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Frequently Asked Questions

What is the Appalachian League?

The Appalachian League is a 10-team summer collegiate baseball league played in the heart of the Appalachia region of the United States and is part of the Major League Baseball (MLB) and USA Baseball Prospect Development Pipeline. The league is also an identification and selection opportunity for the following summer’s USA Baseball Collegiate National Team.

The Appalachian League is one of the longest-running baseball leagues in the history of baseball, beginning in 1911 before transitioning into a short-season league for Minor League Baseball in 1957.


What is the Prospect Development Pipeline?

The Prospect Development Pipeline is a collaborative effort between MLB and USA Baseball that establishes a player development pathway for amateur baseball players to professional baseball in the United States.


Which teams and cities are in the Appalachian League?

There are 10 teams in the Appalachian League:

  • Bluefield Ridge Runners (Bluefield, W.Va.)
  • Bristol State Liners (Bristol, Va.)
  • Burlington Sock Puppets (Burlington, N.C.)
  • Danville Otterbots (Danville, Va.)
  • Elizabethton River Riders (Elizabethton, Tenn.)
  • Greeneville Flyboys (Greeneville, Tenn.)
  • Johnson City Doughboys (Johnson City, Tenn.)
  • Kingsport Axmen (Kingsport, Tenn.)
  • Princeton WhistlePigs (Princeton, W.Va.)
  • Pulaski River Turtles (Pulaski, Va.)

How is the Appalachian League schedule structured?

The Appalachian League will play a 58-game season from Thursday, June 2 to Saturday, Aug. 6, culminating in a one-game Championship on Monday, Aug. 8. The Appy League will host an All-Star Game on Tuesday, July 26, as part of a two-day community event at Burlington Athletic Stadium in Burlington, N.C.


What is the age-eligibility requirements to participate in the Appalachian League?

The Appalachian League will predominantly be comprised of rising freshman and sophomores from all collegiate levels, including NCAA Divisions I, II and III, NAIA and the NJCAA; however rising juniors and seniors, as well as graduating seniors are also eligible to participate in the league.

Only athletes who will be non-draft eligible in the subsequent summer will be eligible for identification and selection for the following year’s USA Baseball Collegiate National Team.


What are the roster sizes for each team?

Each team will maintain a 34-man roster for a total of 340 players in the Appalachian League.


What is the benefit of playing in the Appalachian League?

Athletes who play in the Appalachian League will benefit from 10 weeks of competitive baseball against the top talent in the United States. Appalachian League participants will receive extensive visibility to MLB Club scouts through both in-person observation and state-of-the-art scouting technology, and players will receive instruction from former MLB players and educational programming designed to prepare them for careers as professional athletes. Additionally, the Appy League will be an integral part of the identification and development process for the USA Baseball Collegiate National Team and other future national teams.


What will compose each team’s coaching and administrative staffs?

Each team's coaching staff will include a manager, hitting coach, pitching coach and bench coach. Also on staff for each team will be a certified athletic trainer and a data and technology coordinator.


What technology will be used in the Appalachian League? Will it be available to their college coaches?

The Appalachian League, as part of the joint MLB and USA Baseball Prospect Development Pipeline (PDP), will use Rapsodo, Synergy and Trackman during training and games, and every athlete will undergo PDP testing during the summer. All of the data and analytics aggregated throughout the summer season will be shared with the athletes, their college coaches and MLB scouts. Additionally, this data will be shared with USA Baseball national team coaches and staff as an identification tool for the following year’s Collegiate National Team selection process.


How will the Appalachian League house its players and staff?

Players who participate in the Appalachian League will be housed in apartments, dorms or hotels free of charge by their assigned team during the season. All 10 Clubs have a demonstrated history of caring for athletes during their extended history within professional baseball. The Appalachian League will not utilize a host family program.


Will players be responsible for their own meals during the season?

Players will receive daily meal per diem in addition to a pre-game spread and post-game meal on game days at the facilities.


What if my team is still playing in the postseason when the Appalachian League begins?

If your team is still playing in the postseason when the Appalachian League begins, your Appy League team will reschedule your arrival date for a later time. Athletes will not lose their spot on the roster due to their postseason schedule.


What precautions will the Appalachian League implement to protect its athletes and staffs from COVID-19?

The Appalachian League and USA Baseball will employ every precaution necessary to protect the athletes, staffs and fans from COVID-19. Strict COVID-19 guidelines will be implemented regarding athlete housing, playing facilities, transportation and player meals, and will be communicated to all participants prior to their arrival in the Appalachian League.


How are players assigned to the Appalachian League teams?

The Appalachian League Director of Baseball Development organized a player draft. The Field Managers of the 10 Clubs selected players.


Are there any fees required to participate in the Appalachian League?

It is free for athletes to play in the Appalachian League and there are no additional fees required throughout the season. The Appalachian League will cover transportation costs for athletes to arrive at their assigned city and when returning home at the conclusion of their Appy League season.


How will the Appalachian League protect its pitchers?

The Appalachian League will utilize Pitch Smart, a series of practical, age-appropriate guidelines to help avoid overuse injuries and foster long, healthy careers for pitchers, for the 2022 season, and will typically have one off-day per week for each team. Additionally, all Sunday games will be seven (7) innings in order to limit innings.


How can I become a coach or manager for a team in the Appalachian League?

Any coaches interested in serving on a coaching staff for one of the 10 Clubs in the Appalachian League should fill out the "Appalachian League Interest Form" or email [email protected].


How can I nominate a player to participate in the Appalachian League?

To nominate a player to play in the Appalachian League, you must fill out the “Appalachian League Interest Form” or email [email protected].


How can I play in the Appalachian League?

If you are interested in playing in the Appalachian League, you must fill out the “Appalachian League Interest Form” or email [email protected].


How can I stay up-to-date with all that is happening in the Appalachian League?

Stay up-to-date on the Appalachian League by follow @AppyLeague on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. You can also visit AppyLeague.com for all the latest news on the league and its 10 Clubs.

To receive press releases and post-game recaps from the Appalachian League, fill out the media distribution list here.