PALMDALE (CBSLA.com) — Investigators on Sunday were trying to determine if a fire at a baseball complex in Antelope Valley was intentionally set.
An act of arson or not, the future of the baseball program for hundreds of kids in Palmdale may be in jeopardy.READ MORE: Gunman Barricaded In RV In South LA After Shooting
KCAL9’s Jeff Nguyen says the tower that houses the lights was heavily damaged and no lights means no games in the dark.
Luc Hauptman, 6, is hoping for a bounce back — when it comes to his field of dreams.
“I was sad,” Luc said.
Hauptman and about 200 kids from the Palmdale Pony Baseball League are at risk of not being able to take the field this upcoming season — after fire damaged their tower.
I’s unclear what caused the blaze but the tower housed the control panels and wiring for the lights on the field.
“About 99 percent of our games are played at night… on this field,” said Luc’s dad, Dan Hauptman.
Most of the parents with kids in the league have long drives to and from work. So evening games are better for their schedule.READ MORE: Hollywood Museum Reopens Wednesday
The league’s president says moving them earlier may cause some kids to drop out.
And that would be a bad thing in this working class community where bad temptations are not hard to find.
Nguyen spoke to many who believed baseball is a positive thing for the community and keeps kids of all ages out of trouble.
“All they’re basically doing is running the street. This gives them structure. Gets them involved with the community,” said Russ Monette.
For Alexis Soberanis, 13, baseball is the diamond in a sometimes rough neighborhood.
“If you have a positive place, you can inspire yourself. Like if you’re bored you can inspire yourself to do whatever you want,” said Alexis.
The league has set up a GoFundMe account to raise #25,000 to fix the tower and keep night time baseball alive.
“It will be very nice of them and they’ll probably have good things in life,” said Alan Soberanis, 10.MORE NEWS: Spirit Airlines’ Massive Flight Cancellation Debacle Enters Fourth Day
Try outs were planned for next week but without help the kids are the ones that may end up be knocked out of the park.