New England League Unveils 2019 Schedule
February 1, 2019 - New England Collegiate Baseball League (NECBL) News Release
NORTH ADAMS, Mass. - Commissioner Sean McGrath announced the New England Collegiate Baseball League's (NECBL) 2019 composite schedule today. The New England League celebrates its 25th anniversary season on Wednesday, June 5, with a matchup between the league's two-time defending champion Valley Blue Sox traveling to its newest expansion organization, the Martha's Vineyard Sharks, as part of a full six-game Opening Day slate.
Highlighting the initial slate of games will be a matchup of two defending league champions, as the Blue Sox - back-to-back winners of the Fay Vincent Sr. Cup - battle the Sharks, who were co-league champions last summer. The Blue Sox will raise their second straight championship banner during their home opener on June 8 at MacKenzie Stadium.
Also featured on Opening Day are Sanford-North Adams, Winnipesaukee-Vermont, Ocean State-Danbury, Upper Valley-Keene and Mystic-Newport.
The 2019 season will once again feature seven teams in the North Division and six teams in the South Division. The North Division remain the same, comprised of the Keene Swamp Bats, the North Adams SteepleCats, the Sanford Mainers, the Upper Valley Nighthawks, the Valley Blue Sox, the Vermont Mountaineers and the Winnepsaukee Muskrats. The six-team South Division contains the Danbury Westerners, the Martha's Vineyard Sharks, Mystic Schooners, the New Bedford Bay Sox, the Newport Gulls and the Ocean State Waves.
The New England League will employ a balanced/unbalanced schedule format depending on the division, and all teams will play 44 regular season games overall. Teams in the South Division will face each divisional rival six times (three home and three road games), and will play each team from the North Division twice (one home, one road). Each team in the North Division will play two other in-division teams six times, and the remaining four teams five times, for a total of 32 games, plus the two games against each of the six South Division teams (12 games - one home, one road vs. each team) for a total of 44 games.
The Vermont Mountaineers will play host to the 2019 NECBL All-Star Game on Sunday, July 28, 2019 at Montpelier Recreation Field in Montpelier, Vermont, marking the third time the Mountaineers have hosted the NECBL All-Star Game (2004 & 2012.) The All-Star Game showcases the NECBL's top talent in a fun-filled afternoon and evening of the best the league has to offer - with players from all NECBL organizations showcasing their skills in front of scouts from every Major League Baseball (MLB) organization.
After that, each of the league's 13 teams will play two final days of the regular season with hopes of qualifying for the 2019 NECBL Playoffs, of which the format remains the same from last summer.
Six teams total will qualify for the postseason, with the winners of both the North and South Divisions each earning first-round byes. The No. 2 and No. 3 seeds from each division will square off in a winner-take-all NECBL Wildcard Game; the victors will take on the No. 1 seeds in the best-of-three NECBL Divisional Finals before the last two teams standing face off in the NECBL Championship Series in another best-of-three format that will determine the winner of the Fay Vincent Cup.
The final games of the regular season will be held on Thursday, Aug. 1, with the following day (Aug. 2) open for makeup games before the postseason begins on Saturday, Aug. 3.
The New England Collegiate Baseball League is a wooden bat college summer league that fields teams in all six New England states. Partially funded by Major League Baseball, the NECBL started play in 1994 and is enjoying its 25th-year anniversary season this summer. The New England League has sent nearly 150 alumni to the Major Leagues and has had nearly 100 alumni drafted in each of the last 10 Major League Baseball Drafts. The New England League was recently ranked No. 2 in the Summer Baseball Register's Top-10 collegiate summer baseball leagues in the country. For continuing coverage of the NECBL, visit NECBL.com and follow the league on Twitter, Instagram and on Facebook.
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