MILWAUKEE -- It's a sure sign of spring in Milwaukee. With less than three weeks until Opening Day, the tarp came off the playing field at Miller Park on Friday, March 8.
Michael Boettcher, Director of Grounds at Miller Park, said the removal of the tarp was the unofficial start of the season for his grounds crew team.
"The cover's off, grass has been doing well so far from what we've seen, soil temperatures are starting to elevate, and we're getting ready for Opening Day," Boettcher said. "We do a lot of work in the fall. We make sure we don't have a crazy amount of work because we never know what the springs are going to give us here."
Boettcher said they had to turn the heat on in the stadium this week to allow the grass to get to a level where the grounds crew did not have to worry about damaging it before players set foot on it.
Because the Brewers played late into the season -- and there were concerts later in 2018, the Miller Park grounds crew has had less time to prepare for what is about to unfold this spring. But Boettcher said having the roof allows them to keep snow and ice off the field -- and gives them an advantage heading into the season.
" We look at this as a high-quality playing surface for today's best athletes in the game," Boettcher said. "We utilize all that technology and resources to be able to manage this turf plant so it is ready for the game of baseball."
Mark your calendar because Opening Day at Miller Park is Thursday, March 28. It features the Milwaukee Brewers hosting the St. Louis Cardinals. The first pitch is set for 1:10 p.m.