Augusta, GA-Bill Heaton, the man who brought baseball back to Augusta in 1988, passed away Monday. Bill not only succeeded at forming a partnership to help return baseball to the CSRA, he was also able make an agreement with the Pittsburgh Pirates to have them affiliated with Augusta's new team in which he originally named after the parent club. Heaton forged an agreement with the South Atlantic League for them to add the Pirates and reorganize the league.
"The GreenJackets will always remember Bill Heaton not only as a Hall of Famer but a great community leader," said GreenJackets Vice President, Tom Denlinger. "Mr. Heaton helped pave the way for families throughout the area to be able to come and enjoy America's pastime in Augusta and we look forward to continuing that tradition."
The team's original stadium was named Heaton Stadium in his honor and the team played there from 1988 to 1993. The former US Army Lieutenant Colonel sold the team in the early 90s and they ultimately became the Augusta GreenJackets and began playing at Lake Olmstead Stadium in 1994.
Heaton was inducted into the GreenJackets Hall of Fame on Friday, July 25. Fans can view his plaque on the main concourse of Lake Olmstead Stadium where it is displayed prominently. The GreenJackets will honor Heaton with a moment of silence prior to their game tonight against the Rome Braves. First pitch for tonight's game is scheduled for 7:05pm and the gates will open at 6:00pm. It is Columbia County Community Night featuring a pre-game business expo on the concourse as well as Tuesday Brewsday featuring half-price off all beverages.
The final season at the Lake is winding down with only 12 more chances to catch your GreenJackets in action. We invite you to Catch the Buzz and come out to Lake Olmstead Stadium to enjoy the fun as Your GreenJackets celebrate with a jam-packed promotional lineup. Tickets start as low as $9. For more information, including promotions, group opportunities and more, visit www.GreenJacketsBaseball.com or contact the GreenJackets Front Office at (706) 922-WINS (9467).
The New Ballpark at Riverside Village is underway and deposits are now being accepted for Full Season Seats for the 2018 season. To learn more visit www.greenjackets2018.com and place your deposit to today. Leaving the Lake, Ruling the River.
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This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.