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Ask MiLB: Finding a (very) lost relative
Minor League fans have questions; we've got some answers
02/09/2011 10:00 AM ET
Twins prospect Aaron Hicks was a former first-round pick.
Twins prospect Aaron Hicks was a former first-round pick. (Brace Hemmelgarn/MiLB.com)
Minor League Baseball fans have a lot of questions about the game, its players and this website. We at MiLB.com attempt to answer some of those curiosities. No promises, though.

Have a question? Shoot us an email at webmaster@minorleaguebaseball.com

From a commenter on the previous Ask MiLB:
Is the new umpire school at Vero Beach an alternative to attending either the Jim Evans Academy or the Wendelstedt Umpire School? My understanding was that Evans and Wendlestedt were the only two schools authorized to nominate students for the PBUC program. -- "UmpireArt"

The short answer is yes. There are now three approved professional umpire training schools that can recommend prospective professional umpires for the PBUC Evaluation Course.

Is there a site that shows what players have been released? -- Louise P.

Each league website has a transactions report that shows all player movement. For example, the International League's transactions for January.

Will you archive game audio broadcasts this year? You did it a couple of years ago but not recently. It is quite useful for those of us who live overseas and can't listen to the games live because of the time difference. It would also allow us to listen to the games of two different teams that happen to play at the same time. -- Mark B.

Agreed, it would be convenient -- right now, Minor League teams have the option to create audio archive pages to display game archives, but currently only one team, San Jose, has a complete archive available. More teams may decide to have audio archives available online this season.

I apologize to anyone who received an email from me. Unfortunately, I was unaware my account had been compromised. -- Amy W.

The MiLB.com staff hereby forgives you -- good luck.

I am writing with regard to [former Minor Leaguer] Conrad E. Zurkowski. I know that Conrad played for MiLB. I have some information about him, and I want to know more about him. He was my distant family. In addition, I would like to say I am from Poland, and his surname is Polish too. Could you give me more information about him such as where he studied precisely [probably in Virginia]. -- Kamil Ś.

We've been getting a lot of emails like this, asking about Minor Leaguers who played decades ago -- we have limited information on many of these players, especially those who played long ago. In regards to Mr. Zurkowski, it appears he only played 37 games in 1951 with Suffolk of the Class D Virginia League.

According to the St. Pete Times, a man named Conrad E. Zurkowski died on Jan. 13, 2006, at Mease Countryside Hospital while living in Clearwater, Fla. We can't entirely verify it's the same person, but they have a similar name and age. He was born in West Orange, N.J., and came to the Tampa Bay area in 1965 from Union, N.J. A Tampa Bay newspaper report from 2005 said deputies, helicopters and county park police searched the Lake Seminole, Fla., area for hours after Mr. Zurkowski went missing from his nursing home. "He was found by a Tallahassee firefighter wandering the streets."

Looking for an opportunity with the experience that I have as a professional baseball player to become a scout or coach to move forward the future stars of the game. Please view my résumé. -- Jeffrey R.

Sounds like a nice plan, Jeff, good luck. MiLB.com is not hiring any scouts. Contact Major League Baseball or individual Major League clubs, who would be the ones hiring scouts.

Do you know when you will be having auditions to sing the national anthem before your games? -- Candy H.

You'll need to contact a Minor League club directly with your question -- we're not involved in that process.

I live in Panama City Beach, Fla., and I think this area would be excellent for a Minor League team. We have a decent population with Panama City and the surrounding small towns. Also, Destin and Pensacola are close too. We just got a new airport. We are also well known for our spring breakers. I think a Minor League team would be great here. Besides, I would love to watch some great Minor League Baseball. -- Mark P.

Mark, you make some good points. How about if we move, say, the Carolina Mudcats to Pensacola next year? Deal?

I'm putting together a group to build a Class A ballpark here in Riverside, Calif. What are the Minor League Baseball standards to construct it? Can you help me out? -- Jaime M.

The NAPBL Rules Book that contains recommended minimums for seating, as well as facility standards. Riverside might be in a protected territory, so you should definitely do your homework before getting too deep into this. Contact the California League, which is the most likely destination for a Class A affiliate in Riverside.

Hello, looking to find some information on contacting the player Aaron Hicks, or if he has one, his agent. --Bonnie L.

You know we can't give out personal information about players to fans. Hicks is currently with the Twins organization. The Twins can make the decision on putting you in contact with him or referring you to his agent, if he has one. Also, many players are on Twitter and Facebook.

Would it be possible to set up a link on your site with a list of currently contracted [and active] Minor League players from foreign countries? I am specifically interested in Australians playing Minor Leagues. -- Mick M.

That would be an enormous and constantly changing list considering the thousands of players and the amount of movement. The newly launched Australian Baseball League would be the perfect resource to ask about Minor Leaguers from Australia, they will know 'em all.

Where can I get a list of the owners of Minor League teams? I just recently discovered that the teams were owned by individuals, corporations, etc. How much control do the owners have over the teams? I would like to know where I can read up on the history of Minor League teams. -- Donna H.

We don't have a list; Minor League Baseball does not provide information on individual owners. However, much of this information is available from other sources, such as Baseball America. Although it may not be 100 percent accurate, general information that you are seeking is usually available -- every Minor League team's website is likely to list the front office ownership and management. Other news sources carry this information, as well.

In regards to team history, the two best places to find that would be individual team sites, as they usually have an "about us" or "history" section. MiLB.com has quite a bit of historical content, including an absurdly extensive breakdown of the top 100 teams in Minor League history. It will literally take you hours, maybe even days, to get through, and that's a good thing.

Is there a list that shows the signing bonus players were paid in 2007? -- Charlie S.

What's with all these lists? You mean players drafted in 2007? thebaseballcube.com often lists signing bonuses for higher draft picks or those with notable contracts, and Cot's Baseball Contracts should have any players who signed Major League deals out of the Draft -- those would be good places to start. MiLB.com or MLB.com should also have articles that detail all the big bonus signings. MiLB.com does not have a list of financial details with players and their organizations, though.

Have a question? Shoot us an email at webmaster@minorleaguebaseball.com, and please be as specific as possible so that we can accurately respond to your inquiry. This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.
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