Armena upgrading infield, look to host pre-season tourney

Posted January 19, 2010


Armena upgrading infield, look to host pre-season tourney

The Armena Royals are looking to add a couple veteran pluggers to help fill out their extremely young lineup, but their biggest change in the offseason won’t be off the field, but literally on the field.

In the late fall of 2009, Anniversary Park’s infield was given a much-needed extra layer of clay and then leveled off finally after years of uneven ground that caused huge problems if any substantial rain hit the hamlet.

However, that’s not all the renovations for the park that has been home to four Powerline Baseball League champions.

“The guy is supposed to spread the shale on it in the spring probably in mid-to-late April,” said groundskeeper and Armena Royals first baseman Josh Lyseng.

A move to shale was always frowned upon in the past as many urban centres and bigger towns had used shale in the past. Shale is becoming more and more accepted as time passes and maintaining it, is usually seen as a little easier than dirt or sand still seen in places like Bardo, Ryley and Tofield.

“I love a good dirt or sand infield,” Royal Jason Buzzell said. “But the Rec Board offered to help and it really will be a major improvement that will help solidify less home games getting moved throughout the season.”

History shows a string of canceled tournaments and big games moved to neutral sites for the Armena franchise with the infield being bogged down.

If the shale can get in by April and grounds crews can clean up the ridiculously large mound and get the field in playing condition, the hamlet hopes to show off the new infield early in 2010 with a pre-season tournament the weekend of May 14-16.

“Some guys had concerns about trying to host a (wood-bat) tournament so early in the season with weather and seeding, but we’ll give it a go,” Buzzell said. “It could be cold, it could be warm, it’s Alberta so any weekend before the end of July would be no different.”

Details of entry fee (should be small) and format (could be only a one day) will be announced in April.

If your team is interested in receiving an early invite, contact Jason Buzzell at buzzell_17@hotmail.com or (780) 485-7411.

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