Updated Post 9/16
Mike Harrington of the Buffalo News writes this morning:
It’s been hush-hush until now because of the rules of the minor and major leagues, but the window for MLB clubs to talk to potential new minor-league affiliates officially opened today — and the Bisons and Toronto Blue Jays are now working on the game’s worst-kept secret.
Blue Jays general manager Alex Anthopoulos confirmed to Toronto reporters this morning that the team is speaking to the Bisons about moving their Triple-A club from Las Vegas to Buffalo.
Harrington adds that the only real discussion point is whether the deal will be for two or four years.
As for the Mets, what happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas.
You can follow Mike Harrington on Twitter at @BNHarrington.
Original Post 9/11
The Oklahoma City RedHawks and Houston Astros announced today that they have extended their Player Development Contract through 2014, keeping the Astros’ Triple-A affiliate in Oklahoma City for two more seasons.
“We are very happy to continue our relationship with the Houston Astros,” RedHawks President & General Manager Michael Byrnes said. “The Astros are in the middle of a new and exciting chapter in their franchise’s storied history, and we’re proud to be a part of it.”
The RedHawks became an Astros affiliate prior to the 2011 season. After a 68-75 campaign in the inaugural season, the RedHawks improved to 78-65 in 2012. The RedHawks finished in second place in the PCL’s American Southern Division by just 1.5 games, and it was the best record for a non-playoff team in franchise history.
“We are excited to continue our relationship with Oklahoma City and the RedHawks for another two years,” said Astros General Manager Jeff Luhnow. “The facility is first rate and the environment is excellent for the highest level of minor league baseball. Our prospects benefit from playing there.”
This pretty much narrows down the field for the Mets, as the list of AAA teams without a PDC for 2013 now stands at two cities, not counting Buffalo who want nothing to do with the Mets and Memphis who is close to a new deal with the Cardinals.
The remaining two possible affiliate cities are Las Vegas and Tucson.
All bets are on Las Vegas.