But Westlake, Tri-Cities and Langston Hughes will not be facing just one region opponent one day and another in a few days. They will be participating in a three-game series with the final two games scheduled as a back-to-back.
These results came about due to Region 3 only having six teams.
“This issue was voted on by all the coaches and we all agreed to it,” wrote Westlake coach Dwayne Belcher.
“Since we do not have eight teams in our region this year, the coaches in the region voted to play each other three times this year,” wrote Langston Hughes coach Charles Foster.
Specifically, the Lions will host the Panthers on March 19, visit Langston Hughes on March 21 and return home for the series finale a day later.
With this new system, Westlake, Langston Hughes and Tri-Cities’ players will get more of a feel of what playoff baseball is like along with playing on the next level.
Foster and Belcher also like the benefits of this new format.
“Playing each region team three times a week can be beneficial since we will become accustomed to the team we are playing against,” Foster said. “Also, it adds a MLB like atmosphere since we are essentially playing a three-game series
“This schedule means you will see three different pitchers for each team and not their number one every game,” Belcher said.
However, Foster remains aware that this schedule could also fail to work in his team’s favor.
“This can also negatively affect our players because some of them are not used to such a quick turnaround when playing region games,” he said. “Since I do not have a deep pitching bullpen, it is going to be interesting to see how playing three important games a week affects my players.”
With any type of productive change, the question is usually raised whether this is something other regions could possible adopt.
“In smaller regions I can see this trend becoming more prevalent because it adds more meaningful games to the schedule,” Foster said.
“This should become common because it’s the way colleges play and the way pros schedule too,” Belcher said.
Along with competing in three-game series against each other, Tri-Cities, Langston Hughes and Westlake will also settle things on the diamond in the same manner against East Coweta, Newnan and Douglas County.