Washington back in old stomping ground

Washington back in old stomping ground

OAKLAND -- Friday night marked the 291st game the Rangers have played at the Oakland Coliseum. It was their first under the new name of Overstock.Com Coliseum. Earlier this week, the Utah-based company purchased the naming rights for the next six years.

"I still call it the Coliseum," said Rangers manager Ron Washington, who was a coach for the Athletics for 11 years before moving to Texas.

The Athletics still have hopes of getting a new ballpark. The Coliseum is currently the fifth-oldest ballpark in the big leagues behind Fenway Park, Wrigley Field, Dodger Stadium and Angel Stadium. It is also one of three that is still used for professional football along with the Rogers Centre in Toronto and Sun Life Stadium in Florida.

It also retains a reputation for being a pitcher's park because of the expansive foul territory, outfield dimensions and the ball not carrying well in the Bay Area climate. But Washington said the field is one of the best in baseball.

"Without a doubt, [head groundskeeper] Clay Wood does a great job," Washington said. "He keeps this field in great shape until football starts. He works hard at it and has pride in it. He just takes a ton of pride in it. With all he has to deal with, he does an excellent job."