It’s official: The Arizona State baseball team is moving from Packard Stadium and to Phoenix Municipal Stadium beginning with the 2015 NCAA baseball season.
The reason for the move is simple: Packard Stadium needs a lot of work in order for the Sun Devils program to remain competitive, and the University wants to either sell or lease the land beneath the ballpark in order to pay for improvements to the Sun Devil Stadium football facilities. With Phoenix Muni open after the Oakland Athletics depart for Mesa’s HoHoKam Park, a move to a pro-level facility made sense. We do expect plenty of hand-wringing over the decision to move baseball off-campus, even to a ballpark relatively close to the school.
And, of course, there’s a little keeping up with the Joneses here: the University of Arizona won the College World Series after moving its baseball program off-campus to venerable Hi Corbett Field, a move that also bolstered the school’s bottom line because of increased attendance.
The Board of Regents have already signed off on a lease with Phoenix.
The move keeps Phoenix Municipal open as a baseball facility. Phoenix has made noise about closing the ballpark, which was also home to Triple-A baseball before the arrival of the Arizona Diamondbacks. When the A’s move out of Phoenix Muni, only one team will be training in Phoenix proper: the Milwaukee Brewers, whose spring-training home is in Maryvale Baseball Park.
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