Baseball: Teams in THF limbo get to join new league

The Singapore American School has picked up the slack to fill up the vacant hole after THF closed down its operations in Singapore.
The Singapore American School has picked up the slack to fill up the vacant hole after THF closed down its operations in Singapore.ST PHOTO: JONATHAN CHOO

Teams in the adult baseball league who were left stranded last month by the sudden shutdown of The Hit Factory (THF) are set for a revival.

Starting in the first week of February, at least five of those teams will join a new league organised by the Singapore American School (SAS).

The Woodlands-based school has picked up the slack to fill up the vacant hole after THF closed down its operations in Singapore.

THF was set up in Singapore by American owners in 2013, and had been organising Singapore's only men's baseball league at the Kallang Diamond since last year.

It took over from the Singapore Baseball and Softball Association (SBSA) to run the competition.

Seven teams who were playing in THF's adult league saw their season come to an abrupt and premature end following THF's closure.

THF reportedly pulled out of Singapore because of a rent dispute with the SBSA.

Each team had paid more than $3,000 to join the competition then and the amount has not been refunded by THF to the affected participants.

The Falcons, a Singapore team comprising the men's national players, were among those who were affected.

Even though the teams have no league to play in at the moment, they have not remained completely idle. In recent weeks, some of the players have been gathering at the SAS to play friendly games during the weekend.

Matt Fast, the game-day manager of Singapore Brewers, a team who comprises expatriates, welcomes the re-introduction of a new league.

The Canadian said: "We're excited to get back to playing again. It's been about two months since we've stopped playing (in the league).

"The adult league was well-run by THF and it was successful. Now, there's a whole new league to look forward to. I think if a league was to be cancelled totally, then it would be upsetting."

The SBSA declined to comment.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on December 25, 2016, with the headline 'Teams in THF limbo get to join new league'. Print Edition | Subscribe