Sutter Health Park
Sutter Health Park is the home ballpark of the Sacramento River Cats Minor League Baseball team of the Pacific Coast League. Known as Raley Field from 2000 to 2019, the facility was built on the site of old warehouses and rail yards in West Sacramento, California, across the Sacramento River from the California State Capitol. It is directly adjacent to downtown Sacramento.
Sutter Health Park in 2007
|Former names||Raley Field (2000–2019)|
|Location||400 Ballpark Drive|
West Sacramento, California
|Public transit|| Sacramento Valley Station|
7th & Capitol (southbound)
8th & Capitol (northbound)
|Owner||River City Stadium Management, LLC|
|Operator||River City Stadium Management, LLC|
|Capacity||10,624 (Fixed Seats)|
14,014 (Lawn + Standing Room)
|Field size||Left – 330 feet (101 m)|
Center – 403 feet (123 m)
Right – 325 feet (99 m).
Backstop – 58 feet (18 m)
|Broke ground||October 28, 1999|
|Opened||May 15, 2000|
|Construction cost||$46.5 million|
($69 million in 2019 dollars)
|Project manager||Cordell Corp.|
|Services engineer||Frank M. Booth, Inc.|
|General contractor||JR Roberts Corporation|
|Sacramento River Cats (PCL) 2000–present|
Sacramento Mountain Lions (UFL) 2012
Sacramento State Hornets (NCAA) 2013–present, Occasional
The $46.5 million stadium was built in eight-and-a-half months, but extended periods of bad weather forced the River Cats on a season-opening one month-long road trip, as completion was delayed 45 days. The completion time however was estimated to be about two years. The home opener was played on May 15, 2000.
The stadium is one of the few professional sports facilities in the nation built without a public sector contribution. Although constructed using bonds financed by the River City Stadium Financing Authority, bond payments are paid from ticket, concession, advertising, and other revenues, not taxes. Because the $46.5 million project cost was too large for the host city to finance, Christopher Cabaldon, in his first term as Mayor of West Sacramento, recruited Sacramento County and Yolo County to join his city in a joint-powers agency which became the stadium financing authority. Because of the success of the stadium, its private revenue sources have been more than sufficient to repay the construction bonds and build a bond reserve.
The stadium has 10,624 permanent seats and grass berms in both right and left field for a total capacity of 14,014. Its original capacity was 14,611 and was decreased to 14,414 in 2005 with the addition of a party deck. It further decreased in 2010 with the opening of the Diamond Club behind home plate. The stadium has 2,798 club seats and 750 seats in 36 suites.
The naming rights for the facility were sold to Raley's, a regional chain of supermarkets which is also based in West Sacramento, for $15 million over 20 years. The stadium was not designed with expansion in mind; therefore, if a major league ballclub ever moved to Sacramento there would be significant work required.
There was discussion of the Sacramento Mountain Lions, an American football team in the United Football League, using the field during the 2012 season. A final agreement to this effect was announced on August 6, 2012. The UFL, including the Mountain Lions, abruptly shut down operations in the middle of the 2012 season.
On July 18, 2013, Raley Field hosted a soccer match, a friendly featuring Mexican side Dorados de Sinaloa and Premier League side Norwich City F.C. The game finished 3-0 to Norwich, with goals from Luciano Becchio, Anthony Pilkington and Josh Murphy. The match's attendance was 14,014.
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- "Pacific Coast League". Ballparks.com. Retrieved September 16, 2011.
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- Johnson, Kelly (August 6, 2012). "It's Official: Mountain Lions Will Play Football at Baseball Stadium". Sacramento Business Journal. Retrieved February 20, 2014.
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- "Oilers', Flames' AHL affiliates to play outdoor game". NHL.com. Retrieved 2 September 2015.
- "River Cats' Home to Become Sutter Health Park". Ballpark Digest. August 26, 2019. Retrieved August 26, 2019.
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