KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — Lindsey Nelson Stadium is going to look much different during the 2022 Tennessee baseball season.
Construction is already finished on the 11 new porches in left field. There are now 22 porches, which hold 20 people each, stacked in double decker fashion just over the wall in left field.
“They put this up in a week and our guys were thrilled just to see the construction,” said Vitello. “They all had a smile on their face and we started talking about it in the team room and a couple of them got a little choked up just thinking about it because it’s literally a structure they helped build or at least forced the action that was to build it.”
The left field line is also getting a makeover, gone are the picnic areas in between the visitors bullpen and dugout. For this year, the plan is to put temporary bleachers down the line.
“I believe they will have chairbacks, but they’ll be right up on the field,” said Vitello. “They’re going to be right next to the dugout, they’re going to be at field level right next to the action, right next to the visiting bullpen so that will be a fun seat and a valuable one for us.”
In the long term, Vitello expects the left field line to look more like the right field line currently does.
“Eventually the goal is to expand the stadium so that it almost kind of mirrors this other side,” said Vitello.
The University is expecting to get drawings as early as next week from Populous Architectural Design to see what other upgrades are possible with the current structure.
Vitello would like to have some luxury suites added to the stadium but says they’re not sure how that’s going to look in the future at this point.
“It’s something we’re going to have to sort through, do you want to take one step backwards and demolish some things and take some things down so you can build up, or do we just want to build on to our existing structure,” said Vitello. “I think for this upcoming season it’s a temporary solution but it’s going to be a great one.”