Chicago Cubs pitchers and catchers report to Spring Training today (many Cubs players are already in Arizona), so yesterday was a good day to cut the ribbon on the team’s new ballpark and facilities in Mesa. In attendance, per those who made it out: Tom and Laura Ricketts, Theo Epstein, Jed Hoyer, Rick Renteria, Arizona Governor Jan Brewer, and Mesa Mayor Scott Smith (who is running for governor).

Folks gave speeches, nice things were said, and, by all accounts, the place looked fantastic. I can’t wait to get out there, myself, in the first week of March. HoHoKam was a fine park, but I have a feeling that the new park is going to immediately strike you as state-of-the-art.



“This new ballpark and player development facility will allow our players to better train and compete,” said Tom Ricketts, per a Cubs release. “To achieve our goal of winning a World Championship, we must be able to provide our players with the world-class facilities they deserve.”





The undercurrent of struggle in getting the same thing done in Chicago is fair to read into Ricketts’ comments, even if he didn’t make it explicit. At least the spring facilities are done, and will be available to help Cubs players and prospects all year long.

Carrie Muskat has a more robust write-up on the event and the park, as does Mark Gonzales, which are worth a read as Spring Training gets underway. Some picture tweets from those in attendance:




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