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NATIONALS ANNOUNCE FOUR-YEAR EXTENSION TO WORKING AGREEMENT WITH POTOMAC OF SINGLE-A CAROLINA LEAGUE
The Washington Nationals today announced that they have signed a four-year extension to their Player Development Contract with the Potomac Nationals of the Single-A Carolina League. Nationals President Stan Kasten made the announcement.
“We are excited to extend our working relationship with the Potomac Nationals for four more years,” said Kasten. “The proximity of their facility to Washington has been a great asset to our organization as it pertains to players on rehabilitation assignments and for workouts. We have enjoyed a great relationship with the Potomac ownership and are looking forward to working together in the future.”
Potomac joined the Carolina League in 1978 and currently play in 6,000-seat Pfitzner Stadium, which is located 30 miles from Washington . Potomac began its affiliation with Washington in 2005.
Our condolences to the Thrift family - Maury Brown
Syd Thrift, a former Director of Minor League Operations for the A's, GM of the Pirates, Assistant General Manager of the Cubs, senior vice president of baseball operations for the Yankees, and a man that finished his career from 1995 to 2002 with the Orioles, died today at 77. In total Thrift was a part of the front office landscape for nearly 50 years.
He is survived by his wife, Dolly, sons Jim and Mark and five grandchildren.
Major League Baseball Properties (MLBP), licensing agent for Minor League Baseball (MiLB) and its member Clubs, and TRISTAR Productions Inc., one of the premier producer's of sports collectibles and memorabilia, have reached a multi-year exclusive licensing agreement making TRISTAR the only trading card manufacturer licensed by MLBP to produce nationally-distributed trading cards of top draft picks and prospects within Minor League Baseball.
This new agreement, which introduces TRISTAR into the revamped Minor League Baseball trading card market, designates TRISTAR as the exclusive MLBP national trading card licensee with national distribution rights to produce the first professional base set cards of amateur players selected in the Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft as well as prospects signed as undrafted free agents.
The first TRISTAR Minor League Baseball card set titled TRISTAR Prospects Plus will debut in the fall of 2006 and will include the first pro baseball trading cards of players selected in the June 2006 MLB First- Year Draft. This set will also mark the introduction of Minor League Baseball's "Pro Debut" first-card identification program. The "Pro Debut" logo will identify a MiLB player's first professional baseball trading card with his first MiLB team.
The Indianapolis Indians are currently seeking a sponsorship sales account executive. The selected individual will be responsible for the development of corporate marketing partnerships integrating broadcast, signage, promotions, internet advertising, hospitality, tickets and all other marketing resources.
20 years ago, the Orioles opened a merchandising store in the heart of Washington, DC. Now, that 20-year run will come to an end when the lease expires at the end of December.
The Orioles' Farragut Square store will shut down, and in some senses, provide a victory for fans of the return of MLB to Washington, DC. It was well documented that Orioles owner Peter Angelos was very much against relocation of the Montreal Expos to DC, and at one point said, "There are no real baseball fans in DC."
"For Washington fans, the Orioles store on Farragut Square is a symbol, an emblem of all the years that we had no team and the Orioles did all they could to keep it that way," Colin Mills, president of the Nats Fan Club, said in an e-mail reply to a Sun query. "It's as if the British, after losing the revolution, had kept a royal office open in downtown Boston." (The Baltimore Sun)
Time Warner Cable subscribers found themselves missing the first two innings of an historic game last night when the carrier showed Fox Sports Northwest instead of FSN Prime Ticket. Time Warner Cable started showing the Mariners v. Royals game instead of the Dodgers game, which saw 4 consecutive homeruns.
Jennifer Johnson, a spokesperson for FSN West and FSN Prime Ticket said that a technician in Houston, TX. solved the problem by rebooting Time Warner Cable's receiving system.
This issue componds an already angry Time Warner Cable sports subsriber base after many Southern California sports fans were cutting off the NFL Network at midnight Friday. (The LA Times)
Dan Kenney, the executive director of the new Minnesota Ballpark Authority, conducted a Q&A with the Minnesota Star Tribune on Sunday the 17th. The man in charge of the construction of the new $522 million Twins Ballpark (renderings of which can be seen here) deals with questions that revolve around the bid schedule, naming rights, and public input, to name a few.
Q. For most people, the next big question is when will they see construction start. Is there any possibility the stadium will not be ready for opening day 2010?
A. The preliminary schedules that have been developed show site activity starting in March of '07, and that's site clearance, you know, pulling up the asphalt ... and actual construction starting later in the summer -- July-August time frame. ... I would say at this point we appear to be on track to meet the legislative objective [2010 completion], but it's a big project.
Q. There has been much discussion of what the stadium will look like. Is this something that the Twins, working with their architect, will largely decide, as opposed to the county and the Ballpark Authority?
A. All along the way there's going to be, on the public side, input on decisions they're making because we've got a couple of issues. One is, again, how does the ballpark relate to where it's being built.
Miller's proposed parking and mixed-use structures are shown here just outside centerfield.
While construction of the new Nationals facility is currently on schedule to meet the projected completion date, the two parking structures just outside center field may not. Yesterday, the D.C. Sports and Entertainment Commission (DCSEC), the govenment entity that is overseeing the construction of the $611 million facility on the Anacostia River in Near SE Washington, DC, delivered a contract to developer Herbert S. Miller that had a termination clause allowing for a buyout. Miller has planned to build two 13-story towers that would wrap the parking for the ballpark in mixed use development including a hotel, condos, restaurants and other development. As David Nakamura and Thomas Heath of the Washington Post report (Garage Plan for Stadium At Risk):
The contract includes a termination clause specifying that the commission would pay Miller $990,000 if the project fell through, said a government official who spoke on condition of anonymity because negotiations are ongoing. Miller has until Wednesday to sign the agreement, which would then require approval from Washington Nationals majority owner Theodore N. Lerner.
Lerner and his partners have strenuously opposed Miller's plan, saying they believe it would impede the plan to open the ballpark by March 2008. Under the stadium agreement, the Lerner group has the right to reject development plans on city-owned stadium land if it has reasonable concerns.
Several District government officials said it is unlikely that the owners would endorse the contract. In that case, the deal would be killed, and Miller would be paid the buyout fee, the city officials said. The $990,000 figure is just below the $1 million threshold that would require approval by the D.C. Council.
"We gave Mr. Miller the land disposition agreement today," commission board member William N. Hall said yesterday. He declined to disclose specifics. "It contains a fair and equitable termination provision. I would rather not get into more detail about it than that. We have done it expeditiously and expect an expeditious response."
The Lerner Group, who owns the Nationals, has been opposed to the grand design that was proposed by Miller and backed by Mayor Williams. D.C. Chief Financial Officer Natwar M. Gandhi also was critical of some aspects of the proposal.
The intial start date proposed for the project was September 5th.
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"Our hope was to come to an agreement with the JPA before the end of the season," A's owner Lew Wolff said in a statement.
"The adjustment we offered seemed to me to be equitable and, in my mind, did not require months of delay. We will expect the JPA to honor the current agreement just as we have over the years, and continue to focus on finding another baseball-only venue in Alameda County."
The A's, who share the Coliseum with the NFL's Oakland Raiders, have been searching for a suitable location and funding for a new stadium for several years, branching their efforts into the surrounding area after locating no suitable sites in Oakland.
Recently, Wolff said that San Jose is not a relocation option for the A's given the territorial alignment that has the Giants controlling that county. Instead, Wolff has been in negotiations with Cisco Systems for 194 acres of land in Fremont that would allow Wolff to develop a Ballpark Villiage along with a new stadium.