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Crosscutters expect to play in city beyond 2021

The Williamsport Crosscutters reiterated Sunday in a statement it plans on operating in the city in the 2021 season and beyond.

Recent articles published by Baseball America and The Associated Press have said there is an agreement in place between Major League Baseball and Minor League Baseball on a reduction in the number of minor league teams by more than 40. An initial list released in the fall of the teams to be eliminated included both the Cutters and the State College Spikes.

Baseball America reported last week that of the 42 teams which could be eliminated from Minor League Baseball, eliminating short-season teams like those in the New York-Penn League (including the Crosscutters and Spikes) would make up a majority of those teams.

“Despite recent articles to the contrary, there has been no agreement between Major League Baseball and Minor League Baseball on contraction or any other issues regarding the Professional Baseball Agreement, due to expire after the 2020 season,” the Cutters said in a statement Sunday.

Minor League Baseball also released a statement last week contradicting the reports from Baseball America and The Associated Press. MLB and MiLB met last week remotely in the next step of negotiations to renew the PBA between the two organizations, but no decision was announced following the meeting.

“Recent articles on the negotiations between MiLB and Major League Baseball (MLB) are largely inaccurate,” the MiLB said in its statement. “There have been no agreements on contraction or any other issues. MiLB looks forward to continuing the good faith negotiations with MLB as we work toward an agreement that best ensures the future of professional baseball throughout the United States and Canada.”

At the Crosscutters annual fundraising Hot Stove Banquet in January, principal owner Peter Freund assured the crowd on hand the Cutters weren’t going anywhere.

Even though Williamsport was among the 42 teams initially listed as potentially being contracted, it has been reported that list of teams has been altered.

“The respective negotiating teams of MiLB and MLB are continuing their discussions, with the goal of concluding a mutually beneficial long-term agreement in the near future,” the Cutters’ statement read. “The Crosscutters look forward to continuing to be part of the Williamsport landscape in 2021 and beyond.”

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