Baseball Australia "called for expressions of interest" as it looks to expand its six-team Australian Baseball League for the first time, and New Zealand is "seen as an obvious landing spot," according to Dale Budge of the NEW ZEALAND HERALD. Baseball New Zealand officials received an official letter from BA "asking them to put together a bid to join the league as early as next season." Baseball NZ CEO Ryan Flynn said, "We have been in talks for some months now. The letter does indicate that they are basically open for business." While other locations in Australia and Asia have been afforded the same opportunity, New Zealand "ticks a number of boxes." It is understood a group of sponsors have "already been secured." Flynn: "When you are talking about running the organization we are still waiting on some of the details of what they expect a three-and-a-half to four months minor league season would cost us. But I do believe, talking to major sponsors that I can't name now, that we do have domestic support for one franchise in New Zealand to get this over the line" (NZ HERALD, 11/14).
Atlético Madrid established a new record by reaching 115,000 official members. The club's change of home this summer to the Estadio Wanda Metropolitano "has played a large role in increasing the growth" of Atlético fans. Of the 115,000 members, 56,091 are season ticket holders (MARCA, 11/13).
La Liga President Javier Tebas said that Lionel Messi renewed his contract with Barcelona. Tebas: "Messi has a contract and he has already renewed. Contracts are official when they are signed, not when it is said that they have been signed. ... If they are not lying to me, it has been signed" (MUNDO DEPORTIVO, 11/14).