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AROUND THE MAJORS

Field Dimensions at RFK Marked Wrong

July 22, 2005|From Times Wire Reports

After weeks of complaining by Washington National players that the field dimensions at Robert F. Kennedy Memorial Stadium were longer than posted, two Washington Post reporters measured the distance to the wall in the left-center-field power alley and discovered the players were right.

Using a tape measure, they measured the distance, marked as 380 feet, as 394 feet.

Club officials asked the reporters to stop before other measurements could be taken, but the team agreed to bring in a surveyor, who took measurements Thursday morning. The results confirmed what the players had suspected -- the marks were incorrect. According to club officials, the distance to the mark that read "380" in left-center field was 394.74 feet; the distance to the "380" mark in right-center was 395 feet.

"The dimensions were on pads that make up the outfield fence, but the pads with the 380-feet marks were in the wrong locations," said Andy Dunn, the Nationals' vice president of ballpark operations.

The club contends that the surveyor found measurements down the foul lines to be accurate at 335 feet. The wall in center field, marked 410 feet, is 407.83 feet, Dunn said.

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A day after hinting that he was considering season-ending knee surgery, Washington ace Livan Hernandez said he won't have it until after the season.

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Kansas City pitcher Runelvys Hernandez was suspended for 10 games, and Manager Buddy Bell will have to sit out a game after a benches-clearing brawl last weekend at Detroit. Tiger reliever Kyle Farnsworth was suspended for six games, and Detroit starter Jeremy Bonderman was penalized for five. All the players have announced they will appeal.

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Chicago Cub right-hander Kerry Wood will miss one start after getting a cortisone shot in his right shoulder.

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