City officials of Wichita (Kansas) are trying to get the attention of Minor League Baseball with a new ballpark. Still, there is a lot that needs to be done, as the city has to build the stadium and is in serious talks with teams.
Once, the city of Witchita was home to the Wranglers, an AA team that played in the Texas League before it moved to Springdale Arkansas, where the team adopted the moniker Northwest Arkansas Naturals in 2008.
With still no decision made in San Antonio, the city of Witchita was connected before a few months ago when the name of the San Antonio Missions reared up.
According to city officials, serious conversations have taken place about attracting an affiliated team. When discussing the issue with a Kansas Senate committee, which is investigating whether sales tax and revenue bonds (so-called STAR bonds) can be used for a ballpark project, City Council member Pete Meitzner said that the city is having discussions with teams about relocating to the city.
“The mayor is involved in two conversations with affiliated baseball,” Meitzner said Tuesday before the Senate Commerce Committee in Topeka. “The city is betting on affiliation.”
Meitzner said Mayor Jeff Longwell, Assistant City Manager Scott Rigby and others have been trying to confirm which teams would seriously consider moving to Wichita.
In modern Minor League Baseball, owners feast on new ballparks. But without a ballpark plan in place, it will be difficult to attract teams.
When it comes to luring the San Antonio Missions, Wichita will have some serious competition from Amarillo, that is also in the race for the AA team. But it still looks like that the Missions are going nowhere as long as the city of San Antonio is not willing to build a new ballpark according to AAA standards.
Since all ballparks in the Texas League are less than 20 years old and some are even less than fifteen years old, the question is which two teams the city of Wichita is talking to.
Perhaps the Midland RockHounds are one of the teams. Since 2014 the team’s attendance figures are well behind the other teams with less than 300,000 per season.
To be continued for sure.