11/26/2012 7:11 PM
Editorial: San Rafael Pacifics earned a new 3-year lease
EVERY PROFESSIONAL baseball player wants a long-term contract. If they have a good season, they have far more leverage when it comes time to negotiate a new deal.
That's the position the San Rafael Pacifics were in this year, their debut season in Marin.
The team and its management had a strong rookie season and the San Rafael City Council deservedly rewarded the Pacifics with a new three-year lease to play at Albert Field downtown.
The City Council's decision was greeted by wild applause from the 30 supporters at the meeting. That was a far different reception from what the team got from some residents when an ownership group, Centerfield Partners, proposed having a minor league team play at Albert Field.
This was no slam dunk, to mix our sports metaphors. The independent minor league team had to work hard to win over some vocal critics in the form of some neighbors, who were concerned about noise, parking and drunken fans when the city was considering the team's proposal for a 42-game home schedule at the venerable baseball field last year.
The city listened to those concerns, many of the valid, and so did the team. The city established an advisory committee that included three neighborhood residents to monitor how the team was doing and offer feedback. The team's ownership listened and make changes before and during the season.
The result was a competitive team that was a positive addition to the downtown area and provided a popular recreational outlet for local families and baseball fans.
The team sold 32,000 tickets and contributed $10,233 in net income to the city. The Pacifics averaged 700 fans a game and had several sellouts during a season that ran from June to late August.
The team also recently announced an ownership change that further strengthens its Marin ties. Corte Madera residents and minority owners Mike Shapiro and Eugene Lupario, with the help of another investor, bought out majority owner Brian Clark and formed Redwood Sports and Entertainment Group.
We also appreciate that the city has worked hard to make sure the new franchise is a good neighbor. The lease includes 15 new components that were not part of the first year's lease.
The Pacifics earned a three-year lease. We look forward to an equally entertaining and professional second season.
To read the original story, click HERE.
For more information, please visit pacificsbaseball.com and "Like" us on Facebook. Be sure to follow the Pacifics on Twitter @SRPacifics and follow us on Instagram by searching, "srpacifics."