RailCats owner purchasing Schaumburg baseball team

By Hillary Smith hillary.smith@nwi.com, (219) 933-3233 | Posted: Wednesday, August 24, 2011 2:20 pm

The Schaumburg Village Board approved the sale of the town's newest baseball franchise to RailCats owner Pat Salvi on Tuesday.

Originally brought to the city by Joliet Slammers owner Alan Oremus, the new Schaumburg team will play in the Frontier League beginning in the 2012 season. Speculation this summer put the franchise in the American Association to create a travel partner for the RailCats.

"I would not want to own a team that would force me to cheer against my RailCats," Salvi said.

The team is separate from the Schaumburg Flyers franchise that was a part of the now-defunct Northern League and that was evicted by the city from Alexian Field for not paying $900,000 in back rent. The city is suing the old franchise.

The new team will have a new name, new logo and a new staff. Salvi said that the sale is 95 percent complete and should be finalized in the next two weeks. Putting a staff in place by the end of September is high on the list to prepare for the 2012 season.

"I already have some ideas on who would be the (general manager) and will we pull anyone from Gary or not, those decisions are being made now," Salvi said.

To separate themselves from the former Flyers, Salvi said a lot of work will first need to be done to the stadium and the image of baseball in the area.

"I think No. 1 we must have a makeover of the field and stadium," Salvi said. "That has to be in pristine condition, because I don't think it was the last several years. So I'm going to work very closely with the Village of Schaumburg in making sure that it's like, Wow, when you walk in.

"You also have to have a name and brand identity that is probably new and distinctive and it breaks away from the old franchise."

Salvi and his wife, Lindy, purchased the RailCats before the start of the 2008 season.

"My first love is and will always be the RailCats," Pat Salvi said.