Intercounty Baseball League revamps playoffs as London Majors target leader Barrie Baycats

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The Intercounty Baseball League has decided on a new playoff format.

Meanwhile, the London Majors get a chance to be the first team to hand the Barrie Baycats a loss when the Baycats come into Labatt Park Sunday in the Majors annual Purple in the Park game.

The Majors were supposed to play the Guelph Royals Friday night at Labatt Park, but with the Royals having suspended their operation for the year, the Majors won their game on a forfeit. The Majors are now 19-2.

With the departure of the Royals, the IBL needed to install a new playoff system. The previous system allowed all eight teams to make the playoffs.

The owners reached an agreement on a new system that would see the first-place team earn a first-round playoff bye.

That would leave No. 2 to play No. 7; No. 3 to play No. 6; and No. 4 to play No. 5 in best-of-seven series. The first-place team and the winners of those series would then play best-of-seven semifinals.

The Majors lost their second game of the season Thursday night when they travelled to Kitchener and fell 5-3 to the Panthers.

The Baycats trailed the Toronto Maple Leafs 6-3 in the bottom of the ninth but scored four to win their 21st game in succession 7-6.

Barrie is one game away from tying the IBL record for consecutive wins, set by Brantford in 1961.

The Majors can end the streak on Sunday afternoon at Labatt Park. The Purple in the Park game is in support of the London Abused Women’s Centre.

Game time is 1 p.m.

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