Venues age quickly.
Once upon a time, the minor league baseball park in Shreveport, Louisiana was considered one of Minor League Baseball’s crown jewels. The ballpark opened up in 1986 but the bloom was off the rose quickly. The local Double A baseball team fell out of favor and just 16 years later, the Texas League team left town and was relocated to Frisco, Texas. That was the end of minor league baseball for Shreveport, a town which at that point had a baseball team since 1968. Independent baseball leagues took a look at Shreveport but the attempts to keep baseball going ended after the 2011 season and the stadium, which was considered one of minor league baseball’s best had no tenant. The stadium is now facing the wrecking ball 33 years after it opened. Local residents will decide in a November referendum whether to keep the stadium or knock it down. No one is rushing to Shreveport to put a team in the old ball yard. It will cost about a million dollars to knock down the park which has been declared obsolete. The stadium will be cleared for a parking lot for the Shreveport local fair grounds. The park could be gone in 2020.
Small cities with grand fanfare have gone after Minor League Baseball franchises. The Triple A Pawtucket Red Sox franchise will move 43 miles away to Worcester, Massachusetts. Another Triple A team, New Orleans, is headed to Wichita, Kansas. Pawtucket elected officials don’t know what to do with the PawSox stadium. The same can be said for Mobile, Alabama officials as that city’s Double A Minor League franchise is vacating the city for a state-of-the-art Double A stadium in the Huntsville suburb of Madison, Alabama. Minor League Baseball has always featured franchise movement but now cities are willing to pay millions for a minor league baseball team.