Spring cleaning at County Stadium

YAKIMA, Wash. -- Around my home and your home, it's spring cleaning time, right?

But, when your home seats thousands, that's a big job.

The last sign of the Yakima Bears at County Stadium: just a crumpled-up banner in a big pile of mess. The new ballpark residents, the Yakima Valley Pippins, are full steam ahead with cleaning up, revamping and getting the house in order for the upcoming inaugural season of college all-star West Coast League baseball.

Director of Operations Noel Zanchelli says, "We're making a mess for a good cause. What we're doing is out with the old, in with the new. What you're seeing behind me, I'm not entirely proud of. However, I will say I'm proud of the fact that we are cleaning house."

And, sprucing up the house that has been pretty much ignored since the Bears bailed and moved to Oregon after the 2012 season. But, the Pippins in full-on fix-up mode. Fresh Pippins green paint coming on the outfield walls and dugouts - dugouts that will be enlarged and moved out closer to the field of play. A new groundskeeper has been hired, the grass is going get some much-needed TLC, and that old, smelly couch that's been living in the clubhouse for I have no idea how many summers is outta here. Repainting the players' digs too.

Noel says, "Just because you see a mess now doesn't mean you're not going to see a fantastic new stadium in about a couple of months."