Minor League Baseball fans have a lot of questions about the game and its players. We at MiLB.com attempt to answer some of those curiosities. No promises, though.
Have a question? Shoot us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org
Update: Last week's "Ask MiLB.com" featured a question from Patty S., who was digging up some info on her grandfather, a former Texas League umpire. MiLB.com reader Rod N. got back to us this week with a gem of a find for Patty. Thanks, Rod!
I have a friend who was just released from the Minor Leagues. What can he do to get back in the spotlight and get signed again? -- Orlando A.
Hey, that's the reality of baseball, and especially the Minors -- players don't always stick. There's still open tryouts for organizations -- he can attend some of those or have his agent contact teams directly in time for Spring Training next year; plenty of free agents are given non-roster invites to camp. Our friends in Missoula tipped us off last week to a tryout for the Arizona Diamondbacks hosted at Ogren Park Allegiance Field in Missoula on July 28, for example.
How many players can be on a roster? -- Larry
It varies depending on the level and the time of year, plus there are both active and reserve rosters, which include injured players, for example. Triple-A and Double-A active rosters have a maximum of 24 players, and some of the lower Class A levels allow for up to 35. Class A rosters are also affected by service time and age of some players.
Is there a way to order photos? I have one that was taken by Emily Jones this July that, if available, I would like to have. Any way I can get in contact with her? -- Joel T.
We've discussed this previously -- the idea of allowing fans to purchase images we use on MiLB.com. Currently, it's not something we offer, but we may in the future. Most photographers who shoot Major and Minor League Baseball are only allowed to sell images for editorial use due to Minor League Baseball's media policies. Our friends at futurestarphotos.com offer officially-licensed prints of Minor Leaguers, though. You can contact Ms. Jones through her website.
I was attempting to find out whether a particular pitcher had been placed on the disabled list after being hit in the face by a ball. Apparently he was not, but there are a lot of different terms under "status" under league transactions. Most seem self-explanatory, but some I just couldn't follow. Here are the terms I noted:
assigned, declared free agency, designated for assignment,
loaned, optioned, outrighted, purchased, recalled, released,
retired, returned, selected (called up), signed as free agent, status change, suspension, trade, waived.
Could you explain some of them? I really would like to know what "outrighted" means, as it wasn't even shown in a list of baseball terminology shown on Wikipedia. Thanks. -- C. Hanson
Our stats department will be thrilled to see how excited you are with transaction terminology. But you're right, some of these are tricky. When a player is outrighted, he's been sent from the Majors to the Minor Leagues and has cleared waivers, meaning no other team put in a claim for him. Most players have no choice but to accept being outrighted the first time it happens, unless they have more than five years of service in the Majors. Players outrighted to the Minors for a second time can opt to refuse and instead become a free agent.
Likewise, players can be "selected," as you noted, or have their contracts purchased and brought back to the Majors. Being designated for assignment (or DFA'd, as we call it) is always a confusing term for fans, but it's similar -- a player can refuse his assignment, and the parent organization will then have several days to trade or release the player.
Mike Jacobs is a good example: He was designated by the Mets this April when Ike Davis was called up, and he accepted his assignment at Triple-A Buffalo.
Garrett Atkins was DFA'd in June by the Orioles, and once he cleared waivers, he was given his outright release, making him a free agent, available to sign with any other team. The O's, however, will still have to pay him his salary.
Is tonight's game still on??? -- Lupe R.
With more 100 teams and 19 leagues, you'll need to be a little more specific.
Is there an injury report published for the Minor League clubs? If so, where would I look for that information? Thanks. -- Larry F.
Yes, if you go to an league home page and click "league transactions" under the stats menu, you'll find a record of every player placed on their respective team's disabled list. If a team provides the specific injury, it will be listed there. Here's the Eastern League report, for example.
I am curious to know how MiLB.TV "works." Are teams responsible for producing their own games (all, some?). Does MiLB.TV produce only the ones it wants? Do the teams have local broadcast rights, excluding MiLB.TV-covered games? -- Scott H.
Some Minor League teams have their games televised, and if they choose to participate in streaming their games live online, we provide access to it for fans. MiLB.com does not pick which clubs will be shown -- it's the individual team's responsibility and choice to broadcast their games. Not sure about local rights -- if you have a specific team in mind, we can check with them.
Is it too much to ask that you keep the previous day's/night's scores posted until at least noon of the following day? Some of us would like to see them
all on the MiLB scoreboard page without going to the team site for a quick review of all that league's results.
Thanks. A reply would be nice too! -- F. Simmons
Here's your reply: Some teams occasionally have games scheduled before 12 noon ET, so to avoid issues, the scoreboards advance at about 10 a.m. ET. Additionally, it's very simple to find yesterday's (or any day's) scoreboard, simply click "Select date" at the top of any league scoreboard page and click a calendar date to quickly view box scores from any day of the season.
Christopher Dwyer is my cousin, and I'm trying to get news highlights and info on your MiLB.com website. However, the site is not easy to maneuver for this info. Can you send me some links to get info and new clips on Chris Dwyer, 2009 Draft pick of the Kansas City Royals? -- Karen R.
We had a story about Mr. Dwyer recently when he set a career high with 13 strikeouts. To find his stats, simply type his name into the player search bar on the top-right corner of MiLB.com to view his player page, which contains stats for his entire season. You can also follow the Naturals' site for daily game recaps, or bookmark the team's RSS news feed. Hope that helps!
I love your idea for Moniker Madness. It's a lot of fun. I wish I participated before. Very clever. I am involved with Minor League Baseball, so it means even more to me having seen some of the players. -- John S.
Thanks John, we're enjoying it as well. It's a "wonderful terrific" contest, you might say. You can keep on voting at MiLB.com/madness.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.