Wednesday, December 29, 2010

NORTH AMERICAN LEAGUE SETTLES ON TWO SIX-TEAM DIVISIONS; PAUL ABBOTT OFFERS HIGH PRAISE

Breaking News! Breaking News! We are just like the breathless TV announcers, with our story centering on the announcement that the North American League will only have two divisions (instead of the widely discussed three) with six teams in each.

It almost had to happen since there were only three teams remaining from both the Northern and United Leagues, and it seemed like too much of a stretch to make the Western Canada teams play in the league with the Northern teams as one highly-placed official had indicated was possible or to place a travel team in the United bracket. Travel still will not be easy in either bracket.

The Eastern Division breaks down this way: Edinburg, San Angelo and Rio Grande Valley (Harlingen) in Texas plus Lake County (Zion), Rockford and Schaumburg, IL.

The Western Division will have Calgary and Edmonton in Canada, Tijuana (The Embajadores) in Mexico, Yuma, AZ, Chico, CA and Maui, HA. Somewhat surprising is the omission of Orange County (Fullerton, CA).

HOW'S THIS FOR PRAISE?

Paul Abbott was such a good pitcher he was in the major leagues off and on from 1990 to 2004, putting up a 43-37 record and winning 17 of 21 decisions with Seattle in 2002. And, he obviously is a fan of the Independent game, especially after managing Orange County (Fullerton, CA) in the Golden League last season.

"My time with the Flyers was the richest experience and really (the) most fun I've had in organized baseball", the 43-year-old said as he departed his one season of managing (51-35) to become pitching coach at Lowell, MA in the Boston Red Sox system.

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1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Bob,
My son was picked up from the Arizona Summer League to play with the Tijuana team after they shut down in Mexico and moved to Yuma. Most of their home games were played on the back practice field for home games. I will be shocked if the Golden Baseball League has a Tijuana team in 2011. The GBL's largest draw of crowds came from Tucson and MLB moved in there for 2011 so I bet the Toros are done in Tucson. I sincerely hope that the three leagues joing together will make them stronger, but I personally am afraid that the travel that may be required by each team will be a much larger cost than most of these teams will be able to endure. I sincerely hope that I am wrong, but only time will tell. I truly hope they get the league all worked out and my son gets picked up by another team through all of this.
Regards,
Jim Burris