BRISTOL - While there isnâ€™t very much to come from the coronavirus pandemic that people will look back on fondly, the Bristol Blues and City of Bristol were able to make some enhancements at Muzzy Field that everyone involved seems to be excited about.
The Bristol Department of Parks, Recreation, Youth and Community services used last summer while the Bluesâ€™ season was canceled to update the infield at Muzzy, install new fences, new LED lights and add a new speaker system. The field will start to see some action once spring is in full bloom and then the Blues will be able to break it in come summer time.
â€śWith the past year weâ€™ve had with covid, itâ€™s exciting to have used that time to get the facility in tip-top shape, do all of the renovations weâ€™ve wanted to do for a while now,â€ť Parks department superintendent Josh Medeiros said. â€śSo that way when we open and have a Bristol Blues season and have the full scope of activity this summer itâ€™s going to be a brand new facility in a lot of ways. Weâ€™re really excited that itâ€™s done and the facility is in great shape.â€ť
Medeiros said the old fences were looking run-down and said the new fences make the stadium look both more attractive and safer while the new lights will be more energy efficient, brighter and work better than their predecessors. All of this creates a better experience for Bluesâ€™ players and fans, while still managing to maintain its historic feel.
â€śI think itâ€™s great that weâ€™ve been able to build up Muzzy even more than it already is,â€ť Blues General Manager Nick Rascati said. â€śThe fence looks great, the lights look awesome and the new speaker system weâ€™re really excited to use. So I think the overall experience, not only for the players, but for the fans increased.â€ť
The renovations were completed at the end of 2020 and the field is ready for the warm weather to become a constant over the upcoming months. With the college baseball season already underway, it is almost time for the Blues to start recruiting players for the summer and introduce a new batch of players to Muzzy.
â€śYou get new lights, a new fence, a new playing surface, I think itâ€™s all exciting as far as thatâ€™s concerned, itâ€™ll be welcomed,â€ť manager RonniePalmer said. â€śMuzzy really didnâ€™t need a lot of work, or any work at all, but itâ€™s always good when you can update and upgrade stuff as far as the facilities. I know the players will appreciate it. I think the fans will appreciate it as well.â€ť
Losing one season and getting an updated ballpark in return is an exchange the Blues would make one time and hope to never be a part of again. Having new facilities to go along with celebrating a return to the field has the potential to make this a special summer for the Blues in the New England Collegiate Baseball League.
â€śI think weâ€™re [one of] the nicest fields in the league, even before the renovations,â€ť Rascati said. â€śWeâ€™re extremely privileged to be able to play on that field every day and soak it in. Thereâ€™s just so much history thatâ€™s gone through it over the years.â€ť
Matt Hornick can be reached at (860) 973-1811 or firstname.lastname@example.org