PRESS RELEASE – The Board of Directors of the newly formed Perfect Game Collegiate Baseball League had its initial meeting on the weekend of November 20 in Amsterdam, NY. All eight of the league’s members were represented at the meeting along with Brad Clement, Vice-President of Development at Perfect Game USA. The league, which basically contains some of the stronger franchises that defected from the New York Collegiate Baseball League, will begin play in 2011. At the meeting, bylaws were accepted, league wide goals and expansion plans were written, stadium projects laid out, and other general league practices discussed.
“We decided to enter into this new venture with a group of people who all share the same vision of creating minor league type atmospheres in fan-friendly stadiums. We feel that our new league, with the quality of players, stadiums, crowds, and operators that are in place, will immediately rise into one of the better leagues in the country”, said the PGCBL’s Interim President Brian Spagnola. Spagnola also is the President of one the league’s teams, the Amsterdam Mohawks. “We have dedicated owners who all share the same vision and have great passion for making this new league the best that it can be.”
The eight members of the league:
- Albany Dutchmen (Albany, NY) One of the leagues newer franchises, the Dutchmen are excited to be playing in a one year old stadium beginning in 2011. They play in the state’s capital and have a growing fan base.
- Amsterdam Mohawks (Amsterdam, NY) The NYCBL champions the past two years, the Mohawks broke an NYCBL attendance record as well in 2010. They also had nine players drafted in 2010 and boasted the league’s Top 5 Pro Prospects in 2010. In addition, they have a 32 year vet of minor league baseball with 23 years specifically as a AA and AAA General Manager, running their team.
- Cooperstown Hawkeyes (Cooperstown, NY) Cooperstown plays their home games at historic Doubleday Field, within a block of the Baseball Hall of Fame. Only in their second year, the Hawkeyes now have a 25 year minor league executive running their day to day operations who also oversaw the startup of the Binghamton Mets and Brooklyn Cyclones minor league teams.
- Elmira Pioneers (Elmira, NY) Using a former NY-Penn League stadium, the Pioneers won the NYCBL West in 2010 while averaging over 1000 fans per night. New, dedicated ownership has over 20 years of professional baseball experience and the game atmosphere in Elmira truly mimics a minor league setting.
- Glens Falls Golden Eagles (Glens Falls, NY) One of the most consistent franchises on the field in the NYCBL, Glens Falls has also made steady progress at the gate, averaging over 750 fans per game last season. They have had the most players drafted in the past five years in the NYCBL. With plans to further renovate East Field, another former NY-Penn and Eastern League stadium, they have expectations to surpass 1000 fans per night in 2011.
- Mohawk Valley DiamondDawgs (Little Falls, NY) Owned by the same ownership group as the Amsterdam Mohawks, this new group has increased attendance in Little Falls from 100 fans per night when taking over the team after the 2008 season to 1000 per night in 2010. The Dawgs play in another former NY-Penn League stadium and boast arguably the best facility in the league.
- Newark Pilots (Newark, NY) A brand new franchise in 2011, the Pilots will call Colburn Park, another former NY-Penn League stadium, their home. A quaint stadium, Colburn is getting a major overhaul by its new ownership group before playing in 2011. They also have hired another 25 year veteran of minor league baseball to run the day to day operations of the team.
- Watertown Wizards (Watertown, NY) A staple in the NYCBL where the Wizards won the league attendance record year after year, averaging about 1400 fans per night. They also typically get handfuls of players drafted each year, and in addition play in a beautiful facility in Duffy Fairgrounds, another ex NY-Penn League stadium.
“The eight teams in the league are in great communities in upstate New York and have outstanding facilities, many of which started as minor league facilities in the former New York-Penn League. Several of the parks have been recently updated, and others are in the process or planning for that. All teams have strong ownership and front office staffs, and are committed to having highly qualified coaching staffs, which are already in place in most cases. All cities in the league have good living arrangements for players, mostly with host families. This combination makes the future of this league very exciting and promising”, added Clement from Perfect Game USA’s perspective.
The league schedule will be finalized soon, and the approximate dates for the schedule (approximately 50 games) will run from about June 8 to August 8.