The Fresno Grizzlies, who were recently demoted from Triple A team to Single A, just got some bad news. Chukchansi Casino has finished paying off their naming rights contract with the Grizzlies’s stadium, Chukchansi Park, and will not renew, after 15 years. Thankfully, there’s also good news. Fresno City Council has reduced the rent of the stadium to $100K from $500K, with the city also willing to pay the first $300K of utility bills for the Grizzlies; of course, the city will receive some of the Grizzlies’s profit, though after a threshhold The MLB has also guaranteed that the Grizzlies will remain in the minor league through at least 2030. I wonder who, if anyone, will sign a naming rights deal with the Grizzlies to rename the former Chukchansi Park.
The Fresno Grizzlies, who was a triple A team of the MLB (Minor League Baseball), was recently demoted to a single A team. This comes as part of a new (and rather controversial) reorganization of minor leagues by the MLB. The Grizzlies were only one tier away from major league teams, making the Grizzlies a farm for players moving on to major league baseball. But, as a result of becoming low A, the Grizzlies are now several tiers away.
Their players will no longer be relatively seasoned men (just one step away from major league) but of rookies and teenagers that will rarely remain long enough to build a robust franchise. As such, the reputation of the Central Valley (Since Fresno is the biggest county/city), and the money that the Chukchansi stadium brings in will likely deteriorate, with fans having less motivation to attend the games (unless it’s the parents of the youngsters…)