This post originally appeared way back on 21 May 2020.
Minor league baseball is up against the wall, and it’s not because they’re trying to field a long ball to left center.
This article from SI.com says the winds are bad, and changing for the worse:
Following professional baseball’s shutdown in March, minor league clubs now exist in a sort of sports purgatory, 160 affiliates unsure whether they will have games to host and worried about how they will pay employees, settle debts, and potentially return millions of dollars in ticket and advertising revenue to fans and sponsors. Not to mention the existential anxiety they’ve felt since early last winter, when Major League Baseball proposed a plan that would reportedly eliminate 42 affiliates and give big league clubs greater control over the system.
. . .
A Sports Illustrated survey of minor league organizations, sent to all teams in late April, shows just how desperate the situation has become. The responses of 68 clubs—in addition to interviews with executives representing 21 of those teams—make clear that the minor leagues are facing a crisis that could destroy professional baseball in cities across the country. At every classification level, in markets ranging from metropolitan cities to rural outposts, front offices are worried about their clubs’ survival, concerned about the viability of rival teams and wondering how the minors will recover from a pandemic that is pummeling an American institution.
But don’t worry. We’ll be fine.
The way I see it, MountainStar Sports Group will find a way to argue that the City of El Paso has reneged on their half of the one-sided contract they signed back in 2012.
So, they’ll say. Sorry. We meant well. But you know, Coronavirus. So we’re selling the team. Maybe you can convert the ballpark to a used car lot.
It’s time for our local robber baron philanthropists to admit that their plan failed, and El Paso isn’t getting any of the Economic Development they promised us.