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The site was last updated on October 30, 2007

 
There is much to be said for failure. 
It is more interesting than success.
 

 - Max Beerbohm, Mainly on the Air, 1946

 

 
North Shore Spirit Flies Away,
New Haven Can't Cut It
October 30, 2007
 
Two new teams, both from the Can-Am League, have unfortunately been added to the site.

The league has been trimmed to eight teams for the '08 season. The North Shore Spirit and the New Haven Cutters have officially folded, according to a press release on the league's official site this afternoon. The Spirit's demise had been expected, but the Cutters' sudden departure was more surprising.

“We are disappointed that North Shore and New Haven will not be part of the league," remarked commissioner Miles Wolff,  "but the remaining teams are in strong markets with outstanding ownership groups, and the future of the league is bright. We are looking at expansion for the 2009 season and have some outstanding potential markets in our sights.”

The Cutters front office reported to work as usual today and didn't learn about the team folding until this morning. Click here for the story and video from WTNH television.

 


Suspended Operations vs. Defunct:
The Debate Goes On
 

Don't believe what the newspapers say. At least that's what I've been told.

I've been informed by an official with the New York State League that while it did suspend operations for the '07 season, the league intends to operate next season based in New York City. So the NYSL has been removed from the ILG roster.

This will be a topic for debate as long as independent leagues come and go. When is a league considered defunct: when it "suspends operations" or when it fails to return the following season?

The Mid-Missouri Mavericks are a good example on a team level. Technically the club suspended operations after the 2006 season and did not field a team this past season, yet if a new ballpark is built for them the club will return to the Frontier League. So is the team defunct or "suspended"?

Remember the Southeastern League? It too was not defunct but was going to reorganize as the South States League in '04 and '05. Nothing came of it. The same can be said for other leagues that grace this site.

I don't have a definite answer to the question. The issue will undoubtedly come up again in the future, so I'll really have to give the issue more thought. Suspended, defunct, and relocated leagues and teams...oh boy.

But past experience--and there's been lots of examples--shows that when a league suspends operations, it's the death knell, the nail in the coffin, the last gasp for that organization. It's hard from a public relations standpoint to reassure investors, advertisers, and season ticket holders--not to mention the average fan--that things will be different the second time around.

The intent of this humble website is to share the stories of failed independent leagues and teams, defunct and suspended alike. I also try to inject a bit of humor because, to be honest, the way a lot of these leagues and teams went down in flames is interesting and sometimes funny in hindsight. Sad, but funny. Where else but baseball can bankruptcy and foreclosure be glorified and remembered?

I wish the New York State League the best of luck in new surroundings in 2008. But history has shown that the stigma of cutting a scheduled season short and "suspending operations" will be a difficult hurdle to overcome.

 

 

 
The Juice is Loose
 
While technically not a defunct club, the Bradenton Juice of the fledgling South Coast League will play the remainder of its games on the road this season and will relocate elsewhere in 2008.

The league attributed the decision to the restrictions of playing professional ball in a collegiate facility, namely the inability to see alcoholic beverages and stage fireworks shows at Robert C. Wynn Field. The ballpark is on the campus of Manatee Community College.

Poor attendance didn't help much either. The seating was limited to 600, but the Juice still had a tough time filling them. The team drew less than 150 fans on Opening Night on 
May 25 and attendance only went downhill.

The Bradenton Juice are still playing, so the team isn't defunct and won't be listed on the site. When a name change and new home is decided, we'll add it to the Teams section.

 

 
What is Indy League Graveyard?
 

Indy Leagues Graveyard is an archive of information and images about defunct independent baseball leagues and teams in existing leagues that folded from 1994 to the present. Each league and team will eventually have its own page with histories, player rosters, and front office directories.

The Archives section (currently under construction) will feature league and team memorabilia images (including baseball cards, equipment, and jerseys) as well as team photos and snapshots taken by the players themselves and their families.

The Ballparks section will contain links to pages on many different ballparks complete with photos taken by our readers.

Donations are greatly appreciated, whether they be financial or research materials such as game programs, team rosters, and other materials that add information to the site.

If you are a former player or fan of any leagues and teams covered on this site and have information to share, please contact Kevin McCann here.

 

 
Donations Requested

Please read the Donations page for more details.

 

 

"This is a very important project for the preservation of professional baseball history.

I urge everyone to help Kevin make this a 
must visit site for anyone interested in 
baseball history."

- Dave Chase, Memphis Redbirds GM
and Executive Director of The National
Pastime Museum of Minor League Baseball

 

 
"Great information that would be lost if not for your efforts to save it for the historical value...Keep up the great work. "

- Steve Heagan, baseball fan

 

 
"This is great! It brings back a lot of old memories."

- Scott Bestick, baseball fan

 

 
 
 


 

 

Memorable
Quotes

You can't just get your friends together and have a league.

Norb Ecksl
Executive V.P.
Big South League

Between sanity and lunacy is a thin line.

Bob Weinstein
Founder/President
Golden State League

 
We have never auctioned off a baseball league before.

Jeremy Dodd
President of 
Able Auctions
whose company sold all
Canadian Baseball League assets to help settle its debts.

 
All bills will be paid.

Allen Wolf
President
Heartland League

 
When the independent boom finally dies, that will probably be the inscription on its tombstone.

Will Lingo
Columnist
Baseball America
(on Wolf's statement)

 

 

A proud member of

The Society of American Baseball Research

 

Indy Leagues Graveyard website and content
(c) 2006-2007 Kevin D. McCann.

All league and team logos presented on the site are used for educational and historical purposes and belong to individual copyright and/or trademark owners.

 

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