MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — The season is starting late and there is no postseason goal to chase, but ‘Morgantown 2’ will take the field Wednesday to open their summer schedule of games.
No American Legion baseball games are being played this summer in West Virginia due to the pandemic. The Legion World Series and regional tournaments were canceled in April. Teams competing are doing so without ‘Legion’ baseball affiliation.
The team formerly known as Morgantown Post 2 will split into three different rosters, the ‘Morgantown 2’ team and a pair of junior squads. Around sixty players in the Morgantown area signed up to play.
“It is going to be competitive from within as well as against other teams,” said new Morgantown manager and former WVU pitcher Andy Altemus. “It is a great opportunity to put up stats going into next year so we know what we have. That’s going to help us make the roster for the big team next year. Stats don’t lie.”
Post 2 won the state championship last summer and won a pair of games in the Mid-Atlantic regional tournament.
“It was frustrating that we were setup to do some damage again. Based on how we left it last year, there was so much anticipation for this year. A lot of people were very, very interested. Look at the numbers we had show up on Day 1. That is not a coincidence.”
Morgantown 2 will play a schedule of around two dozen games through July 29. They will open the season Wednesday against against the West Virginia Patriots at the Bridgeport Recreation Complex.
“We got on the phone with all the independent teams in the state and put as many games together as we could,” said administrator Tyler Barnette.
“It is about the kids. These kids have lost baseball all year.”
Morgantown’s home games will be hosted at Mylan Park, where the field has undergone extensive renovations and improvements.
“We have put a lot of work into the park over the last few months,” Barnette said. “We have a brand new, 1,500-seat grandstand that surrounds the park. We have fresh sod and a new playing surface.”
Altemus says the team will feature a trio of players that competed at Potomac State College this spring. Devon Neal, Caleb Taylor and Colton Matthews were all integral parts of last year’s championship team.
“The majority of the team is back,” Altemus said. “I think these other guys are kind of tired of seeing some of the success from the older guys and they want to push them out a little bit.”