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Boise Hawks lose affiliation, move to independent league

The Colorado Rockies announced it will move affiliation from the Boise Hawks to Spokane. The Hawks join the Pioneer League instead.

The Hawks said the changes are in response to the MLB changing the Minor League system.

“We’re excited that we’re going to continue the long history of playing professional baseball in the Treasure Valley,” the co-owner of the Boise Hawks, Jeff Eiseman told BoiseDev. “That’s our first and foremost number one objective… It has been a 14-15 month endeavor since we’ve learned about Major League Baseball’s plans to restructure the entire Minor League system. And it been a roller coaster ride”

[Hawks owners say Boise could lose baseball, team with Ahlquist for large-scale Expo Idaho site concept]

Eiseman said that the Hawks’ aging facility led to this decision by the MLB.

“…As we have stated since the day we purchased the Hawks, the venue is a challenge,” Eiseman said. ”The failure to not have replaced it in all of these prior years led to this move.”

The Pioneer League

Starting next year the Pioneer League moves to an independent professional MLB partner league rather than a league affiliate. The Pioneer League has teams in Idaho, Montana, Colorado, and Utah.

“We lose our affiliation the Colorado Rockies but you know in the four or five years that we’re with them only one player made it to the major leagues,” Eiseman told BoiseDev. “And we never really fielded a winning team on the field. Now, being a professional baseball team with independence, we have the ability to impact what we do on the field as well as off the field.”

Eiseman ultimately hopes to get the Hawks back to being an affiliated team.

“ I think our future will be back with affiliated baseball,” he said. “I don’t think this is a long time expulsion by any means and the markets too big. I think once we settle the stadium circumstances, and bring things up to a modern era I see Boise not only returning to the affiliated ranks but not with the Northwest League but probably at the AAA levels where I anticipate us being.”

[Emails show Harsin pushed to leave Mtn. West; BSU engaged with conferences]

Expo Idaho site changes ahead

Agon Sports, which owns the Hawks, teamed up with Tommy Ahlquist’s BVA Development on a possible plan for the future of the sprawling Expo Idaho site. Yesterday, a citizen’s advisory committee put the finishing touches on recommendations for the site.

Agon Sports and partner organization Greenstone Properties has worked for years to find a plan for a new stadium in Boise or the surrounding area.

[‘It’s terrific:’ Citizen’s panel makes final recommendations for Expo Idaho site]

Ahlquist told BoiseDev they are still working with Agon on the project.

“We’re still working closely with them and trying our best to come up with a solution,” Ahlquist said. “With the elections and now the post elections-leadership of Ada County, we’re just doing our best to find a solution and help in anyway we can.”

Autum Robertson - BoiseDev Reporter
Autum Robertson is a BoiseDev reporter focused on Ketchum, McCall and general news. Contact her at [email protected].

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