Hurricane Dorian Washes Away End of FSL, GCL Seasons
Hurricane Dorian has already brought two seasons to an early close. A day after the Gulf Coast League cancelled the remainder of its season and its playoffs, the Florida State League announced on Thursday, Aug. 29 that its season will end with tonight’s games.
The final three days of the regular season for all teams was cancelled. In addition, the entire playoffs were called off as well. Dunedin was scheduled to face an as yet-to-be-determined opponent in one semifinal while Charlotte and Fort Myers were set to play the other semifinal series beginning on Tuesday, Sept. 3.
“This was a tough decision to make” said FSL President Ken Carson. “The safety of our players, staff, umpires and fans are top priority to us. Team travel is also a great concern during hurricanes.”
This will be the fourth time this century that the Florida State League playoffs have been called early. In 2001, the FSL cancelled its championship series in the aftermath of the 9/11 terrorist attacks. In 2004 and 2017 the championship series were cancelled because of hurricanes.
In the past, because the series were cancelled as the teams headed into the finals, the two remaining teams were declared co-champions. It is not so simple this season as the semifinals of the playoffs were cancelled as well. In their release announcing the decision, the FSL made no declaration of a champion.
The Gulf Coast League was similarly not far enough along to make an easy decision about a champion. The GCL had three separate divisions. The GCL Orioles had the best record in the league, but the three divisions do not play each other at all.