The Yankees aren’t moving any of their minor league franchises, but their Triple-A team’s stadium needs a renovation and for the next year they will be without a home. The Yankees figured a good place to stash them would be Newark, New Jersey as that is where traditionally they always had a minor league team and there is an empty stadium waiting to be used.
Seems simple enough, right? Wrong. Because of Major League Baseball’s anti-trust exemption the Yankees and the Mets both have territorial rights in the New York City area including parts of New Jersey. That gives the Mets the right to keep the Yankees from putting a team in Newark even if it’s just for one year. And that’s what they did.
Jerry Izenberg of the Star-Ledger has the entire story, but the basics is that the Yankees approached the Mets for permission to put there team there. They offered to grant the Mets the same rights and even offered to pay the Mets for the rights. They were rejected.
The Mets must be afraid that having a minor league team so close to
their minor league team them could potentially cut into profits. Or they are just being dicks.
For a little back story, back in 1997 the Mets tried to put a minor league team in Long Island, but the Yankees rejected it. What ended up happening was that the two sides came to a compromise and the Mets put a team in Brooklyn instead while the Yankees put one in Staten Island.
However this time there will be no compromise. The Mets outright rejected the Yankees proposal and now there may never be a minor league team that fills the empty ball park in Newark (It’s not technically empty, an independent league team is there). The Mets have made it known that they don’t want the Yankees there and there is no chance that after this the Yankees will just allow the Mets to put a team there. It is neither team’s interest to let another organization place a team there. So the real loser in this story is the city of Newark, a once proud baseball city.
Stay classy New York Mets.