Browse Articles

Gailen Forced To Play A Waiting Game

J.J. Cooper -

Perserverance has never been a problem for Blake Gailen. The Chico Outlaws (Golden) outfielder's career has seen him travel all around the country, through three different independent leagues in less than three years, in hopes of attracting the attention of an affiliated team. And just when he was putting together the kind of season that couldn't be ignored, he literally ran into a wall.

Minors | #2010#Independent Audit

Guerrero Joins Rare Club With Five Straight Home Runs

J.J. Cooper -

Cristian Guerrero has reached Triple-A. He's part of one of the most famous baseball families of this generation (cousins Vladimir Guerrero and Wilton Guerrero are both big leaguers), and he could defy odds make it back to affiliated ball and make it to the big leagues himself. But even if all that happens, he'll never have a day like he had on June 9.

Minors | #2010#Independent Audit

Indy Notebook: New Northern League Manager Counting On Frontier Leaguers

J.J. Cooper -

When Fran Riordan was hired by the expansion Lake County Cornbelters (Northern) in the offseason, it marked the end of an era. Riordan had either played of managed in the Frontier League since 1997, winning three league titles as a manager. But he hasn't forgotten his Frontier League roots, and he brought along a core of his final Kalamazoo Kings team to prove it. On Feb. 1, Riordan swung a 11-player swap with his old team to bring seven ex-Kings to Lake County.

Minors | #2010#Independent Audit

Independent League Top Prospects

J.J. Cooper -

For the fourth year, we present our survey of the top talent in the independent leagues. After talking to scouts and independent league commissioners and managers, here is the list of unsigned independent leaguers who may deserve a first or second chance at affiliated ball.

Minors | #2009#Independent Audit

Try, Try Again

J.J. Cooper -

Isaac Hess will pick up his glove and head to the mound for the Victoria Seals, just as he has 11 times before. It's everything that had gone on since his last start that may make everything feel a little different.

Minors | #2009#Independent Audit

Nice Move

J.J. Cooper -

As a former big league manager with the Indians, San Angelo skipper Doc Edwards has a pretty good idea of what kind of player he's looking for when he heads to a tryout camp. But he can't take credit for finding Bryan Frichter.

Minors | #2009#Independent Audit

Their Last, Best Chance

J.J. Cooper -

When the final pick of the 50th round of the draft has been called out and more than 1,500 players have been selected, there are still hundreds of players left disappointed. Last year Mike LaLuna was one of them. The shortstop at New York Tech headed into his senior season knowing that he needed to build on a .317/.377/.427 junior season. Instead he slumped to .268/.360/.411 as a senior and watched whatever hopes he had of being drafted disappear.

Minors | #2009#Independent Audit

Bad Time For Indy Ball

J.J. Cooper -

The current recession has cost millions of Americans their jobs and has cost the U.S. Treasury billions of dollars in deficit spending. And as you would expect, it's causing headaches for independent leagues as well. All sports have been affected by the economic downturn, but the effects may be felt especially hard in some of the independent leagues, where the margin between success and dissolution is smaller.

Minors | #2009#Independent Audit