Jesse Goldberg-Strassler, Mick Gillispie and Kevin Reichard discuss the two biggest stories in the baseball world — spring training and the new MiLB league structure — in this week’s Hot Stove League edition of the Ballpark Digest Broadcaster Chat.
- The poor rollout of the new MiLB league structure and the total disavowal of MiLB history with generic league names awaiting sponsorships. Goodbye Southern League; hello Double-A South.
- MLB missed some golden opportunities to hail this next version of MiLB; instead, the announcement came quietly on a Friday and was soon overshadowed by other MLB news.
- Every agrees that six-game series suck.
- On the plus side, spring training begins today, with pitcher and catchers reporting to many camps. After a brutal weather streak, the impending baseball season is good news.
- Spring training still won’t be the same: no fans will be attending workouts, and ballparks will be filled to roughly 25 percent of capacity.
- The Baseball Thesaurus term of the day: hot stove league, the traditional offseason event heralding the approach of the coming season. They’ve become an endangered species in MiLB and morphed into fan fests in MLB.
Jesse Goldberg-Strassler is the Voice of the Lansing Lugnuts and the author of The Baseball Thesaurus and The Football Thesaurus from August Publications. Mick Gillispie is the Voice of the Tennessee Smokies. Kevin Reichard is publisher at August Publications and Ballpark Digest.