On Thursday, the Houston Astros owner, Jim Crane, said the team could relocate their Class AAA minor league team to the Houston area, The Woodlands to be more specific. The current AAA team is in Oklahoma City.
This change makes sense to me. The Astros are trying to extend their brand of baseball throughout the state of Texas, much like it used to be when their AAA affiliate was in Round Rock. The Astros must compete with the Texas Rangers to grab fans in the state of Texas. Moving the AAA team from Oklahoma City to The Woodlands makes sense as a whole.
The question that this possible move causes is if this move will affect the Astros entire minor league system. In other words, will this cause the Astros to move the AA Corpus Christi Hooks, and move the Rookie League Greeneville Astros? I’m not sure this move will affect those two teams.
For this move to occur, the Astros would have to buy the Oklahoma City Redhawks, and Crane says they are looking into doing just that.
Another move owner Jim Crane talked about involved Spring Training. The Astros play their Spring Training games in Kissimmee, Florida. Their contract with Osceola County Stadium runs out in 2016 and Crane says the team is looking at all the available options. Crane wants the team to have the best facilities, the best hotels and close airports. He mentioned moving the team’s Spring Training to Arizona or Port St. Lucie, Florida where the New York Mets facilities are.
Personally, I like the idea of having the Astros Spring Training in Arizona. Just about every team’s facilities are in the same area. It is an easy drive for the fans at Spring Training to go from stadium to stadium to watch their teams play. On top of all that, the Astros new divisional opponents all play their spring games in Arizona.
All these changes have been mentioned by Crane, and I honestly like the ideas of these changes. It makes sense for the Astros as an organization. We’ll just have to see if Crane follows through with these ideas. I for one, hope he does.