The New York-Penn League released their preliminary schedule for the 2016 regular season on Thursday. The season will begin on Friday, June 17, one week after the 2016 MLB draft, with a traditional home-and-home series between the Staten Island Yankees and the Brooklyn Cyclones.
The West Virginia Black Bears, the Short-Season affiliate of the Pittsburgh Pirates, open their second season in the league with a two-game series in Niles, Ohio, against the Mahoning Valley Scrappers, before hosting the Miami Marlins-affiliated Batavia Muckdogs on June 19 in their home opener in Morgantown. The defending league champion Black Bears will return to St. George for thee games, facing the runner-up Staten Island Yankees in a rematch of the 2015 New York-Penn League Championship Series beginning on June 22.
Continuing with the rotating schedule of earlier years, all teams in the McNamara Division will host the Mahoning Valley Scrappers and the West Virginia Black Bears and visit the State College Spikes and the Williamsport Crosscutters. The Tampa Bay Rays affiliate, the Hudson Valley Renegades, will host the 2016 New York-Penn League All-Star Game on August 16. The 76-game schedule comes to an end on Monday, September 5, with each team facing an opponent within their own division.
The New York-Penn League began play in 1939 and is the oldest league in Class-A professional baseball. During its 76 years in existence, roughly 2,700 NYPL alumni have played in the Major Leagues, including nine Hall of Famers: Phil Niekro, Warren Spahn, Tony Perez, Nellie Fox, Wade Boggs, Robin Yount, Jim Rice, Randy Johnson, and Jim Leyland (Source: 2015 Brooklyn Cyclones Media Guide). Current big league stars Robinson Cano, Andrew McCutchen, Miguel Cabrera, Jose Bautista, and Giancarlo Stanton also began their professional careers in the New York-Penn League.
Below is a link to the complete 2016 schedule. First pitch times will be announced on a later date.