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Orientation 2018

Here is a summary of the coming year to review.  Much is the same for returning players but read it through as a reminder anyway.  We are still looking for a few players in each league so keep the word out to anyone you know who might be interested in playing this summer.

*upcoming schedule: We start with workouts of the new players to the league over the next week or so and then coaches get together to go over all the players in the league to make sure we draft balanced teams as much as possible.  The draft is on the 15th, after which each player will get a call from his coach(es).  After finding out their teams, players can refer to the spring schedule on the website for practices and eventually to the regular season schedule which will be posted soon.
*teams: There will be 14 teams in the league this year (12 players max on each team).  6 teams in the 15 & under Majors where the average age is around 13 1/2.  6 teams in the 19 & under Seniors where the average age is around 17 and then the two new Sunset teams that are 18 & over.  Players can still request to be paired with a partner in the draft so do so soon if you want to be with a friend (some limits).
*coaches:  Majors who are wearing 1930's uniforms this year...
Cardinals (Manley & Wade)     Browns(Wilkerson, Brayfield, & Keeter)     Redsox(Buxton & Johnson)
Senators (Walker & Meiss)      Robins(Smith)                                            Giants(Haynes & Cooper)
                  Seniors who are wearing 1950's uniforms this year...
Braves(Tarbutton, Looney, & Claussen)     Athletics(Twigg & Frey)          Indians(Eisenhour & Demster)
Orioles(Shelton & Stewart)                         Pirates(Smith & Jaquess)      Reds(Ginocchio & Sillavan)
                   Sunset who are wearing 1990's uniforms this year...
Devil Rays(Shelton & Penka)                     Marlins(Davidson & Stokes)
If you have ONE particular coach you would prefer does not draft you this year, call or email and I will make sure to diplomatically make sure you end up on a different team.  Do not bother to call with a request to be on one particular team, though you are free to call and guilt trip coaches directly about picking you if you want.  Also do not request to avoid more than one coach or I will assume you are the problem.
*goals: Our first priority is that everyone is having fun playing.  Our draft tries to make the teams competitive and our playing rules make sure everyone is involved throughout every game.  We also try to make sure players are getting chances to try different things, so don't be afraid to talk to your coach or employ me to speak on your behalf at the field.
*rules: We have a few primary league rules but otherwise play as in Major league baseball. 
#1 we bat a continuous order, so everyone is in the lineup in every game.
#2 players can not be on the bench defensively for two innings after being on the bench one inning.  In other words if you are out in the first you can not sit again until the fourth, etc.
#3 Pitchers can pitch 3 inning per game, but can pitch in every game all season (special rules exist for championship games and in the Sunset league).
#4 Players in the Majors can not steal home including on passed balls and wild pitches.
*discipline: Watch your conduct and language at the field.  We will issues warnings where necessary but will also eject or suspend players who interfere with the sportsmanship we expect at the ballpark.  Don't throw equipment including bats!!!  You are expected to slide to avoid contact where possible and may get called out if you don't and will definitely get ejected if you deliberately run into a defensive player. 
For fans: If you smoke, please confine that to the parking areas, away from the ballfields.  There is also no alcohol allowed at the ballparks.  You may bring your dog, but please pick up after them.  Also please help with picking up trash and putting it in the garbage cans provided.  Watch where you sit at both parks since there are protected areas with fencing, especially if you have younger children or will be looking at phones, etc. and not constantly aware of foul balls.
*uniforms: Each player will get a jersey (most are full button), some include a t-shirt since they are sleeveless and you are expected to always wear both.  Majors and Seniors wear fitted caps and also receive a pair of baseball socks.  Players are required to supply their own baseball pants.  Some teams will wear White and others Gray.  The list of which wear which will be posted after the draft.  There will be a discount to purchase pants at Play-it-Again sports when we do uniform distribution there along with discounts on equipment.   Don't lose your stuff!!!  It costs money to replace and you will get the bill.
*equipment: Wood bats, catcher's equipment, and helmets are in the dugouts at the field each game.  You can bring your own stuff obviously, but try and keep track of it.  If you leave something at the park, chances are it will end up with me and I'll have it the next time.  Players may NOT use metal spikes in the summer league.  You may wear facemasked helmets but are not required to do so in either league.  We use only ASH and MAPLE bats, no composite, bamboo, etc.  If you have questions on a bat, call or ask me at the park.  You can use metal bats in the preseason.
*season format: each team plays 15 games in the regular season (three against each other team).  Majors play on Mondays, Saturdays, and some Tuesdays and Thursdays.  There is one Wednesday in the Majors schedule this year.  Seniors play Friday, Sunday, and some Tuesdays and Thursdays.  The Sunset league plays nine games on Saturdays and Sundays only.
*world series: teams are seeded after the regular season and all start 0-0 again, playing 3 games each.  The top four teams advance to semi-finals and the winners there to the Championship game for each league.  During the Series we will try to announce all batters each game and also dress up the field, etc.  Trophies are presented to the top two teams at an on field ceremony after the championship games.
*remembering history: throughout the practice and regular season players should check this page on the website for info on players, teams, and parks of our two primary decades this year.  At the ballpark, I try to quiz players on what is posted and give away small prizes like gift cards, baseball cards, etc. for those in the know.
*Romano's bullpen: our weekly trivia contest on the website features facts on some of our teams in use this summer, league history, and then gives a larger weekly prize away to a single winner who guesses the big weekly trivia question right. (pizza, gift card, stock cap)
*power derby: our annual hitting contest allows all players who want to participate a chance to win a big trophy and coveted power derby t-shirt while competing as an individual against all other players in the league.  It is fun and relatively simple, but not as easy as it looks.  We also now have our derby game tournament where this year five teams (two of coaches, and three of players) will battle for supremacy in our one hour "derby games" that are fun to play in and watch.
*roster book: each family will get a copy on opening day with the schedule, all the players/teams, sponsors, and other info on the league.
*standings board: posted at each park when we play.  Shows current standings, recent scores, and upcoming schedule along with other updates.
*Opening Ceremonies May 20th: All players should be present in uniform. Multiple former MLB players will be on hand to sign autographs and visit with players.  We usually have an honor guard and special musical guest from Branson to do the Anthem as well.  Admission is $5 for that day only and all players and kids 10 & under are FREE.
*We may have some optional fundraisers this year and will make you aware of those at the park or via the website.
REMEMBER: The website is your ultimate tool  It is updated daily with scores, standings, news, and on the main page you can get information on rainouts and rescheduling.
Pay up and Paperwork: still have lots of forms and fees due, please get them in asap to ensure we can get everything we need in order to play ball on time.

Fall league information will be posted later and registration for that season will begin in July.

If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to call or email and ask.  Hope to see everyone soon and looking forward to a great summer season.

Rob