The Rascals may have River City in their name, but they might be looking for a new stadium to call home.
As of the evening of Oct. 22, the city of O’Fallon locked the River City Rascals professional baseball team, out of the local CharShield Field, 900 TR Hughes Blvd., after the team allegedly failed to pay rent on multiple occasions.
Formerly T.R. Hughes Ballpark, CarShield Field stadium served at the home of the River City Rascals Frontier League baseball team in addition to the Christian High Eagles baseball team.
The initial lease agreement the team signed was to gradually pay back the debt over time, but city officials say the team has not held up their end of the plan, resulting in the termination of the lease.
According to a 2017 lease agreement with the city and verified by O’Fallon Communications Director Tom Drabelle, the Rascals team owed an estimated $122,000 to make up for missed payments.
As for the late rent payments, according to Drabelle, the team currently owes O’Fallon a 2018 overdue balance of about $49,066.67. Per the last negotiated lease, the Rascals are paying the city about $12,100 per year for previously due rent. The team is currently on the 2018 payment but, still owes a remaining $48,400 in four equal installments over the next four years to fully pay back rent. According to Drabelle, this portion is not past due according to the current lease, but it is the result of previously unpaid rents that were negotiated into the most recent lease.
According to Drabelle, the city is currently examining other options for the ballpark, including bringing in a different team or drawing up a new deal with the Rascals to still utilize the stadium sometime in the future.
“Traditionally, it doesn’t get used much in the winter anyway because it’s only been hosting the Rascals and some other events that are usually in the spring and summer,” Drabelle said, “So, this is the downtime for it anyway. We are definitely looking at options, from other teams to more events. Basically, anything is still on the table, including the fact that we’re still having discussions with the Rascals.”