MiLB AAA PCL Season Opener: Aviators vs Chihuahuas
The El Paso Chihuahuas start their sixth season tonight and it is the team’s 2019 campaign opener. While the Las Vegas Triple-A franchise isn’t new the name of the team is. The new name for the Las Vegas 51s minor league baseball team was unveiled this past December. The new name is Las Vegas Aviators.
As a result the Aviators and the Chihuahuas open the season tonight, the first of a five-game series in El Paso. Opening night tickets sold out in less than 10 minutes. The Aviators are the Triple-A affiliate of the Oakland Athletics while the El Paso Chihuahuas are affiliated with the San Diego Padres.
The 51s become The Aviators
Vegas’ new name was announced by Howard Hughes Corp. CEO David Weinreb. And other speakers and attendees at the special event included Kevin T. Orrock, President, Summerlin; Pat O’Conner, President and Chief Executive Officer, Minor League Baseball; Branch Rickey, President of the Pacific Coast League and grandson of baseball legend Branch Rickey; Don Logan, President and Chief Operating Officer of the Las Vegas Aviators; and Steve Hill, CEO, Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority.
According to Weinreb, “the name change pays homage to the company’s namesake, Howard R. Hughes, Jr., one of the twentieth century’s most successful businessmen whose passion for aviation and legacy of innovation includes significant aviation-related firsts and accomplishments.”
The Padres’ Triple-A affiliate has spent the past several years bouncing from location to location. Furthermore after 10 seasons as the Portland (Ore.) Beavers, the team moved to Tucson’s Kino Stadium in 2011, becoming the Tucson Padres. When plans fell through to build a stadium for the club in Escondido, Calif. — just 32 miles north of Petco Park in San Diego — the team instead relocate to El Paso, Texas and appropriately became the Chihuahuas.
The Pacific Coast League is excited to kick off its 117th season and today released the official schedule for the 2019 Championship Season. Also the 16 teams will each play a 140-game schedule that begins on Thursday, April 4 and wraps up on Monday, September 2.
Tatis before Urias
When the Padres decided to promote top prospect Fernando Tatis Jr. to the parent club it left the franchises other highly touted player to start in El Paso. This player being Luis Urias. It is no secret that most MiLB pundits believed Urias would get the nod in The Show over Tatis. But the club assigned him to Triple-A El Paso.
In summary allow the Las Vegas SuperBook, Westgate to outline the Odds for this PCL opener – Aviators and Chihuahuas