ARIZONA DIAMONDBACKS

Hall: D-backs visited Vancouver to prepare for Chase Field emergency

Feb 27, 2020, 11:17 AM | Updated: 5:34 pm
Arizona Diamondbacks CEO Derrick Hall interviews with Doug & Wolf on 98.7 FM Arizona’s Sports Sta...
Arizona Diamondbacks CEO Derrick Hall interviews with Doug & Wolf on 98.7 FM Arizona’s Sports Station on Feb. 13, 2020. (Matt Layman/Arizona Sports)
(Matt Layman/Arizona Sports)

Arizona Diamondbacks president and CEO Derrick Hall said Thursday that team officials visited a Vancouver stadium in 2018 to prepare for an emergency backup plan if Chase Field became unusable.

Following a report from The Athletic, Hall confirmed to Doug & Wolf on 98.7 FM Arizona’s Sports Station that the D-backs were going through due diligence in case they needed to relocate temporarily.

They took a tour of B.C. Place Stadium, which regularly hosts the Canadian Football League’s B.C. Lions and Major League Soccer’s Vancouver Whitecaps.

“Any team that has a dome, in particular in a challenging weather atmosphere, should have at least a backup plan,” Hall said. “I mean, if that (Chase Field) roof won’t close in the middle of summer, we can’t play here. Probably, the union wouldn’t allow it, we wouldn’t allow it.”

To that point, the Chase Field roof malfunctioned last April for the team’s home-opener against the Boston Red Sox. Only one side retracted prior to the start of the game, and the team opted to close the other side for the game.

Before the visit to Canada, MLB provided Arizona a list of stadiums capable of hosting baseball teams in case of emergency.

“One of those places was Vancouver. We were very impressed by the city obviously and the stadium. We did go back a second time but that was more for a concert,” Hall said.

The Athletic reported some Diamondbacks employees took in a Mumford & Sons concert.

That visit gave the team a feel for handling stadium operations.

The Diamondbacks took over those duties from Maricopa County in May 2018, ending a lawsuit involving the county. The team hoped to break a lease with the county because the county refused to pay for $187 million in repairs and upgrades to Chase Field. Settling the feud put the team in charge of stadium upkeep and helped the D-backs move forward searching for options to relocate or rebuild their home stadium in Arizona.

In the original 30-year deal with the county, which ran through 2027, the Diamondbacks couldn’t search for a new home until 2023.

After the team and Maricopa County ended their disagreement, reports surfaced that the D-backs had previously signed a nondisclosure agreement with the city of Las Vegas. The Diamondbacks also had conversations with the city of Henderson, Nev., which expressed interest in luring the MLB team to the Las Vegas suburb.

Hall reiterated Thursday that the D-backs have not pursued any relocation attempts outside the state of Arizona.

“We’re looking at downtown now and eventually we’ll look again around Maricopa County to see what we have to compare it to, but we have no intention of playing anywhere but Arizona,” Hall said.

“I think going back to that time with Henderson and (dealing with) really good people: Remember, they responded to an open RFP (request for proposal) that we had,” the D-backs president added. “We never went and visited. We left it open in case we wanted to or needed to and we certainly hope we don’t, because we anticipate this is where we’re playing forever, in Arizona.”

Arizona Diamondbacks

(Twitter photo / @jones_druw)...
Alex Weiner

D-backs take Druw Jones in MLB mock drafts at The Athletic, MLB.com

The Athletic's Keith Law and MLB.com's Jonathan Mayo both predict the D-backs will take OF Druw Jones with the No. 2 pick.
15 hours ago
Arizona Diamondbacks' Geraldo Perdomo, right, celebrates with Ketel Marte after he scored during th...
Associated Press

D-backs can’t complete sweep after Cubs go back-to-back in 8th

The Cubs hit back-to-back home runs in the eighth inning as the D-backs couldn't complete the four-game sweep in Chicago.
2 days ago
Arizona Diamondbacks' Josh Rojas reacts after striking out swinging during the first inning of a ba...
Associated Press

D-backs 3B Josh Rojas out of lineup Sunday, day-to-day with hand injury

D-backs 3B Josh Rojas is out of the starting lineup for Sunday's series finale against the Chicago Cubs because of a left hand contusion.
2 days ago
(AP Photo/Matt Slocum)...
Alex Weiner

D-backs recall Opening Day 3B Drew Ellis, option IF Yonny Hernandez

The Arizona Diamondbacks recalled third baseman Drew Ellis from Triple-A Reno, the team announced Sunday morning.
2 days ago
Daulton Varsho #12 and Ketel Marte #4 of the Arizona Diamondbacks celebrate after scoring in the 10...
Associated Press

D-backs win 3rd-straight in Chicago behind extra innings win over Cubs

Daulton Varsho hit a three-run double in the 10th and scored on a throwing error to give the D-backs to a 7-6 comeback win over the Cubs.
3 days ago
Arizona Diamondbacks' Josh Rojas pauses near home plate after lining out to Colorado Rockies first ...
Alex Weiner

D-backs’ Josh Rojas exits game after getting hit in hand with pitch vs. Cubs

Diamondbacks 3B Josh Rojas exited Saturday's game in the first inning after getting hit by a pitch by Cubs lefty Justin Steele.
3 days ago
Hall: D-backs visited Vancouver to prepare for Chase Field emergency