The home of the Erie SeaWolves (Class AA; Eastern League) has a new name, as it is now known as UPMC Park. This announcement comes as the result of a naming rights agreement between the SeaWolves and UPMC.
Beginning today, the facility at 110 East 10th Street formerly known as Jerry Uht Park is renamed UPMC Park. The new name will be featured on major signage on the exterior of UPMC Park. UPMC, UPMC Health Plan and UPMC Hamot, will be prominently displayed inside the ballpark with recognition on the scoreboard, home plate backstop, and playing turf behind home plate. In addition, the new name will be featured in the team’s communications, marketing and promotional efforts.
Under the partnership, UPMC and the SeaWolves will continue successful, annual community impact programs including UPMC Health Plan Paint the Park Pink Weekend, C. Wolf’s Super Smiles (a youth dental rewards program), and C. Wolf’s Healthy Challenge (a youth rewards program based on fitness and nutritional choices).
“We are thrilled to have UPMC as our stadium naming rights partner. UPMC is one of the most recognized names in health care and an organization that has been investing in the Erie community over the last several years,” SeaWolves Owner and CEO Fernando Aguirre said. “This is another major statement on the part of UPMC regarding the importance of Erie in their business plans. From our perspective, this is one of the most critical aspects of our financial plans to continue with our long-term commitment to maintain professional Double-A baseball in Erie. The community will continue to benefit from the entertainment value of professional baseball.”
“Since the early days when UPMC Health Plan was just beginning, we have had a business office located in downtown Erie and for about the same amount of time, we have had a wonderful relationship with the Erie SeaWolves. As we celebrate our 20 years of service as a Health Plan, we can take our partnership with the SeaWolves to the next level and deepen our commitment to the Erie community,” Stephen Perkins MD, UPMC Health Plan’s Chief Medical Officer, Commercial & Medicare Products said.
“Our commitment to Erie goes beyond our promise to make high-quality affordable health care services accessible to local residents. Our promise to the community also means reaching out beyond our hospital walls and being a good community leader with partnerships like this,” Jim Fiorenzo, President of UPMC Hamot said. “We are proud to support our Erie SeaWolves, and carry on Jerry Uht’s passion to keep Double-A baseball here in our town. This beautiful venue not only provides a healthy atmosphere for families and friends to gather to enjoy the game of baseball, but also helps boost local businesses throughout the city.”
A world-renowned health care provider and insurer, Pittsburgh-based UPMC also provides nearly $900 million a year in benefits to its communities, including more care to the region’s most vulnerable citizens than any other health care institution. The largest nongovernmental employer in Pennsylvania, UPMC integrates 60,000 employees, more than 20 hospitals, more than 500 doctors’ offices and outpatient sites, and a 3 million-member Insurance Services Division, the largest medical and behavioral health services insurer in western Pennsylvania. Affiliated with the University of Pittsburgh Schools of the Health Sciences, UPMC ranks No. 12 in the prestigious U.S. News & World Report annual Honor Roll of America’s Best Hospitals.
While this is UPMC’s first stadium naming rights deal in professional baseball, UPMC is no stranger to sports partnerships. UPMC Sports Medicine serves as the official sports medicine provider of the Pittsburgh Steelers and Pittsburgh Penguins. The UPMC Lemieux Sports Complex is a regional destination for athletes of every age and serves as the training center for the Stanley Cup champion Pittsburgh Penguins. The UPMC Rooney Sports Complex is one of the leading sports medicine centers in the United States and serves as the practice and training facilities of the Pittsburgh Steelers.
UPMC Park is administered by Erie Events. In March 2016, the SeaWolves announced a new lease with Erie Events to play home games at the ballpark through the 2020 season.
“We would like to congratulate the SeaWolves and UPMC,” Casey Wells, Erie Events Executive Director said. “This announcement speaks volumes for the partnership that Erie Events has established with SeaWolves owner Fernando Aguirre and his commitment to Erie. Fernando has delivered on everything he promised from the start, and we are confident that his long-term plans and commitment are further solidified by today’s announcement.”
This is the second major announcement of the day from the SeaWolves. Along with securing the naming rights with UPMC, the team has extended its player development contract with the Detroit Tigers through the 2018 season.