Guthrie to help fund Ashland prep field

ASHLAND — Former Ashland High star Jeremy Guthrie, a starting pitcher for the Kansas City Royals, has offered to provide funding for an all-purpose, artificial-turf field at his alma mater, according to an Ashland Public Schools press release.

The field would provide nearly unlimited use for the football and soccer teams and would also be used for activities such as PE classes, youth soccer and football, band and cheer.

The cost is estimated to be at least $500,000, said the release, depending on site preparation and which company is selected for the project.

It's unclear how much Guthrie would donate. The school district is exploring other revenue sources, which might be necessary for completion and possible expansion of the project, said the release.

Class 5A Ashland is the only 6A or 5A school in southern Oregon that does not have an artificial field.

Guthrie graduated from Ashland as valedictorian in 1998. He was a three-sport athlete, then attended Brigham Young and Stanford. He was selected in the first round of the 2002 major league draft by Cleveland and also pitched for Baltimore and Colorado before being traded to Kansas City in July 2012.

Guthrie, who signed a three-year, $25-million contract in November, is coming off his best season. The right-hander was 15-12 with a 4.04 ERA. He had 111 strikeouts in a career-high 2112/3 innings.

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