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Bristol State Liners make temporary move to Greeneville

Pioneer Park, Greeneville

Facing issues regarding new-ballpark financing, the Bristol State Liners (summer collegiate; Appalachian League) are leaving Boyce Cox Field for the 2024 season and will play a hybrid schedule out of Greeneville’s Pioneer Park.

The State Liners management had worked out a deal for a new ballpark at an expanded Whitetop Creek baseball field, on the Tennessee side of the city. The budget for the new ballpark is $7 million: $5 million from the Bristol City Council and $2 million from Boyd Sports, which manages several other teams in the Appy League as well as owning the Tennessee Smokies (Double-A; Southern League). But in February it was announced Boyd Sports was pulling out of the deal, temporarily impacting development of a ballpark once anticipated to open June 2024.

While a return to Boyce Cox Field was considered (the strange details are here), the facility is in terrible shape–concrete bleachers behind home plate and along the first-base line became unsafe to the point of being shut down, and bumps in the outfield have hampered the playing field–a return was deemed to be unfeasible.

And while Bristol Baseball is still planning on that ballpark opening–now for the 2025 season–that still poses issues for 2024. The solution: The State Liners will be operating their home clubhouse operations at Tusculum University’s Pioneer Park, home of the Appy League’s Greeneville Flyboys, and will play several home games there. (Greeneville is about an hour’s drive from Bristol.) Other “home” games will be played on the road.

Photo by Mark Cryan.

RELATED STORIES: New Bristol State Liners ballpark set for 2024; Bristol Pirates Face Pressing Facility IssuesBristol (TN) Could Further Explore New Pirates BallparkBristol (TN) could study new ballpark

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