Baseball community deserves loan for facility

Plans for new baseball complex spark controversy over WSU’s decision to front some of the cost, donations should cover price



Football receives more attention at WSU than any other sport. This leaves other athletic communities with fewer resources for players and fans.

AMAR JOSHI, Evergreen columnist

The WSU Board of Regents approved plans to fund a new baseball facility, going into debt to pay for its cost.

While they received some backlash, the baseball community is due for more monetary support. This addition is the facility the community deserves to celebrate their sport.

Baseball fans are one of the most dedicated and passionate groups in the WSU sports community. Having a space for these people to come to, connect with each other and appreciate their pastime is justified.

“There is a real history in regards to WSU baseball,” said Marty Lees, WSU baseball head coach. “[We have] tremendous coaches and players and an alumni base that is passionate to see the team succeed.”

Despite not being as popular as other sports, baseball has more enthusiastic and invested fans than any other sport. Football may have the Mississippi Mustache, but baseball has generations of history and heart to boot.

Football has received its fair share of support from WSU, but this is the first time in a long time baseball has received this kind of upgrade. WSU is willing to invest money in football, yet there is immense doubt about the loans for the baseball field.

Many forget the work these people put in daily to improve not only their game but their community. This space is ideal for the team to work together outside of the field and with the fans. The facility will be filled with rooms, amenities and memorabilia for the baseball community to enjoy.

“Having a locker, class, training, offices and lounge all in one place allows us to build the culture,” Lees said. “Everyone is invested and can become part of a community.”

Rome wasn’t built in a day and the same goes for a good team. Teams have to work day after day to take the raw talent each person brings their freshman year and mold it into a star athlete who represents their team.

The new facilities will hold more than just rooms for the team. Lees mentioned rooms similar to what football has which will properly commemorate the storied history of WSU baseball. This will be open for fans to have a proper celebration of their legacy.

This sport is about the fans; they bring the enthusiasm and support to a game that many consider to be slow. Baseball is a distinctly American game our fans have already embraced. This show of support is exactly what they need to see from the higher-ups at WSU.

“When there’s a commitment to the program, it shows everyone involved investment into the program,” Lees said. “This support is huge for the team. If you want to be a champion you have to show investment.”

While WSU is going further in debt for this $10 million project, the loan itself will ultimately be repaid by the community. There is already $4 million in donations for the project and construction is planned to begin at $6.5 million, where the remaining $3.5 million will be provided. The baseball team deserves this facility however and will improve immensely from the support they will receive. This investment will help immensely in their pursuit of a championship.

WSU baseball is like the son finally getting approval from his father to live his dream. They have the support, now they need a community and a team which can push them to the championship. Our fans and alumni all want to see this team grow into a family of champions.