The reorganisation of the Minor Leagues in North America is a large and controversial topic, one that can be summarised as MLB taking everything over and reforming it to meet the business needs of the 30 ownership groups.
Essentially, just like everything else MLB does these days.
For the A’s, the reshuffle has meant that the Beloit Snappers are no longer our Low-A affiliate, which is handy for those of us who can never remember how we’re supposed to pronounce Beloit.
The Stockton Ports will take on that assignment, with the California League in which they’re based being reclassified from High-A to Low-A, and the open space is being filled by a former Toronto Blue Jays affiliate.
We welcome into the A’s fold the Lansing Lugnuts.
Yes, it’s a curious nickname but that goes with the territory in the Minor Leagues. Apparently it’s due to the car-building industry in Michigan, lugnuts being what we would call wheel nuts. That doesn’t explain why the logo is a bolt rather a nut, but we’ll look past that for now.
Also their promotional games (fireworks nights etc) are known as “Lugnuttiest Days”. One for the Madness fans among you, at least.
The ballpark seats nearly 11,000 and regularly is at the top of the attendance lists in the Mid-West League, so it appears to be a well-run organisation and a good home for an affiliate. It’s approximately 90 minutes drive out of Detroit, or 3.5 hours out of Chicago or Cleveland, if you wanted to follow the A’s on the road and then take in some games at some A’s of the future.
The full A’s affiliate line-up for 2021 will be:
- AAA: Las Vegas Aviators
- AA: Midland Rockhounds
- High-A: Lansing Lugnuts
- Low-A: Stockton Ports
Fingers crossed there will be Minor Leagues games for players and fans to enjoy in 2021.