Pivotal season for expanded ABL
14 November 2018
After months of momentous change – including the granting of franchise arrangements and the addition of two new clubs – Australian Baseball League will enter an exciting new phase when national league competition simultaneously begins in Sydney, Brisbane, Melbourne and Perth late this week.
The eight team competition has been split into two divisions – South West and North East – with each club playing eight games against the three others in its group, along with sixteen crossover schedules that will result in a total of forty regular season games over a ten-week season before playoffs for the time-honoured Claxton Shield.
While a legion of new players will be added to clubs across the league, there will be particular interest in Auckland Tuatara and Geelong-Korea, both of whom have been diligently building their lists and adjusting to travelling and acclimatisation demands as they seek to make an impact.
Triple reigning champion Brisbane will be aiming to extend a remarkable period of league dominance – on and off the field – although it will be acutely aware of intensive behind-the-scenes work that is likely to see another seven clubs well placed to de-rail the Bandits juggernaut.
These are heady and captivating times for the Australian Baseball League, which has certainly endured its challenges and its struggles since being resurrected nearly a decade ago. With clubs now fundamentally under the control of astute business interests, 2018/19 will be a watershed season for the league as it strives to consolidate as a serious player in the Australian sporting landscape.
Time, now, for eight worthy baseball organisations to show us what they have.
The 2018/19 Australian Baseball League season will be covered and reported on in depth across a range of sports and social media platforms. Supporters should allow for time differences in scheduling.
Australian Baseball Alumni extends its very best wishes to all clubs – and to all players – for an outstanding summer of elite competition.