July 15, 2009
PHILADELPHIA - Saint Joseph's University and the Camden Riversharks have reached an agreement that will allow Saint Joseph's to play its entire 25-game 2010 home schedule at Campbell's Field in Camden, N.J.
The move to Campbell's Field is the first step in the planned transition to playing home games at an on-campus facility in the near future. A new home field for the Hawks is included in the University's master plan for the use of the space on the Maguire Campus that opened in 2008.
"We are excited about calling Campbell's Field our new home," said Saint Joseph's head coach Fritz Hamburg. "Any time you play in a professional park it's an exciting experience for the program. We had a wonderful experience working with the Riversharks last season and look forward to expanding on that relationship in the future."
"It will be a pleasure hosting Saint Joseph's home games," Riversharks general manager Adam Lorber said. "Campbell's Field has all the amenities needed for their fans and players, and we will do everything possible to make them feel at home."
Campbell's Field is a 6,425-seat facility that serves as the home of both the Atlantic League's Riversharks and the Rutgers University-Camden baseball team. The park also played host to the Atlantic 10 Baseball Championship in 2008; the event will return to Camden in 2010.
Since opening in 2001, Campbell's Field has become known as one of the premier minor league ballparks in the country. Famous for its fantastic views of the Ben Franklin Bridge and the Philadelphia skyline, the stadium was honored as the "Ballpark of the Year" in 2003 by Digitalballparks.com and in 2004 by Baseball America.
The Hawks played six Atlantic 10 games at the stadium during the 2009 season, facing off with St. Bonaventure and George Washington. For the past 20 seasons, Saint Joseph's played its home games at Latshaw-McCarthy Field in Norristown, Pa. That stretch marks the longest tenure for a home park in program history.
Last season, Saint Joseph's notched its best conference finish in six years in Hamburg's first year at the helm. SJU's improvement did not go unnoticed by the local baseball scene, as Hamburg was named the Big 5 Baseball Coach of the Year. Next year's team will be led by rising seniors Dewey Oriente, who hit .403 in 2008; David Valesente, who currently ranks 16th in school history with 160 career hits; and Randy Mower, who is on pace to graduate with more wins and innings pitched than any hurler ever to don the Crimson and Gray.