Upcoming Rosemont Baseball Team Believes Minor League Market Is Not Saturated

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It’s imperative, when you’re a minor league baseball franchise, to get way outside the box with your promotions. With over 200 minor league baseball teams in the United States, you’ve got to make major waves by being original, in order to get noticed by the media and publicity industries.

“As long as it’s legal, and in good taste, we’re going to do it,” proclaimed Shawn Hunter, co-owner of the not yet named minor league Rosemont baseball team.

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“It’s a chance to be a little irreverent and have a little fun.”

Hunter brings over 20 years of sports marketing and executive experience, having previously served as President of the NHL’s Phoenix Coyotes from 1996-2002 and Executive Vice President of the NHL’s Colorado Avalanche and NBA’s Denver Nuggets from 1991-1995. The 8th person ever hired by the Minnesota Timberwolves, Hunter maintains that the only thing minor league about this Rosemont baseball team will be the prices.

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“Shawn has a long history of doing things that are unexpected,” said the other co-owner of the Rosemont baseball team, Steven Gluckstern, a man with five years of experience as co-owner of two professional sports teams. He got into prof sports began in 1995 as co-owner of the NHL’s Winnipeg Jets.

Gluckstern and his co-owner decided to move the team to Phoenix, renaming the team the Phoenix Coyotes (later to become the Arizona Coyotes).

Gluckstern and his partner sold the Coyotes in 1997 and later went on to co-own the NHL’s New York Islanders from 1997-2000.

The unexpected is how a minor league team can hook the fans in- see the Archer Men endorsement deal for $3.4 billion dollars, over a 10,000,000 years, with Windy City Thunderbolts pitcher Clay Chapman contract.  Better yet, take the St. Paul Saints, who have a trained pig delivering baseballs to the home plate umpire.

The Saints, and the league they play in, the American Association, are both the gold standard of indy ball.

In many ways the Rosemont baseball franchise will be modeled after the Saints, who will also be their league rival.

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The Saints have proven that they can compete in a marketplace with a pro team, and thus Rosemont is betting that they can do the same.

Joining them in the front office is Tom Sheridan, a Senior Vice President of Business Operations for 23 years with the Chicago White Sox. In his more than two decades on 35th street, Sheridan helped create the scout seats, home plate club and fan deck.

The Rosemont baseball team will be unaffiliated, or independent from the major and minor league system. They will not serve as a farm club for any Major League team. MLB clubs used to have many more minor league clubs before the draft and collective bargaining were implemented.

The recent bomb in unaffiliated teams is likely filling a void that was created when they MLB franchises cut back on the size of their systems and exported much of their investments in player development to countries not subject to the draft.

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In other words, what every American corporation tries to do whenever possible: Outsource jobs to countries with looser labor laws and no workers union protections. The Rosemont baseball team players will all be on one-year-contracts. Hunter said that the quality of baseball itself is on par with AA ball. When pressed about the consumer’s ability to discern between unaffiliated and affiliated ball, he said most fans don’t really differentiate.

In the Chicago area, you already have four unaffiliated teams:

the Schaumburg Booomers, Gary South-Shore Rail Cats, Joliet Slammers and the aforementioned Windy City Thunderbolts (Crestwood). The Kane County Cougars (Geneva) are the only affiliated ball club.

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Obviously, you have not one, but two Major League clubs on top of it, thus setting up a very crowded marketplace.

However, the Rosemont baseball group believes that they are bringing something special more to the table. They are building a $60 million, 6,300 seat stadium adjacent to the Rosemont Metra stop and Interstate 294.

The facility will sit at the corner of Balmoral Avenue and Pearl Street.

The Rosemont baseball stadium will be about a mile and a quarter from the CTA Blue Line and situated in the heart of the city’s entertainment district, where you’ll find the fashion outlets, Muvico Rosemont, indoor skydiving, HoffBrau Haus Rosemont, the Toby Keith bar and Big Ten headquarters.

Hunter said the team is about 45 days away from having a name, which will be decided by fan input and “must be fun.”

It will have Chicago in the name, not Rosemont, and they are scheduled to begin play in May of 2018.

Paul M. Banks runs The Sports Bank.net and TheBank.News, partnered with FOX Sports Engage Network. and News Now. Banks, a former writer for the Washington TimesNBC Chicago.com and Chicago Tribune.com, currently contributes to WGN CLTV and KOZN

Follow him on TwitterInstagramSound Cloud, LinkedIn and YouTube

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