Will grass be greener in second half?
MIAMI — Perhaps the grass will be greener for the Marlins in the second half.
The organization certainly hopes so.
Literally, keeping the grass green, and growing properly has been a challenge at Marlins Park since the Celebration bermuda sod was rolled onto the field a few months ago.
Brown spots and dead patches have constantly been dealt with by the grounds crew.
Since the Marlins have been away for two weeks, the roof has remained open to provide plenty of sunshine and rain to help the grass grow.
“I think the grass sort of reflects our season,” Marlins president David Samson said. “It’s brown right now, but getting greener.”
It’s not uncommon for fields in retractable-roof parks to take some time to grow. Over the past few months, the club has tried everything, calling agronomists, argiculturists, various grounds crews. Experts who work to maintain golf courses have been consulted.
“We’ve called them all,” Samson said. “They feel like this break we’ve had right now is going to help. That’s just an indication that we’ve spoken with everybody, and they all say the same thing. This Celebration grass should be the right grass. It’s been a little weird. The weather pattern was off. The rainy season started early, and we had to close the roof. We had a lot of day games. But it’s getting better.”
Samson admits a problem was the grass didn’t initially have enough time to grow. It was installed on schedule as construction was nearing completition.
“It did not have enough time, there is no doubt about it,” Samson said. “It’s roots didn’t grow. We did everything that golf courses do. We’ve tried everything.”
On Friday the field will get tested again as the Marlins face the Nationals to begin the second half.
– Joe Frisaro