If you like some food with your baseball, Town Madison (AL) has unveiled an appetizing plan that blends the best of both worlds. A giant food hall – featuring 18 kitchens as well as breweries and food trucks – will be the primary connection between the Town Madison retail/restaurant district and the development-anchoring baseball stadium that’s home to the Rocket City Trash Pandas (Double-A, Southern League). Read more here. In other Panda news, the team has named Josh Caray, grandson of baseball legend Harry Caray, to be the voice of the team. Read more and watch news report here.
Inspired by the Iowa Wave during football games at the University of Iowa’s Kinnick Stadium, the Birmingham Barons (Double-A, Southern League) have started a similar tradition for their home games. The Children’s of Alabama Hospital overlooks Regions Field, the home stadium for the Barons. So, during the seventh inning stretch, players and fans wave at center field in the direction of the hospital. Read more here and here.
Opening Day for the Tennessee Smokies (Double-A, Southern League) is Thursday night. As thousands prepare to gather at the baseball team’s Kodak (TN) stadium, some in Knoxville speculate about when the team could move to Old City. City Councilman Mark Campen is supportive of a possible ballpark in the Old City and said he hopes project leaders will take First Creek’s possibilities into their plans. Read more here.
Affordable family fun is returning to the Baseball Grounds of Jacksonville for the 2019 season presented by Community First Credit Union, as the Jacksonville Jumbo Shrimp revealed their promotional schedule that begins on Opening Night on Thursday, April 4. On May 11, the Jumbo Shrimp will host “Vice Night.” The team will be wearing specialty Jumbo Shrimp Vice Night jerseys that will be auctioned off during the game. Fans will have the opportunity to get their picture taken with Crockett and Tub(b)s, as they’ll be on the concourse for a meet and greet during the game. Read more here and here.
As the city of Knoxville (TN) and Randy Boyd continue talks about bringing the Tennessee Smokies (Double-A, Southern League) team to the Old City, two businesses have been approached by real estate agents inquiring about their willingness to sell property near the stadium site. Read more here.
PRESS RELEASE – At a press conference on Wednesday, the Biloxi Shuckers revealed the official logo for the 2019 Southern League All-Star Game. The Shuckers will host the Southern League’s annual All-Star Festivities on June 17 and 18 at MGM Park.
Once he became burned out on playing baseball, Chris Garagiola searched for a new passion. He didn’t grow up dreaming of following his famous grandfather, Joe Garagiola, who went from a major league playing career (1946-54) to becoming an American icon as a baseball broadcaster and television host. And really, who could imagine following that path? Rather, it was circumstance that led Chris to even try broadcasting. Read more here.
Chris Garagiola (right), the Blue Wahoos newly named lead broadcaster, on air with Tommy Thrall (left).