Connecticut Sports Online
SANFORD, Maine, Oct. 9, 2001 -- The New England Collegiate Baseball League added their second expansion franchise in less than two months with an announcement of a franchise in Sanford, Maine. The Sanford team will give the NECBL 12 teams.
The NECBL awarded a franchise to North Adams, Massachusetts in September.
"I can't tell you how pleased I am that the NECBL is coming to Sanford, Maine. The State of Maine has a strong tradition in the game of baseball and the NECBL and the outstanding collegiate players that will be coming to Sanford each summer can only help but build on that tradition," said NECBL president Fay Vincent, former Commissioner of Major League Baseball.
Tom Hutton, commissioner of the NECBL led several contingents from the league to Sanford several times in the last two months. He personally endorsed the Sanford's application.
"Goodall Field is an outstanding facility which is as good as any in summer collegiate baseball, including the Cape Cod League," Hutton said. "I have been very impressed with the enthusiasm of everyone I've met in Sanford and, if this excitement can be channeled, I don't think will be an exaggeration to say that Sanford could rapidly become one of the NECBL's best franchises."
The group that will lead the new Sanford franchise will be headed up by Neil Olson, a businessman from Bethel, Maine. Olson has previous NECBL experience, having served as President of the Mill City All-Americans during their start-up period and their first year in the league in 2000.
Mayor says NECBL expanding to North Adams, Mass.
The mayor of North Adams, Mass., revealed Tuesday (Aug. 29) that the NECBL will be coming to this northwest corner city in Massachusetts in 2002.
The NECBL Board of Directors still has to approve North Adams's application but Mayor John Barrett III said it is a formality. The league had been interesting in placing an expansion team in nearby Pittsfield, which is considering three proposals for professional baseball teams at Wachonah Park.
"It's a done deal; count on it," Barrett told the Berkshire Eagle. "Tom Hutton read about our interest in bringing a team here in the newspaper, and I got a call from him. I invited him and other league representatives to the Noel Field complex and, needless to say, they just fell in love with it." A spokesman for the NECBL confirmed to the Eagle that negotiations with North Adams have been ongoing for the past several weeks.