Baseball has continued the growth of its program with the addition of a new video board in right field of Crutcher Scott Field.
The board is part of a series of changes to the field dating back to the shift to an fully turf facility in 2016 and the renovation of the Gilbreth-Scott Team room in 2019. The board itself is an upgrade from the previous, traditional electronic scoreboard.
It varies from the original board by featuring a traditional scoreboard at the base, followed by a 17 x 30 foot video board above it.
The addition of the video board is logical as this year marks the first season of ESPN+ baseball capabilities at the facility. This was a move that included running fiber-optic cable to Crutcher Scott Field, Poly Wells Field and Elmer Grey Stadium for ACUTV ESPN+ broadcasts.
Deputy athletic director for external operations Steve Harrell says the board was a significant aspect of a series of advancements for the program changes.
“We started looking at where we can make strategic investments into our baseball program,” Harrell said. It’s been a lot of things. It’s been trackman software; it’s been player development tools; it’s been nutrition; it was a locker room renovation.”
Harrell also says that the board can add an aspect of fan engagement that Crutcher Scott Field previously lacked. This includes starting lineups, fan votes and replays.
“People’s favorite thing about a video board, I think, is to be able to see the replay,” Harrell said. You know, in baseball, nine innings is quite a bit to sit out in the stands and watch the game, and every once in a while, you’re talking or checking your phone, and you might miss the play, but now you can check the video board and see the replay.
The digital scoreboard below the video board is an OES brand board with more features than the board previously at the location. This includes pitch speed, a clock and changeable home and away team names.
“It’s another step in the right direction for our program,” said head coach Rick McCarty. “There’s gonna be a lot of opportunity there from a game-day experience for our fans, for our players.”
The board debuted in a two-game series versus the Air Force Falcons, with the Wildcats dropping both of those games.
For now, Harrell says ACU baseball and Crutcher Scott Field still have more to come in the with new lights, covered bleachers and upgraded facilities on the horizon.