By Nate Rider

nrider@batavianews.com

BATAVIA — Last week, the organization that will now be considered formerly the Batavia Muckdogs officially announced that the era of professional baseball in the city is over.

In a statement released by the New York-Penn League and Batavia Muckdogs, president Ben Hayes quipped the following:

In 1939, the New York-Penn League (NY-P League) was founded in Batavia, NY (formerly known as the Pennsylvania-Ontario-New York (PONY) League), and has been the oldest, continuously operated CLASS A league in professional baseball. As one of the founding members of the League, the Batavia club has proudly provided affordable, family entertainment for the Batavia community and Western New York for decades. Unfortunately, Major league Baseball has announced it will no longer continue to offer Major League Baseball club affiliations to Batavia and most of the other clubs in the New York-Penn League. The result of Major League Baseball’s action means the end of professional baseball in Batavia.

“The elimination of this historic League as part of Major League Baseball’s player development system is truly heartbreaking for the NY-P League’s fans, communities, club employees, and club owners,” Hayes said. “Sadly, most of the NY-P League’s clubs played their final professional baseball games in 2019, and neither they nor their fans knew at the time that it would be their last professional baseball season. The elimination of these classifications of professional baseball by Major League Baseball will result in thousands of players, who would have had an opportunity to develop and compete to play in the Major Leagues, no longer getting the chance to live their dream. I’ve been working with Batavia Interim City Manager, Rachael Tabelski, over the past several months to ensure the Batavia community will continue to enjoy the play of live baseball at historic Dwyer Stadium.”

And pending a City Council vote on Monday night, it appears that baseball will, in fact, be returning to Batavia.

Last week, the Batavia City Council members announced that they will consider approving the proposition put forth by Elmira Pionners owner Robbie Nichols so that CAN-USA Sports, LLC., will own and operate a team that plays in Batavia in 2021 and play its home games at Dwyer Stadium as a part of the Perfect Game Collegiate Baseball League.

Read full article at the Batavia Daily News.