For now, it appears the Sunflower Collegiate League will play ball.
The deadline of June 15 is set to come up in a little over two weeks and with the state’s restrictions being adjusted on June 8 and on June 22, the league is making preparations to play ball.
“We’re going to follow everyone’s orders,” Sunflower League Commissioner said during an interview online. “We’re a non-profit organization. We try to do things the right way. No one’s safety is above making it where people can play baseball.”
While nine of the 10 teams are ready to play, the Andale Warhawks have decided not to play this summer and the league has decided to have a league team, based in Wichita, to replace the Warhawks.
“In late April, the Warhawks organization made the difficult decision to cancel our season. The decision was made with the health and safety of our players, host families, and staff in mind. This is only a one season hiatus due to the uncertainty of the Coronavirus pandemic. We will be back to baseball in the SCL next season,” the Warhawks said in a statement.
The team will be made up of select players and are giving the fans an opportunity to name the team on social media.
How the season is going to progress is unknown at this time. Whether it’s playing baseball as normal or playing without fans, the league is expected to play some sort of season this year.
“If we can get to a manageable position where we can have 100-150 people in the stands, we can play,” Walkup said.
The mood has changed from a month ago when collegiate leagues around the nation started canceling. The Cape Cod League will not play for the first time since World War II. The Kansas Collegiate League canceled their season three weeks ago.
“We’re going to try and do it the right way,” Walkup said. “Fortunately, our stadium orders are very willing to work with us. They understand our situation.”
The league anticipates a schedule of between 32 and 40 games for each team with the possibility of some non-league games.
“One of the biggest factors in the delay is making sure pitcher are in shape to have higher pitch counts without being rushed, we don’t want to take chances with players that haven’t been playing,” the release said.
For now, the waiting game continues, hoping for good news.