The Orlando Monarchs and the City of Orlando were selected to host the Inner City Baseball Classic and the Black World Series for the next three years. This is even more reason why Mayor Buddy Dyer and the City of Orlando should invest in preserving and renovating historic Tinker Field.
These events have been a part of the Metropolitan Junior Baseball League (MJBL) since 1966. The games will take place July 25th-August 2nd. Organizers hope it will be a week of baseball celebration and education. Scouts, special speakers and people of influence from Major League Baseball will be in attendance to provide advice to the youth and the Central Florida public on how to make a major career out of baseball. All of this is another reason why the history connected to Tinker Field would provide a perfect backdrop.
The Orlando Monarchs tout a list of partners taking part in making this great event happen including Major League Baseball, the Jackie Robinson Foundation, the City of Orlando, UCF, Bright House Network, and numerous local community partners.
With only 8 months until the tournament, investing in Tinker Field is a must. Our city has literally spent hundreds of millions of dollars on various sports arenas in downtown. There is no reason why historic Tinker Field should not be immediately preserved and renovated by the City and County. The Inner City Baseball Classic and Black World Series should provide enough additional reason why there is no better time than to change course and save Tinker Field.
Cities across America are investing in preservation and renovation of local baseball fields while launching Urban Youth programs and other community efforts. Why not Orlando?
The Orlando Monarchs played at Tinker Field outside of the Citrus Bowl until this year, when Dyer’s construction ate into the field and the full scope of the mayor’s plans were made public. Former Orlando Monarchs General Manager Mark Popkin provided public testimony at the beginning of the year urging leaders to save Tinker Field. Popkin testified that baseball still has a future at historic Tinker Field.
But Tinker Field may be demolished if Mayor Dyer has his way despite the good news from the Orlando Monarchs.