Peter O’Malley said recently that he has had discussions with Major League Baseball about taking over Historic Dodgertown, the venerable Vero Beach complex.
Historic Dodgertown–which includes Holman Stadium (shown above)–was the longtime home of spring training for the Brooklyn and Los Angeles Dodgers. The Dodgers played their last spring training game at Holman Stadium in 2008, and Minor League Baseball eventually began leasing the facility with the goal of using it for youth tournaments, umpire school, corporate events and other activities. However, MiLB encountered financial issues when operating the complex, prompting O’Malley and his group to later take over the lease.
Since then, Historic Dodgertown has found success hosting sports tournaments, camps, and other events. O’Malley believes that it could be taken over by MLB down the road and, in a recent interview, stated that that he has met with MLB commissioner Rob Manfred and other league officials. More from TCPalm:
Minor League Baseball had heavy losses and planned to close the complex in 2011. That’s when O’Malley; his sister, Terry Seidler; and former Dodgers pitchers Hideo Nomo and Chan Ho Park formed a partnership to take over the lease and run the business. It eventually made a profit in 2016.
O’Malley said Tuesday it’s time to take the business to another level and to ensure Historic Dodgertown remains a significant community asset when he’s gone.
“Dodgertown is worth saving and enhancing, and we’re getting ready for the next chapter of that,” he said. “I’m very proud of what we do here, but I want to see it taken to the next level.”
O’Malley said he has met multiple times in New York, Los Angeles and Vero Beach with MLB Commissioner Rob Manfred and other officials. Baseball officials could not be reached for comment Tuesday.
Though no longer home to a team on a full-time basis, Historic Dodgertown and Holman Stadium has been hosting MiLB action in the form of the successful Jackie Robinson Celebration Game that is played annually on April 15. That date commemorates the anniversary of Robinson’s first MLB game, played on April 15, 1947.
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