Empire Professional Baseball League
|No. of teams||4|
The Empire Professional Baseball League is an independent baseball league scheduled to start in 2016. The Empire League plays a 60-game regular season followed by a five-game post season.
The Empire League is a replacement of the North Country Baseball League, which folded after one season (and was itself a last-minute replacement for the East Coast Baseball League, which disbanded before the start of the 2015 season). The league would four teams based in the states of New York, New Hampshire and Maine for its inaugural season.
It is a low-budget league meant to give players recently graduated from college or with little professional experience an opportunity at staying in shape and providing them the chance at being signed to higher level league contracts with affiliated or independent teams. All league funding comes from advertisement sales, ticket sales and tryout revenue.
The league is operated by Eddie Gonzalez, former professional baseball player and NAIA All-American at Webber International University. Gonzalez is also a former NCBL executive.
The Sullivan Explorers, despite finishing the regular season with a losing record, won the 2016 league championship over the regular season leading Watertown Bucks.
Prior to the league's second season, the Watertown Bucks lost the lease to their stadium and was replaced by a team from Puerto Rico. However, since a stadium deal in Puerto Rico had not yet been finalized, the team will play the 2017 season as a travel team.
|Old Orchard Beach Surge||Old Orchard Beach, Maine||The Ballpark in Old Orchard Beach||6,000|
|Plattsburgh Redbirds||Plattsburgh, New York||Chip Cummings Field||500|
|Puerto Rico Islanders||TBD, Puerto Rico||Travel team|
|Sullivan Explorers||Loch Sheldrake, New York||Generals Park|
- "Are We in for Another Summer of New Indy Leagues?". Indy Ball Island. 15 December 2015.
- "North Country Baseball League folds". Indy Ball Island. 23 November 2015.
- "City Council to consider agreement with Watertown Bucks for 2016". Watertown Daily Times. 30 January 2016.
- "Weekly Sports League & Franchise Report". OurSports Central. November 7, 2016.