Mets tweaking stadium dimensions

NEW YORK -- Citi Field will be more homer-friendly next season.

For the second time since the ballpark debuted in 2009, the New York Mets are significantly tweaking the dimensions to their home stadium.

General manager Sandy Alderson, who unveiled the revised dimensions Tuesday, indicated the Mets would have hit 17 additional homers and opponents would have hit 10 additional homers had those dimensions been in place last season.

Alderson cautioned that the effect in 2015 will not necessarily benefit the Mets more than their opponents.

Lefty hitters Lucas Duda and Curtis Granderson should see the biggest boost to their power numbers in the redesigned dimensions.

Still, the GM added that the changes, which are focused on right-center field, were not drawn in a way to specifically benefit the Mets.

"That would be far too complicated and represent gerrymandering, which I'm not sure would be approved by MLB," Alderson said.

From 2009 through '11, Citi Field measured 415 feet at its deepest point in right-center. For the past three seasons, the wall was 390 feet at that spot. Under the new dimensions, that spot will be reduced to 380 feet.

Alderson suggested the new dimensions closely mimic that of the Mets' former home, Shea Stadium.

The right-center walls are moving in 5 to 11 feet, depending on the spot.

Alderson said there are two goals in modifying the dimensions: to make the Mets more competitive at home and to increase the overall offense, increasing the entertainment value. He suggested the latter goal -- increasing fan excitement through more runs on the scoreboard -- may be the more important of the two factors.

The Mets went 40-41 this past season at Citi Field and have produced losing records at home in each of the past four seasons. The club was outhomered by opponents 71-59 at Citi Field in 2014.

Alderson downplayed any negative impact on Mets pitching, which figures to be the club's strength. Of the 10 additional homers opponents would have hit in 2014 if the new dimensions had been in effect, the GM said right-handers Bartolo Colon and Rafael Montero would have surrendered two extra homers and no other pitcher more than one.

When it was noted to Alderson that both World Series teams -- the San Francisco Giants and Kansas City Royals -- played in big ballparks, Alderson countered that both were wild-card teams. He added that playing in a big ballpark was not advantageous across MLB.

The new space created by the revised dimensions will partly increase the size of the bullpens and partly become dead space that may be used to create a garden.

Chief operating officer Jeff Wilpon said additional seating could not be created in the new, narrow areas because there is not an easy way to get fans from concourses to the area, food service would be unavailable, and it would not be compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act.