The bad news for the three Suburban Council class A teams Averill Park, Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake and Mohonasen is that the league will be as competitive as ever this year.
"Throughout the league, there's a lot of balance," said BH-BL coach Paul Deluca. "It's going to be tough for the single As, as it always is."
The good news for the class A teams is that they won't need a .500 or better league record to make the Section II playoffs. The Suburban Council is switching to a point system where a league victory over a team from a different class is worth two points and a win against a team from the same class is worth one point. Seven points will get a Suburban Council class A team into Sectionals.
"I think it's tremendous," said Averill Park coach Mike Conroy. "There's two points now for a quality win over a double A team, which would solidify our playoff position. Anything that allows us to receive recognition for our quality wins is a good thing."
While the competition between the three class A teams to reach seven standings points will be keen, the competition between the class AA teams to get the best league record will be tougher. Several teams have a chance to reach that goal including defending class AA champion Guilderland, defending Blue Division champion Colonie and perennial powers Shenendehowa, Columbia and Shaker.
"I think it's going to be very competitive," said Guilderland coach Doug LaValley. "I can see five or six teams that can compete for the overall league title."
Here is a closer look at the Suburban Council.
Colonie Garnet Raiders
Head coach: Greg Lanni
Key veterans: Joe Poleto (centerfielder), Nick Carnevale (pitcher), Derek Zielinski (pitcher/outfielder), Matt June (shortstop), Andy Carucci (outfielder/pitcher), Ron Notar (first baseman), Adam Herman (pitcher/third baseman), Kevin Smith (catcher), Chris Smith (pitcher), Matt Weinman (second baseman), William Keegan (first baseman/outfielder/pitcher)