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The California League is a Class A Advanced minor league baseball league which operates throughout the state of Californiamarker. Before 2002, it was classified as a "High-A" league, indicating its status as a Class A league with the highest level of competition within that classification, and the fifth step between Rookie ball and the Major Leagues. Although Minor League Baseball, the umbrella organization for Minor Leagues that are affiliated with Major League Baseball, has eliminated the distinction between High-A and other full-season A leagues, most Major League teams still use such leagues as a standard promotion step. A few draftees, generally early-round draftees with college experience, will be assigned to a High-A team upon signing a professional contract, but generally players will not arrive at this level until their third or fourth year of professional play.

The league was founded in 1941, and contained teams in Anaheimmarker, Bakersfieldmarker, Fresnomarker, Mercedmarker, Riversidemarker, San Bernardinomarker, Santa Barbaramarker and Stocktonmarker. The following year, as a result of World War II, the league dropped to four teams, then ceased operations altogether. It came back in 1946, adding teams in Visaliamarker, San Josemarker and Venturamarker by 1947. Reno, Nevadamarker joined the league in 1955 and continued as a member for 37 years.

All of the current teams are playing in stadiums that have been built or extensively renovated since 1990. League attendance continues to increase each season, with over one million fans attending games per year. The league is divided into a Northern Division and a Southern Division.

Near the end of the 2008 season, it was rumored that the Bakersfield Blaze and another unnamed team would move to the Carolina League after the following season. However, Minor League Baseball president Pat O'Conner announced in February 2009 that both teams would remain.

Current teams

Division Team MLB Affiliation City Stadium Capacity
Northern Bakersfield Blaze Texas Rangers Bakersfieldmarker, Californiamarker Sam Lynn Ballparkmarker 3,500
Modesto Nuts Colorado Rockies Modestomarker, Californiamarker John Thurman Fieldmarker 4,000
San Jose Giants San Francisco Giants San Josémarker, Californiamarker San José Municipal Stadiummarker 4,200
Stockton Ports Oakland Athletics Stocktonmarker, Californiamarker Banner Island Ballparkmarker 5,300
Visalia Rawhide Arizona Diamondbacks Visaliamarker, Californiamarker Recreation Parkmarker 2,468
Southern High Desert Mavericks Seattle Mariners Adelantomarker, Californiamarker Stater Bros.marker Stadiummarker 3,808
Inland Empire 66ers of San Bernardino Los Angeles Dodgers San Bernardinomarker, Californiamarker Arrowhead Credit Union Parkmarker 5,000
Lake Elsinore Storm San Diego Padres Lake Elsinoremarker, Californiamarker Lake Elsinore Diamondmarker 1 7,866
Lancaster JetHawks Houston Astros Lancastermarker, Californiamarker Clear Channel Stadiummarker 6,860
Rancho Cucamonga Quakes Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim Rancho Cucamongamarker, Californiamarker The Epicentermarker 6,200

1 Hosted 2009 California/Carolina League All-Star Game

Current team rosters

Champions (since 1960)

*Teams declared co-champions in wake of the September 11th, 2001 terrorist attacks.

Complete team list (1941-42, 1946-present)

The Los Angeles area, Riverside, San Bernardino, Palm Springs, Yuma (AZ) and Las Vegas (NV) were also major league spring training site cities, as well possessed California League teams on different occasions except for Yuma, Arizonamarker.

Cities that have had California League Teams (current in bold)

  • Adelanto (1990-)
  • Anaheim (1941) AL
  • Bakersfield (1941-42, 1946-75, 1978-79, 1982-)
  • Chico (1940's)
  • Eastside [Los Angeles] (1940's)
  • Fresno (1941-42, 1946-1988) PCL
  • Lake Elsinore (1994-)
  • Lancaster (1996-)
  • Las Vegas, NV (1959) PCL
  • Lodi (1966-86)
  • Long Beach (1946-49, 1962-66)
  • Merced (1941)
  • Modesto (1946-64, 1966-)
  • Oakland (1941) AL
  • Palm Springs (1985-93)
  • Rancho Cucamonga (1993-)
  • Redding (1940's)
  • Reno, NV (1955-64, 1966-92) PCL
  • Riverside (1941, 1993-95)
  • Sacramento (1940s) PCL
  • Salinas (1954-58, 1963-65, 1973-80, 1982-87, 1989-92)
  • San Bernardino (1941, 1987-)
  • San Diego (1942) NL
  • San Jose (1942, 1947-58, 1962-76, 1979-)
  • Santa Barbara (1941-42, 1946-53, 1962-71)
  • Santa Clara (1972-75, 1979)
  • Santa Rosa (1980-85)
  • Stockton (1941, 1946-72, 1978-)
  • Ventura (1947-55, 1986)
  • Visalia (1946-62, 1968-75, 1977-)

Modesto has hosted a California League team longer than any other city, hosting a team in all but two of the CL's 65 seasons.


See also

External links

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