Music, league trying to pay off debts

The South Coast League (SCL) forum
User avatar
Site Admin
Posts: 93
Joined: Mon Jun 25, 2007 12:32 am
Location: Warner Robins, GA

Music, league trying to pay off debts

Post by kekemortson » Sun Mar 02, 2008 4:59 pm

This story broke this week in Macon and it was very disappointing to see. At the end of last season they were praising Music GM Ric Sisler for Macon leading the league in attendance. Now he is the scape goat in this mess. I can probably guess he is not TOTALLY to blame for this either, although he must share his part of the blame. Ah, the life in Indy ball..... :(

And my employer was looking into another company outing at Luther Williams Field again this season as last year was so successful.......

By Jay Adams -
With the power and water turned off at Luther Williams Field due to an outstanding debt with the Macon Water Authority, the Macon Music are taking steps to rectify the situation.

The Music will meet with city leaders March 11 to discuss plans to get the team out of a financial hole, but South Coast League CEO Jamie Toole is trying to create a solution before meeting with the city.

Toole, according to SCL chief development officer J.D. Hardin, is working to recapitalize the league and find new financial contributors to help ease what is becoming a tumultuous situation.

"I know he's been working furiously to get some people to help us with some of our debts, but also to set us up for year two," Hardin said. "So there's no doubt, people talk about us owing money, but it's not like we're trying to run from it or hide from it. It's a situation where we're working (hard) to get out there and get these things paid off, because we don't want anybody mad at us."

The Music fired general manager Ric Sisler on Thursday. Hardin wouldn't speculate as to why Toole made the move, he but did say Toole wanted someone in that position who could bring in money for the league.

The Telegraph reported Thursday that manager Phil Plantier said he has not received all his paychecks or compensation for housing and travel. He also said he has had a difficult time reaching Toole about the situation.

"I hate that Phil feels that way about us," Hardin said. "When bad situations go wrong, people's emotions get involved, and they just start spewing information, and whether they think about it or not, it may not be correct.

"I don't know whether it's all correct or not, but I hate that Phil feels so betrayed by the league or whatever he wants to call it."

The Telegraph received several e-mails Thursday concerning more areas where the SCL owes money, including a moving company that said it has not received payment and still has some of the league's property.

Another e-mail sent to The Telegraph came from the former Anderson Joes director of community relations and ticketing, Diana Vossbrinck, who said she was laid off in September and still has not received all her paychecks. Upon the most recent communication with Toole, Vossbrinck was told her remaining checks were in the mail. But, she wrote, the league "still owes me no small sum."

Hardin, however, said there is another side to the story.

"Regardless of what we did elsewhere, there are people who still owe us quite a bit of money," he said.

The money owed to the league and the Music comes from sponsors and vendors, "whether it be (for) an outfield billboard, a program ad, whether it be a fireworks sponsorship," Hardin said. He declined to mention any specific names of those indebted to the league or the team.

The league is trying to get that money from those who still owe, but that's not the reason the SCL is facing such financial hardship.

"The money people owe us wouldn't offset everything, but I guarantee that it would help a lot," Hardin said. "It would help it out a tremendous amount."

Hardin said the league has made big strides in paying off what it owes to various entities. He said in several cases the league has paid off a huge chunk of debt with only a small amount still outstanding.

"Our business isn't the only one that's in debt to people," Hardin said.

South Coast League Fires Music GM
Last Update: 2/28/2008 5:51:13 PM
Author: Suzanne Lawler

There is a new development out of the Macon Music office.

The Music say you will still see baseball this summer at Luther Williams Field.

But South-coast League CEO Jamie Toole told Eyewitness Sports Thursday afternoon that they relieved general manager Ric Sisler of his duties this week.

Toole says they need a general manager who can go and bring in revenue.

The league says they did make a couple of other personnel changes.

J.D. Hardin, who was a part of the Music's public relations staff last year, is now in charge of league development.

And they brought on Jason Gold as an Assistant GM for the Music.

Toole says they plan to sit down with the city March 11th to go over their unpaid bills. ... ryid=49558

Site Admin
Posts: 17
Joined: Mon Feb 25, 2008 5:17 pm

Post by Mark » Mon Mar 03, 2008 9:11 pm

:rolleyes: Interesting. So, according to Toole, all the reports of unpaid personnel, unpaid utility bills, and unfulfilled promises circulating throughout the league are all the fault of the sponsors! First its the coaches, then it was the local front office managers, and now its the sponsors. When is Toole going to 'fess up and admit that it was the league that screwed up. If the same problems are happening in all your markets, then the problem isn't with the local front office. Firing your staff for own mistakes might make one feel empowered, but it doesn't solve the problem.

Site Admin
Posts: 18
Joined: Sun Jul 22, 2007 4:21 am

League Mess

Post by Nuckinfuts » Wed Mar 05, 2008 3:33 am

Sponsors not paying their bills may have contributed to the league's problems but it cannot account for all of them. I thought Ric Sisler seemed sound but I do agree that the fund-raising for this league was lacking. I was at the Championship game and you would have thought it was a fledgling little league field. They had run out of everything, there were no fireworks and very little enthusiasm for the inaugural championship game. I can't understand why the cities of these leagues haven't stepped up and tried to help this league and its individual teams climb out of the deep hole they've got themselves into. Aren't there any baseball-happy welldoers out there who've got a heart for the game and some mula to help? I'd do it if I had it! The money generated from the fans coming to the games, staying in hotels, eating at the restaurants, and the team's players staying in the area are avenues for income. Lord knows they frequent the restaurants often. I'm sure the local vendors in these cities might be interested in helping -- they should have realized the difference with the team there and not by now. Come on people, look at the potential -- what else do these areas have? Think bigger guys -- some of these leagues generate quite a bit of money for their localities, but they had to start somewhere...and with assistance. Good luck SCL.

Site Admin
Posts: 17
Joined: Mon Feb 25, 2008 5:17 pm

Post by Mark » Wed Mar 05, 2008 9:39 pm

Surprisingly, I agree. I know it seems like I've soured on the league, given some of my acidic comments of late, but the truth is, we need these teams. I know Albany does! Some of the problems were, no doubt, due to the learning curve--such as week-night games running well into September and crappy food. And, too, the City of Albany could be more supportive in performing needed updates to the stadium such as awnings and a better sound system. But there's no doubt that the Peanuts have proved themselves to be a regional draw, given that most of the attendees are from out of town. That has to translate into tourism dollars.

I should also give the boys in Albany a little credit in that they seem to be listening to their critics. I noticed that the new coach is trying to reassure fans that some of the old faces will return, and that we will still see the same style of baseball to which we (the fans) have become accustomed.

I'm willing to give the League office another chance, but they're going to have to change the way they do business if they want to survive. They're going to have to put the fans first, make excitement on the field paramount, and keep their promises to local suppliers. If they can do that, this league might survive into year 3. Otherwise, they have a VERY difficult road ahead of them.

I want to see baseball stay in Albany. I want them to continue bringing sights, sounds and smells of REAL baseball to the masses (as opposed to the the game million-dollar prima donas in the Majors offer us). I'm ready for the season to start. I just hope it does.
Last edited by Mark on Fri Mar 07, 2008 7:59 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Post Reply

Return to “SCL”