Brewers visiting tough venues for power hitters

Brewers visiting tough venues for power hitters

SAN DIEGO -- Welcome to the portion of the Brewers' schedule where fly balls go to die.

The team began a weeklong stretch on Monday at San Diego's Petco Park and San Francisco's AT&T Park, two of the toughest venues for Major League power hitters. The big outfield gaps can get in hitters' heads, Brewers manager Ron Roenicke said.

"It definitely can," he said. "Last year, [Mark] Kotsay, for example, came here and crushed a ball to right-center with everything he had, and it didn't get out of here. He talked about it the rest of the year."

It didn't deter Kotsay from signing with the Padres in November. He's owned a home in San Diego since 2003.

The Padres are considering shortening the fences at Petco Park, Padres interim CEO Tom Garfinkel said last week. Low-scoring games can be exciting, Garfinkel said, "But not night after night after night. We've heard a lot from fans."

Roenicke would endorse some outfield remodeling, especially if it meant moving the visitors' bullpen off the field of play. Currently, road relievers sit down the right-field line and Padres relievers have an enclosed bullpen over the left-field fence.

"I like a fair ballpark," Roenicke said. "If you crush a ball, it should be a home run. Sometimes the elements will get you, like [when] you get the wind blowing in at Wrigley. But if the wind's not blowing and you crush a ball, it should be a home run."