Marlins Triple-A affiliate owner Lou Schwechheimer dies after coronavirus battle

Lou Schwechheimer, the majority owner of the Wichita Wind Surge, the Miami Marlins’ Triple-A affiliate in Kansas, died on Wednesday afternoon due to complications related to COVID-19. 

He was 62. 

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Owned the Marlins affiliate since 2016

Lou Schwechheimer purchased the New Orleans Zephyrs in 2016, and quickly renamed them the Baby Cakes after that first season. They relocated to Wichita after the 2019 season and were set to kick off their first season in Kansas at the brand new Riverfront Stadium this summer. The minor league season, however, was canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic

“There are no words to express the loss of the entire Wind Surge family,” senior vice president and general manager Jared Forma said in a statement, via the Wichita Eagle.

“Lou was truly one of a kind, someone who never met a stranger. He will be deeply missed by his family and many friends, which included an extended baseball family. Our thoughts and prayers go out to Lou’s wife and daughter at this difficult time.”

Schwechheimer also spent more than 35 years with the Pawtucket Red Sox, and was part of a group that purchased the Charlotte Stone Crabs — the Tampa Bay Rays Single-A affiliate.

“The Wind Surge team will work tirelessly to fulfill Lou’s dreams and visions for the great city of Wichita, a place he was proud to call home,” Forma said, via the Eagle. “We will ensure his legacy lives forever at Riverfront Stadium.”

There were more than 4.3 million confirmed cases of the coronavirus in the United States as of Wednesday afternoon, according to The New York Times, and more than 150,000 deaths attributed to it. The country has reported more than 65,000 new cases each day over the past week, and more than 1,100 deaths each day, too. 

The news comes amid a massive coronavirus outbreak within the Marlins organization in Miami. At least 16 players and two coaches have tested positive in recent days, and the team’s season has been paused until at least through Sunday.

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