There is certainly something to be said for investing a lot of money into making the accessories at a baseball stadium look good. There's also something to be said for paying homage to baseball, whether it's remembering past greats or celebrating one of the elements of the game.
But there's also something to be said for keeping things simple. This newest proposed piece of art at Nationals Park is anything but simple. Back in July, Washington Business Journal described it as follows:
Thomas Sayre with Raleigh, N.C.-based Clearscapes Inc. is designing 30 "stainless steel-domed forms which will accurately follow the theoretical model of the trajectory of a curving fast-ball pitch," said Sarah Massey, spokeswoman for the D.C. Commission on the Arts and Humanities. They will be suspended by early next year from the eastern garage.
The steel spheres with cutout "laces," each seven feet in diameter, will feature programmable LED lights for an "iconic ‘wow' factor," said Gloria Nauden, the commission's executive director.
Now, we have pictures (via NatsNQ, below the jump).
That gets points for originality, to be sure, much like the controversial "motion" statues of Frank Howard, Josh Gibson and Walter Johnson. But is this all necessary? Those lights are going to cost nearly seven figures, according to the Washington Business Journal, and they add ... what, exactly? I'm still struggling to find out.
It's times like these where I think we should all heed the words of D.C. Councilman Jack Evans, who said this when the statues were installed.
"Certainly the intent I understand, swinging the bat, but I think when people come to baseball games they are looking for the traditional, not the nouveau. It was a mistake."
Those same words apply doubly here.