December 14, 2009 - Golden Baseball League (GBL)
(San Ramon, CA. December 14, 2009) The Golden Baseball League (GBL) announced today that they have reached an agreement with Palm Springs Professional Baseball, LLC that grants the rights to operate a professional baseball team in Palm Springs and the Coachella Valley. This would return professional baseball to the region for the first time since the minor league Palm Spring Suns played in 1997.
"We are pleased to reach an agreement with such an impressive and experienced ownership group," said GBL Commissioner Kevin Outcalt. "The team could play in either 2010 or 2011 depending on what they work out with the City of Palm Springs regarding the ballpark facility, or potentially in a ballpark elsewhere in the Coachella Valley. This is a big win for all parties as the league expands into a great market with outstanding professional baseball history, the City is able to receive an increased and true market value for their stadium lease, the fans will enjoy exciting professional baseball with well known players and managers as teams from all over western North America come to play, and the local economy is the benefit of $5M or more in annual economic impact as has been documented in other GBL markets."
Headed up by a trio of baseball industry executives who have owned minor league teams in the New York - Penn League and the Golden Baseball League, the team will host 45 regular season home games, plus playoffs, in a season that will stretch from mid-May to mid-September. Headed on the field by a Major League All-Star Manager (this group in the past have employed Gary Carter, Phil Nevin, and Garry Templeton) the team should feature the typical GBL mix of 5-6 ex major leaguers along with minor league experienced players and a few college graduates at a level of play that is rated at or above AA by experienced minor league baseball operators. Considered the premier independent pro league in western North America and one of the top in the country, the GBL regularly has 20 -30 players purchased by major league baseball and is the annual leader in Top Prospects and All-Independent Pro All-Stars as selected by Baseball America. Major League MVP and All-Stars such as Rickey Henderson, Jose Canseco, Jose Lima, Robert Fick, Scott Spiezio, Junior Spivey, and Felix Jose have all played in the league. Four GBL alumni have already made it to the major leagues.
The Palm Springs team would play in the South Division of the GBL which includes the Tucson Toros, the Orange County Flyers, the Long Beach Armada, the Yuma Scorpions and the Maui ballclubs at this time.