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The Jamestown Jammers are Relocating to Morgantown

The Jamestown Jammers will be relocating to Morgantown next year, according to Mitch Vingle of the West Virginia Gazette. Vingle is hearing this from West Virginia University athletic director Oliver Luck.

When the Pittsburgh Pirates moved to Jamestown for the 2013 season, we heard that this might lead to a move to Morgantown for the 2015 season. WVU was building a new stadium for their baseball team, which could also host a New York-Penn League team.

The assumption here is that the Pirates will continue their Player Development Contract with the Jammers, and make the move to Morgantown next year. The Pirates don’t own the franchise, and only have a two-year deal with the Jammers as their NYPL affiliate. I’ve been hearing things from within the organization that suggest it will be the Pirates playing in Morgantown next year. This has been the assumption for two years, but what I’ve heard lately seems to be based on new information, and not an old assumption.

The stadium in Morgantown is currently in the process of being build. The last thing I saw on the subject had an estimated completion of next Spring, which would be perfect timing for a short-season team to start their season in mid-to-late June. Vingle said that a press conference would be held on Monday at 4 PM, at which time we can expect more details to come out.

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Tim Williams

Tim is the owner and editor in chief of Pirates Prospects. He started the site in January 2009, and turned it into his full time job during the 2011 season. Prior to starting Pirates Prospects, Tim worked with AccuScore.com, providing MLB, NHL, and NFL coverage to various national media outlets, including ESPN Insider, USA Today, Yahoo Sports, and the Wall Street Journal. He also writes the annual Prospect Guide, which is sold through the site. Tim lives in Bradenton, where he provides live coverage all year of Spring Training, mini camp, instructs, the Bradenton Marauders, and the GCL Pirates.

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  • wvwc9092

    Tim, here is the link to watch the construction of the stadium. m.oxblue.com/open/mascarro/wvubaseballpark

  • dr dng

    Tim,
    Remember as always, I am a real amateur at this, but could you take a moment to explain a little about the NY Penn League level? I know I will be able to get to see several of the games if they move to Morgantown. I’d like to be able to explain to others even less knowledgeable than me, “ok, here is the level and quality of players you will see and this is the objective of players. teams, and organizations at this level. So far, since this has been leaked there has not been a great media frenzy about this.

    Thank you.
    Dave Gaudino
    Wheeling, WV

    PS: A game or two in Morgantown would add to my goal each year of a grand slam of seeing at least one game at A, AA, AAA and in Pittsburgh each year.

  • Chris Hershman

    Both WVU and the minor league team will share the field, but will have their own separate locker rooms, offices, etc. The location on top of the hill at University Town Centre is absolutely gorgeous with views of the Allegheny Mountains, the Monongahela River, downtown Morgantown, the WVU Coliseum and the Evansdale campus. Here’s some detailed renderings and plans for how the venue will look and be organized: http://www.wvusports.com/content/files/General/ballpark-renderings-20140123-1.pdf

    Here’s another artist rendering of the park with a bird’s eye view of the ballpark, though I’d refer to the previous renderings for the more nuanced vision of the facility: http://www.wvusports.com/blogs.cfm?blog=baseballBlog&story=25988

    Keep in mind that, starting next year, they will be building a new exit off I-79 between the Granville/Star City and Westover exits, which will be the road heading by the ballpark and connecting with the existing road. Also, there will be an indoor training complex coming later on beyond the right field fence as well as a new municipal park for recreation and other businesses, hotels, restaurants and such in this district (in addition to the ones that are already there).

    • Lee Young

      Chris…thx.

  • cabbo80

    Living in Morgantown my entire life, this is a great move by our town. Chris is so right about the view, this will be a great venue for baseball. I’m so glad it’s a Pirate affiliate and hope that is the long term plan. I welcome all of you to visit and experience a great small city that is all about sports, education and quality of life.

    We’ve been known to toss a few pilsners and root very passionately for WVU, the Steelers and of course the Pirates. Look me up….we’ll shoot the bull.

  • dr dng

    Hope to check out the site on Tuesday when I stop at Sweet Frogs.

    I agree, the few has to be great. Hope the building in the outfield
    does not spoil the view.
    =

    • Paul Hartman

      Last year, late in the season, I attended several games as a media representative in Jamestown NY to check up on several Pirate prospects. When I mentioned to Jammers GM Matt Drayer that the Jammers would, of course, only be in Jamestown through 2014, given the well speculated move to Morgantown, he reacted in complete surprise?

      He said to me, “Oh no, the Pirates will be here to stay.” I tried a second time to tell him that observers everywhere were anticipating a move for the 2015 season to West Virginia. Plus, why would any team move from a modern facility such as State College to the dark ages facility at Jamestown and the even darker recession hit town of Jamestown New York.

      The entire state of New York is reeling from high taxation and lack of jobs. Just across the border, Pennsylvania is booming from the fracking industry while the Empire State ignores the appeal of those in New York who want to get in on the boom. All this, yet, the Jamestown General Manager seemed to be totally unaware of what was going on with his newly associated Pirates organization.

      So I’m wondering how the Jammers staff and the fans in Jamestown are reacting to this latest news of a move to Morgantown WV?

      • wkkortas

        A pro-fracking commentary masquerading as a low-A ball commentary? From someone who has all of one comment in the ol’ Disqus queue? Why is my spidey-spam radar tingling?

        • NorCalBuc

          Thanks for the call-out, wkkortas. IMHO, quality of life and safe water is more important than corporate profits from fracking.

      • smurph

        Perhaps the residents of New York feel it is important to have safe drinking water.

      • NorCalBuc

        Massachusetts has the highest quality of living, highest graduation rates from high school, college, and level of graduate degrees among their population. Along with the highest income rates in America. So, they have the highest taxes, to pay for the highest quality and most educated work force in America. Low taxes? – try Alabama and Mississippi (good luck).

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