Skylands Park, the former home to pro baseball in Sussex County, N.J., has been sold, clearing the way for pro baseball to return to the area as part of a new league focusing on players just out of college.
The sale price of $950,000 was what we reported several months ago. Investor Mark Roscioli of 17 Mile LLC, closed on the deal Friday. His interest in the ballpark site, we’re told, has little to do with baseball: his financial interest is in developing cell-phone-tower sites. So expect the ballpark site to be hosting a cell-phone tower in the future as well as the ballpark. While Roscioli may be investing in the ballpark to attract a tenant (we’re told it would take a million dollars to bring the ballpark up to pro standards), his plan is to work with a tenant on an investment plan, we’re told.
As for the ballpark: there are plans to bring back pro baseball to the area, as there has been talks between Roscioli and potential tenants. Now, what form the pro baseball will take is in flux; we’ve spoken to all the important figures and come away with some details of what’s already happened and what could happen. What’s under discussion: a team in a lower-priced entry-level league focusing on players just out of college. Because some of its founders have been associated with the independent Atlantic League, there was talk about it being an Atlantic League feeder league, but that’s not the case; any new league would have no ties with the Atlantic League. (There is, however, a chance another pro league could be involved.) There has been an analysis of potential markets (Atlantic City, Sussex County, Worcester, etc.) by the folks developing the new indy league. We expect some firm plans to be announced in coming weeks.
The ballpark was formerly home to the Sussex SkyHawks (independent; Can-Am League) and New Jersey Cardinals (short season A; NY-Penn League).
Photo by Mark Cryan.
RELATED STORIES: New owners: We’ll have baseball in Skylands Park in 2014; Skyland Park debt sold; Atlantic League interested in placing team there; Future of Skylands Park in play; Atlantic League: Big plans for 2014 and beyond; Skylands Park on block; baseball unlikely for 2012; Taxes becoming huge issue for Skylands Park; Skyhawks to go dark?
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