Tosa Baseball League renovates underutilized property to expand facilities
The Tosa Baseball League announced that it donated the funds necessary to complete the renovation of two fields at Underwood Elementary School in Wauwatosa.
With a proud tradition of over 45 years of teaching kids the fundamentals of baseball in a positive and fun environment that emphasizes sportsmanship between players, coaches, umpires, and families, the organization felt that efforts to reclaim a 60’ softball field and a 90’ baseball field were overdue.
“Jim Hoefgen, the Tosa Baseball League president, contacted me and asked how the league could make a reinvestment in the community,” said Michael Wick, CPRP, Recreation Director for the Wauwatosa School District Recreation Department. “Underwood was an underutilized property, as the conditions of the site were not ideal for scheduling games. In addition, the recreation department was not targeting Underwood for improvements in the near future. Because of this, the decision was made by the Tosa Baseball League to contribute to the costs of the renovation.”
The refurbishment of both fields took about two months to complete and included:
- Adding 20’ x 20’ x 20’ backstops behind home plate.
- Installing 6’ high chain link fence from behind the plate to the dugouts along the first and third base lines.
- Adding 175 tons of infield mix to the 90’ field and 100 tons of infield mix to the 60’ field, with both fields compacted with a drum roller.
- Laser grading of the fields to ensure proper drainage.
- Installing new base anchors, home plate, and pitching rubber.
- Installing clay in the batter’s boxes and pitcher’s landing area.
- Edging of all grass edges to remove lips.
“The money used to pay for the renovations was collected over a three-year period as a result of community support and sponsorship, as well as the generosity of the families that participate in the Tosa Baseball League,” said Hoefgen. “A main focus of the renovation was to make sure the fields were safe for the kids to play on. We are extremely pleased that we accomplished that goal. Both renovated fields at Underwood Elementary School will be great places for league players to develop their skills for years to come.”
Tosa Baseball League strives to create a family atmosphere and success comes from the contributions of the parent volunteers that guide each team and the league.
“As a result of the refurbishments, Underwood has become a flexible, more playable space that accommodate bases at 60-, 70-, and 90-feet,” Wick said “The way the project turned out is tremendous. This gift cemented Tosa Baseball League’s partnership with the community and school district. We are grateful that Tosa Baseball League selected this project to give back. The renovated fields are a tremendous benefit for everyone that uses the facilities.”
The Tosa Baseball League encourages a competitive level that’s age appropriate where fundamental skills, effort, and teamwork are emphasized ahead of winning a game. With an understanding that children develop athletic abilities at varying ages, the league ensures that all players see even playing time and have the chance to try different positions to determine where they have the best chance to excel.