Paul Matney seems to be a serious expert on baseball and its potential interest in his hometown.
The retired Amarillo College president hit the stump this fall to campaign for approval of a multipurpose event venue in downtown Amarillo. Part of Matney’s pitch was that Amarillo “is a baseball town.”
The MPEV received voters’ endorsement on Nov. 3 in a non-binding municipal referendum. The Amarillo City Council then ratified the results and voted unanimously to proceed with development of the MPEV.
Then, what do you think was revealed just this week?
Melissa Dailey, head of Downtown Amarillo Inc., told the Local Government Corporation that, by golly, she’s had some informal contact with a Class AA minor-league baseball franchise that might be interested in setting up an operation in Amarillo.
Dailey said she is not at liberty — yet! — to disclose the name of the franchise. She said the city is on a “short list” of communities being considered.
Hey, didn’t Paul Matney predict this might happen if voters approved the MPEV?
Yes, I believe he did.
The LGC is moving forward, per the City Council’s advice. It will report to the council regularly as it continues its work toward developing the $32 million MPEV.
And now the conversation might include a minor-league baseball outfit, with major-league connections, that could move into the MPEV once it’s built.
Oh yeah. Paul Matney seemed to be ahead of the curve.