As Bill Davis Stadium and Buckeye Field opened their doors for the first time this season, new video boards and sound systems for the 2014 campaign were unveiled.
The change is a clear improvement over the old video boards, much to the delight of Ohio State baseball coach Greg Beals. The team revealed its new toys for the first time March 14 in an 8-5 win against Siena.
“It is a huge addition to the atmosphere of our ballpark,” Beals said after his team defeated Xavier, 10-3, Wednesday. “The umpire who was (at) third base today has been at our park for the last five years and I go out for the game and the sounds and the bells are playing for the bottom of the first inning and he is like, ‘Yeah it’s sweet.’”
The old scoreboard, which was installed in 1997, was not capable of the color animation that is brought by the new and improved video board.
The new baseball video board cost approximately $475,000, while the sound system cost $192,000, an OSU athletic spokesman told The Lantern, in an email. The video board at the softball field cost $400,000, while the board at Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium cost approximately $600,000.
Senior starting pitcher Greg Greve said the improvements have definitely made a difference, especially with the players.
“Huge improvement, no doubt about it,” Greve said. “It pumps the boys up in the dugout … it brings a nice energy to the ballpark.”
Not only was the video board revamped, the renovations included adding a new sound system which plays each player’s walk-up song as well as between inning music and, of course, the OSU fight song.
“It is great to finally hear the music and not have to you know, sit out there during (batting practice) wondering what is playing,” Greve said. “It is really awesome.”
Junior pitcher Ryan Riga, who leads the team in strikeouts, echoed his teammate’s excitement about the renovations.
“It’s sweet,” Riga said. “The sound system is 10 times better … you get a more baseball vibe out of it.”
The baseball team is 7-1 at home this season, while the softball team is 3-0.
The scoreboard at Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium, which plays host to men’s and women’s soccer, men’s and women’s lacrosse and track and field also received the same modifications.