Diplomats to Face Barnstormers

LANCASTER, Pa.— The Lancaster Barnstormers announced today that they will play exhibition games against baseball teams from Elizabethtown and Franklin & Marshall during spring training.  The games at Clipper Magazine Stadium will be free and open to the public. 

F&M will travel down Harrisburg Pike to face the Barnstormers on Monday, April 20 at 5 p.m. Elizabethtown will play Lancaster’s minor league club on April 16.

The Barnstormers have connections to both programs.  Elizabethtown head coach Cliff Smith and F&M pitching coach Matt Scheuing were both members of the Barnstormers inaugural team in 2005.  Smith represented the Barnstormers in the 2005 Atlantic League All-Star Game in Atlantic City, N.J.  

“The way this story has played out with Cliff and Matt is exciting to me,” said Barnstormers vice president of baseball operations Keith Lupton, who signed both Smith and Scheuing in 2005.  “It shows how deep our connections run in this community, and we’re looking forward to strengthening those ties.”

The exhibition games will be the latest in a series of efforts by the Barnstormers to support youth and amateur baseball across Lancaster County.  Since the club’s inception, youth athletic league participants have received free admission to Barnstormers home games and Barnstormers players and coaches have assisted in numerous clinics and camps across the county.  Clipper Magazine Stadium hosts the New Era Tournament, the Lancaster-Lebanon League baseball championship and, in 2008, the PSAC baseball championships.

Lancaster is one of three Atlantic League teams with plans to train at home prior to the 2009 season.  The Barnstormers will play four exhibition games against Freedom Division rivals York and Somerset from April 17-21.