With the everyday nature of Major League Baseball, it is not uncommon for teams to need reinforcements from their minor league affiliates on short notice. So when hours can make the difference between being short-handed or having a full roster, it is nice to have a Triple-A farm club close by.
Apparently the Blue Jays missed the memo.
The average distance from a Triple-A team and their parent franchise is approximately 434 miles. The Blue Jays top minor club, the Las Vegas 51s, are 2,261 miles from Toronto. The next biggest distance between clubs is the Minnesota Twins, whose AAA partner in Rochester, New York is 1,012 miles away (by car).
Here is the distance between every major league team and the city that hosts their Triple-A affiliate…
And why do the Blue Jays have a triple-A team in Las Vegas? Apparently when the music stopped, Vegas was the only chair available. In 2008, the Blue Jays needed a new affiliate, but Las Vegas was the only team without a parent club. Still, the distance from Las Vegas to Toronto pales in comparison to the Hawaii Islanders, who were a triple-A affiliate of the Washington Senators in the mid-60s.
The Seattle Mariners (AAA team in Tacoma, WA) and Atlanta Braves (Lawrenceville, GA) have the shortest distance to cover (both 36 miles). Meanwhile, Pawtucket, Rhode Island is 41 miles from Fenway Park in Boston.
With modern travel, getting long distances in short periods of time is much easier. But even a first-class ticket on a plane isn’t going to make the Vegas-to-Toronto commute an easy one.