Suns set 1999 schedule

October 29, 1998

The Hagerstown Suns will play the usual suspects in 1999.

As always, there will be a full slate of rodents (Bats and Boll Weevils), domestic animals (RiverDogs and Alley Cats) and flying objects (Shorebirds and Bombers) when the Suns begin their seventh season of South Atlantic League baseball on April 8.

But, for the first time in three years, Hagerstown will play eight games - two four-game home-and-home series - with all four teams in the Southern Division. That means there will be a swarm of (Savannah) SandGnats and (Augusta) GreenJackets, along with the Macon Braves and Columbus RedStixx leaving Georgia to play at Municipal Stadium.

It will be a throwback to the way things used to be, as all 13 teams will play in Hagerstown, beginning on April 16 when the Suns open the home season with a 7:05 p.m. game with the Greensboro Bats. Hagerstown will open the season with its traditional road trip, this time an eight-game swing through Columbus, Ga., and Hickory, N.C.


Since the SAL split into a three-division league three years ago, the schedule was staggered to cut down on traveling for each team, since its configuration stretches from Maryland to Georgia.

The staggering allowed for the Northern and Southern Division teams to have one meeting per year for one four-game series. Two of those series were on the road and two at home.

It also forced the Northern and Southern teams - which are aligned as four-team divisions while the Central holds six teams - to play 26 games against intradivision teams, for 78 games of the 142-game schedule.

The Suns lose 16 games against their Northern foes to create the extra contests needed for a full schedule. Hagerstown will play Delmarva 23 times, Cape Fear 20 times and Charleston (W.Va.) 19 times, totaling 62 intradivisional games.

The 1999 schedule features three 1:05 p.m. businessperson's specials: April 11 against Greensboro, April 29 against Augusta and June 2 against Delmarva.

The Suns will play most home games at 7:05 p.m., except for 6:05 starts on Mondays and 2:05 and 5:05 starts on Sundays. Hagerstown will feature three fireworks shows, on May 28, July 2 and Sept. 4.


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