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Is Bakersfield on cusp of new ballpark?

Bakersfield BlazeThe sale of the Bakersfield Blaze (High Class A; California League) is in final stages of MLB approval — which means speculation about the team’s next phase, a new ballpark, is close to beginning.

It’s an open secret in MiLB circles that the sale of the team included plans for a new privately financed ballpark, pretty much the only way you’re going to see a new facility built in California these days. The new ballpark would replace venerable Sam Lynn Ballpark, a WPA-funded facility pretty much on its last professional legs.

The new owners, Chad Hathaway and Gene Voiland, have received Cal League and MiLB approvals; all that’s waiting is the MLB approval. Once that comes, many in Bakersfield are anticipating an announcement about plans for a new ballpark in town. Columnist Jeff Evans says a new ballpark site is already chosen: “Many people have told me a site is picked out — it will be located somewhere in the open plot of land on the northwest corner of Coffee and Brimhall roads.”


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