Category Archives: Independent Ball

2022 Season Wrap-Up and a Look Ahead

The 2022 MLB World Series between the Philadelphia Phillies and the Houston Astros kicks off tonight, officially starting the beginning to the end of the 2022 baseball season.

Additionally, the MLB partner leagues and other independent leagues have all wrapped up their seasons and are looking ahead to what the 2023 season will bring.

Here’s a look at your 2022 season champions and some news on what you can look forward to in 2023.

2022 Season Champions:

MLB Partner Leagues

Atlantic League – The Lancaster Barnstormers captured their third Atlantic League championship with a series sweep over the High Point Rockers.
Lancaster Barnstormers Official Press Release

American Association – The Fargo-Moorhead RedHawks walked off on the Milwaukee Milkmen in the bottom of the 10th inning in game five of the Miles Wolff Cup Finals to win the 2022 American Association Championship.
American Association Official Press Release

Frontier League –  The Quebec Capitales became the first team to defeat the Schaumburg Boomers in a playoff series to capture the Frontier League Championship in four games. 
Frontier League Official Press Release

Pioneer League – The GJ Rockies win their first PBL Championship in 41 years with a two-game sweep over defending champions the Missoula Paddleheads.
Pioneer League Official Press Release

MLB Draft League – The WV Black Bears win the inaugural MLB Draft League Championship. (While the first half of the season featured draft eligible prospects, the second half belonged to professional players who have exhausted their amateur eligibility.)
MLB Draft League Official Press Release

Other Independent Leagues

United Shore Pro Baseball League – The Birmingham Bloomfield Beavers rallied from four runs down late to defeat the Utica Unicorns in the USPBL Championship Game.
United Shore Pro Baseball League Official Press Release

Pecos League – The Roswell Invaders won their fourth Pecos League championship, their first in seven years, after defeating the defending champions the Tucson Saguaros.

Empire League – The Tupper Lake Riverpigs win their first Empire League Championship.
Empire League Official Press Release

Mavericks League – The Salem Senators defeated the Portland Mavericks to win the Mavericks League Championship.
Mavericks League Official Website

Yinzer Baseball Confederacy – In its third season of play, the Yinzer League (ran by Black Sox Pro Baseball) continued to be a feeder league for many players. Throughout the summer, players from the Yinzer League were able to sign contracts and play in various MLB Partner Leagues.

2023 News

Atlantic League

Nashville Developer Acquires Lexington Legends and Wild Health Field
Nathan and Keri Lyons have acquired the Lexington Legends of the Atlantic League of Professional Baseball (ALPB) along with Wild Health Field and its real estate.
Read more HERE (Atlantic League).

York Revolution Announce Rick Forney as New Manager
Forney, a native of Frederick, Maryland, spent the last 17 seasons managing the Winnipeg Goldeyes of the American Association, compiling a record of 887-753 with 13 winning seasons, 10 playoff appearances and three league championships in 2012, 2016 and 2017. He was also named American Association Manager of the Year in 2011 and 2020.
Read more HERE (York Dispatch).

Atlantic League Breaks Ground in Hagerstown
A ground breaking ceremony was held in Hagerstown which is set to host a new Atlantic League team in 2024.
Read more HERE (Herald-Mail Media).

Frontier League

Crushers Name Jared Lemieux Manager
Lemieux spent the past 2 seasons coaching with the New Jersey Jackals, and has been involved in professional baseball, either playing or coaching since 2006.
Read more HERE (Frontier League).

Florence Names Chad Rhodes Manager
This marks Rhoades’ third stint with Florence, having spent his two previous stops with Florence as the team’s pitching coach.
Read more HERE (Frontier League).

Windy City Names MLB All-Star Richie Sexson Manager
This will be the first professional managerial position for Sexson, who has spent much of the last decade as director of baseball at Summit High School in Bend, Oregon. He played for 12 seasons in the Major Leagues from 1997-2008.  
Read more HERE (Frontier League).

2023 Schedule Announced
The Frontier League, a MLB Professional Partner League, unveiled the schedule for its 30th season of play.  The 2023 regular season will begin on Thursday, May 11 and run through Sunday, September 3.
Read more HERE (Frontier League).

Pioneer League

Stu Pederson Named Second Ever Manager of Range Riders
Pederson served as an assistant coach for the Range Riders this past season, helping guide the team to a successful second half, including a 17-12 record at home and a five-game home win streak to finish off the season.
Read more HERE (Our Sports Central).

2023 Missoula PaddleHeads Coaching Staff Announced
 Manager, Michael Schlact is returning to the Garden City after having the highest winning percentage in all of professional baseball each of the past two seasons. The PaddleHeads have re-signed 2022 hitting coach, Jeff Lyle who played an integral role in the team’s success in 2022. New to the coaching staff, but not to the PaddleHeads is the new 2023 assistant coach Brandon Riley. Riley has been a leader in the clubhouse each of his past two playing seasons in Missoula.
Read more HERE (Our Sports Central).

MLB Draft League

2023 Format Announced
First half (June 1-July 4): For Amateur/Draft-eligible players from the Divisions I-III, NAIA, junior college and high school (graduating seniors) levels. 30 games per team.
Second half (July 7-Sept. 2): For professional players who have exhausted their amateur eligibility. Players receive housing, meal money, travel and weekly compensation. 50 games per team.

See the MLB Draft League Official Site HERE.

2023 Schedule Announced
The halves will be uneven with 30 scheduled games per team in the first half and 50 scheduled games per team in the second half.
See the Draft League schedule HERE (MLB Draft League).

United Shore Pro Baseball League

2023 Schedule Announced
The 70-game schedule will run from May 19 through September 9 at Jimmy John’s Field in historic downtown Utica, Mich.
See the USPBL schedule HERE (USPBL).

Pecos League

The Pecos League Announced two new teams for the 2023 season
The Marysville Drakes in California (more info HERE) and the Blackwell FlyCatchers in Oklahoma (more info HERE).

Empire League

The Empire League Reveals New Team
 The Empire Baseball League has revealed the team name for the new Malone, New York team to be the Border Hounds.
More info HERE (Empire League).

Black Sox Pro Baseball

The Black Sox Pro Baseball League will be again hosting off-season workouts, a competition camp in Florida, and continuing with their spring training barnstorming tour against the MLB Partner Leagues.
More info HERE (Black Sox Pro Baseball).

A Love Letter to the Frontier League

Dear Frontier League,

For 20 seasons, you have filled my summer nights.

We have had a crazy relationship… a real roller coaster of emotions.

You are some of my fondest memories… And also some of my most heartbreaking ones.

I’ve cried over you and a trophy that seems to always allude the ones that I love.

I’ve celebrated triumphs.

Taken some pretty awesome road trips.

Made life long friends.

I’ve seen boys start their careers and men finish theirs.

And all the bullpen bags, and I really do mean ALLLLL the bags, that were carefully picked and packed. I wouldn’t trade those shopping trips or days of baking cookies for anything.

My loyalty to my home team will always be there, but if you taught me one thing, it’s that the name on the front of the jersey doesn’t matter in the end.

The relationships I’ve made because of you go much deeper than if someone is a WildThing, a Y’All, or even a Miner… hell they might end up being all three at some point in their careers.

You’ve taught me to always take care of the people who take care of you.

This website was built on that statement, and I will always stand by that.

To the people and ballparks that feel like home, thank you.

You’ve helped this once shy girl turn into the confident woman who created something pretty special with Indy Ball Island.

You’ve given me a love for baseball that I now pass on to the ones that I coach.

You’ve given me a place in this world.

The end of the regular season has arrived, and this post season will definitely be one that will toy with my emotions yet again.

20 years later… let’s see how this one plays out.

With love,

Ms. Indy Ball Island

P.S. To every player and coach that has ever put on a Frontier League jersey… I just want to say thank you.

P.P.S. To all the boys who have played their final game… congratulations.