The Savannah Bananas (summer collegiate; Coastal Plain League) will remain at Grayson Stadium for at least five years after agreeing to a new lease with the city.
Not that there was much of a mystery to the proceedings: the Bananas are one of the most successful summer-collegiate teams out there, with a 88-game sellout streak recorded before a 2020 campaign limited by COVID-19 mitigation measures. The new lease for Grayson Stadium does feature a rent increase, from $20,000 to $25,000. But the key part of the new lease calls for the Bananas to contribute at least $250,000 over the first five years toward capital improvements. There are plenty, as you would expect in a ballpark that first opened in 1926. But making that $250,000 go much farther: the city expects to spend $2.5 million on the ballpark with money generated from T-Splost 7, a local sales tax. According to the Savannah Morning News:, there is a long list of upgrades and issues to address, including the grandstand, bleachers, outfield wall, scoreboard, restrooms, locker rooms and air conditioning. The Bananas and the city will map out a plan to address these issues.
So the yearly rent is closer to $75,000. That’s relatively high on the summer-collegiate front, but not among the highest: the Prospect League’s Lafayette Aviators committed to a yearly rent at Loeb Stadium of $120,000, with more due the city if team revenues exceed $800,000.