Major overhaul in minor league landscape may be at hand

According to, the city of Wichita may have reached a deal with a Pacific Coast League club to move to that city. A part of the deal is that the owners of the AAA team will buy a Southern League team and move it to their current market.

Afbeeldingsresultaat voor Pacific Coast League logo
The current ballpark in Wichita, Lawerence-Dumont Stadium will be torn down after the 2018 season. This means the future of the independent Wichita Wingnuts is at stake. According to a report, a new ballpark will be built on the site of that stadium.

Which team Pacific Coast League team could be in the race to move to Wichita? It must be a market that is near the Southern League hemisphere. One of the three teams that come to mind is the New Orleans BabyCakes. Their stadium lease will expire in 2020. Other teams that are in the same hemisphere are the Nashville Sounds or the Memphis RedBirds. The Sounds may be pretty unlikely as they are in a brand new ballpark that opened in 2015. The RedBirds’ stadium is 19 years old now and their attendance in 2018 was one of the lowest in the league and the second lowest of the teams in the Southern League hemisphere. But… the team is owned by the Cardinals and has signed a 17-year stadium lease deal in 2015 forcing them to pay seventeen million dollars when it moves before the deal expires.

Which Southern League city may lose its team then? The Chattanooga Lookouts are looking for a new ballpark, preferably in the city itself. The Jackson Generals (also Tennessee) and the Mississippi Braves had the worst attendance figures in 2018, 110,798 and 151,352 respectively. Only the Mobile BayBears did worse but that team will move to Madison, a suburb of Huntsville.  With the ballpark in Pearl MS only being 13 years old, it seems unlikely the Braves will move. The ballpark of the Jackson Generals, on the other hand, is twenty-one years old, so that team may be the main candidate to move elsewhere.

According to the report, an announcement about the move to Wichita may be expected on Thursday.

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