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  1. #1
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    Florida Instructional League?

    I'm going to be in Clearwater in the middle of October, and I'm wondering if anyone has any info on the Florida Instructional League...hoping to check it out while I'm down there, but can't find anything about it anywhere. Thanks in advance!

  2. #2
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    Re: Florida Instructional League?

    Bumping this back up...I've found out a little bit of info from the team directly, but would still like a 'first hand account' of what to expect at these games...thanks for any info!

  3. #3
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    Re: Florida Instructional League?

    I can't give you a first-hand account, but I can tell you that I attended the Arizona Fall League for 3 years and my brother lived in Arizona and attended Arizona League games, which would be more similar to this league. From my experience attending the AFL and his view on the Arizona League, plus the time I spent reading about the Florida Instructional League, I will give you my perspective of it.

    The attendance at these games will be very low, and it sounded like there is no charge to attend. You may or may not have a PA announcer. You may or may not have a concession stand, and if they do have one it will have limited availability on what they will sell. The types of people that do attend will be families of the players, scouts, autograph/game-used collectors, and a few other fans, etc. It will be very young players that need some more at-bats or are trying to play a new position. In other words, guys below Low-A ball (i.e. Rookie, Short-Season). You may have a few older players, but most will be in their teens.

    It probably would be neat to do if you live in the area, and I personally would do it. I would not take a vacation for the Florida Instructional League; however, I would take a vacation for the Arizona Fall League since it involves more AA guys and some prospects. I never attended any Arizona League games, but the description I wrote above is coming from my brother's perspective.

    I am trying to be helpful, although I do not have a first-hand account of the league.

    Chris

  4. #4
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    Re: Florida Instructional League?

    Thanks, so much, for the input!

    From your experience with the Arizona League, how likely are guys to give away broken bats/caps/etc? Not counting on walking out with a huge haul, but I'm wondering if they're even allowed to hand things out.

  5. #5
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    Re: Florida Instructional League?

    Quote Originally Posted by Copa View Post
    Thanks, so much, for the input!

    From your experience with the Arizona League, how likely are guys to give away broken bats/caps/etc? Not counting on walking out with a huge haul, but I'm wondering if they're even allowed to hand things out.
    I personally never attended the Arizona League games, but my brother did. My brother does not collect game used bats, however people that he knew did. I believe in some cases they were not allowed, but some did give the cracked bat away. The worst thing they will tell you is no.

    My experience in asking for hats on the final day is that most players will say no. You may find someone that does give it to you if you keep asking. My experience is that the lower the level or the less they have played, the more likely the answer is no.

    Chris

  6. #6
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    Nov 2007
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    Re: Florida Instructional League?

    Quote Originally Posted by Copa View Post
    I'm going to be in Clearwater in the middle of October, and I'm wondering if anyone has any info on the Florida Instructional League...hoping to check it out while I'm down there, but can't find anything about it anywhere. Thanks in advance!
    How was your experience?

  7. #7
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    Re: Florida Instructional League?

    Really glad I took the time to check it out! In total, there were maybe 50 people there, mostly scouts and players not playing in that day's game...it was such a unique experience being able to hear the sounds of the game so clearly (specifically, a player getting chewed out by the first base coach after nearly getting thrown out on a shallow pop out).

    From a collecting standpoint, it seemed like this would be an awesome place to go if you're an autograph collector...everyone signed! As for game used stuff, baseballs are very easy to come by, but the players in the stands come and retrieve all foul balls, so that was kind of a bummer...it was about 95 degrees the day I went, and I had dinner plans, so I didn't stay all the way until the end of the game, but given how personable all the players were, I have a feeling that snagging a broken bat wouldn't be that difficult.

    The games are free and open to the public, so I highly suggest to anyone living in Florida, or traveling there, catch a game!

  8. #8
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    Re: Florida Instructional League?

    Quote Originally Posted by Copa View Post
    Really glad I took the time to check it out! In total, there were maybe 50 people there, mostly scouts and players not playing in that day's game...it was such a unique experience being able to hear the sounds of the game so clearly (specifically, a player getting chewed out by the first base coach after nearly getting thrown out on a shallow pop out).

    From a collecting standpoint, it seemed like this would be an awesome place to go if you're an autograph collector...everyone signed! As for game used stuff, baseballs are very easy to come by, but the players in the stands come and retrieve all foul balls, so that was kind of a bummer...it was about 95 degrees the day I went, and I had dinner plans, so I didn't stay all the way until the end of the game, but given how personable all the players were, I have a feeling that snagging a broken bat wouldn't be that difficult.

    The games are free and open to the public, so I highly suggest to anyone living in Florida, or traveling there, catch a game!
    Were there any scouts or players that were worth getting from an autograph perspective? By the way, if a ball leaves the stadium, it is possible that you could retrieve it if no one collected it as well. Just sit in an area where you can watch what is going on.

  9. #9
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    Re: Florida Instructional League?

    Most of the guys there were between 15-23, so it's tough to say what these guys will become, but from what I understand, it was many of the top young prospects for both teams...I'm a Tigers fan, so I don't know the Phillies or Blue Jays systems very well.

    I sat outside the park for about 20 minutes, in hopes of snagging a ball that left the stadium, but didn't see anything come out...I saw a number of people on golf carts driving around, so it could have been staffers picking up foul balls, but I'm not positive...I would think if you were able to find one, it would be all yours!

  10. #10
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    Re: Florida Instructional League?

    Quote Originally Posted by Copa View Post
    Most of the guys there were between 15-23, so it's tough to say what these guys will become, but from what I understand, it was many of the top young prospects for both teams...I'm a Tigers fan, so I don't know the Phillies or Blue Jays systems very well.

    I sat outside the park for about 20 minutes, in hopes of snagging a ball that left the stadium, but didn't see anything come out...I saw a number of people on golf carts driving around, so it could have been staffers picking up foul balls, but I'm not positive...I would think if you were able to find one, it would be all yours!
    A buddy of mine worked for the O's down at their minor league complex this past spring training and part of the job was to patrol the fields and collect any balls they saw. Apparently there has been a few people who would go around and take as many balls as they could and sell them on eBay.

    That could explain why the players have to pick up the balls as they come out of play.
    Always looking for anything John Flaherty, Drew Storen and Marcell Ozuna game used.
    jaeger_danny@yahoo.com

 

 

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