The Chico Heat Scorch the Great West League in Year One

The Chico Heat return to Nettleton Stadium in 2016 was a huge success! The Heat dominated the Great West League in what was the league’s inaugural season.

page-1_img04The Heat 2016 accolades ranged far and wide in their return to Chico. Awarded GWL Coach of the year, Heat skipper Fred Ludwig built a Championship ball club winning the first ever GWL Championship on the road against the Medford Rogues. Starting pitcher and workhorse of the Chico Heat pitching staff, Chico State Wildcat Stuart Bradley was awarded the GWL Pitcher of the Year award.

The community embraced the Heat’s return by setting the GWL single game attendance record with 4,415 fans showing up for the July 4th match-up against the Rogues. Additionally, Chico also led the GWL in average attendance and total attendance and ranked 15th nationally for total attendance for this level of baseball.

Heat baseball has generated some of the largest crowds in Butte County and has proven to be the most affordable family entertainment in all of Chico and the Northern Sacramento Valley.

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GWL Attendance Grows Year Two

Extreme Heat Burns Chico

September 28, 2017, Chico, CA:  Following a stellar inaugural season, Great West League overall attendance showed an increase in 2017.  "We're extremely happy with how our infant league is growing," said GWL Commissioner Ken Wilson.  "We had more fans attend our games this season than last."

Attendance in the recently completed regular season totaled 192,115, for an average of 1,076 per game.  In 2016, the league drew 191,629 in 17 fewer dates.  The 2017 post-season featured 8-games and drew 9,625, for an average of 1,203.  "With a total attendance of 201,740, it's the first time we've passed 200,000," noted Wilson.

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The Portland Pickles drew 50,514 fans, an average of 1,684 per game, to lead the league.  The Pickles average attendance increased 8% over 2016 and ranked #18 in the Summer Collegiate Top 100 Per Game Average Attendance, published by Ballpark Business.

In the 2016 season , the Chico Heat lead the Great West League in both total attendance and average game attendance. The Heat also set the GWL single game attendance record with 4,415 people on the 4th of July. Nationally, in their inaugural season Chico ranked 15th in total attendance and 21st in the country for average attendance.

In 2017, due to the hottest summer in decades, Chico attendance faltered a bit. “We had twice as many triple digit temperatures at game time than we had all of last season which resulted in large numbers of people choosing to stay inside” said Heat GM Hunter Hampton. Despite the extreme temperatures of 2017, the Chico Heat finished second in the GWL attendance derby, setting a new league record for single game attendance of 4,473, averaging 1,337 per game and ranking #38 in the Top 100 ranking

ABOUT THE GREAT WEST LEAGUE: The Great West League is one of the premier summer collegiate wood bat leagues in North America, providing a professional, minor league-like atmosphere for top college players seeking professional baseball careers, while providing affordable family entertainment and enriching the quality of life in its member communities.