by OSC Special Edition
March 26, 2017 - Southern League (SL)
Season preview for the Southern League
The AA Southern League is centrally located in Atlanta, GA. In the semifinals of last years Championship Series, the Jackson Generals conquered the Montgomery Biscuits in game three, the same number that the Mississippi Braves had won when they beat the Pensacola Blue Wahoos.
No doubt however, the biggest game of 2016 was played between Jackson Generals and Mississippi Braves. The Generals reigned victorious with 11-3 win. O\'Neill got three more hits and was chosen as a MVP.
The 2016 All-Star game was played on June 21st in Perl, Mississippi. The South Division, included players such as Dansby Swanson, Dustin Peterson, Willians Astudillo, Hader, Phillips, and Jacob Nottingham. The North Division had talent including Willy Adames, Daniel Palka, Casey Gillaspie and Tyler O\'Neill. Although O\'Neill gave his all, he couldn\'t save the team. The combined forces of Swanson and Ervin proved to be unbeatable as Ervin hit grand slam to the left center field and was chosen as a MVP.
There have been many changes, improvements and acquisitions in the league. On September 15, 2016 the Marlins announced that they were extending their PDC with Jacksonville for four years, up until 2020. The owner of the Suns, Ken Babby, said that they are very proud of this deal and that the fans will continue to witness some of the most talented players. Most of which are coming through Jacksonville and going to Miami to enter the big leagues. This is leaving Jackson (Mariners) and Mobile (Diamondbacks) as the remaining teams in the Southern League with PDCs that are expiring after the season.
The Reds and Pensacola Blue Wahoos also had updates on the PDC\'s to continue through 2018. But they faced some problems and needed the help of Bubba Watson, a golf pro who is a co-owner of the team. Watson gave his knowledge and experience without any hesitation.
On September 19, there was news that the Jackson Generals, recent winners of the Southern League championship, were going to switch their affiliations at the start of the next season. The Mariners were partners with the Generals at the beginning of their journey in 2007, when they made a transition from the Cubs. Generals GM Jason Compton has been quoted saying that they are excited about their bonding with the Diamondbacks. Mobile has been vacated by the Diamondbacks so they remain an open spot for the Mariners.
J.R. House will be managing the Diamondbacks. Jason Camilli\'s will return to the as hitting coach and the veteran Doug Drabek will be pitching coach. Joe Mather will be part of the coaching staff as well.
Commentators are predicting an exciting and fulfilling season for 2017!