Greg Mercer, Record staff
CAMBRIDGE — After six seasons at Cosgrove Field, the Burlington Herd are relocating to Welland for the 2019 season.
The move was unanimously approved by the Intercounty Baseball League’s owners at a meeting this week. It marks the return of the IBL to the Niagara Region for the first time since 1989, when the Niagara Falls Mariners last played there.
The Burlington club — which finished in last place with a 12-24 record this season — will change its name and play at the 3,000-seat Welland Stadium, which was home to the Welland Pirates of the Class “A” New York-Penn League from 1989 to 1994.
“The team is moving to a great ballpark and we think a great community that is excited about having an IBL team. We had two games there last year when Hamilton’s park was unavailable and the players and teams thought it was great,” said league commissioner John Kastner.
Burlington Herd Announce Relocation Plans for 2019— Burlington Herd (@IBLHerd) October 2, 2018
BURLINGTON – The Burlington Herd today announced that the team has been approved by the IBL to relocate to Welland, Ontario and Welland Stadium for the 2019 IBL season.
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The move away from Burlington comes after the municipality and the team couldn’t come to terms on upgrades for Cosgrove Field.
“Through many meetings with key municipal officials, it was apparent that the complex we called home was not going to see many of the small upgrades that would be required to be successful and a tough decision had to be made,” the Herd majority owner Ryan Harrison said, in a statement.
The Burlington Herd moved into Cosgrove Field in 2011 when Elliot Kerr relocated the Twins from Mississauga. In the fall of 2016, Harrison, Jason McKay, Dan Pokoradi and Adam Harrison took over ownership and rebranded the team as the Herd.
“We’re excited about the future of our club and we're dedicated to growing the Intercounty Baseball League brand into the Niagara Region,” Harrison said.