On Tuesday, the Joliet Slammers had two very important victories.
The team won the Frontier League championship by defeating the Washington WildThings in game 5 on the road in Pennsylvania.
As the team was celebrating their 4-2 victory, back home the city of Joliet and their fans were celebrating a new lease that will keep the Slammers in the city of Joliet… for now.
As Indy Ball Island reported, the city of Joliet had not renewed their lease with the Slammers and were possibly looking at other options for the stadium. That changed on Tuesday when the city council approved a five-year lease to allow the Slammers to continue renting the city’s Joliet Route 66 Stadium.
At first glance, a five-year lease sounds fantastic for fans; however, there are many opt-outs built into the new lease that weren’t there in the previous lease.
The drop in attendance has some city officials worried about cost and revenue.
The new lease now calls for the Slammers to pay $75,000 to the city annually. The previous amount was only $25,000.
And after multiple complaints about the over quality and experience, the new lease states that the “Team shall guarantee to the city, its fans and invitees, first class treatment with respect to the cleanliness of the operation and quality of the product, the efficiency and tastiness of the concession services and such friendliness befitting of a minor league professional team venue.”
Another added provision is that the city of Joliet can terminate the lease with the Slammers (with a minimum of one-year notice) if the city lands an affiliated minor league baseball team.
Slammer representatives and city officials now must meet monthly – instead of annually – “to discuss any other matters that pertain to the use and or lease of the stadium.”
For further details on the lease and specific complaints the city and fans had against the Slammers this year (including concessions, marketing, advertising, and overall fan experience), check out the article from the Joliet Patch “Hug Not Happy With Slammers Stadium Lease.”