Sumner’s Brena Patten fields a ground ball during a 2019 preseason high school softball game against Houlton at Bucksport High School. Local baseball and softball teams will play their first preseason contests as early as this Thursday, April 8. FILE PHOTO

Baseball, softball teams to begin preseason play this week

ELLSWORTH — Springtime means baseball and softball, and although many fields are still rather damp at the moment, the action is set to return to local diamonds in the coming days.

The Hancock County preseason slate is scheduled to begin with the first game Thursday, April 8. Contests will continue into the weekend and over the next two weeks before the first regular season games begin later this month.

The first preseason game will pit Mount Desert Island baseball against Penobscot Valley at 4 p.m. Thursday in Bar Harbor. Action will then continue over the weekend with the MDI baseball and softball teams hosting Belfast at 11 a.m. Saturday, April 10, and Bucksport playing doubleheaders against Bangor and Hampden Academy (baseball at Mansfield Stadium; softball at Hampden Academy).

Ellsworth baseball and softball will begin play next week with 4 p.m. road contests next Monday, April 12, against Hampden and next Tuesday, April 13, against Bangor, respectively. George Stevens Academy will begin preseason action next Wednesday, April 14, with baseball hosting Brewer at 4 and softball playing on the road against Belfast at 4:30. Sumner has yet to unveil a preseason schedule.

Hancock County teams will play between two and five preseason games in total. The first regular season contests in Maine can be held as soon as next Thursday, April 15, though local teams will not begin regular season play until April 21.

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