As most of you may have heard, the MLB and MLBPA have come to a stop in the negotiating with the “deadline”. I’ll be honest, baseball has frustrated me a lot in recent times, but the MLB essentially has a monopoly on the world of baseball but that’s not totally true. And instead of focusing my time on frustrating financial contracts in these crazy times, I wanted to actually write about the sport I love - Baseball. I’ll fully admit I am not in the slightest qualified to present this information - but I figured I’d start doing some research on the Independent Leagues of baseball. If you haven’t guessed where this is going, Houston actually has another baseball team - The Houston Apollos.
The Apollos were established in 2002 and play in a few independent leagues. Most recently the travel team for the American Association of Professional Baseball, and the PECO Spring League / Coastal Baseball Summer League.
So who are the Houston Apollos? I found this KHOU11 clip on them
I was pleasantly surprised that I can find the statistics both on the team site as well as some of the normal sites like baseball reference.
But the overall coverage looks to be really good
I haven’t found a place that has entire games online, but the highlights definitely seem consistent and I’m sure I’ll find a lot more resources as we go.
If you’ve never done much research on the Independent leagues, I though this video was a pretty cool introduction of a team that was put into a similar position as the AA travel team and explains the independent leagues a bit. These players play for the love of the game and the hopes of one day earning a shot.
The Apollos faced the same challenge last season, and ended up with a similar result.
Even cooler, I realized that you could actually play as an Independent League baseball team on Out of The Park Baseball. I haven’t done a detailed check, but a quick look and the players look to be legit.
I checked the players on both, and the names/DOB are the same. I did a quick scan and it didn’t seem like any of the stats projected were majorly off compared to how the player was performing. Admittedly, I don’t know enough about league averages to determine well what the baselines for above/below average would be.
I may try to do an OOTP league with the Independent League teams, or provide some coverage/analysis on different players and teams throughout the US.
Are there any articles you’d like to see about the Independent Leagues?