Spudders will host spring games, Raptors to take over in the summer
This is a Ridgefield baseball story, but it also is a Clark County baseball story.
High school programs from throughout the region will be headed to Ridgefield today and Saturday, celebrating the all-weather baseball field at the Ridgefield Outdoor Recreation Complex (RORC).
The RORC will be home of the Ridgefield Raptors in the summer. The Raptors are a new team in the West Coast League, a wood-bat league for college baseball players.
The new stadium, and the new baseball field, though, will be the home for two teams.
“The two main tenants of the baseball field are the Raptors and the Ridgefield Spudders. We are co-tenants of the field” said Gus Farah, the GM of the Raptors. “We’re building a nice alliance not just with the city and the school district, but with the Ridgefield Spudders baseball team.”
The new field for the Raptors is the new field for the Spudders.
The Spudders will open that new field with a 5 p.m. game Friday against Kalama. There will be a pre-game ceremony beginning at 4:40 p.m., with former Ridgefield coach Art “Ossie” Osmundson throwing out the first pitch.
“It’s a game changer, to be honest,” Ridgefield baseball coach Nick Allen said.
His Spudders will be going from a field that was not ideal to the “absolute best” facility, the coach said.
“The venue is gorgeous and will give us more tools to develop our athletes,” Allen added. “Beyond that, it gives us a venue to really connect with the community. Hopefully we can be a small part of making the RORC a place for the community to gather and enjoy baseball.”
Baseball will be played before the first official game. Mountain View, Union, and La Center will play in a jamboree starting at noon Friday. They will play each other in three-inning games.
On Saturday, 11 teams will meet up for a jamboree, with mini-games starting at 10 a.m. Scheduled to be there are: Hudson’s Bay, Woodland, Evergreen, Columbia River, Camas, Prairie, Battle Ground, Skyview, Kelso, Southridge, and host Ridgefield.
“Everything’s ready” to host high school baseball in the spring, Farah said.
The bleachers for the stadium have yet to be installed, but there are more than 600 premium seats plus picnic tables.
“This thing is coming together,” Farah said. “It’s pretty now.”
Long term, Farah said the goal would to one day host a WIAA final four for baseball.
For now, Clark County and Ridgefield are thrilled to have an all-weather baseball field.
The future of baseball starts today.
Note: For more information on the Raptors, visit their site at: https://ridgefieldraptors.com/