Professional baseball could return to South Georgia - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Professional baseball could return to South Georgia

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October 20, 2005

Albany-- City officials confirm they are in negotiations with two independent baseball leagues, who want to put a team in the Paul Eames Complex.

Albany's last pro baseball team was the South Georgia Waves in 2002. Today, two independent leagues that are starting up are negotiating to make Albany home for the 2006 season.

City of Albany Promotions Manager Tony Ford said "It would be a shame to have a wonderful stadium like the Paul Eames Complex to sit without a professional baseball team."

The Peach State League and the South Coast League both plan to start play in 2006, and both think Albany could be a winning home. City officials hope to bring pro baseball back, if the deal is right.

Ford said, "We want to make sure that we are protecting ourselves not so much for the short term, but certainly for the long term."

Albany has been home to the Polecats, the Silver Bullets, the Alligators, and the Waves, and all left or went out of business because of poor attendance. But great success by Albany's Arena League Football team last spring makes these baseball teams think they can be profitable.

Ford said "They see the numbers we are drawing with regards to indoor football. And they think they can go ahead and do something."

A pro baseball team in Albany would be going head-to-head in the same season with the Wildcats Football team for sports fans, but these two baseball leagues are still interested.

The city wants a tenant at the Eames Complex, if the price is right. Representatives from the Peach State League and the South Coast League did not return our phone calls today.

City officials say the pro baseball negotiations are still in the preliminary stages, but hope to have a team step to the plate in 2006.


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