Over the last few days, Major League Baseball has changed the landscape of how Minor League Baseball is going to function. The Kansas City Royals are one of the teams that have to adjust to this minor league change. Kansas City will now have four teams in their minor league system for the 2021 regular season, despite this, they will be bidding farewell to four teams that were apart of the organizations’ farm system.
The teams that will occupy the Kansas City farm system are (Triple-A) Omaha, (Double-A) Northwest-Arkansas, (High-A) Quad Cities, and Columbia (Low-A). The Royals made this announcement Wednesday afternoon regarding their minor league changes.
Minor League Change: What Stays the Same
The Omaha Stormchasers will be apart of the Royals’ minor league system and have been the Kansas City Triple-A affiliate since 1969. Along with them, Double-A Northwest-Arkansas will be staying as well. The Northwest-Arkansas Naturals have been apart of the Royals’ organization since 2008.
Minor League Change: Quad Cities and Columbia
Kansas City is adding two new minor league teams to their organization starting this season. These two teams are the Quad Cities River-Bandits, who will serve as the team’s High-A club. Quad Cities’ team use to be affiliated with the Houston Astros. Quad Cities is located in Davenport, Iowa, and they have a very unique ballpark that is surrounded by a body of water.
Along with Quad Cities, the Royals added the Columbia Fireflies. Columbia was last affiliated with the New York Mets and is based out of Columbia, South Carolina. Royals’ current utility-man, Whit Merrifield, is a big fan of this move. Merrifield played college ball at the University of South Carolina, and he loves the idea of making a return to Columbia sometime in the near future.
Minor League Change: Four Teams on the Chopping Block
While adding these two new teams, the Royals announced they have cut ties with the four other clubs. These four include Wilmington (High-A), Lexington (Low-A), Idaho Falls (Rookie), and Burlington (Rookie). It is sad to see these teams go, but with these minor league changes, the club did not have a choice. The Kansas City Royals organization commented on cutting ties with these four clubs.
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