Finding that a patchwork of local and state restrictions on crowds too difficult to surmount, the independent Frontier League has suspended its 2020 season, though some teams will be running local events.
“We all want to play Frontier League baseball in 2020,” said Rich Sauget, Sr., league president. “However, with the continuing limitations on social gatherings in our markets plus travel restrictions impacting our Canadian teams we had to make the tough decision that without availability to play in many of our 14 ballparks that a 2020 championship season was no longer realistic.”
It had already been announced that the Quebec Capitales and the Trois-Rivières Aigles would not be playin this season because of Canadian travel restrictions.
The suspension of the championship season allows individual teams to pursue baseball and other activities in their facilities as state and local restrictions allow. As restrictions are eased and health and safety plans approved the individual clubs will be announcing what activities they will be allowed to host. The Joliet Slammers, for instance, will launch the inaugural City of Champions Cup at DuPage Medical Group Field beginning July 16.
Four teams will compete for the Cup, all playing a 27 game schedule each at DuPage Medical Group Field from July 16 through September 6. The teams will be made up of players drafted from the ranks of Frontier League players unable to play for their current teams and free agents from MiLB affiliated teams.
“We are expecting a very high level of talent to be on the field for the Slammers and the other three teams,” said Nick Semaca, Slammers majority owner.
“We fully understand and respect the seriousness of the COVID-19 epidemic,” said commissioner Bill Lee. “With all of the excitement surrounding the addition of five former Can-Am League teams for 2020 everybody was primed for our best season ever. That being said our league-wide focus now shifts to carrying this momentum into 2021.”
The move by the Frontier League followed an announcement by the independent Atlantic League that its official league slate was canceled, with teams free to implement solutions tailored to their current governmental guidelines. Last week it was announced six American Association teams will be playing out of three hubs, with games hosted by the Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks, Milwaukee Milkmen and Sioux Falls Canaries.
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