Chicago Cubs fans will find more than a touchup paint job when they arrive at Wrigley Field for Opening Day on Monday.
Renovated restrooms, enhanced food offerings and an upscale private club are among the upgrades unveiled by the team’s new owners Friday.
The Ricketts family purchased the team last fall and embarked on upgrades at the nation’s second-oldest venue behind Boston’s Fenway Park.
There’s a more open feel in the lower grandstand following removal of concrete panels.
Other work included restoration of part of the center-field scoreboard to its original condition.
New food options include bison burgers and hot dogs from the Ricketts family’s Wyoming ranch.
Cubs players, meanwhile, will enjoy a renovated clubhouse that features a new player lounge, larger weight room and remodeled kitchen in the first upgrade since 1984.
Sox, Yanks surprised by ump’s criticism
An umpire’s criticism about the pace of games in the latest Red Sox-Yankees series has players and coaches on both sides a little confused.
Umpire crew chief Joe West said Wednesday that the Yankees and Red Sox were “pathetic and embarrassing” for dragging out games in this week’s season-opening series.
“It surprised all of us,” Red Sox manager Terry Francona said.
“I don’t see what’s embarrassing about it. Opposed to what? Twenty minutes shorter and it’s not embarrassing?” Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter said.
Giants get apology
Longtime San Francisco Giants equipment manager Mike Murphy received an apologetic phone call from the team’s uniform manufacturer for a misspelling on Eugenio Velez’s gray road jersey.
It read “San Fran-cic-so” for the team’s road series at Houston. A replacement was en route, Murphy said.
Clearing the bases
San Diego pitcher Chris Young will miss his next start with tightness in his right shoulder. … Bronson Arroyo’s lower left leg is much improved, leaving him confident he’ll be ready for his next start with Cincinnati. … A female knuckleball pitcher from Japan will be playing for a minor league team in the United States. Eri Yoshida, an 18-year-old pitcher who played pro ball in Japan last year, signed with the Chico Outlaws of the Golden Baseball League.
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