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Texas Collegiate League Welcomes Lake Charles Gumbeaux Gators

Lake Charles, La. (Dec. 19, 2023) – The Texas Collegiate League (TCL) announces the addition of the Lake Charles Gumbeaux Gators as the sixth team in the league for the upcoming 2024 season. This expansion marks a significant milestone for TCL expanding its footprint in Louisiana with the third team in the state, alongside the Baton Rouge Rougarou and Acadiana Cane Cutters.

The Lake Charles Gumbeaux Gators will play a total of 48 games, including 24 home games at McNeese State University’s Joe Miller Ballpark in Lake Charles. The season will kick off on May 30 and run through July 28, promising an exciting minor league baseball experience for players and fans alike.

The Lake Charles Gumbeaux Gators roster will feature a diverse mix of 30 players from Division I, II, III, and Junior Colleges, showcasing elite talent from Southwest Louisiana and across the nation. The TCL’s reputation for being heavily scouted by major league baseball makes it a sought-after destination for underclass collegiate baseball players seeking to elevate their skills during the summer months.

“Highlighting our role as the baseball capital of Louisiana, this team adds another layer to our existing lineup of events,” Eric Zartler, the senior vice president of sports, said. “It elevates our sports profile and enhances tourism, making Lake Charles an even more appealing destination.”

Four ownership groups, which include Mike and Sharamie Moore, Joey and Lydia Odom, Brent and Julie Reeves, Luke and Stacey David, and Daniel and Kayla Odom, jointly own the team, with each group contributing to the success and growth of the Lake Charles Gumbeaux Gators. Sam Moore, currently the director of sports relations at Visit Lake Charles, will serve as the general manager, overseeing the roster, players, sponsorships, and day-to-day operations.

“We can’t wait to bring the high-energy Gumbeaux vibes to Joe Miller Ballpark,” Moore said. “We are bringing in a talented roster of top-notch players that are bound to make it an electrifying baseball season.”

Season tickets and packages will become available soon, offering fans an opportunity to secure their spot for a summer filled with thrilling baseball action. Gameday and other sponsorship opportunities are available. A streaming service will be in place for fans unable to attend in person, with season passes available for the streaming service.

In an effort to build strong community ties, the Lake Charles Gumbeaux Gators are actively seeking host families to provide a welcoming home environment for players during the summer. Host families will play a vital role in the players’ experience, offering a bed, two meals per day, access to laundry facilities, and the chance to form lasting relationships. Interested individuals are encouraged to contact Moore for further information on becoming a host family.

“This TCL expansion marks a significant milestone for Southwest Louisiana,” Kyle Edmiston, the president and CEO of Visit Lake Charles, said. “With a powerhouse roster and strong community support, the Gumbeaux Gators are set up for success, promising not only an exciting inaugural season of baseball but also a boost for our destination as fans from near and far make their way to our backyard.”

Since its establishment, the TCL has been a breeding ground for talent, with over 300 TCL players drafted by major league teams and no fewer than 20 making it to the big leagues. The league’s commitment to providing a wholesome, minor league-type atmosphere using wooden bats aligns with its mission of offering quality, inexpensive entertainment in a distinctly Southern, intimate atmosphere while promoting the game of baseball in the communities involved.

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