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Latest attack on home run sculpture is one too many

After four years of abuse and mockery, it is time to stand up for one of the key features that makes Marlins Park so unique.

New York Yankees v Miami Marlins Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images

Noah Syndergaard has become the latest person to give their opinion on the home run sculpture that sits behind the center field wall in Marlins Park, and it wasn't positive:

This latest public bashing of the sculpture is the straw that has broken the camel's back, and it is time to set the record straight on the now infamous home run tradition that Miami and Marlins Park is known for once and for all.

First of all, it was clear than even when the plans for Marlins Park were still being drawn up, the stadium was being designed to break the mould of a traditional ballpark. With the retractable roof, promenade level with 360-degree views, and bobblehead museum, Marlins Park was supposed to have a very modern feel and different atmosphere to, say, Fenway Park.

Every MLB ballpark is supposed to provide spectators with a different experience, and while most stadiums light fireworks when the home team hits a ball out of the park, many have had their own, unique, celebrations to accompany the pyrotechnics over the years.

There is the mascot going down the slide in Milwaukee, the swinging Liberty Bell in Philadelphia, and the steam train in Houston, to name a few. At Pro Player/Landshark/Dolphin/Sun Life Stadium the Marlins didn't have a unique home run tradition, and so they wanted to come up with something special when they moved into Marlins Park in 2012.

If you ask this writer, they did just that. The 75-foot tall work of art designed by Red Grooms epitomizes the diverse and colorful culture of Miami, and fits like a glove in the equally artistic and striking surrounds of Marlins Park.

After four seasons of baseball in Little Havana, the Marlins decided to move in and lower the outfield fences after posting some of the lowest home run totals in the league, even with Giancarlo Stanton defying the odds and threatening to hit the ball through the outfield windows every night.

One thing would remain constant in the outfield for 2016, though: that bizarre, yet glorious, home run sculpture.

Love it or hate it, the home run sculpture has got people talking and has helped make Marlins Park unique. Although many people see it as a horrendous practical joke, it has done its job in center field perfectly. The flashing lights and leaping Marlins may not go down as a classic in the history books of home run celebrations, but it is something which this young franchise can call their own.

Besides, if Syndergaard hated the sculpture so much, he wouldn't have let Marcell Ozuna light it up last Friday.