Former Yankees affiliate files suit against club

Field Level Media

December 03, 2020 at 11:17 pm.

The minor-league baseball club in Staten Island announced Thursday it intends to cease operations and said it has filed a lawsuit against the New York Yankees and Major League Baseball after the major-league club ended its affiliation.

With the minor leagues undergoing a massive restructuring across the country that is expected to eliminate several clubs, the Yankees announced in November they would be cutting their ties with their longtime Single-A affiliate.

In a statement released Thursday, the Staten Island club, which used the Yankees nickname, said their former major league affiliate had “made assurances we would always be a minor league partner.”

The Staten Island club said it had no intentions of fielding a “subpar team” with players that were not affiliated with the Yankees. The team played at 7,171-seat Richmond County Bank Ballpark.

“The best thing we can do for the community is to step aside and let others try to save baseball in Staten Island,” the team’s statement read. “While we have invested considerable resources into the development of the North Shore, and hoped to remain a piece of that renewal, we have not been offered support to create a sustainable business entity.”

The club said that a lawsuit was filed Thursday and that a portion of any potential settlement or jury award would be given to local Staten Island charities.

The Staten Island club has operated since 1999 and has only been an affiliate of the Yankees. The club has won six New York-Penn League championships, the most recent in 2011.