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Dodgers unveil ballpark enhancements

Plazas highlight new features, including restaurant named for Lasorda

LOS ANGELES -- The Dodgers held a ribbon-cutting ceremony Wednesday for Tommy Lasorda's Italian Trattoria, the new restaurant named after the Hall of Fame manager that is the centerpiece of new plazas built behind the Dodger Stadium bullpens.

The plazas are part of the second round of $150 million of enhancements to the 52-year-old stadium, which will be the site of Freeway Series games against the Angels on Thursday and Friday nights.

Along with a new team store, tickets and concessions space, and Dodgers memorabilia in the plazas, the enhancements include seating and lounging areas at bars and drink rails overlooking the bullpens in the outfield.

In addition to Lasorda's Italian Trattoria, there will be a hot-off-the-grill Think Blue BBQ located on the left-field area of the plaza.

The left- and right-field entryways will feature photo moments, Dodgers memorabilia, five-foot diameter World Series rings, an eight-foot replica of the Rawlings Gold Glove Award, a life-size statue of the iconic Farmer John Dodger Dog and interactive replicas of the 76 ball, both Dodgers partners for more than 50 years.

A clock in left field will greet fans with Vin Scully's signature line, "It's Time for Dodger Baseball."

Fans will be connected and enjoy a new state of the art wireless system throughout Dodger Stadium. The Dodgers upgraded the electrical infrastructure and added new equipment and substations in 2013. Work continued in the offseason to connect the new equipment to improve safety and provide the best technology available for fans.

The 10 retired numbers have been relocated from the pavilions to the club level façade down the left-field line. Much work was done in the parking lots to improve traffic flow and improve safety for pedestrians.

Ken Gurnick is a reporter for

Los Angeles Dodgers