The Southwest League of Professional Baseball announced Dallas will be awarded a franchise for its inaugural season next spring and the league wants the public's help in naming the team.
Southwest League officials were in Dallas last week, where the city council voted to approve a 30-year lease agreement with Reverchon Sports and Entertainment (RSE), LLC. RSE, along with architects and Suffolk Construction, will design and built the multi-purpose venue for the city.
RSE will own and operate the professional minor league team at Reverchon Park.
Though the Texas Rangers are close by, Dallas is the largest city in the country without a professional baseball team inside city limits.
In addition to professional baseball, the new multi-purpose stadium will be used by the Dallas Independent School District for high school playoff games and amateur baseball leagues, including the North Dallas Amateur Baseball and Mexican Baseball leagues.
"I applaud the Dallas Parks Department and Dallas City Council for having the vision to transform Reverchon Park into an entertainment destination," said Mark Schuster, President of the Southwest League. "The Dallas franchise in the Southwest League will be the largest city that has not had professional baseball until now. Reverchon Park will truly be a unique minor league baseball experience. Fans will able to bike or walk down the Katy Trail to a minor league baseball game in the middle of downtown Dallas."
The Southwest League will open its inaugural season with six franchises. The league has already announced the Waco BlueCats, the Royse City Griffins and the Joplin (Missouri) Miners as members.
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Both the BlueCats and the Griffins will open in new stadiums in their respective cities.
The Joplin Miners will play in Joe Becker Stadium, where Mickey Mantle played his first minor league game. Joe Becker Stadium underwent a $4.4 million stadium renovation in 2014. The remaining two teams in the league will be announced by the end of July.
The "Name the Team" contest for the Dallas franchise will begin at 10 a.m. on July 3. Fans interested in submitting their team moniker can do so by going to www.dallasprobaseball.com.
The Southwest League will play a 112-game schedule split evenly between home and road games.