking their sod out and putting this in, because it’s such a good grass," said Jerry Danforth, Director of Facilities and Capital Projects for the City of Amarillo.

Right now, there is gravel where the warning track will be.

“We’ll have clay come in on top of this. About 10 inches of clay, and then you’re looking over at the different gravel that’s a little bit further out,” said Danforth. “It’s a finer gravel but we’ll have 10 inches of what we call root zone dirt that we put down there. It’s sand and peat and different fertilizer mixes that goes in the soil and then on top we actually put the sod.”

If you’re sitting in the front row, you can see the bullpen as well as the shape of the diamond beginning to take place.

Come April, you might want to be ready to catch a foul ball.

“Next week, you’ll see that being developed over here,” said Danforth. “You’ll start seeing the last pieces of this gravel put in. The root zone being developed and put in. Right after that, the sod starts coming onto the fields.”

The sod that’s coming to the stadium is being grown outside of Austin.

Once it’s cut, the grass has 24 hours to get to Amarillo to be placed on the field.

Irrigation is already in place to accommodate it.

“We went with what’s called a Latitude 36. It’s a hybrid Bermuda. This grass basically is designed to work in a colder climate,” said Danforth. “So it gets green quicker and it stays green longer. It’s durability from what we found is to be outstanding.”

Once the grass goes down, you can bring some Cracker Jacks and head to the front steps of City Hall to get a whole view of the field.

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