A tribute to the origins of baseball in Launceston will be the cornerstone for a new competition following three decades in the wilderness.
The Launceston Baseball League plans to honour past administrator Geoffrey Wallbridge, naming the inaugural trophy after the 20-year-old tragically passed away in a car accident in 1954.
He would have been 85.
The treasurer of the former West Launceston Red Sox Club helped to reinvigorate baseball for a third time in the city after both world wars put a halt to past leagues.
New Launceston Baseball League president Matt Little felt it was a worthwhile exercise to name the winning prize the Wallbridge Shield.
"In an article at the time in The Examiner, they were quite confident in 1951 there would be more playing baseball in Launceston than there would football," he said.
The game did once peak around Wallbridge's death, but petered out by the 1990s.
Baseball had dated back briefly to 1909 when the first teams were the Orientals and the Columbians.
Little announced that the revitalised 2019-20 edition will start with teams named the Swamp Rats and the Browns to relate it to a moniker close to Launceston.
"It gives a unique sense of identity," he said.
ELSEWHERE IN SPORT
"We could have down the track called them the Cubs or the Yankees, but I like the idea of localising the teams.
"There's a native swamp rat that lives in the Churchill Park swamp area so we ran with that, while there is a brown snake nearby to that facility as well so we might have to be very careful if we're looking for balls that happen to go over in the swamp."
The Launceston Baseball League will also begin with a best-of-12-game season, splitting six games either side of the Christmas break.
Plans have been put in place to extend the competition to three or four sides for the following summer.
The opening pitch of the season will be November 10 and played every Sunday, but Little is even flirting with the idea of a midweek "beer league", popular in the US, for more casual games.
He is confident the sport can grow in Launceston after several come-and-try days.
"We are not looking for major league stars here - we want people to try the sport, fall in love with the game and be keen to see it get established here," he said.
The two Launceston teams will combine to face Hobart in a representative clash.
The Southern league has six first division sides and four more in second division.
"I'm very confident with the small base that we've grown here that we can take on their best," Little said.
City of Launceston has redesigned the Churchill Park softball facility to allow for a larger baseball diamond that included Little building a pitching mound to not disrupt the softball field.
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