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Finally, it’s time for minor-league teams to also play ball

Clearwater Threshers, Dunedin Blue Jays and Tampa Tarpons open play Tuesday in new-look format.
The Threshers will back in action this year at BayCare Ballpark as part of the Low-A Southeast League.
The Threshers will back in action this year at BayCare Ballpark as part of the Low-A Southeast League. [ LUIS SANTANA | Times ]
Published May 3
Updated May 3

For the first time since September 2019, minor-league baseball teams will be back in action starting Tuesday, with three based in the immediate Tampa Bay area — the Clearwater Threshers, Dunedin Blue Jays and Tampa Tarpons — and others nearby in Bradenton and Lakeland.

After competing for years at the advanced Class A level in the Florida State League, the teams were reclassified and dropped down a level as part of Major League Baseball’s extensive overhaul of the entire minor-league system.

The Tampa Bay area teams are now part of the Low-A Southeast League, with rosters comprised of younger and less advanced players, but still conveniently located at the organization’s spring training sites.

Two other significant changes are that scheduling is now done in six-game series with all teams off on Mondays, and the Rays no longer have a team in the league, switching their affiliation from Port Charlotte to Charleston, S.C., and making Bowling Green, Ky., their advanced Class A team.

Also of note, the Dunedin Blue Jays won’t play any home games until at least June, as the big-league team is using TD Ballpark for regular-season games through late May and potentially longer.

Find daily schedules here.

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