Being Owned by the Same Guys, ODP, Stinks

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Being Owned by the Same Guys, ODP, Stinks

Post by BlastFan » Sat Mar 31, 2012 1:58 pm

ODP spreads the wealth so to say and has the biggest decision in moving players around their teams. Each team supposedly has a GM who picks players, but I personally think that ODP holds the highest authority when picking players for teams. (I'm kind of surprised that they haven't tore up the York Revolution now that they have had their shining time at winning back-to-back championships).

For example, for the SOMD Blue Crabs (though I'm sure you can find a multitude of examples from the other 4 teams they own):
York has:
  • James Shanks (great hitter, good outfielder)
  • Liu Rodriguez (not that big of a loss for SOMD)
  • former assistant coach Andy Etchebarren.
The Riversharks have:
  • Lloyd Turner (another not big of a loss).
    I'm surprised ODP hasn't torn up their team considering they haven't won a Championship yet...
You may as well rename Lancaster the Lancaster Blue Crabs:
  • "Hail" Cesar Nicolas (great hitter, and 1st basemen)
  • Adam Godwin (one of those not that big of a losses)
  • Kody Kirkland (he had a great stint with the Crabs, but last year, not so well)
  • Coaching Staff:
    • Butch Hobson
    • Marty Janzen
    • Mia Del Hierro
Sugar Land Skeeters:
  • Octavio Martinez (ahh, Lopez is doing a great job as primary catcher now, so...)
  • Iggy Suarez (great player but didn't live up to his fullest in SOMD)
  • Ben Harrison (the loss of this guy will be felt this year on the Crabs)
Note: some of these losses are from years ago, but you get can get the drift.

There are probably a few people that I haven't mentioned. I'm sorry for going on a rant, but I just feel as if the ODP gets too involved with their teams. You don't see much player movement in independently owned clubs like Somerset or Long Island or even Bridgeport. They retain most of their players.

As for these ODP teams, for fans, it's like the luck of the draw as to whether they get a really good team this year or one that needs drastic improvement.
Last edited by BlastFan on Sat Mar 31, 2012 2:05 pm, edited 6 times in total.

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Post by HeadFirst » Wed Jun 06, 2012 2:17 am

There is much insight and truth to what you say.

I love the Atlantic League, what it represents, does and is. But I do not love the perception of overly centralized ownership, nor do I like the ways that centralization can manifest itself. Having more than half of an indy league owned by a single entity has the potential of calling the league's validity into question.

There's no question that the players are playing to win and advance no matter the uniform. But the ethicality of how those players wind up in those uniforms should never be questioned, or questionable. Centralized ownership makes it questionable. It cannot be a long-term solution.
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I'm not sure how to feel...

Post by BryceGlacier » Fri Jun 15, 2012 9:25 pm

I'm not sure how to feel about it. I enjoy the Atlantic League and the product that is put on the field for all of the teams.

While, it doesn't look that great to have 5 of 8 (and at least 1 expansion team) under the ownership of one group, if that group displays a measure of stability that sometimes can be difficult, is that a reasonable trade off? With how limited capital seems to be, is better to have an relatively stable league with highly centralized ownership, or have ownership de-centralized and run the risk of having some of the same issues that are plaguing other leagues like the Can-Am league. (Only mentioned because of the proximity and have had teams jump from Atleantic to Can-Am in the past.)

The fact of the matter is that the seven of the eight teams in the league are owned by two entities. While ODP owns York, Lancaster, Camden, Southern Maryland and the new Sugar Land team and Boulton's group owns Long Island and Bridgeport, only Somerset is outside of that.

I guess the big worry I have is if something were to happen to either of those two groups, you've really put all of your eggs in that one basket. While ODP is showing stability and growth now, what about in five years? Ten years? Heck, with indy leagues... next year? I think that as long as ODP and Boulton remain stable and don't meddle too much with on-field affairs (Like if ODP decides to stack the deck with one team.) then it shouldn't matter so much.

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Re: Being Owned by the Same Guys stinks

Post by TrumpetGuy » Sun Jun 21, 2015 2:12 pm

Posting to this thread in 2015. Here are the Atlantic League standings as of June 20th, 2015:

Freedom Division W L
Southern Maryland Blue Crabs 30 24
Sugar Land Skeeters 28 28
Lancaster Barnstormers 23 32
York Revolution 20 35
Liberty Division W L
Somerset Patriots 39 16
Long Island Ducks 37 17
Camden Riversharks 22 33
Bridgeport Bluefish 20 34

Let's see here. The Somerset Patriots and the Long Island Ducks have the best two records in the league. Hmmm, very interesting. These two teams are contenders virtually every year and have won a significant amount of the AL Championships.

Yet the Riversharks are terrible... once again. I can't remember the last time that team even made the playoffs or had a winning record... and I know they have never won an Atlantic League Championship. How about the Bluefish, they seem to be a 2nd division team much more often then one would expect.

I think I read last off-season that the Barnstormers are now separately owned by a local group in Lancaster. That is a good thing.

Still, there is a feeling that permeates through the league that there is some level of collusion or at least a tendency to favor the success of some teams over others.

I agree that the product is still solid and the ballparks are great for an indy level product. That said, I do think that this league has fallen back to some of the other indy leagues in recent years (but that is another topic off-point with this thread).

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Post by Duckfan » Mon Jun 22, 2015 6:37 am

Frank Boulton owns both the Ducks and the Bluefish and he has a big piece of the Riversharks. He has been draining the profits from Long Island to keep the Bluefish and the Riversharks afloat. Before those two he supported the Nashua Pride and the Atlantic City Surf. They both went bankrupt. The Ducks have won only 3 titles in 15 years and attendance has been dropping for years now. I fail to see any collusion there. Duck fans are searched before entering the park to make sure they're not smuggling in food and have have pay $4.75 for a bag of peanuts. The food sold at the concession stands is garbage and it's sold at caviar prices. It's cheaper to go out to a local restaurant for Surf and Turf than it is to eat hot dogs at the ball park. The novelty has worn off and Boulton's nickle and diming everyone has taken a lot of the fun out of it. He will eventually kill the League.
Last edited by Duckfan on Mon Jun 22, 2015 7:23 am, edited 2 times in total.
Reason: typo

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Re: Being Owned by the Same Guys

Post by TrumpetGuy » Fri Jun 26, 2015 10:52 pm

In an ironic twist, the Rockford Aviators of the Frontier League apparently just enacted a provision within their bylaws (according to another post on this website) as to prevent an entity from having multiple ownership interests (in different leagues) and that this constitutes a violation of same. In that league they appear to have much more strict guidelines on this type of situation.

As for what you are saying Duckfan, I think your post actually supports my argument about collusion. Your focus as to Mr. Boulton's ownership of multiple teams is focusing on the profitability (or lack thereof) of other teams within the league and that this is some type of kudos to him for picking up another ownership group after another's failure. I think it is more likely he would have stepped in because his team has to other teams to play against. While there are likely profitability issues associated with all of the four other franchises that he has owned at some point, the bottom line here is that his team is the Ducks. It is not Bridgeport or Camden or the other ones which couldn't make a go of it. Profitability is one aspect of ownership, competitive balance is another. I still say that if you own multiple teams and have the opportunity to pick and choose which players from your collective pool that will ultimately play for your "real" team vs. one of the other teams that you happen to own (for whatever reason), this smacks of some level of an unbalanced playing field, ie a competitive advantage or disadvantage (depending on which team you root for).

I suspect that you might not have the same things to say if you were a die hard fan for Bridgeport or Camden.

Just my opinion.

BTW... I still really like the Atlantic League product and get to games every year, so just because I have this opinion doesn't mean I won't go to see their games.

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