Garden City police Capt. Randy Ralston has picked up a part-time job, and it's one that will involve him hanging out in a place where he likes to spend his summer nights, only now he will be doing so in an official capaity.

Ralston, public information officer for the Garden City Police Department, has taken on an administrative role with the Garden City Wind baseball team as he continues a lifelong passion for the sport that he hopes will translate into an opportunity for the GCPD.

As the Wind’s director of operations, Ralston said he is better positioned “to enhance police and public relations on a more personal level.”

“Now maybe when I talk to people we can talk baseball and show the community that the police do have a human side and are approachable on different levels,” he said.

The Pecos League of Professional Baseball and the Wind announced Ralston’s new position earlier this month. Ralston and Ryan Klaus, the Wind’s new game day director, will take over leadership responsibilities for the 2018 season left behind by the team’s general manager, Marcus Sabata, who accepted a position with The Jackson Generals, the Double AA affiliate of The Arizona Diamondbacks.

“Although I am excited to work with a first-class organization like The Generals, I will always have a soft spot for The Garden City Wind,” Sabata said in a statement. “I would like to thank The Pecos League, the Wind staff and the Garden City community for such a great experience. I have complete confidence that Randy and Ryan will do a fantastic job. The club is in good hands.”

Ralston will handle day-to-day duties of the team, including marketing and promotion. Klaus will be responsible for game day operations and events throughout the season and anything else that might fall under the “game day” umbrella.

Ralston said his new position will not affect his role as the GCPD’s PIO. He said the league commissioner “understands that my current position with the police department comes first.”

“I am thankful that the City of Garden City and the GCPD are willing to let me take on this new role,” he said. “As a 23-year veteran of law enforcement, I have learned how to multitask and feel that this can be done with great success.”

Ralston describes himself as a lifelong “avid baseball fan” who has coached baseball for many years at multiple levels, ranging from little league to high school. He was also a baseball umpire for nine years and says his family has hosted Wind players since the team’s inception.

“The way it has gone over the last few years, I have been at Lightner Stadium every night anyway cheering and supporting the Wind, so what better way to support the team and organization even more,” he said. “Garden City has been good for the Wind, and the Wind has been good for Garden City. We need to continue this and grow baseball in Garden City. That can only be done by continuing to gain support from the community. I am very excited to get the 2018 season started.”

Ralston said his duties have already begun, but he will become more actively involved with the Wind in January and February. The 2018 Wind season will kick off May 24 against the Trinidad (Colo.) Triggers.

Contact Mark Minton at mminton@gctelegram.com.