Melbourne City Council Approves Renaming Crane Field Park in Honor of Tim Wakefield
By Space Coast Daily // November 15, 2023
Tim Wakefield Sports Complex
SPACE COAST DAILY TV: Legendary knuckleballer Tim Wakefield stood before a sold-out crowd of friends, fans and admirers during the inaugural Space Coast Sports Hall of Fame induction in 2012 and searched for words to describe his feelings at the moment.
BREVARD COUNTY, FLORIDA – During last night’s meeting, the Melbourne City Council approved a resolution to change the name of Crane Field Park to Tim Wakefield Sports Complex to honor Tim Wakefield and to provide a long-lasting and permanent testament to his commitment to the City of Melbourne.
Tim Wakefield passed away on October 1, 2023. He was born in Melbourne in 1966 and attended Eau Gallie High School and Florida Institute of Technology until drafted by Major League Baseball.
He was a gifted athlete and held international fame, yet he remained dedicated to our community. He served on the Florida Tech Board of Trustees, and he received an honorary degree and many awards from Florida Tech for his humanitarian projects.
He hosted an annual celebrity golf tournament to raise money for Melbourne’s Space Coast Discovery (formerly Space Coast Early Intervention Center).
He was also dedicated to serving children in the Boston community through programs such as New England’s Pitching in for Kids, Touch ‘Em All, and Wakefield Warriors Program, to name a few.
The Tim Wakefield Sports Complex is located at 1550 Mosswood Drive. It consists of two baseball fields, a softball field, a basketball court, and a multi-purpose field. Crane Community Center and the Pieloch Dog Park of Eau Gallie names will remain unchanged.
Crane Field Park was originally named in 1956 for the late Cecil Crane who was elected to City Council in 1951 and was instrumental in bringing athletic events to Eau Gallie.
To continue to honor and recognize Mr. Crane’s legacy, Field #3 has been renamed Cecil Crane Field.
Wakefield played prep baseball at Eau Gallie High School and college ball at Florida Tech before rising to the big leagues with the Pittsburgh Pirates and the Boston Red Sox.
The Space Coast Sports Hall of Famer Tim Wakefield, 57, died from brain cancer.
In 19 Major League seasons, Wakefield had a 4.41 ERA with a 200-180 record and 2,156 strikeouts. He was best known for his knuckleball.
In 2012, the legendary knuckleballer stood before a sold-out crowd of friends, fans and admirers at the inaugural Space Coast Sports Hall of Fame induction and searched for words to describe his feelings at the moment.
Wakefield, usually a cool customer on and off the playing field, fought back tears welling up in his eyes while thanking the coaches he played for along the way in his long baseball career and for the unwavering support of his family.
“I wouldn’t be here today if not for my high school coach, Ken Campbell, or my college coach Les Hall,” Wakefield said.
“I also would like to thank my wife, Stacy, for allowing me to pursue my dream.”
Inducted in the professional athlete category, Wakefield played prep baseball at Eau Gallie High School and his college ball at Florida Tech before rising to the big leagues with the Pittsburgh Pirates and the Boston Red Sox.
He won 200 games in the major leagues and despite playing in key playoff matchups, the All-Star Game and in the World Series before millions of fans, he said being inducted into the Space Coast Sports Hall of Fame is the top honor he’s ever been given.
“There’s something special about being recognized by those in your hometown,” Wakefield said.
“Melbourne is my home and always will be and this is something I will remember forever. Of all of the awards I have been given, this one means the most to me.”
FOR INFORMATION about the Space Coast Sports Hall of Fame, or to make a nomination, e-mail Contact@SpaceCoastDaily.com or call 321-615-8111.
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