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Sharks, FCBL Spar Over Potential League Change

Martha's Vineyard Sharks

An effort by the Martha’s Vineyard Sharks to change summer-collegiate leagues has prompted a legal dispute with the Futures Collegiate Baseball League, which contends that the club is violating its bylaws. 

The Sharks are attempting to depart the Futures Collegiate Baseball League (FCBL) in favor of the New England Collegiate Baseball League. The club notified the FCBL in September that it was working to complete the transition by the 2019 season, but the league is contending that the Sharks are violating its bylaws in the process.

According to the FCBL, its bylaws require the Sharks to provide evidence of financial difficulties and obtain two-thirds approval from its board of directors before leaving the league. In its legal complaint, the FCBL is seeking to force the Sharks to pay a $100,000 fee for leaving the league and agree to not field a team in the next two seasons. The Sharks, however, allege that the bylaws are not enforceable as they were never signed, and have sought to have the case dismissed. More from The Vineyard Gazette:

The league wants the team to pay a $100,000 exit fee and forfeit play for the next two summers.

Attorneys for the Sharks claim the bylaws were never signed and are not enforceable.

In October the Hon. William Barrett, an associate justice of the superior court, denied a motion by the league for a preliminary injunction that would have prevented the team from beginning its exit while the case is pending.

Attorneys for the Sharks have filed a motion to dismiss the case. Oral arguments were heard in December, according to court documents.

The Sharks are a charter franchise in the FCBL, and have fielded a team in the league since it began competition in 2011.

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