Going inside the 'Green Monster'

BOSTON (KSDK) - The "Green Monster" sits just 310 feet from home plate, a scary sight for pitcher and for hitters, but respected by all.

In fact, NewsChannel 5's Anne Allred found out some St. Louis Cardinals had already been inside and left their World Series signatures.

Standing at just above 37 feet, the Green Monster is an iconic feature every baseball fan appreciates. So we're taking you inside, with St. Louis snagging the keys and opening the door to some baseball history. Once inside the manual scoreboard you can see it's not fancy, but very few ever get to go inside.

If you're really lucky, you get to scrawl your name among the hundreds of other signatures, including Neil Diamond, Pedro Martinez, and most recently added is Cardinals players Matt Carpenter, Trevor Rosenthal, and Shelby miller. Anne Allred couldn't resist, adding KSDK to the concrete.

The Green Monster wasn't built as part of the original park. It was built 22 years later in an effort to keep fans out.

"In 1934 they built this wall, not to keep balls from going out, but to keep people on Lansdowne Street from looking in and making sure you pay your admission," said Mark Travis.

Now people pay hand over fist to sit on top of it, with Fenway Park adding Green Monster seats in 2003.

But what's behind the name? Well, the left field wall was painted green in 1946 to match the rest of the park, and historians suggest "monster" came from how it famously changes the nature of the game.

"A ball that would be a homerun somewhere else hits the wall and stops, becomes a single if you don't know how to play the wall, or a lazy fly that in another ball park would be an easy out, here become a homerun," said Bob Allison.

And to keep those runs coming in, Anne created a little omen of her own, predicting a St. Louis win from inside Boston's beloved scoreboard.

The monster was rebuilt in 1976 and covered in plastic. It is repainted every spring.


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