In an announcement made to a crowd of area residents, community leaders and media, Carleton Davidson Stadium in Springfield, Ohio was named as the new home for the Champion City Kings. The Kings will play, beginning in the 2014 season, in the Prospect League, a collegiate wood bat league with 11 teams ranging from Pennsylvania to Missouri.
Dating back to the Springfield Champion City team in the 1877 League Alliance, the community has a rich baseball history, much like many cities in the Midwest. The team will be the third in Ohio along with the Chillicothe Paints and the Lorain County Ironmen. However, the closest Champion City Kings rival in the Prospect League will be the Richmond (IN) RiverRats.
“The Prospect League is excited to add Springfield to our roster of communities hosting our brand of quality summer collegiate baseball” said Prospect League Commissioner Dave Chase. “We are here today announcing the birth of the Champion City Kings in large because of the leadership of the Parks Department, the Chamber of Commerce along with Wittenberg University and Ron Heineman.”
The National Trail Parks and Recreation District entered into a scheduling agreement that would provide access to the stadium for 30 home games in the 2014 season.
“We’re proud to call Springfield our home and be a part in strengthening the community with this great American past time,” said Ronald Heineman, owner of the Champion City Kings. “We have been welcomed to Springfield with open arms and couldn’t think of a better location to make our home. I have hired Rick White as our General Manager not only for his extensive baseball background, including over a decade as a major league pitcher, but also for his deep ties to his hometown community, Springfield...the Champion City.”
“We are truly excited about adding a franchise that will play at the Carleton Davidson Stadium,” said Leann Castillo, director of the National Trail Parks and Recreation District. “The combination of this areas passion and history of baseball is an incredible opportunity to provide affordable entertainment and additional revenue for local businesses.”
The Kings will play a 60 game schedule beginning in late May through early August, beginning in 2014.