San Francisco Giants prospects could be reporting to Vancouver in 2021.
The Vancouver Canadians may have a new Major League Baseball club supplying its players for the first time since the 2010 season.
The Oakland Athletics were the previous affiliate to Vancouver before the Toronto Blue Jays took over in 2011. Now the affiliation for Monty’s Mounties may be on the other side of the Bay Area with the San Francisco Giants. Steve Ewen of The Province spoke with C’s co-owner Jake Kerr who indicated there are at least four MLB teams who would be a good partner for the Canadians if the Blue Jays leave.
“One of those clubs could be the San Francisco Giants, considering their current full-season, single-A team is the Augusta GreenJackets of North Augusta, S.C., and their short-season, single-A team is the Salem-Keizer Volcanoes, a Northwest League rival of the C’s who was on the 42-team chopping block list that Baseball America published in November. As well, the Giants’ owners include Jeff Mallett, who’s also one of the Vancouver Whitecaps’ owners.”
Mallett is also from North Vancouver so that local connection to Vancouver could help San Francisco land the affiliation if the Blue Jays leave. Ewen’s article also notes that Kerr is a Giants fan.
Other teams who may be in the mix for a potential Vancouver partnership are the A’s, the Los Angeles Angels and the San Diego Padres. Each of them have affiliates that were on the initial contraction list but there has been speculation the list has undergone a few revisions since then.
Along with the C’s future MLB affiliate being up in the air, J.J. Cooper from Baseball America speculates about what is in store for the Northwest League for 2021.
“Multiple MLB personnel said they have heard MLB is strongly considering the possibility of flipping high Class A and low Class A leagues.
If it did so, the Florida State League, California League and Carolina League would be the low Class A leagues moving forward, while the Northwest, Midwest and South Atlantic leagues would constitute high Class A. There is a possibility that there would be four high Class A leagues in this iteration with a smaller South Atlantic League and a six-team Mid-Atlantic League as well.
Such a move could make significant logistical sense. Teams could promote/demote players from a low Class A team in the Florida State League by simply moving them from one clubhouse to another. Such a move would also provide an easier transition as players would remain at their complexes while still getting their first taste of full-season ball.”
Cooper says the Northwest League could remain in a short-season format in another proposed scenario.
“In this plan, the Florida State League could play the first half of the season in Florida and then head to the cities of the existing New York-Penn League sites for the second half of the season.
FSL clubs aren’t generally big draws overall, but getting fans to games gets even tougher in the second half of the season. By that point many snowbirds have headed back North. Also, the weather gets hot and more humid with regular thunderstorms during the afternoons. In such a scenario, the NY-P would get close to the same number of games as it currently get as a short-season league while the FSL would jettison the worst-performing time of its season.
A similar case could be made with Arizona complexes and the Northwest League. Baseball America has learned that there are Northwest League teams that are not sure if they want to switch to full-season ball. A similar plan could conceivably be laid out where teams could play at their complexes in Arizona from April through mid-June and then head to the Northwest League.”
For Blue Jays fans clamouring for more baseball in the Lower Mainland in 2021, the possibility of another team taking over as the affiliate for the Vancouver Canadians while still playing at a short-season level would be a double whammy.
At least Vancouver will have a baseball future. The same cannot be said for teams like the Salem-Keizer Volcanoes, the current Giants affiliate in the Northwest League. World Magazine looks at the current situation in the Oregon city.
Congratulations to 2017 Vancouver Canadians right-hander Nate Pearson for an electric MLB debut with the Toronto Blue Jays in which he tossed five shutout innings against Washington.
Pearson’s 2017 Canadians teammate Dany Jimenez also made his first appearance in the majors for the San Francisco Giants after being selected in the Rule 5 draft.
Finally, congratulations goes to 2014 Vancouver Canadians first baseman Ryan McBroom for his first major league home run.
This latest batch of C-Tweets covers a wide number of topics including Canada Day, Joe Kelly, Black Lives Matter, a 2011 Vancouver Canadian strapping on the blades and a 2018 C’s pitcher writing about life in the minors.