Chronological Tour: Stop 362

New Ballpark for Laredo

Main (home plate) entrance to Uni-Trade Stadium, Jul-2012.

A look in from the right-field concourse.

The view from directly behind the plate.

Quick Facts: Rating: 3 baseballs
Uni-Trade Stadium, originally listed as City Baseball Stadium, replaced the abysmal Veterans Field as the home of professional baseball in this city on the Rio Grande.

While the new ballpark is clearly superior to the old one in many ways, I found it difficult to give it a superior rating. Part of the problem may be that the park was still incomplete. They promise a 12,000-square-foot kids’ play area down the left-field line as well as a walk-around concourse, but the play area was all dirt and the berm was not all in place when I arrived two months into the Lemurs’ first season in the American Association.

In addition, there is no lineup board in the ballpark; also, while all the players are identified on the video board as they come to bat, the public address announcer does not generally announce the fielding position for each batter. That makes it difficult for a fan who missed the starting lineups to fill in a scorecard. I don’t think I had all the positions marked properly until the fifth inning.

The park faces a traditional northeast, but the designers made the left-field alley shorter than the one to right field. If Laredo had the prevailing westerlies that are common in the northern part of the state, that would be fine. However, winds along the Rio Grande tend to blow upstream, and so the ball travels exceptionally well to left field.

The Lemurs went extinct after the 2016 season. A nasty dispute between team co-owners involving allegations of fiscal misappropriation could not be resolved to the satisfaction of the city, which owns the stadium. As a result, the club was dissolved only a few weeks prior to opening day. The league placed a (mostly) road team into the schedule to replace them, although that club will play a few games in Salina, Kan., which was home to a Pecos League team in 2016.

Game # Date League Level Result
1198 Sat 28-Jul-2012 American Assn Ind. Wichita 3, LAREDO 2
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