Independent Atlantic League cancels season due to virus

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LANCASTER, Pa. (AP) — The independent Atlantic League won’t be able to play this season because of the coronavirus pandemic, and its Sugar Land Skeeters will host a four-team circuit whose managers are to include Roger Clemens, Pete Incaviglia and Greg Swindell.

The Atlantic League said Friday that the High Point Rockers, Long Island Ducks and Southern Maryland Blue Crabs are working with several professional clubs to put together a 70-game schedule starting in mid-July and that will by followed by five-game championship series at the end of September.

Sugar Land will host a four-team league from July 3 through Aug. 23, and each team will play 28 games. Rosters are expected to include players with major league service. It did not say whether the contemplated managers would be fulltime.

“There are multiple teams in each league at different stages of reopening,” Atlantic League President Rick White said in a statement. “The solution would pair those clubs able to play.”

The Lancaster Barnstormers will host an outdoor summer movie series and may play the York Revolution. The Somerset Patriots may host local games and drive-movies.

The league launched in 1998 and has been used by Major League Baseball to test rules and technology, such as automated balls and strikes called by a computer. Its eighth team last year, the New Britain Bees, said in October it was joining the Futures Collegiate Baseball League.

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