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Minor league baseball season preview (help)

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by NDub, Mar 26, 2007.

  1. PhilaYank36

    PhilaYank36 Guest

    There's Class A, which includes the Midwest League and the South Atlantic (Sally) League, both of which are full-season leagues. Then there is A Short-Season, which is the New York-Penn and Northwest Leagues. Those are the ones that start in late June and are mostly made up of a team's fresh draft picks.
  2. NDub

    NDub Guest

    This is A ball - Midwest League.

    danhawks, i can write a damn preview. i'm not a moron. i'm just looking for ideas because i want this to dazzle.
  3. ColbertNation

    ColbertNation Member

    Used to cover NY-P League ball. It was among the best times I had as a sports writer. The manager made things really easy on me, and the players didn't have big heads, so they were really accessible.
  4. NDub

    NDub Guest

    I loved doing the independent ball beat. Manager was a great quote and funny as hell. Players were laid back and really seemed to enjoy talking about the game. I don't know how many times i'd hit the locker room for post game interviews and they'd offer me a Bud Light from the overflowing beer tub in the middle of the room. Good stuff.
  5. leo1

    leo1 Active Member

    yeah danhawks, let's keep our fingers crossed and hope he remembers to interview the general manager - who, as posted above might be a glorified PR guy - but is obviously worth talking to, even if only to discover that he's utterly useless as a source. i think the ace junior high school reporter could figure out that you should at least talk to the GM.
  6. Ace

    Ace Well-Known Member

    This ace doubts the GM will dazzle.

    Do something different. Don't just break down the lineup.
  7. jfs1000

    jfs1000 Member

    This is difficult because it depends what kind of paper you are. If you are a smaller paper covering the team to death, the only way to do this story is to focus in on some of the players. Instead of a preview story, how about 3 or 4 profiles on the key players?

    Remember, you have two types of minor league stories

    a. The prospect story...this is easy. He may play in the majors.

    b. The non-prospect story...why is this guy hangning on? Why does he cling to the dream? Future manager? Coach? Does't know what to do? Doesn't want to grow up? Loves to play?

    The charm in minor league baseball is these types of players coming together and playing the game of baseball. Go rent Bull Durham and figure it out.

    If you are a bigger paper who gets 8-10 inches per gamer, then right a 15 inch preview outlining the strengths and weaknesses of the roster and what to expect. Then try and find really good stories on the team. You only do that by talking to the players.

    I am disheartned by some who say you are SOL. Minor league baseball is rich with stories. You have to be creative. And if you are a young writer, being creative on this beat will get you a bigger and better job, not a solid clean 15-inch gamer on the Newark Bears wininng 5-1 on a warm July night.

    Don't know what to write?

    Well, what would you like to read?

    Remeber this: Most people don't care if the minor league team wins or loses. It's about seeing potential major leaguers, and having a night out watching baseball. I don't remember the record of the team I saw as a kid, I remeber seeing the guys who went to the major leagues. That's the hook. So assume that angle, don't write mindless play-by-play drone, and don't get buried in statistics.

    Tell a story. Hell, if it's an independent league team, then you can do stories about guys travels in minor league baseball. Independent leagues are the vagabonds of baseball. Intersting stuff there.

    And if you still can't find stories, well there may be a future for you in public relations.

    You have everything you could possibly want on a minor league beat:

    1, Interesting stories
    2. Change over year-to-year
    3. No pressure
    4. Very little coverage allowing you to take more chances on what you write.

    Now I am still a young journalist, and I know what you are going through. Been there done that. Just trust your instincts and have confidence. You've been reading newspapers (hopefully) your entire life. What kind of stories did you like to read?
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