Mad River Union
HUMBOLDT – A new, semi-professional baseball team will launch its inaugural season this summer, playing about 40 games in Arcata and Eureka.
Dubbed the B-52s, the team will have a roster of 30 players competing against other summer wood bat teams, most of them coming here to play the Humboldt Crabs.
The Crabs, a separate entity from the B-52s, is the oldest continuously-operated summer collegiate wood bat baseball team in the country. Crabs players must be in college or have graduated just prior to the start of the summer season.
That leaves non-college players and those who are well past graduation without a team to play on. Until now.
McKinleyville resident Patrick Ryan said he got together with Spencer Duggan and Jeff Giacomini earlier this year to hatch the idea of creating a new team.
While the Crabs recruit players from colleges across the country, the B-52s will be mostly local, with only a half dozen or so players from outside Humboldt, Ryan said.
“We just wanted to bring baseball back to Humboldt,” Ryan said.
The only requirement for playing – other than being a good player – is that you have to be at least 18 years old. Older players are welcome, as long as they can hit home runs, and are willing to pay the $350 required of each player. That money helps pay for field rentals, umpires and other expenses.
Tryouts were held last weekend. Spring training will continue until the B-52s’ opening game at 7 p.m., Friday May 30 at the Arcata Ball Park. The B-52s will face the Fairfield Indians. Admission to games will be $5 and attendees are welcome to bring a picnic lunch.
Ryan said that the B-52s will play all the teams that are coming to Humboldt to play against the Crabs. The B-52s will also have some out-of-town games.
This year’s schedule doesn’t include any games between the B-52s and the Crabs, although that hasn’t been ruled out for the future.
For more information about the team, visit its Facebook page by searching for “Humboldt B-52’s Baseball.”