Rumble Ponies Owner Says Progress is Sluggish on MLB Contract [FULL INTERVIEW]
Baseball's winter meetings were held in San Diego, California last week. Binghamton Rumble Ponies owner John Hughes attended. Hughes says there was no progress or additional information garnered on what is ahead for 42 minor league teams that are being considered for elimination in 2021 by Major League Baseball (MLB). One of those teams on the list is the Binghamton Rumble Ponies.
Speaking with WNBF's Roger Neel on Monday morning Hughes said that while a representative of MLB spoke with minor league owners the commissioner Rob Manfred did not address them. Binghamton is one of two Eastern League teams that could be effected. The other is Erie, an affiliate of the Detroit Tigers.
Listen to the full interview with John Hughes here:
The contract between Minor League Baseball (MILB) and MLB expires on September 15, 2020. MLB contends it collectively is looking for ways to cut costs in the new potential agreement. Many of the proposed team cuts are centered on Class A teams including Brooklyn, a New York Mets affiliate in the NY-Penn League, a short-season league geared to facilitate players who were just drafted or signed to a professional baseball contract. Part of the proposed plan from MLB would be to have New York move its Double A affiliate (Binghamton) to Brooklyn and still compete at the Double A level.
The Rumble Ponies owner says none of the New York Mets upper level management has reached out to him or the Binghamton operation. He says he expects a lengthy negotiation period between the Major Leagues and Minor Leagues.
Hughes does emphasize that no matter what the outcome is on the MLB and MILB agreement going forward nothing will change in the 2020 season including holding the Eastern League All-Star game in Binghamton in July.