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TR Mac
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AAA baseball teams aren't owned or operated by MLB or their teams. The leagues are affiliated but separate from MLB with their own group of owners. The MLB and minor league teams have agreements...one provides players and coaching oversight while the other provides the players a specific level of play, a place to play, and in some cases, a place to live. The minor league teams receive some compensation but still have to sell tickets, find sponsors, etc. to pay employees and some players (not all necessarily come from the big club), promote the team, keep the ballpark looking nice, and maybe make a sheckle or two.
While we need a true second division...having one on a national scale is problematic. The expense of travel was a big part of Cleveland's demise; Pittsburgh, Richmond and Charlotte all dropped to have a chance at breaking even or making a bit of money. Buses are much cheaper than airplanes. The WPS has the same problem. The quickest way to become a millionaire...buy a soccer team when you're a multi-millionaire. MLS wrestles with the travel expense...it will be awhile before they can afford to underwrite a league below them.