As one of two expansion teams that entered the league in 1993, the Florida Marlins (now the Miami Marlins) had the daunting task of building up a fan base in South Florida and competing in the ultra competitive National League East division. For much of the team's history, the Marlins played at Sun Life Stadium, home to the NFL's Miami Dolphins. However, like most stadiums that combine football and baseball, it was hard to replicate the home field advantage of smaller and louder parks and the team has had a tough time increasing attendance numbers each year. This will all change in 2012 when the newly-dubbed Miami Marlins will make their debut in a new cutting-edge ballpark.
From top to bottom, the tentatively-named Marlins Park will be filled with cutting-edge features. One of the most talked-about additions to the ballpark is the inclusion of two saltwater aquariums to the left and right of home plate. The tanks are constructed from bulletproof glass to safeguard the fish against any wild pitches and are meant to reflect some of the natural beauty of Southern Florida.
The 37,000-seat stadium will also include a three-paneled retractable roof, which can open and close in only thirteen minutes. With the unpredictability of Florida weather and its many massive thunderstorms, this is one of the most noticeable improvements over their previous stadium. The new ballpark is also located less than two miles away from downtown Miami and is situated at the Orange Bowl site in the Little Havana quarter of the city. Along with the many shops and restaurants that have begun to spring up around the area, fans can also enjoy delectable cuisine inside Marlins Park in an area called "Taste of Miami." This food court will feature many famous Miami eateries and give fans plenty of options other than hot dogs and peanuts.
With a new logo, stadium and plenty of high-priced acquisitions, the Marlins look to open up their new ballpark with a bang. The team has had a remarkable run since entering the league in 1993, winning two World Series championships. After each title, the Marlins reinvented themselves into a brand new squad and crafted a new winning formula. Fortunately for fans, they finally have a stadium of their own to host their future postseason victories.