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USC raises price to use baseball field from $4,000 to $18,285; City Section says no thanks

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Adrian Gonzalez (left) and Alec Garcia of Cleveland won’t be getting play in the City semifinals at USC this season as they did last year because of costs.
(Eric Sondheimer / Los Angeles Times)

The City Section, which has played its semifinal baseball games at USC for the last few years, is moving the semifinals to Lake Balboa Birmingham High on May 22 and 23 because of a major price increase in using USC’s Dedeaux Field, according to Abel Navar, coordinator for the baseball playoffs.

USC charged the City Section $4,000 last year, school spokesman Tim Tessalone said. Navar said that was for four days of use. This year, under a new policy, USC was offering the facility for $18,285 for three days of use, Tessalone said. That would include rental and expenses, such as security and ticket takers. In the past, the City Section supplied its own security and ticket takers.

Tessalone said rental fees at USC have been raised across the board for use of athletic facilities. The City Section was given the community rate.

Navar said Birmingham offers the best alternative facility for hosting the Open Division and Division I semifinal games because of parking and seating. The winners advance to the championship games on May 25 at Dodger Stadium, which has hosted the City final for 51 years and given the City Section financial breaks every season. The expenses for playing at Dodger Stadium are around $16,000 and primarily to pay for personnel and security.

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Reseda Cleveland, Birmingham, Woodland Hills El Camino Real and Chatsworth made it to last year’s semifinals.

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