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October 2, 2008 October 2, 2008

Posted by atlanticleaguenews in Uncategorized.

Continuing Championship Coverage: Check out the last post for quotes, photos and videos of Somerset’s exciting Game 4 championship clinching win.

Two things I need to point out…

One is Courier News beat writer Ryan Dunleavy’s excellent article on Travis Anderson, complete with a unique Atlantic League twist.

Two is that Sparky Lyle, Anderson and two other Patriots players will be available to the media today as part of the Patriots unveiling their championship merchandise in their gift shop.

I will be attending the event, and hope to get everyone’s thoughts and reactions to a remarkable season.

And, as I mentioned a few days ago, stay tuned for an announcement regarding how you can win a baseball signed by the 2008 Atlantic League Champions. – MA



1. PatsFan04 - October 2, 2008

I saw in the paper this morning that SS Anthony Granato of the Pats was traded to Atlantic City. Didn’t they acquire him from there about two weeks ago?

2. Scott Stanchak - October 2, 2008

Yes, there were a lot of deals yesterday. In summary, basically every player sent to Atlantic League teams from other independent leagues have been sent back to their original team. Some of these players didn’t even play in the A.L. after they were traded here.

3. KenD - October 2, 2008

Hey Scott, did you ever get a chance to ask someone in the league about the economics of these trades?

4. Scott Stanchak - October 2, 2008

No, I haven’t. From what I’ve been told in the past is these guys are just traded to the A.L. so they can keep playing. Teams need bodies and these guys are cheap. This season we saw more of these players than ever before because there was a lack of talent on the open market, or teams just weren’t willing to spend.

5. PeteB - October 2, 2008

Scoot & Mike a real nice job this season I enjoyed the coverage and the comments page. Regarding the players traded back I don't believe there are any economics involved. These are merely "rights" trades where a player such as Granato has his rights traded and then the Patriots sign him for the remainder of the season, release him and trade him back as the player to be named later. Silly I grant you.

Could we have a more detailed conversation in the weeks to come about the economics of this league. The disparity between what ownership is making versus the salaries these athletes are receiving is growing. It has been written about before and I for one would like to see it explored in depth. Frankly it leaves a bad taste in my mouth. The Patriots are a prime example. They just won a championship. The players worked hard all season to achieve something and they did. Yet the only one who will see any benefit from that championship is ownership. Just seems wrong.

Thank you guys

6. 3xchamps - October 3, 2008

here we go again whith the negative Patriots talk. Just can’t let it go, huh……..Like the new screen name!

7. PeteB - October 3, 2008

I guess that comment is intended for me and thats fine. Except I don’t think I bashed anyone. And you-you cowardly idiot- hide behind some made up screen name. My name is Pete Bentrice. My desire is to have a constructive discussion about the economics of this league and why there is such a huge gap between the wealth being made and what these professional athletes are being paid. It is a reasonable discussion but clearly one you. But hte fact is that these players are paid a gross wage. They average a couple of thousand dollars a month before taxes, housing costs and clubhouse dues. The league boasts of a maximum salry of $3000 per month yet very very few make anywhere near that.

You tell me with such wealth being made can’t these people be paid at least a livable wage. On this very page today there is discussion of championship merchandise going on sale–how much do the players see from this. The answer is none.

8. Scott Stanchak - October 3, 2008

I can tell you that I’ve heard from a team executive who is interested in talking about the league and its economics. We’ll do something in the off-season, but start thinking up some questions.

9. PeteB - October 3, 2008

By the way 3xchamps–what exactly is it that you find inappropriate about discussing the economics of this league. What exactly are you afraid of. I am not the first to raise the issue, there have been discussions on this site about playoff salaries and season salaries for some time. Do you think the players don’t talk about it. Hasn’t it been written up in the newspapers.

Believe me as someone who spent time in your ballpark in the past there is plenty to bash you about from dirty bathrooms to lousy food to the same rudeness and arrogance you display here today.. But that wasn’t my discussion. I sought from the moderators to have a discussion about wages and economics. No it doesn’t seem appropriate that these men make such a poor wage while such revenue and wealth is being generated.
And don’t give me the hype about all you do for them, giving them an opportunity to go to the majors. If they make it back to the majors they did so of their own hard work. You want to stay on message fine, the rest of us can have a friendly but serious discussion. You go back now to figure out how you can make more money on the backs of 25 guys who just won you a championship.

10. PeteB - October 3, 2008

Thank you Scott thats all I was interested in. And three cheers to the Patriots players on their championship and to all of the players in the league this year who gave it their all.

11. PeteB - October 3, 2008

By the way Scott, my cousin is stationed at Norfolk and he heard on the radio earlier this week that the city of Richmond has some new hope of replacing the Richmond Braves with an affiliated team. I guess I thought from reading this page and others that Richmond was a done deal for the Atlantic League next year. Even some of our players on Camden were saying they heard it was a done deal. Whats the scoop.

12. jidyfan - October 3, 2008

Scott, it would be great if you could get Frank Boulton to join us here for an open discussion with us like we had done previously with some of the players. I know that would never happen but it’s worth a shot.

13. PeteB - October 3, 2008

jidyfan that is an outstanding idea and Scott I was actually coming back to say that while a team executive has offered to discuss it–we need to look at this as a league wide issue. It is not just the Patriots and would be enormously unfair to simply look at it from their perspective. I do believe there would be some players willing to discuss this issue. Probably guys who have moved on but that could be helpful. Great idea jidyfan and thanks Scott and Mike.

14. snynault - October 3, 2008

ok. devil’s advocate here. let me ask the other side of it. say a player plays for a team that loses money (and there are a few of those in the Atlantic League and MANY in independent/minor league baseball), should they then be responsible for helping pay the bills?

15. PeteB - October 3, 2008

snynault I am not sure what your point is, though I appreciate your contribution to the discussion. The Atlantic League is one of the most successful and wealthiest independent leagues in the country. Are there teams which draw less in the league absolutely, though I do not believe we should assume they are losing money. Not every empty seat is unpaid for. Should the standard of what is an appropriate wage for players be determined on the basis of those clubs that are not cutting it versus those who are reaping record profits.
Beyond the obvious revenue generated by ticket sales and ticket packages there are luxury suite rentals, group sales, corporate sponsorships and advertising, stadium naming rights, and a host of other revenue generators. Is your argument that if a specific business is not being run well then its employees should be held accountable?
Considerable wealth is being realized in this league and it is not making its way to those who are ultimately sparking its development. The 200 or so players who played in the league this year had an average salary in the 2000 dollar range. Subtract taxes, housing and clubhouse fees and you figure it out. This is not a livable wage. No one is holding a gun to their heads to play here but ultimately that is irrelevant. We have standards for fairness in this country even beyond what the law allows.
Every time there is a story on the news uncovering that some clothing line or popular accessory or toy is being made by people paid a substandard wage we all get up in arms. Should these 200 men be viewed differently because they are professional athletes. I don’t think so. Should we be concerned less that they are exploited just because its baseball. I don’t think so.
I understand your point that there are costs involved for management. It costs just to turn the lights on and to staff and so on. But take a look around at the money being spent. New stadiums, new scoreboards, updated luxury suites, stadium modernizations. What is the cost of licensing fees for displaying trademarked movies and television shows on stadium scoreboards throughout the season.
This is why I would like to see the discussion begun. There is wealth being made here. And from my perspective and I do not believe I am alone, fairness dictates that these athletes that are the foundation for all of this should at least receive fair compensation. Lets hear from ownership and management and the players themselves. I for one look forward to the healthy debate to come, it’s been along time coming.

16. Sportswriter - October 4, 2008

A huge cost that no one ever mentions is road trips. The gas, food and lodging of teams went way up this year and the league expanded South with the Blue Crabs. Owners may be making a lot of revenue but I don’t think they are turning big profits. With the economy failing, ballpark advertising is also at risk. There’s a lot of factors to look at if you want to talk to owners here.

17. PeteB - October 4, 2008

sportswriter welcome to the discussion. A fair point about travel costs though ballpark advertising and corporate partnerships generally do not suffer in this type of economy. Product and good will branding generally justifies the continued expense. That combined with contractual aggreements usually stabilizes this revenue.
One thing I do hope is that we avouid the generalizations that this discussion held when it occurred between the players association and the owners of major league baseball. No one is disputing that there are hard costs. There are also soft costs. And I can assure you that at the end of the day if the truth is made known, ownership is making money and in certain cases, significant wealth. Lets have a dialogue with ownership and the players. How many people know what5 life is like for these men outside the white lines and out of the bright lights. It might surprise many.
I would also like to hear about the benefits to the local municipalities both in direct monies as well as through tax base. The question is simple, whose seeing the benefits of the teams, and who isn’t. Bottom line, at this point, the players are not.

18. PeteB - October 4, 2008

By the way, the one thing I can tell you about ownership in this league is that they are skilled businessmen who are not stupid. I can assure you that an appropriate feasibility review was done before southern maryland was added. Any such review done properly would include indicators for travel, fuel cost instability, and lodging. And by the way, these guys are not staying in sany five star hotels. Further many hotels are contracted over an extended period of time for group rates. And because of reduced tourism and travel many chains have actually lowered package rates as an incentive. If southern maryland was to be a financial burden it would not have happened.

19. SharkGirl - October 4, 2008

To 3xchamps…Am I missing something? I thought this was the 4th championship for the Pats yet your screen name implies otherwise. This is a quote from Somerset’s home page…”Somerset Patriots catcher Travis Anderson hit a walk off home run in the bottom of the ninth inning to give the Patriots a 3-2 win in Game Four of the Atlantic League Championship at Commerce Bank Ballpark on Monday night to clinch the team’s fourth Atlantic League Championship in 11 seasons. I was just wondering……….

20. SharkGirl - October 4, 2008

oops-forgot the end quotation marks after “11 seasons”. (I’m sure the Patriots weren’t wondering how many they’d won…lol….but I just wanted to clarify).

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