The Houston Astros have brought some of baseball's best major league prospects to the Quad Cities the past two seasons, and this week they are bringing their 10-year major league groundskeeper to Modern Woodmen Park. Ogden, Iowa native and Iowa State alumnus Dan Bergstrom, the Astros' Senior Director of Major League Field Operations, will be working with the Quad Cities River Bandits grounds crew while he visits Davenport Thursday through Saturday.
"Dan Bergstrom's visit is another reason the Houston Astros have been such great partners, not only in assembling the team playing in the Quad Cities, but also for their collaboration within their entire organization and their commitment to excellence," said River Bandits owner Dave Heller. "We are thrilled to have a major league groundskeeper working with our grounds crew to even further improve the field of the Best Minor League Ballpark in America."
"I am excited for the opportunity to visit the Quad Cities River Bandits," Bergstrom said. "I've heard great things about the award-winning facility, personnel, and baseball operation in my home state, and I'm anxious to see the facility and work with the operations teams that keep the park in top condition."
Bergstrom played high school baseball for Hall of Fame Coach Dick Smith. At Iowa State University, he earned a bachelor's degree in horticulture (turfgrass specialty). He has served as President of three statewide turfgrass associations in his career, including the Kentucky Turfgrass Council, the Nebraska Sports Turf Managers Association, and the Texas Sports Turf Managers Association.
With the Astros since 2004, Bergstrom has worked more than 725 games, including the 2004 MLB All-Star Game and the Astros' 2004-05 postseason runs. He also worked the first World Series game ever played in Texas in 2005.
Bergstrom has traveled to Houston's other minor league affiliates, the Astros' facilities in Kissimmee, Fla., and the Dominican Republic, to assist in playing surface renovation. He also volunteers to help build fields for youth organizations and played a significant role in the construction of the fields at the Astros Urban Youth Academy.
"We are extremely excited to have Dan Bergstrom working with our grounds crew," said River Bandits General Manager Andrew Chesser. "His tremendous knowledge and experience will help us maintain a true field of big-league dreams at Modern Woodmen Park."
UP NEXT: All ladies age 18 and over receive $2 off ANY regular ticket to the Ladies Night game at 7 p.m. Thursday. Gates open at 5:30 p.m., and the team store will offer 10% off women's apparel. Ladies 21 and over receive 2-for-1 $2 drink vouchers on Thirst-Day Thursday, which features $2 drink specials presented by Rock 104-9 and the River Cities' Reader. To order any of the River Bandits 2014 ticket plans - with new lower prices - call the River Bandits box office at 563-324-3000. Season ticket and mini-plan packages start at just seven games and begin at less than $40. Call a River Bandits account representative today to choose your seats and get the details of our various mini-plan packages.
ABOUT THE BANDITS: Having just been named Ballpark Digest's winner of Best Ballpark Improvement in America under $1 million, the River Bandits ownership is making one of the biggest improvements to Modern Woodmen Park since the ballpark was first built back in 1931! A new Ferris wheel, standing 110 feet over the playing field, opened May 24, followed by a new ride called a "Drop and Twist," an expanded 300-foot long zip line, and many other new games and attractions. In 2013, the team unveiled a new 220-foot long dual zip line, a rock climbing wall, and a number of new bounce houses. Last season, the team's major league affiliate, the Houston Astros, saw all six of its affiliates reach the playoffs - the first time in a decade any MLB team can claim such success. The River Bandits were one of three affiliates to reach the championship round and one of two to win their league championship.