Brock: Sacramento’s sluggin’ Solons: ‘Pure amateur’ and 233 feet down the line

From Corey Brock at The Athletic on May 7, 2020:

Professional baseball returned to Sacramento after 14 years amid considerable fanfare and a palpable sense of confusion.

There had been a Pacific Coast League team in one iteration or another from 1909, but attendance started to sag after the big-league Giants began playing in San Francisco in 1958. Two years later, the Solons bolted for Hawaii.

But in 1974, the city was undergoing a sort of baseball renaissance with native sons Dusty Baker, Larry Bowa, Rowland Office and brothers Ken and Bob Forsch playing in the majors. Sacramento had surpassed the one-million mark in population, and new Solons owner Bob Piccinini was certain his team would be a hit in a city without a major sports tenant (the NBA’s Kings wouldn’t relocate to Sacramento until a decade later).

The problem: There was no ballpark in place for the 1974 season — and no plans for a new facility.

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Originally published: May 7, 2020. Last Updated: May 7, 2020.