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04/14/09 10:00 AM ET

New Stadium scoreboard is a marvel

Giant high-definition screen in center will keep fans informed

NEW YORK -- The thing that most distinguishes the new Yankee Stadium from the old one, that dominates the center field skyline and gives the park an entirely new look, is the scoreboard that hangs above the batter's eye in center field.

It is big, bright, vibrant, impressive. Choose your adjective, and the list goes on. It is a marvel, a monstrous board that commands attention. And the fans are sure to provide plenty of that.

"I'd be surprised if they don't love it," Yankees chief operating officer Lonn Trost said.

By the books, it is 59 feet by 101 feet, a 16-mm true high-definition video board. And hard as it is to believe, it seems even larger than that.

During the course of any given game, the main video board will display the line score in a strip across the bottom, player information with an enormous picture in the middle, and another strip at the top with a K counter, a radar gun reading and a pitch count for whoever is on the mound. Between innings, it displays many of the same entertainment features that the scoreboard at the old Yankee Stadium did, only on a larger scale, in a more vibrant style.

Compared to the main board, the two smaller boards that flank it seem precisely that: small. But they are not.

The board to the left of the main video screen displays advertisements throughout the game. And the one to the right houses the out-of-town scoreboard -- a section that shows the score of games, the pitcher and the men on base -- as well as captioning of some of the stadium's audio.

A smaller board down the right-field line also provides captioning.

There is a nearly quarter-mile ribbon board that stretches along the facing of the Terrace level, and a 383-foot ribbon board beaming in the Great Hall, the stadium's main entranceway. Also present in the Great Hall is a 24-by-36 foot high-definition video board, mammoth in comparison to nearly everything but the main scoreboard in center field. And like many of the others, this board comes with a twist.

"It's not only for enjoyment of the game-day experience," Trost said.

On the way out of games, fans can glance up at that or any number of video monitors for traffic delays and related information. If a subway line isn't running, fans can find out about it on the board. If there were ever a fire at the new Yankee Stadium, emergency exit routes would pop up on the screens. If weather patterns are affecting play, fans can see what the forecast holds.

In all, the Yankees installed nearly 1,100 high-definition video monitors throughout the stadium, with the goal of ensuring that fans won't miss a pitch when they go to the bathroom or buy a hot dog. There are video monitors at the concession stands. There are video monitors on the concourse. Anywhere a fan might be, video will be, too, showing the game in real time.

They're all impressive in their own right. But it's clear that the jewel of this stadium is the board in center field, mammoth and brilliant and vivid all at the same time. If not for the scoreboard, the new Yankee Stadium would look even more like the old park than it already does.

"Except for the huge screen above the batter's eye," Yankees manager Joe Girardi said after the first of two Spring Training games against the Cubs last weekend, "you felt like you were in old Yankee Stadium."

But with the addition of that board, fans can truly feel like they're experiencing the new Yankee Stadium -- and all the technological advances that go along with it.

Anthony DiComo is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.