FARMINGTON — The goal of every player in the Connie Mack City League is to one day play for the host team in the World Series.
The atmosphere of playing in front of 6,000 fans at a sold-out Ricketts Park is unparalleled across youth baseball.
So it comes as no surprise many baseball players from across New Mexico are looking to join forces with teams in the Four Corners in the hopes of taking part in the CMWS.
This summer, the city league will feature players from Albuquerque, Las Cruces, Los Lunas, Artesia, Carlsbad and El Paso, Texas, all of whom are looking to aid a local team in hosting the series.
Tristin Rizek, a recent graduate of St. Pius X in Albuquerque, returned this season with 4-Corners after helping Strike Zone win a couple of games in the series in 2013.
Rizek said the baseball environment in Farmington drew him back to the city.
"The Connie Mack World Series is an amazing experience, and, hopefully, we'll get to do it again. We have a good team here," he said.
The 5A champions, La Cueva, will also have a few players joining Rizek on 4-Corners.
"It's a great team and a great group. It's kind of like an all-star team," said infielder Jeff Deimling, a 2014 La Cueva graduate. "To be out here and try to play for a World Series is pretty sweet. Connie Mack has a lot of good competition and gets you better as a ball player."
Jacob Turcotte, who was a junior on the Bears title team this spring, said his familiarity with the coaches and area played a factor in him coming to Farmington this year.
"It's a nice environment to play in, and it's a good experience," Turcotte said. "We've heard good things about it, and we're here to play good baseball."
4-Corners head coach Brett Alexander said the area has solid players, but it's important to have depth, especially within the pitching staff, if any host team wants to advance in the CMWS.
"You've got to go out and get some guys that can throw. This town has good, quality baseball, but we just don't have the No. 1 across the basin," Alexander said. "So you've got to go out and get a few arms that can compete against the D-Bat and the Midland teams. They also just help solidify to lineup."
Alexander, whose team features six players from Piedra Vista, two from Aztec and two from Durango, Colo., said the addition of players from outside of the Four Corners doesn't do anything to diminish the host team feel of the squad that wins the city tournament.
"I think any kid that steps on this field and gets to play in front of this crowd is pretty fortunate," Alexander said. "Whether they're from La Cueva or El Paso or whereever, it doesn't matter. When they're here, they're part of the community."