Sunday, March 20, 2011

North American League down to 10 teams?

Originally announced as a 16-to-20 team league, the North American League may have shrunk down to only 10 teams. Ballpark Digest is reporting that a 10-team schedule is being drawn up after the recent eviction of the Schaumburg (Illinois) Flyers from their ballpark. That leaves the Eastern Division with only five squads. Rumours are circulating that one of the Western Division teams would be taken out of play in order to get back to an even number. It's likely that this organization would be the hastily-assembled Henderson (Nevada) Roadrunners, one of three league-owned teams.

The black clouds continue to gather on the North American League's horizon. Unconfirmed rumours that the Rockford Riverhawks are planning to jump ship to the Frontier League continue to circulate. That would leave only one team in Illinois, a scenario that would likely kill the Lake County Fielders (who lack a proper ballpark in which to play anyway). The result would be only three teams in the Eastern Division, all of them in Texas. There is also talk of adding a fourth team in the Lone Star State, but this would be a travelling team named after the city of McAllen.

Another unconfirmed rumour has the NAL considering putting a team in Kamloops for the 2011 season. Victoria fans may remember that the Seals played a pair of mildly successful exhibition games in Kamloops prior to the 2010 season.

It will be interesting to see how things play out for the still unstable North American League.