Storm baseball team gets ‘thrown out’ trying to find host ‘homes’ in Steamboat | SteamboatToday.com
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Storm baseball team gets ‘thrown out’ trying to find host ‘homes’ in Steamboat

Former Steamboat Storm player AJ Medina rounds first base and heads for a double as a teammate gets waved home from third base. The Storm spent three years in Steamboat Springs as part of the Mountain West Summer Collegiate Baseball League, which disbanded due to problems housing players in mountain towns.
Joel Reichenberger

STEAMBOAT SPRINGS — After three years in Steamboat Springs, the Storm collegiate baseball team will not be coming home, or even rounding first base, when summer returns to the Yampa Valley in June.

“Dog gone, we were unable to find host families this year for the Storm players, and so we will not have a collegiate team here in town this summer,” said Dave Roy, who helped start the team here. “We had the support last year and were able to pay for some lodging down there at the Flour Mill, but we just can’t afford to do it this year. So, unfortunately, it just isn’t going to happen — maybe next year?”

On Monday, the former Steamboat Springs resident who moved to Tucson last year announced the Steamboat Storm will cease to exist — at least for the 2018 season.



Despite moving away, Roy, who coached several teams in Steamboat Springs including the Sailors high school baseball program, has continued to work from Arizona to keep the Steamboat Storm alive.

This spring, he sent out 50 requests to families who had been involved in baseball or hosted players in the past. Only two possible hosts responded. One household offered to keep one player for a three-week stint, and the other was willing to host a player for the entire six-week season.



“I don’t know what the problem is,” Roy said. “The first year it was easy, the second year it was tougher, and last year, it was very difficult. Maybe we can resurrect this thing next year. Maybe times and things will change a little bit, and we will find more host families.”

But even if Roy had found more host families in Steamboat Springs, it was still unlikely the team would take the field. The Mountain West Summer Collegiate Baseball League, which included teams in Summit, Vail, Rangely, Grand Junction, Steamboat and a combined team from Glenwood and Eagle Valley, folded this year because most of the other mountain towns ran into the same housing problem.

Rangely was the only team that was able to find housing for its players this season.

“They are lucky because they have a junior college over there, and the dorm is empty in the summer,” Roy said. 

Roy is hoping to line up corporate sponsors before the start of next season. He believes $30,000 would have covered the cost of players’ housing for the season, but he found little interest from the business community.

“We are trying to think of other ways to approach it,” Roy said. “There are things that you can do with fundraisers, but it’s tough to marshal that kind of money.”

Roy said the news is disappointing because he felt the Storm had started to build a following and was about to take off.

“Unfortunately, that is where it is, but I’m not giving up,” Roy added.

To reach John F. Russell, call 970-871-4209, email jrussell@SteamboatToday.com or follow him on Twitter @Framp1966.


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