The Can-Am League is one of the historic names in minor league baseball. The first Can-Am League was formed in 1936 with cities in upper New York State and Ontario. This league operated as a Class C circuit until 1942 when World War II caused it to cease operations along with most of the minor leagues in North America.
With the war over the league reopened in 1946 with two of the current members, Pittsfield and Quebec. Minor league baseball encountered a huge boom in the post-war years and the Can-Am was no exception as the league experienced large attendance numbers with a great fan following. But the boom collapsed in the early 1950’s, and the Can-Am closed its doors after the 1951 season. The introduction of television was one factor, but the fact that there were not enough major league working agreements for the huge number of minor league teams was also a factor in the dwindling of minor league franchises.
Minor league baseball’s downturn continued for the next several decades and the leagues that remained were kept alive with the help of subsidies from the major leagues. But baseball started a turnaround in the 1980’s and by the 1990’s, the minors were booming. Cities across the country wanted teams, but the major leagues were not expanding their farms systems. In 1993, independent baseball started to serve those cities that wanted teams. Without major league help, the Northern League, the first of the independents, showed that baseball at the minor league level could survive without big league help and other independent leagues spring up across the country.
The Can-Am was reformed in 2005 with many of the teams from the Northeast League that had started in 1995. The Can-Am is now one of the most respected of the independent circuits with strong cities, good stadiums, and a great brand of baseball. In the 2018 season, the Can-Am will play series’ against both the Dominican Republic National Team and Salina Stockade from the American Association.
The Dominican Republic National Team will be making it's third tour of the Can-Am League this season. A country rich with baseball history, the Dominican Republic has always been a producer of outstanding major league talent. The Dominican team also took home the 2013 World Baseball Classic championship with the help of many major-league players.
The Salina Stockade are a professional baseball team that began play in 2016. The Stockade are the only team in independent baseball history to play in three different leagues in three consecutive years. The Stockade have always been a travel team with limited or no home games. In 2016 and 2017 the Stockade called Salina, Kansas home and played home games at Dean Evans Stadium in Salina, Kansas.
The league is currently comprised of six teams: Ottawa, New Jersey, Rockland (New York), Quebec City, Trois-Rivières, and Sussex County (which is also located in New Jersey state)