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The Future of Minor League Ball

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Minor League Ball is now entering its second decade. I'd like to briefly discuss where we were ten years ago, and where we are going in the future.

The Spring of 2005:

Minor League Ball began on February 11th, 2005. The first post was titled "A World to Win, an Empire to Build." You can click on that and go read it the whole thing, but the key points were thus:

I also see this blog as a meeting ground for people interested in prospects and minor league ball in general. I will be posting here at least once a day. There will be open threads, but I will also post mailbags and prospect analysis. . .I will post trade analysis, trip reports, and pictures from my trips. The site will also serve as an information exchange. If you see an interesting prospect, post something about it in the diary section!

In order to make this work, I need as much interest from you, the reader, as possible. Please visit often; register and post. Please visit our advertisers and sponsors. . . Make visiting a regular part of your day. That's what I need from you.

"It is better to rule in Hell than to serve in Heaven" is bad theology, but in the baseball business I have found it to be true. When STATS dropped their publishing arm and the Minor League Scouting Notebook died, I was able to turn it around into the Baseball Prospect Book, which turned out to be a better deal. This is thanks to you, the readers, who put up with the initial blunders and mistakes on our end. Together, we can make a success as well. We have a world to win, an Empire to build.

And grow the Empire did, thanks to you.

But like all successful empires, there come a point where it becomes too much for one person to handle. You guys know about the health problems I've had to deal with over the last couple of years. I'm 47 now, not 37, and believe me there is a big difference.

Over the last year we've been blessed with Nick Melotte's Gameday threads. Those aren't going away. But even with Nick's help and the help of other contributors like Jessica Quiroli, and the ever-patient community of readers, Minor League Ball can't take the next steps forward without a new approach, without more minds and hands at work.

We need new voices. We need more voices. We want to go from four posts a day to six or eight or even ten. We want more coverage, more analysis, more information. And we need all this so the community can grow and thrive even when I need a day off.

We put out a call for volunteers last month and we have found those voices. I am VERY excited about the new voices who will be joining us. The first wave will arrive this coming week, with another wave a week or two after that.

Rest assured, I'm not going anywhere, and neither is Nick. Everything that we do will continue. Chris Slade has a new position: Fantasy Editor. Jessica will still be here, covering the Gulf Coast League for us.

Matt Garrioch has been doing outstanding draft coverage for several years, but Matt has decided to pursue other opportunities. He will be badly missed, but we have found a worthy successor as our amateur baseball expert: Michael Cook, known to the community as Cookiedabookie. Six other contributors are in the pipeline for the first wave and will be introduced this coming week.

So change is coming. Good change, quality change, change that will ensure the health and vibrancy of the Minor League Ball community for years to come. Stay tuned.