Minor League Baseball’s popularity continues to increase with more and more focus put on prospects throughout the game. And another step to grow the game in the minors was announced on Thursday.
Minor League Baseball and CBS Sports Network have formed a partnership that will make the network the home of Minor League Baseball’s Game of the Week during the 2014 season. The “Game of the Week” will be televised on Thursday, beginning on May 1 with the Indianapolis Indians (Pirates) taking on the Pawtucket Red Sox (Red Sox) and run through early August.
MiLB released the schedule for the first five games of the week. The Iowa Cubs and Memphis Redbirds will be the Game of the Week on Thursday, May 29.
According to the release, “additional dates will be announced later and could feature multiple classifications of play ranging from Single-A to Triple-A.”
Dick Gabriel and former big leaguer Doug Flynn will call the games.
“We look forward to exposing even more fans to the excitement of Minor League Baseball, from top prospects working their way up to the major leagues to the fun and engaging elements our fans enjoy at our ballparks,” Minor League Baseball President & CEO Pat O’Conner, said. “We feel this partnership with CBS Sports Network will truly capture the emotion of our game to a national audience week after week.”
The partnership between Minor League Baseball and CBS Sports Network was formed in conjunction with JMI Sports and its Chief Executive Officer, Erik Judson. JMI Sports, based in San Diego, Calif., is a leading provider of sales, marketing, and project management and multi-media rights management services to universities, professional teams, and municipalities.
“This partnership will allow us to further expose the experience of Minor League Baseball beyond the 41 million-plus fans that pass through our gates each season,” added Michael Hand, Chief Marketing Officer for Minor League Baseball and President, MiLB™ Enterprises. “Since baseball began its first player draft in 1965, only 21 selections out of nearly 60,000 have advanced directly to Major League Baseball without first playing in Minor League Baseball. This partnership is the first truly comprehensive television package that will allow MiLB to feature the next generation of stars at all classifications as they travel The Road to the Show™.”