Category: Uncategorized

Sam Franco Selected first overall for Border Hounds

The Empire League has long been heralded as a breeding ground for baseball’s future stars. With its rich history of nurturing talent and providing a platform for promising players to showcase their skills, the league continues to attract attention year after year. The recent player draft saw the selection of four exceptional talents, each poised to make a significant impact on the league. Let’s take a closer look at the first four picks of the Empire League player draft and what they bring to the table.

1. Sam Franco – Outfielder, Purdue University (Malone Border Hounds)

With the first overall pick in the draft, the Empire League team wasted no time in selecting Sam Franco, an outfielder from Purdue University. Known for his blazing speed and exceptional defensive prowess, Franco has the tools to become a game-changer on both offense and defense. His ability to cover ground in the outfield and his knack for getting on base make him a valuable asset to any team. With a strong work ethic and a passion for the game, Franco is poised to make a seamless transition to the professional ranks and make an immediate impact in the Empire League.

2. Hanley Acevedo – Outfielder, Toronto Blue Jays Minor League System (North Country Thunderbirds)

Selected second overall in the draft, Hanley Acevedo brings a wealth of experience to the Empire League. Having honed his skills in the Toronto Blue Jays Minor League system, Acevedo is no stranger to the rigors of professional baseball. With a powerful bat and a keen eye for the ball, he has the ability to change the course of a game with one swing. His veteran presence and leadership qualities will be invaluable to his new team, providing guidance and inspiration both on and off the field.

3. Leandro Emiliani – First Baseman, Washington Nationals Organization (Tupper Lake Riverpigs)

The third pick in the draft, Leandro Emiliani, is a towering presence at first base. With his impressive size and strength, Emiliani poses a formidable threat at the plate, capable of launching balls into the stratosphere with ease. Having honed his skills in the Washington Nationals organization, he brings a polished approach to the game and a deep understanding of what it takes to succeed at the highest level. Emiliani’s ability to drive in runs and provide stability in the infield will make him a valuable asset to his new team as they strive for success in the Empire League.

4. Francis Florentino – Outfielder, Minnesota Twins Organization (Saranac Lake Surge)

Rounding out the top four picks is Francis Florentino, an outfielder who previously plied his trade in the Minnesota Twins organization. Blessed with lightning speed and exceptional defensive instincts, Florentino is a game-changer in the outfield, capable of tracking down balls that seem destined for the bleachers. With a compact swing and a knack for making contact, he poses a constant threat on the base paths, keeping opposing pitchers on edge at all times. Florentino’s blend of speed and power makes him a dynamic presence in the lineup and a player to watch in the Empire League.

As the Empire League welcomes its newest crop of talent, all eyes will be on these four players as they embark on their professional careers. With their unique skills and unwavering determination, they are sure to leave an indelible mark on the league and carve out a legacy as some of baseball’s brightest stars.

Article by Empire Media


MALONE, NY – The Malone Border Hounds have defeated the Plattsburgh Thunderbirds to win their first Empire Baseball League Championship on the inaugural season.

The Border Hounds came into Game 2 of the Finals looking to sweep the Finals Series and win their 16th in a row. An Empire Baseball league Record.

In front of another sold out Malone crowd, The Border Hounds took a 5-1 lead through the first 3 innings of the game. Jose Torrealba launched a two run blast over the left center wall on a 1-2 slider that didnt slide.

Platsburgh would answer right back as they took a 6-5 lead by the 5th. A 2 run shot by Anthony Socci in the 4th to score Tommy Kretzler and great hitting by Tommy Dunleavy and Kez Douglas and Tommy Kretzler in the 5th scored 2 more.

Thunderbirds bats went silent after the 5th as 6 runners were left on base without a score for the remaining of the game.

Chris Loeb put the nail in the coffin when he belted a grand slam in bottom of the 8th inning to give the Hounds a 12-6 lead in which the team would never give up.

Carlos Velez closed the game out for the Border Hounds going 3.0 innings of work without allowing any runs or hits.

Amaury Telemaco went 5.0 innings allowing 4 earned and striking out 5.

This concludes the Empire League Season for 2023 and a great summer for all involved.


MALONE, NY – The Border Hounds took on the Plattsburgh Thunderbirds in Game 1 of a best of 3 Finals Series in Malone, NY

A Sold out game one crowd in Malone saw a well played 4-3 game. Plattsburgh took a 2-0 lead in the top of the 3rd inning when Katsuya Arai doubled to start the inning and scored on a single by George Sutherland. Sutherland would then score on a single by Kezlin Douglas.

Malone bounced back in the 6th inning when Chris Loeb led off the inning with a single. Wataru Kumagai got a single with one out to move Loeb over to third. Loeb would then score on a double by Jerry Torres. Wataru would score on the following pitch as the reliever threw a wild pitch. Jose Torrealba would then work a good count to drive in Jerry Torres with a double of his own in a cluth situation and give the Border Hounds a lead that would not be topped.

Border Hounds would take Game 1 by a score of 4-3.

Game two will be tomorrow at 5:00pm ET in Malone in which Malone has an opportunity to win their 16th game in a row and be crowned Empire League Champions.

Article by Empire Media

Border Hounds No Answer for Riverpigs

MALONE, NY – The Tupper Lake Riverpigs came into Malone with a 9 game winning streak and would continue that streak as they defeated the Malone Border Hounds by a score of 5-0.

This was a match full of energy and a great environment. Over 700 fans in attendance for this one as Malones William Shea faced off against Tupper Lakes Joe LaFiora.

This game was a pitchers duel heading into the late innings. It was a two run ball game all the way until the 8th inning.

The Riverpigs took advantage of a few mistakes by the Border Hounds early to give themselves a 2-0 lead.

The Border Hounds had many opportunities with runners in scoring position and suffered with a few baserunning miscues and failed to bring in the runs.

Joe LaFiora was lights out as he would go the distance for the Riverpigs. LaFiora tossed a complete game shutout. He Struck out 11 batters in the game allowing just 4 hits and walking 3.

Tupper Lake would tie the Empire League record in most consecutive wins with a victory on Monday versus Japan.

Article by Empire Media

Sheas Stellar Pitching Performance Not Enough

MALONE, NY – The undefeated Tupper Lake Riverpigs (6-0) defeated the Malone Border Hounds in Malone, New York in their first meeting this season.

Left handed starting pitcher Joe LaFiora made his Empire League debut going against one of the Empire Leagues top pitcher William Shea.

There was no action until the 3rd inning when the Tupper Lake Riverpigs scored their first run on a single to center field that scored Ryan Enos.

Malone got their first run in the 6th inning when Devon Hawks scored on a ball hit by Jose Torrealba to the pitcher in which William Shea made an errant throw.

The game took a turn in the Top of the 8th inning when the Riverpigs would score 4 runs. Collins Robinson scored the first one on a hit by pitch to Walner Espinal with bases loaded. Ryan Enos and Starling Paulino would score on the following at bat with a single by Christian Naccari. The 4th run would come in when Walner Espinal scored on a double play grounder with zero outs to make the game 5-1.

Border Hounds did however respond in the bottom of the 9th as they made a big comeback that fell short. Evan Keegan scored on a wild pitch, Nate Darwin scored on a single by Devon Hawks, and Devon Hawks scored on a bases loaded walk by Chris Loeb.

With a score of 5-4 in the bottom of the 9th, a new pitcher for the Riverpigs would come in and get Matt Golda to ground out and end the game.

Joe LaFiora was credited with his first win of the season going 6 innings giving up just 1 hit and striking out 7. William Shea was given a no decision as he went 7 innings allowing just 1 run on 6 hits, walking just 1 batter and striking out 7.

This was the first matchup of the rivalry in which Riverpigs remain undefeated for the season.

Article by Empire Media

Hawks, Telemaco come up big in Win!

Malone, NY – The Malone Border Hounds came back to defeat the Japan Islanders in the bottom of the 8th for a 14-12 victory.

The Islanders took the lead in the 2nd inning 6-1 as the first 6 batters of the inning all scored. Darius Barton drove in a run on a single while Tommy Dunleavy drove in two with a laser to left field.

Malone, However, answered with a 4 run inning when catcher Nate Darwin doubled in both Matt Golda and Darlin De La Rosa. Devon Hawks singled and drove in both Nate Darwin and Tristan Bourne.

Hawks was not done as the following inning he belted a 2-run shot over the right center wall. a 380ft shot.

It was a back and forth game, the Islanders scored 3 in the top of the third on a double by Tommy Dunleavy that drove in two more. The Islanders added 3 more in the 4th inning and would be silent the rest of the game.

The Border Hounds were not done as they would score two in the 5th, 2 in the 6th and 2 in the 8th.

Amaury Telamaco Jr was stellar as he tossed 6 shutout inning allowing just 3 hits and striking out 6 batters with no runs or walks.

Jacob McCarthy had a big day with 4 hits, 4 stolen bases and 4 runs scored. Jerry Torres joined him with another 4 hits and driving in 3 runs. Hawks finished the day going 3 for 5 with 3 runs, a homer, 4 RBI’s and 2 stolen bases.

Telemaco Jr was credited with the win and Nakasato was credited with the loss.

The final score was 14-12 in favor of the Malone Border Hounds.

Article by Empire Media

Border Hounds Fall to Surge

MALONE, NY – The Saranac Lake Surge have come together to put up some great games as of late and they have traveled to Malone to defeat the Border Hounds for a second straight time.

It was no easy task as they took this second game in Malone by a score of 4-2.

Salix Felix was a big stand out in this game once again as he homered over the left center wall to give the Surge a lead. A 2-run shot in the same place he hit his first of the year, against the Border Hounds

Starter for Malone Clarke Davenport and Surge Nic Daniels were outstanding today. Nic Daniels would go 7 inning without a run and striking out 8, while Davenport also went 7 innings striking out 9 batters but giving up 2 runs.

Border Hounds infielder was the highlight offensively for the Hounds as Devon Hawks belted his first of the year to shorten the lead but it was not enough as the Border Hounds would go down to the Surge for the second straight matchup.

Border Hounds will play tomorrow at 11am while the Thunderbirds take a much needed break.

Article by Empire Media

Border Hounds win Wild opening night

Malone, NY – The Malone Border hounds packed the house on opening day when the team made Empire League History by having a sold out crowd of over 1,000 fans to see the Border Hounds play.

Japan wasted no time as lead off hitter Aj Pollack hit the first ever pitch thrown over the ball park. The team would score 4 runs in the first inning off pitcher Alex Lilja.

However the team showed resiliency as they would put up 4 runs in the 3rd and 6 in the 4th to take the lead which they would never give up.

Malones own Evan Keegan led the way for the Border Hounds with 3 hits, 2 runs and an RBI. Devon Hawks, Jose Torrealba, Jacob McCarthy and Darlin De La Rosa all had two hits in the game.

While for the Islanders, Tommy Dunleavy led the way with 2 hits and Taiga Sato had a total of 3 RBI’s.

William Shea got the win for the Border Hounds while Yoshi Nakasato was credited with the Loss.

Article by Empire Media



DATE: June 3-7, 2023 | LOCATION: Municipal Park in Tupper Lake, NY

ADDRESS TO TRYOUT:19 Demars Blvd, Tupper Lake, NY 12986

IMPORTANT INFORMATION: To Play in the Empire League, Players must attend this week long League wide Spring Training Showcase camp, which serves as the final Tryout to be eligible to be selected by a Empire League team. Only players that have attended other Tryouts or Showcase camps and were selected to teams can be exempted from this tryout.


The Empire League Scouting executives and Managers will select the players that earn the final rosters spots for the upcoming season.

This 5-day tryout also includes a MLB Analytics Evaluation day by PBR-New York. All players will have their MLB Data on the Empire scouting databases available for all requested MLB scouting reports.  ALL the Empire League Rosters will be formed and finalized. Over 100 available Roster spots are filled. 

CAMP HOUSING: The league is not responsible for housing players during this camp. Players must book their own housing accommodations for the duration of this camp. After camp is completed, Only selected roster players will be sent to the League housing for the season.

REFUND POLICY: There is NO REFUNDS! Camp registered players that confirm signing to an MLB affiliated or MLB partnered league, (American Association, Frontier League, Atlantic League) before the Empire camp date, are eligible for a refund. Players signed to leagues other than the MLB affiliated or MLB Partnered Leagues (Atlantic League, American Association, Frontier League, or Pioneer League) are not eligible for Empire Camp refund.

Cost: $795 Position Players & $495 Pitcher Only

Instructions: Submit Registration for Camp below, Agree to Terms and Conditions, You will be redirected to Make Payment, Use receipt as confirmation of entry. Check in on the first day begins at 9am at 19 Demars Blvd, Tupper Lake, NY 12986.

LIMITED PARTICIPANTS. Deadline to Register is May 25th.



YORK, PA – The Empire League will be hosting its annual All Independent Professional Baseball League Showcase Tryout in April.

Every year, players attend the All Indy Showcase tryout looking for an opportunity to sign last minute to MLB Partnered League teams as well as Empire Baseball League teams for the Regular Season.

As usual, April 5-6, 2023 will bring players from all over the country to showcase in front of confirmed coached from the Frontier League, Atlantic League and Empire League .

The Empire League will begin to fill its 125+ roster spots at this event for players who do not have the experience or are not properly developed to compete at the higher levels just yet. Every year, the Empire League allows for new players to enter the system, therefore all rosters start fresh every season. In order to play in the Empire League, however, you must attend a tryout, showcase camp or spring training.

This showcase tryout will take place at PeoplesBank park in York, Pennsylvania which is home to the York Revolution of the Atlantic League.

Over the years, players have signed directly to MLB partnered leagues and to Empire League. That number is higher than 80% of players in attendance are provided an opportunity.

If you’re looking to begin your career out of college or released from minor league ball and looking for opportunities, be sure to register for this event. NO Experience is necessary as the Empire Leagues platform is used to create experience to eventually move up to the higher levels.

Visit the Tryouts Link located in our navigation menu to register today.

For stats, news, updates and more, visit our website periodically at Follow us on Facebook and Instagram @eblborderhounds. If you have any questions about upcoming events, tryouts, or more, contact the Empire League via email at