Friday, October 26, 2007

LEAGUE SHUFFLES AND THE RUMOR MILL

A few ramblings heading into a weekend of World Series baseball...

MORE GAMES FOR MORE TEAMS IN GOLDEN LEAGUE

The official addition of former Northern League entries Edmonton and Calgary certainly solidifies the Golden League, but I find the 12-game expansion of the schedule also intriguing. Instead of a 76-game schedule from June to August, the GBL teams will now start in late May and play 88 games, finishing up in early September. It seems entirely possible the Golden League still could add other teams, most likely Canadian, possibly getting to 10 franchises for 2008.

Meanwhile, the Northern League already has announced its schedule with, you guessed it, only six teams, half of what the venerable circuit had as recently as 2005 when it led Independent Baseball with nearly 2.2 million in attendance. Rumors indicate some of the remaining clubs may want out next fall.

YANKEES SIGN TWO FROM ISREAL LEAGUE

The New York Yankees have become the first major league organization to sign players out of the Israel Baseball League, which debuted this summer with players from nine nations. The Yankees will give an opportunity to an outfielder who is a native of Australia and a catcher from the Dominican Republic. I would expect a few players from the Israeli league will find their way into Independent leagues by spring.

MANAGERIAL SLOTS FILLING UP

Several Independent teams have signed new managers within the past few days, but one job still open is that with the newly-named Harlingen (TX) White Wings. Eddie Dennis has retired from the team known as the Rio Grande White Wings during the first two seasons of the United League. General Manager Dave Kost has made it clear the team wants someone who "will weave his way into the community" in addition to leading a competitive team.

IS NO NEWS GOOD NEWS?

Nothing definitive has been announced on whether Nashua, NH will be back to defend it Can-Am League title, although various sources have been mentioning possible managerial candidates they have heard of for the Pride. That seems very positive, but it also would indicate veteran skipper Butch Hobson has choosen not to return.

Our regular Independent Baseball Insider column will dig deeper into some of these topics in its regular slot next Thursday.


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1 comment:

Anonymous said...

The news I want to hear soon is whether the CanAm will be even more Canadian by next season. Can you dig up the latest on the efforts being made to revive Montreal and Ottawa as members of this indy league, expanding it to a good 12? And what about the Plymouth RiverEels in MA? It seems only likely that they should join the CanAm also.
Will the Atlantic expand to ten by finally adding the teams hoped for from the Meadowlands and Yonkers NY? We know Southern Maryland is now ready.