There will be no minor league baseball season this year. Reports also say that more than half of the 160 teams were in danger of failing without government assistance or private equity injections.
With the leagues not having national TV revenues, the season would not be feasible with an estimated 85-90% of revenue related to ticket money, concessions, parking and ballpark advertising. The minors drew 41.5 million fans last year for 176 teams in 15 leagues, averaging 4,044 fans per game. MLB teams are planning for a 60-game regular season and most of their revenue will derive from broadcast money.
The Tigers have agreed to terms with their 1st round draft pick, third baseman Spencer Torkelson from Arizona State University. In addition, the Tigers announced that Torkelson has been added to the club’s player pool for 2020 Summer Camp.
With the signing of Torkelson, the Tigers have now agreed to terms with all six of their selections from the 2020 draft.
As monuments, statues and memorials around the world come under increased scrutiny, some former Most Valuable Players in Major League Baseball are saying they’d like to see a change in future MVP plaques. The trophy is engraved with the name of Kenesaw Mountain Landis in large letters. Landis was baseball’s first commissioner and there were no Black players in the majors during his reign from 1920 until his death in 1944. His name has been on every American League and National League MVP plaque since then. Barry Larkin, Terry Pendleton and Mike Schmidt say they’d like to see it pulled off.
New Orleans Pelicans general manager David Griffin says three of the team’s players have tested positive for COVID-19 and will be in self-isolation until testing shows they can return to team activities without infecting others. Griffin declined to identify the players, citing medical privacy laws.
The positive tests occurred on June 23, the first day all members of the team were tested as part of the NBA’s plan to restart the season, which was suspended in mid-March because of the pandemic. Griffin says the Pelicans have had no players test positive since.
When the Pelicans return to action on July 30 against Utah, they will be 3½ games out of the Western Conference’s final playoff spot with eight games left.
Memphis Grizzlies rookie guard Ja Morant posted and deleted an Instagram photo suggesting he’d replace his name with an expletive on his number 12 jersey in a protest against police. Morant then apologized, saying the post didn’t “accurately convey” what he wanted to share. Morant said he knows “there are good cops” out there.
The league, Nike and the players association are reportedly working on a deal that would allow players to replace the names on the backs of their jerseys with social justice statements.
In the fourth week of the PGA Tour’s return to competition, the field finally starts to weaken at the Rocket Mortgage Classic in Detroit. The top five in the world ranking all entered the first three events. None of the top five is in Detroit. The leading player is Webb Simpson, who withdrew the previous week because someone in his family tested positive for the new coronavirus. Simpson joins Patrick Reed and Bryson DeChambeau as players from the top 10 at Detroit Golf Club. The tournament is in its second year. DeChambeau is on a roll with six consecutive top-10 finishes.
The LPGA Tour lost another tournament when the Canadian Women’s Open was canceled because of travel restrictions and quarantine requirements from the COVID-19 pandemic. The CP Women’s Open was scheduled for Sept. 3-6 at Shaughnessy Golf and Country Club in Vancouver. The LPGA Tour and Golf Canada say it will return to Shaughnessy the last week in August next year.