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New Martinsville management off to strong start

Martinsville MustangsThe new management of the Martinsville Mustangs (summer collegiate; Coastal Plain League), Team Cole & Associates, is off to a strong start for the 2013 season.

For the last seven years the city has owned the Mustangs and subsidized losses. This year, the city decided to go with Team Cole — which also manages the Forest City Owls and Gastonia Grizzlies in the same circuit — and paying the firm $50,000 to manage the team.

The goal to revamp the team and the ballpark offerings has attracted attention from fans — and that’s before new logos are released on May 9. From the Martinsville Bulletin:

Jesse Cole, the firm’s president, told the council on Tuesday that compared to last year, season ticket sales are up 379 percent, team sponsorships have tripled and more than 2,000 “group tickets” — such as those businesses buy for their employees — have been sold. No group tickets were sold last year.

“It’s rocking and rolling” at the field, said Cole.

Cole noted improvements to Hooker Field that baseball fans will see when the stadium opens for [the season]. They include more seating and children’s attractions such as “bouncy castles” and a “dunk tank.”

It looks like good early reaction is leading to an extension of the deal between Team Cole and the city, with a $45,000 contract discussed for 2014 by the City Council and a possible long-term management deal thereafter.

RELATED STORIES: Parsons new GM in Martinsville; Martinsville outsources Mustangs management; Martinsville looks to outsource Mustangs management; Future of Mustangs to be decided next month


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