Officials say future of Potter Co. Memorial Stadium relies heavily on MPEV

Published: Oct. 25, 2016 at 10:25 PM CDT|Updated: Oct. 25, 2016 at 10:33 PM CDT
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AMARILLO, TX (KFDA) - The Texas Airhogs baseball team will no longer be playing at the Potter County Memorial Stadium.

Nearly 70 years old, time has obviously taken its toll on the stadium. And Potter county commissioners say its future relies heavily on what will come of the downtown MPEV project.

The stands of the Potter County Memorial Stadium seat 8,500 people, but in recent years, they have been lucky to seat around 1,000.

The Airhogs are the latest team to use the stadium for baseball games, however American Association baseball independent league commissioner Miles Wolff says...not any more.

He tells us with the shape the stadium and field are in, visiting teams did not want to come. And now commissioners are discussing what's next.

"The big variable in all of this is what happens with the MPEV, what happens with whether there will be a major leagues baseball affiliated minor league team," says Potter County Attorney Scott Brumley.

Potter County currently acts as a landlord, as someone leases the stadium and the current lease is up next September. Brumley says though the county does not like to hear people speak badly of the property, the responsibility does not entirely fall on them.

"The terms of the lease explicitly place responsibility for maintaining the playing surface on the SIB, that being Southern Independent Baseball," says Brumley.

If the MPEV comes to fruition, Brumley tells us there will likely not be a demand for Potter County's stadium.

"There are ideas at work about what to do with it, whether it might be to re-purpose that facility for high school and youth baseball," says Brumley. "I could certainly personally get behind that idea."

And if the MPEV doesn't pan out.

"Then I think the task for the commissioners court is to decide how significant an investment they want to make on behalf of the taxpayers in Potter County."

Commissioner Wolff tells us there needs to be a commitment to renovating if this stadium hopes to see a team in the future.

Brumley tells us the idea of a Pecos League team is being explored, however it will have to be approved by commissioners, as the stadium would be sub-leased.

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