No major-league team has been connected to a minor-league affiliate longer than the Orioles have had a team in Bluefield, West Virginia. But after 52 years, that connection will be broken.
The Orioles announced that they'll disband their entry in the rookie Appalachian League, cutting their system from seven to six teams, which has become common. The Orioles have two short-season Class A teams, one close to Baltimore and another that uses their spring-training facility.
The move makes perfect business sense for the Orioles, but it's kind of sad to see such a long tradition come to an end. Bluefield officials say they'll pursue another affiliation to keep baseball in town.
-- David Andriesen
For more baseball news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsmlb on Twitter or subscribe to the RSS feed .