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Two PBL Teams Advance to the Third Round in Best of the Ballparks Tournament

June 10, 2021

Lindquist Field, home of the Ogden Raptors, and Suplizio Field, home of the Grand Junction Rockies, both advanced into the third round in Ballpark Digest's "Best of the Ballparks" 2021 tournament featuring all MLB Partner League stadiums.

Lindquist Field, home of the Ogden Raptors, and Suplizio Field, home of the Grand Junction Rockies, both advanced into the third round in Ballpark Digest's "Best of the Ballparks" 2021 tournament featuring all MLB Partner League stadiums.

Lindquist Field, Ogden, UT Scott G. Winterton, Deseret News
Suplizio Field, Grand Junction, CO Colorado Country Life

By Kevin Reichard

After some very close votes decided by the slimmest of margins, we’ve moved on to the Sweet Sixteen round of the 2021 Best of the Ballparks, MLB Partner Leagues vote, where we expect more tight contests. So vote!

How close were some of the votes? Fans chose Suplizio Field, home of the Grand Junction Rockies, by a single vote over Joseph Bruno Stadium, home of the Tri-City ValleyCats. Jimmy John’s Field (USPBL) won by just nine votes, as did Truist Point (High Point Rockers). And several other contests were decided by a handful of percentage points. Receiving the most votes in the round of 32: Clipper Magazine Stadium (Lancaster Barnstormers), PeoplesBank Park (York Revolution), Jimmy John’s Field, Melaleuca Field (Idaho Falls Chukars, in a losing effort) and Franklin Field (Milwaukee Milkmen).

The four MLB Partner Leagues came about during the offseason reorganization of Minor League Baseball. Three former independent leagues–the American Association, Atlantic League and Frontier League–were offered and accepted MLB Partner League status. The Pioneer League, formerly an affiliate Rookie league, transitioned to an MLB Partner League as well. Several former affiliated teams that did not make the 120-team cut also ended up joining MLB Partner Leagues. They’re all represented here. (OK, strictly speaking, not every ballpark here is part of an MLB Partner League: Jimmy John’s Field and Volcanoes Stadium host professional baseball and fall under the imprimatur of independent baseball.)

This is an unwieldy bracket because of the 45 entries; we decided to go for broke and have a vote of the full field rather than trim the roster to 32 teams. So we begin the voting with what’s essentially a play in round and a limited number of contested matchups, versus the 19 byes needed to balance the brackets. Still, there are some interesting matchups here, and we think you’ll find the selections to be a challenge.

Go vote for your PBL ball clubs here: https://app.votion.co/bracket/802b1173-be51-11eb-8f9b-020163947320