While I do enjoy putting together different potential scenarios for how Minor League Baseball will look next year, I am hoping that their plans are made public early next week as speculated because there are still so many unknowns that it seems like a futile exercise to do any more conjecture. Now with that being said, Baseball America reported that there will be three High A leagues instead of the four that we thought. So while it sounds like the Carolina League name will be discarded in favor of the more geographically correct Mid-Atlantic League, I’ll update my structure one more time to indicate one possibility of how things may look. And if any other information comes out this weekend, I will incorporate that as well.
I will also incorporate the speculation from Ballpark Digest that the Astros will be getting a Midwest League team. To do that, I’ll assume the Astros stay at Quad Cities and Kane County is the odd man out. To break up the Mid-Atlantic League and South Atlantic League, there isn’t a clear distinction between the two in this version although I tried to keep it as geographically separated as possible, but I ended up with Delmarva and Lynchburg as SAL outliers. While Delmarva is further north and Lynchburg is too far west, all of the teams closer to the coast end up as part of that league as it now includes Down East, Carolina Mudcats and Fayetteville. Now if the Orioles were to do something like drop Bowie, making Aberdeen their AA team and Delmarva their High A team, things could fit much better. And some other team would get added back to the South Atlantic League also, like Chattanooga as an example.
The other struggles are where the Marlins and Rays High A affiliates would fall, so I listed both in two places (Beloit and West Virginia). I’m still assuming that the West Virginia Black Bears have a Mid-Atlantic team with no obvious affiliation, although that could also make sense as Trenton too. And really there are many other assumptions that could be wrong that cause this entire thing to fall apart.
So let me know what you think of the latest version. I’ll keep making updates when new information is available.
This is my best attempt at piecing together the leaked information with some attempt at logic and keeping as much in place from 2019 as reasonable. Red denotes changes. Blue denotes ownership stake. Question marks are things I made up.
So according to this Minor League Baseball would look something like this:
International League (AAA)
Buffalo Bisons – Blue Jays
Charlotte Knights – White Sox
Columbus Clippers – Indians
Durham Bulls – Rays
Gwinnett Stripers – Braves
Indianapolis Indians – Pirates
Jacksonville Jumbo Shrimp – Marlins
Lehigh Valley IronPigs – Phillies
Louisville Bats – Reds
Nashville Sounds –
Norfolk Tides – Orioles
Worcester Red Sox (2019 Pawtucket Red Sox) – Red Sox
Rochester Red Wings –
Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders – Yankees
Syracuse Mets – Mets
Toledo Mud Hens – Tigers
Pacific Coast League (AAA)
Albuquerque Isotopes – Rockies
El Paso Chihuahuas – Padres
Fresno Grizzlies – Nationals – Move to California League (Low A)
Iowa Cubs – Cubs
Las Vegas Aviators – A’s
Memphis Redbirds – Cardinals
Oklahoma City Dodgers – Dodgers
Omaha Storm Chasers – Royals
Reno Aces – Diamondbacks
Round Rock Express –
Sacramento River Cats – Giants
Salt Lake Bees – Angels
San Antonio Missions – Brewers – Move to Texas League (AA)
St. Paul Saints – Twins
Sugar Land Skeeters – Astros
Tacoma Rainiers – Mariners
Wichita Wind Surge (2019 New Orleans Baby Cakes) – Marlins – Move to Texas League (AA)
Eastern League (AA)
Akron RubberDucks – Indians
Altoona Curve – Pirates
Binghamton Rumble Ponies – Mets
Bowie Baysox – Orioles
Erie SeaWolves – Tigers
Harrisburg Senators – Nationals
Hartford Yard Goats – Rockies
New Hampshire Fisher Cats – Blue Jays
Portland Sea Dogs – Red Sox
Reading Fightin Phils – Phillies
Richmond Flying Squirrels – Giants
Somerset Patriots – Yankees
Trenton Thunder – Yankees
Southern League (AA)
Biloxi Shuckers – Brewers
Birmingham Barons – White Sox
Bowling Green Hot Rods? – Reds?
Chattanooga Lookouts – Reds
Jackson Generals – Diamondbacks
Jacksonville Jumbo Shrimp – Marlins Move to International League – AAA
Mississippi Braves – Braves
Montgomery Biscuits – Rays
Pensacola Blue Wahoos –
Rocket City Trash Pandas (2019 Mobile BayBears) – Angels
Tennessee Smokies – Cubs
Texas League (AA)
Amarillo Sod Poodles – Padres
Arkansas Travelers – Mariners
Corpus Christi Hooks – Astros
Frisco RoughRiders – Rangers
Midland RockHounds – A’s
Northwest Arkansas Naturals – Royals
San Antonio Missions – Diamondbacks?
Springfield Cardinals – Cardinals
Tulsa Drillers – Dodgers
Wichita Wind Surge – Twins?
Carolina League Mid-Atlantic League (High A)
Aberdeen IronBirds? – Orioles
Asheville Tourists? – Braves?
Brooklyn Cyclones – Mets
Carolina Mudcats – Brewers Move to South Atlantic League?
Down East Wood Ducks – Rangers Move to South Atlantic League?
Fayetteville Woodpeckers – Astros Move to South Atlantic League?
Frederick Keys – OriolesFredericksburg Nationals (2019 Potomac Nationals) – Nationals
Greensboro Grasshoppers? – Pirates
Hickory Crawdads? – Rangers
Hudson Valley Renegades – Yankees
Jersey Shore BlueClaws? – Phillies
Lynchburg Hillcats – Indians Move to South Atlantic League?
Myrtle Beach Pelicans – Cubs Move to South Atlantic League?
Salem Red Sox – Red Sox
West Virginia Black Bears? – Marlins? Rays?
Wilmington Blue Rocks – Royals
Winston-Salem Dash – White Sox
(Low A) (High A)
Beloit Snappers –
A’s Marlins? Rays?
Bowling Green Hot Rods – Rays – Move to Southern League (AA)?
Burlington Bees – Angels
Cedar Rapids Kernels – Twins
Clinton Lumber Kings – Marlins
Dayton Dragons – Reds
Fort Wayne TinCaps – Padres
Great Lakes Loons – Dodgers
Kane County Cougars – Diamondbacks
Lake County Captains – Indians
Lansing Lugnuts – Blue Jays
Peoria Chiefs – Cardinals
Quad Cities River Bandits – Astros
South Bend Cubs – Cubs
West Michigan Whitecaps – Tigers
Wisconsin Timber Rattlers – Brewers
(A – Short Season) (High A)
Boise Hawks – Rockies
Eugene Emeralds –
Everett AquaSox – Mariners
Hillsboro Hops – Diamondbacks
Salem-Keizer Volcanoes – Giants
Spokane Indians –
Tri-City Dust Devils – Padres
Vancouver Canadians –
Blue Jays A’s
(High A)(Low A)
Fresno Grizzlies – Rockies?
Lake Elsinore Storm – Padres
Lancaster JetHawks – Rockies
Modesto Nuts – Mariners
Rancho Cucamonga Quakes – Dodgers
San Bernardino Inland Empire 66ers – Angels
San Jose Giants – Giants
Stockton Ports – A’s
Visalia Rawhide – Diamondbacks
Florida State League
(High A)(Low A)
Bradenton Marauders – Pirates
Charlotte Stone Crabs – Rays
Clearwater Threshers – Phillies
Daytona Tortugas- Reds
Dunedin Blue Jays – Blue Jays
Florida Fire Frogs – Braves
Fort Myers Mighty Mussels – Twins
Jupiter Hammerheads – Marlins
Lakeland Flying Tigers – Tigers
Palm Beach Cardinals – Cardinals
St. Lucie Mets – Mets
Tampa Tarpons – Yankees
South Atlantic League (Low A)
Asheville Tourists – Rockies Move to Mid-Atlantic League?
Augusta GreenJackets –
Carolina Mudcats? – Brewers
Charleston Riverdogs –
Columbia Fireflies –
Delmarva Shorebirds – Orioles
Down East Wood Ducks – Rangers
Fayetteville Woodpeckers – Astros
Greensboro Grasshoppers – Pirates Move to Mid-Atlantic League?
Greenville Drive – Red Sox
Hagerstown Suns – Nationals
Hickory Crawdads – Rangers Move to Mid-Atlantic League?
Jersey Shore BlueClaws – Phillies Move to Mid-Atlantic League?
Kannapolis Cannon Ballers – White Sox
Lexington Legends – Royals
Lynchburg Hillcats? – Indians
Myrtle Beach Pelicans? – Cubs
Rome Braves – Braves
West Virginia Power – Mariners
NY-Penn League (A – Short Season)
Aberdeen IronBirds – Move to Mid-Atlantic League?
Brooklyn Cyclones – Move to Mid-Atlantic League
Hudson Valley Renegades – Move to Mid-Atlantic League
Mahoning Valley Scrappers
Norwich Sea Unicorns
State College Spikes
Staten Island Yankees
Vermont Lake Monsters
West Virginia Black Bears – Move to Mid-Atlantic League?
Williamsport Crosscutters Appalachian League (Rookie – Short Season)
Bluefield Blue Jays
Johnson City Cardinals
Pulaski Yankees Pioneer League (Rookie – Short Season)
Grand Junction Rockies
Great Falls Voyagers
Idaho Falls Chukars
Rocky Mountain Vibes