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Gary happy with progress as Farragut Baseball looks ahead
Final of a two-part series

Facilities improvements and future plans are two parts of a four-part outline as compiled by Farragut Baseball, Inc. president Jeff Gary, who labeled the 2006 Spring season “successful.”

“I told the board members, ‘I felt like we couldn’t have done a better job,’” Gary said. “Everybody worked hard, and it was a great team effort.

“Basically, when I took the presidency at the first of the year, I outlined a number of things that I wanted us to do in the spring two thousand six season and beyond,” Gary added.

While FB, Inc.’s “Bragging Points” and “Administrative Improvements” were revealed in last week’s farragutpress, the final of a two-part series focuses on “Facilities Improvements” and “Future Plans” for the organization, which organizes games in spring and fall leagues for about 1,000 baseball players ages 5 to 18.

Facilities improvements:

• Worked with professional grounds crew to do “dirt and grass” improvements on Fields Nos. 2, 3, 4 and 5. “These guys do work for U-T and they are very well-schooled in what they do,” Gary said, adding that the cost was “roughly” $5,000.

• Added new netting and re-worked old netting on Field 4 to limit lost foul balls and damage. “We have lost a lot of foul balls that have gone back and into the woods, also there’s also a concern with all the cars that are parked up there,” Gary said. “... We raised [netting] higher ... and then we extended it down the foul lines.” Gary estimated the cost at $5,000.

• Purchased a small pitching machine for league “evaluations” costing about $75, Gary said.

• Partnered with Farragut Rotary Club to finish a variety of “punch list” items in order to open the new concession stand “on the hill” at Fields 4, 5 and 6. Restroom improvements and pavement in front of the new stand are among the upgrades. Gary estimated the cost at $10,000.

• Finished construction of a fence behind new concession stand and repaired fencing on Fields 7 and 8. Added protective black plastic fencing at Field 5. The FB, Inc. president estimated the cost at $5,000.

• A change in soft drink sponsor resulted in new, free scoreboards all eight fields, including scoreboards with timers on Fields 1-6.

Future plans:

• Have appointed board member Mark Hogan to chair a committee to look at long-term and short-term facilities needs. He will report findings back to board this fall.

• Plan to work with professional grounds crew to bring Fields 1, 6, 7 and 8 up to the grooming level currently enjoyed by Fields 2, 3, 4 and 5.

• Construction is under way on a new, permanent concessions facility at Field 1 that is intended to service all fans and players at the three fields along Northshore Drive.

• Board has updated Code of Conduct to ban the practice of “Player Poaching,” where coaches attempt to persuade parents to have their children join a new team — or persuade players themselves. League officials will communicate this code to all coaches heading into next season.

• Travel coach selection process streamlined and upgraded.

• Plans are under way for a new, permanent free-standing Web site.


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