The MINK League has attracted quality Big 12 talent in recent years, including Texas outfielder Jordan Danks and Nebraska righthander Charlie Shirek. Now it looks like the league is making a move to become the pre-eminent collegiate summer league in the Midwest.
The MINK announced it will expand from six teams to 10 for the 2009 season. The four new teams are the Sedalia (Mo.) Sluggers, the Joplin (Mo.) Outlaws, the Nevada (Mo.) Griffons, and the St. Joseph (Mo.) Mustangs. The Joplin and Nevada franchises left the Jayhawk League to join the MINK, citing travel costs. The St. Joseph franchise originally applied for membership in the Jayhawk, but withdrew that application and joined the MINK instead upon learning that Nevada and Joplin were taking that route. The 10 teams in the MINK will be split up into two divisions, helping to alleviate travel costs. There will be 34 league games followed by a playoff between the North and South divisions.
Meanwhile, the Jayhawk League will likely be left with a maximum of five teams next year, and the Texas Collegiate League already dropped to four teams last year. Expect to see plenty more talented players in the Midwest wind up in the MINK League.
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