The venue is called Fabacher Field, and it’s the home of the Acadiana Cane Cutters baseball team. This college-level, minor league-ish squad has been around for 10 or 11 years, depending on how you put it down in the scorebook. "Actually, we're in 11,” begins co-owner Richard Chalmers, “but with Covid, we're claiming that it's our anniversary year, because our anniversary year kind of got chopped up a bit last year."
Lafayette's Richard Chalmers has always been a lover of baseball, particularly minor league games he watched when visiting his father's relatives in New Jersey and Pennsylvania. "I just liked the atmosphere (of minor league ball), I liked the entertainment of the game, I liked the presentation, i just always loved it."
But Chalmers and his wife Sandi knew minor league baseball wasn't really going to happen unless they did something. So “…I started paying attention to Collegiate Summer League Wooden Bat Baseball."
And since 2011, the Acadiana Cane Cutters have hosted college players from all over the country, helping them refine their games and get ready for their next seasons. "I think we've contributed a little bit --don't get me wrong, the kids work very hard, it's about how hard they work, we've given them a platform, a platform to get better a platform to grow on."
Fun fact: the Chalmers' also host 3-to-5 of these players throughout the June-to-August season. And in addition to baseball, there are other fun and out-of-the-box elements that the Cane Cutters have brought to the Lafayette area.
“If I can entertain the kids, it gives the dads an excuse to go, and the moms want entertainment. that's what we tried to do,” explains Chalmers. “That's what I set out to do."
Games begin this week, with the home opener next Tuesday at Fabacher Field. And know this: Owning a club in the six-team Texas Collegiate League is not a cheap venture; owning a team is truly about loving the sport of baseball.
"Well, I can't say we're packed every night, but our crowds are getting better,” smiles Chalmers. “That's not a goal to get rich on baseball, it's a goal to expand on baseball."
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