CALDWELL, Idaho — Not only are sports in the Treasure Valley rebounding from the pandemic, but they're also growing.
The Canyon County Spuds is a new collegiate summer baseball team that plays at Wolfe Stadium in Caldwell.
"It is fun to watch baseball and be at a live game again," Tick Sweet, a fan at the Spuds game, said.
Beyond the opportunities the team is giving college baseball players during the summer, there's also a lot to offer fans.
Brisket nachos, two-dollar beers, and a competitive baseball game are just some of the things you can expect at Wolfe Stadium.
"I got a signed autograph and it is fun to be out here," said Spuds fan Caleb Wagner.
The Spuds are a part of the Expedition Collegiate Summer Baseball League, offering an opportunity for college players to get more reps before their season begins.
“Baseball players are improving every year so being able to come out in the summer and getting 60+ games in and to get you better and ready for next year is huge,” Noah Stevens, Spuds pitcher, said. “I’ve learned a lot just being able to communicate with your teammates, and my confidence level has increased a lot on the mound by being able to command my pitches.”
There are a few players from Idaho, but most of the team comes from all over the country.
And it's not just about getting experience on the field; it's about being a positive member of the community and impacting our youth.
“It is kind of crazy. Not too long ago, I was going to games and looking up to those dudes, and that is what you are trying to be is someone that other people can look up to and kids can look up to," Henry Clark, Spuds pitcher, said.
Wolfe Field is the place to be this Summer with great baseball, food, and fun! Come make memories that will last a lifetime at the next Spuds home game! #gospuds #tatertown #spudsnation #canyoncountyspuds #wolfefield #spudsmerch @Exp_League pic.twitter.com/SGLXFAgPZo— spudsbaseball (@spudsbaseball) June 7, 2021
“Talking to little kids, being able to sign a baseball for them. I remember when I was little going to games and getting my baseballs signed so it's a really cool experience to talk with the youth and get them ready because maybe one day, they’ll come out here and play for the Spuds,” Stevens said.
Between every inning, the team brings kids out on the field for fun competitions like dizzy bat, potato toss, and races around the bases.