Cuban Combing the Books
You’d think this was Lebron James or Bret Favre. Mark Cuban has been in the Dallas area news just about everyday with regard to his interest in the Texas Rangers and the latest has him doing his due diligence. He was supposed to say yesterday whether he’d make a play at the team but as this went to press, I hadn’t heard anything.
In other Rangers news, it was reported that the bankruptcy auction of the Rangers was going to go as scheduled on August 4, 2010. The creditors were trying to get this date pushed back at least a week but bankruptcy Judge Michael Lynn ruled that the delay was unneccesary.
San Jose/Athletics Talks Heats Up
It looks like San Jose is moving forward with their plans to try to bring the Oakland Athletics to town without MLB’s consent. Mayor Chuck Reed announced last week that he was going to ask the city council to put the ballpark measure on the upcoming November ballot even though MLB’s special committee had yet to determine what the best outcome for the Athletics would be.
The big hitch is San Jose is right in the middle of Giants country and the team still opposes a move to San Jose. Reed had some time pressure though because in order to get the measure on the ballot, it has to be decided by August 3, 2010 which is less than a week away. The measure being considered has the Athletics paying for the ballpark and the city supplying the land and the infrastructure around the ballpark.
Of couse shortly after Reed’s announcement, Bud Selig issued some statements of his own. He said the league was both disappointed and surprised by the announcement and that the stadium referendum would be premature.
HGH Testing In the Minor Leagues
MLB announced late last week that they were going to begin testing minor league players for human growth hormone (HGH) effective immediately. All players will be subject to random blood testing and this marks the first time a league will perform blood testing on its players.
I’ve heard a little about this and while I’m no expert, for someone to test positive the test has to be performed just a day or two after the player is injected with HGH. After that, it’s difficult to tell whether it’s naturally produced or whether it was put there by the player. Still, a lot of this is probably posturing for the next round of collective bargaining agreement negotiations and if it proves a success, then the league might press for it when the next CBA is being talked about.
St. Petersburg Giving Rays Some Wiggle Room
St. Petersburg mayor Bill Foster came out with a plan that would allow the Rays to begin looking at ballpark sites other then Tropicana Field. The city has the Rays locked up until 2027 but Rays ownership has said they’re looking to get out. While this announcement looks like a big deal, it limits the Rays to looking in St. Petersburg or the great Gateway area. According to Field of Schemes, at the end of the day this allows the team to look at two other spots to put a stadium without much more flexibility.
Something has to give because I was watching Monday’s game where Matt Garza pitched a no-hitter and there were a ton of empty seats. Kind of sad for a team that many think is the second best team in all of baseball. Paid attendance for the game was just over 17,000 and the Rays 24th in overall attendance.
Minor League Wrap
The New York Mets and the Buffalo Bisons extended their player development contract for another two years through 2012. The International League team became the Mets Triple-A affiliate last year and it’s one of three minor league affiliates that the Mets have in the state of New York.
The California League hit a big milestone last night as the 40,000th game in the league’s history was played. The actual 40,000th game will be determined by the end time of each game. The California League began play in 1941.