Baseball Field Opens After Renovation

Baseball+Field+Opens+After+Renovation

Amanda DeVecchi, Staff Writer

When junior Tim Tague stepped onto the new baseball diamond he had nothing but good things to say: “It was so nice walking onto the field for the first time. It’s really nice, right up there with other high school fields. No more rocks and potholes, it’s nice and smooth. The grass is the best out there, it could be cut a little shorter but it’s great. It’s a huge improvement.”

The Matador varsity baseball team played its first official home game on it’s new field Tuesday, April 12, against Las Lomas. “Our first game on the field was a lot of fun. It is such a beautiful field, and awesome to play on. And we got that first win! 4-0!” Tague said.

It was a longer process than the team expected for the field to be completed, due to the weather. “The field was finished on time, in the time frame that was expected. But El Niño pushed us back because we wanted to wait for the field to dry,” baseball coach and Athletic Director Vince Dell’Aquila said. The team has played a total of 13 away games this season; if there had been no rain, approximately half of those games would have been at home. “The district declines to disclose the total cost of the renovation,” Dell’Aquila said. But he pointed out that the money was used to update the drainage system, and to replace the old park grass with real baseball grass. “I think the reason why the project took so long is because the field needed time to sit so we didn’t tear up the new grass,” senior Quinn Thomas added.

While their new field was being updated, the team members had to think of alternative areas in which to practice. “We tried using the JV softball diamond, but it didn’t work out like we wanted it to,” Dell’Aquila said. “We focused more on hitting in the cages: tee, and soft toss. Something we weren’t able to do was live batting practice.” Not only did the team have to practice on a different field, it had to play “home games” on nearby fields at Campolindo, Acalanes, and St. Mary’s College. “We had to take a bus to these other games which was tedious, but it was nice to have a trial run at those fields against not-so good teams to prepare us for when we play Campolindo and Acalanes in league,” Thomas said. The baseball team utilized every facility it could to get the most out of their practice. “We were limited to hitting in the cages, throwing bullpen in the mini gym, and trying to do whatever defensive work on the turf,” junior Nolan Brown said. The Matadors were patient as they awaited their field to be settled and dry. Their first official practice was Monday, April 11. This practice was essential to get that live batting practice in that they have been missing. “It was nice being able to finally practice on our new field. Traveling back and forth to Saint Mary’s took up time from our practices, and our field is as nice as theirs,” Brown said.

“We have a beautiful field, one of the nicest in the area. So it is up to the team now to keep it looking nice,” Dell’Aquila said.