by Pim van Nes
Ground preparations for the new baseball and softball stadium complex are underway. Yesterday at 16.00 hrs exactly elderman Michel Bezuijen officially started the construction of the new stadium and clubhouse for Hoofddorp Pioniers by hammering the first pile for the foundation. Alike any building in the Netherlands also the clubhouse and stands of the baseball project Park 21 require underground foundation by driving concrete piles into the soil, reclaimed from the lake of Haarlem 150 years ago.
The first pile was hanging over a home plate shaped board and was driven in by Bezuijen in a white working coat, made available by Vaessen, the construction company sponsoring the first team of Hoofddorp Pioniers. Ten junior players of the club hammered together with aluminium bats for the last few centimeters of the ceremonial first pile. According to club president Ilja Schinkel the stadium will be ready for Dutch home games of next season.
After the ceremony in the present desert area south of Hoofddorp, all officials and invitees gathered for champagne and speeches in good old Toolenburg, the present home of Pioniers in Hoofddorp near cross roads of motor ways, railroads and international airport Schiphol of Amsterdam. Mister-Baseball.com sat down with Mr Bezuijen for a while and mentioned Hoofddorp with its new Home of Sports as a possible good location for MLB Europe at only five or ten minutes by taxi to the airport, connecting their headquarters with close to 100 airlines. “I did leave this suggestion for further consideration with Jason Holowaty, when he was here for the press conference. Of course he could not reply with yes or no, but he and his colleagues in crowded London are welcome for investigating the idea. Here they will be closer to planes and to baseball.”
Photos: Sander van Lubeck