With only four days left until the team's Home Opener on April 4, the Cleveland Indians on Thursday unveiled Progressive Field's new renovations to media and fans.
This season's renovations include the addition of seven more local restaurants, the Home Plate Club, new Season Ticket Holder-only gates, and a new scoreboard and sound system. Other updates include wayfinding consistent with the Right Field District, updated signage and more team history incorporated throughout the ballpark, along with the renovation of a select number of suites.
RESTAURANTS: LOCAL FLAVOR
Progressive Field now features a dozen local restaurants for fans' enjoyment. Seven of the 12 restaurants were added this year including Happy Dog, Ohio City Burrito, Cleveland Pickle, Momocho, Fat Head's Brewery, Dante's Inferno and The Brew Kettle. This project extends from the Right Field District all the way to the Home Run Porch.
The new restaurants join last year's additions to the Right Field District - Melt Bar and Grilled, Barrio, Sweet Moses, Great Lakes Brewing Co. and Dynomite Burger. These additions continue the commitment by the club and its food and beverage supplier, Delaware North, to support local food service providers and producers, including Pierre's Ice Cream, Sugardale Hot Dogs, Smucker's, Shearer's Snacks, Schwebel's breads and the world-famous Bertman Ballpark Mustard.
Additionally, a new beer garden featuring Great Lakes Brewing Co. has been installed near section 164 and the main Progressive Field Team Shop. The beer garden will have 8-10 beers available at all times.
Budweiser's presence in the ballpark also has increased: The Home Run Porch is now the Budweiser Home Run Porch, which now also filters into the expanded drink rail area in left field, similar to those in right. Bud's 1876 cart has a new, visible presence on the porch, and Budweiser will roll out a Tribe-themed can in the Northeast Ohio market soon.
SCOREBOARD AND SOUND SYSTEM
The new scoreboard replaced the now-outdated system installed at then-Jacobs Field in 2004. The new scoreboard, manufactured and installed by Daktronics, features premier high-definition technology for every fan at Progressive Field. It measures 59 feet high by 221 feet wide, amounting to nearly 13,000 square feet of active display area.
The project also includes a state-of-the-art sound system and other boards throughout the ballpark which will enhance fans' experience by providing greater access to statistics, scores from around the league and sound quality.
SEASON TICKET HOLDER ADDITIONS
The Home Plate Club, accessible by Diamond Box and Field Box Front Season Ticket Holders, is located on the ballpark's main level and behind home plate, providing great views of the action on the field.
The club will include a full bar, access to a variety of new concessions options within the space and a glass front for prime viewing. The club will remain open after games, to offer Season Ticket Holders with access to an option to let traffic clear on high-demand games. Season Ticket Holder-only gates have been added at the Left Field and Infield gates.
PAYING HOMAGE TO TRIBE HISTORY
Archways seen in the Infield District near the new local restaurants are a nod to architecture from the League Park era, and spotlight Tribe players and MLB players who excelled during the League Park era. Featured players include Nap Lajoie, Tris Speaker and Earl Averill.
A Bob Feller silhouette for fan photo opportunities has also been added to the Infield District. The silhouette is the same pose featured on the patch that Tribe players wore on their uniforms after Feller's passing.
Interior concourse walls now display players' names who entered the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum wearing a Cleveland Indians uniform.
The Indians 2016 schedule features 19 promotional items and Hall of Fame weekend on July 30, during which the club will induct alumni Jim Thome, Albert Belle, Frank Robinson and Charlie Jamieson. In addition, fans will receive a Thome bobblehead, courtesy of Medical Mutual.
Other promotional items include five jerseys and other wearables including a batting practice pullover and perforated-lens sunglasses. The Indians will celebrate the roster's young stars with a quartet of jerseys:
· Jason Kipnis road gray (June 18 courtesy of KeyBank)
· Corey Kluber midnight navy (May 28 courtesy of Discount Drug Mart)
· Francisco Lindor home white (August 20, courtesy of Liberty Ford)
· Carlos Carrasco home white (May 17 courtesy of Shearer's Foods)