ST. PAUL-The American Association of Independent Professional Baseball has realigned its divisions after adding and losing a team for the 2018 season.
The American Association's three divisions will be pared to two, with the St. Paul Saints remaining in the North Division with Fargo-Moorhead, Sioux Falls and defending league champion Winnipeg. Gary and a new team, the Chicago Dogs, also will join the North.
The Central has been dissolved, so Lincoln, Kansas City, and Sioux City will join Cleburne, Texas and Wichita in the South Division. The Salina Stockade folded at the end of last season.
Because each division has six teams, teams will play inter-division competitors an equal number of times. The top two teams from each division will meet in a best-of-five semifinal, followed by a five-game championship round.
"Moving to a two-division format enables the league to create a more equal schedule, with teams playing divisional rivals the same number of times," American Association commissioner Miles Wolff said in a press release. "We expect greater competition and balance from the new setup."