One of the unique aspects of Dodger Stadium will be going away for good in 2013. As part of the upgrades to Dodger Stadium taking place this winter, the Dodgers will be installing two new video boards in left and right field. One of those new video boards will be replacing the infamous Diamond Vision above the left field pavilions.
The Dodgers built the infamous Diamond Vision in 1980. It was originally constructed for the only all-star game ever held at the Ravine. Unveiled at the 1980 all-star game, it was the first of it’s kind back in those days. The 875 foot video display has been a permanent part of Dodger Stadium for the last 32 years. It seems almost inconceivable to imagine Dodger Stadium without it.
The Diamond Vision has sat atop the left field Pavilions for the last three decades, gracing us with images of games past, highlights, blooper reels, scores, stats, standings, and many other videos. The Dodgers will be replacing the Diamond Vision with a brand new state of the art video board. One of those modern boards with state of the art sound, and a thousand by a thousand resolution, or something like that. The new board will be returned to it’s original hexagon shape, the same shape as the scoreboard above the right field pavilions. They’re calling it Dodger Stadium, classic look. If you remember, the regular hexagon scoreboard was above the left field pavilion before the birth of the Diamond Vision.
There it sat for years perched atop the left field seats. Familiar brands like Unical 76, or Coca-Cola advertising from atop the board. It let us know of other scores, or showed us replays of great plays. Once the games were over, the Diamond Vision showed the highlights of the past game, weather the Dodgers won or lost, the story unfolded across the Diamond Vision. People throwing out the first pitch, and others from the pre-game ceremonies graced the pixels of the Diamond Vision. Other people like the Don’t stop believing guy, and relief pitchers making warm-up throws also appeared on a daily basis over the Diamond Vision. 30 years worth of players have been featured on that Diamond Vision. From Steve Garvey, Ron Cey, Fernando Valenzuela, Orel Hershiser, to Mike Piazza, to Matt Kemp, and Clayton Kershaw. Many Dodgers have been shown on the Diamond Vision.
Honestly, I’m not really sure how I feel about this guys. I mean I know it may seem silly to be upset about this, but there is a reason I am. I feel that upholding Dodger tradition is one of the most important tasks of the new owners. In my mind, the Dodgers aren’t just a Baseball team, they’re a culture, and Dodger Stadium is our cathedral. Preserving and protecting Dodger Stadium’s unique design and classic essence is as important as anything. So in my opinion, taking away anything that affects Dodger Stadium’s traditional look, and makes Chavez Ravine look and feel like Chavez Ravine is a pretty big deal to me. I just don’t like Dodger Stadium touched in any sort of way.
I know, I know. I get it. Dodger Stadium is old and has to be upgraded, and the Diamond Vision is outdated technology. I am very pleased with the overall renovations for 2013. And I am excited to check out the improvements once they are finished. I think the new owners are doing a terrific job sprucing up, and upgrading the Stadium, while not removing the classic architecture, and design that gives Dodger Stadium it’s soul.
But I still can’t help but feel a little weird about not seeing the familiar rectangle Diamond Vision scoreboard above left field. I won’t forget it I tell you that. Many games I have craned my neck in order to see it better while sitting along the third baseline box seats. How many times have you yourself peered through your binoculars if only to catch a close up glimpse of the early 1980’s video board.
Dodger Stadium is beautiful. Everything about it is breathtaking to me. Every little microscopic thing about the Ravine is wonderful. Dodger Stadium is my home, and I will always love my home, even after the upgrades for the 2013 season. It will still be strange however, not seeing the Diamond Vision. Search your mind, you know you’ll feel a little funny about it too. It’s like a piece of Dodger Stadium will be missing. I guess we’ll just have to accept it. Let’s take a moment of silence for the Dodger Stadium Diamond Vision. An unforgettable piece of Dodger Stadium history. A foregone obsolete remnant of an era past, that has been ingrained into our minds for over 30 years. Goodbye Diamond Vision. Dodger Stadium is returning to a pre-1980 look. Minus one left field Diamond Vision.