The Walla Walla Sweets are on the road tonight finishing their first season in the West Coast League. The season has been a successful one.
The team's win-loss record is not particularly good -- 17-27 -- but that hasn't kept Sweets fans away from Borleske Stadium. In fact, the expansion team is leading the league in attendance. The Sweets averaged over 1,400 fans a game. The final home game of the season drew a record crowd of 1,891.
Going to a Sweets game became the thing to do this summer for Walla Wallans. People of all ages enjoyed the games played by some of the best college players in the nation. Teenagers, in particular, made the stadium a gathering place.
Going to a Sweets' game -- hearing the crack of the bat and the roar of the crowd -- was just plain fun.
"This has been an unbelievable experience," Sweets' manager J.C. Biagi said of the first home season. "The support from the community speaks for itself. The guys (on the team) have been an absolute pleasure. We couldn't ask for better attitudes, especially in times when we've struggled. Zachary (Fraser, Sweets general manager) has been unbelievable. The supporting staff has worked really hard to put (together) what has ultimately become a neat thing for the community. I look forward to everything it brings in the future."
So, too, do we.
The Sweets management and its ownership group ran a first-class organization this season.
They made a considerable investment in upgrading Borleske Stadium. They've also invested themselves in this community. One of the team's owners, former major league player Jeff Cirillo, was the featured speaker at the Walla Walla Valley Youth Baseball & Softball fund-raising dinner and auction.
The Sweets, in just a few short months, have become an important part of Walla Walla.
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