Weston Little League has established objectives, policies and rules for all aspects of our local program. These are described in detail below.
WESTON LITTLE LEAGUE (updated January, 2012)
Little League Mission Statement
Through proper guidance and exemplary leadership, the Little League program assists youth in developing the qualities of citizenship, discipline, teamwork and physical well-being. By espousing the virtues of character, courage and loyalty, the Little League Baseball program is designed to develop superior citizens rather than superior athletes.
Little League in Weston
Weston Little League runs baseball and softball programs for children in kindergarten through 12 years old:
T-ball Division (spring only) - Kindergarden
A Division - Grade 1
AA Division - Grade 2
AAA Division - Grades 3 and 4
Majors-American League - Grade 5
Majors-National League - Grades 6 and 7
AA Division - Grades 2 and 3
AAA Division - Grades 4 and 5
Majors-American League - Grades 6 and 7
Juniors Division - Grades 8, 9 and 10
Our fall season begins the week after school starts and runs through the first week of November, and emphasizes skills development over competition.
Role of Volunteers
Little League at its core is a volunteer managed and run organization. Board members, team managers, coaches, team safety volunteers, and assistants volunteer or are recruited from the ranks of interested parents. Head coaches are appointed by the League President with the approval of the Board; assistants and other volunteers are recommended by the respective head coach and approved by the Board. A head coach is subject to removal if he or she allows any adult to assist or participate in a game or a practice without Board approval. All approvals are subject to the successful completion of a background check.
All volunteers or hired workers who provide regular service to the league and/or have repetitive access to or contact with players will undergo a mandatory background check, per Little League rules. Volunteers who complete their background check and fulfill their volunteer duties become regular members of Weston Little League, entitling them to participate in Little League votes. We encourage all interested parents to visit our website and select from the list of volunteer opportunities.
Alliance Positive Coaching
Along with other youth sport organizations in Weston, Weston Little League supports the goals and objectives of the Positive Coaching Alliance. PCA believes that winning is a goal in youth sports but that there is a second, more important goal of using sports to teach life lessons through positive coaching.
Coaches feel the responsibility not only to teach their players the skills and strategy behind the game, but also a respect for the tradition of the game and for all who are involved (teammates, opponents, officials, and fans). Learning to honor the game contributes to a growing sense of responsibility and maturing moral reasoning that helps athletes prepare to become contributing citizens of the larger community. For more information on PCA, visit them at ttp://www.positivecoach.org/
League Policies Conduct/Etiquette:
These games are for the players. No “in your face baseball” (i.e. intimidation tactics or demeaning behaviors) by players, coaches, umpires or fans. All managers, coaches, players, parents, and spectators will conduct themselves in a civil, sportsmanlike manner. Fans are the responsibility of the team they are rooting for. Coaches and league officials present need to keep spectators under control.
Only volunteers who have undergone a League background check are permitted to be in the dugout or in the immediate vicinity of the bench. Parents and spectators should refrain from coaching during games, and keep away from the benches and field.
Line up after a game for the traditional handshakes and “good games”.
No food on bench, except drinks, gum, and seeds - clean up the bench after your game.
No smoking, alcoholic beverages, or any illegal substance at Little League events (games, practices, or other sanctioned events) including the spectator areas.
No cursing, foul language or inappropriate behavior (e.g. fighting) is permitted. These behaviors will result in a player being removed from the game. Coaches will notify the board if a player is removed from a game, detailing the reason for doing so. Coaches evidencing this behavior will be subject to ejection and/or League disciplinary action.
If a player is ejected from a game he cannot play the next game.
If a manager is ejected from a game he may be removed as a manager by the Board.
If a parent is ejected from the field by the umpire, appropriate disciplinary actions will be taken by the Board.
Attendance and Playing Time Policy
Weston Little League believes that all little league players who participate at ALL levels should play an equal amount of time. Talent levels do not determine innings played. Our League’s own rule (different from National LL) is that all players will play an equal number of innings and where not possible only one inning differential will be allowed (three exceptions: poor attendance, poor attitude issues, or when a starting pitcher is able to throw a complete game within pitch limits). This rule is applicable for ALL games, rain shortened, regular season, extra innings, playoffs and inter-league. Additionally, players who are present for the entire game must play at least two innings in the infield in all regular season games. Beginning in Fall 2011 and thereafter, this policy is suspended for the playoffs in our NL, AL and AAA divisions so that there is no minimum infield requirement in the playoffs.
Failure to follow these equal play regulations can be protested by the other team.
For Majors and AAA
Players are required to attend ALL baseball games and practices. Practices are as important as games. Players should be fully dressed, on the field and ready to play on time. Weston Little League differentiates between excused and unexcused absences.
Players who miss practices or games with an excused absence (defined as at least 24 hour notice of conflicts involving school, religion, or family, or ASAP notice on health) will be eligible to play in games according to the league’s playing time policy.
Unexcused absences, defined as any absence not covered above, will result in reduced playing time during games at the discretion of the head coach.
Please call or email your manager or head coach at least 24 hours BEFORE a practice or a game if you are going to be absent. Please state the reason for your absence. Any absence that occurs without prior notice will be deemed "unexcused."
AA, A and T-Ball League:
As a courtesy to coaches who create line-ups and practice plans, players should adhere to the same notification of absences policy as above; coaches can use discretion with playing time for chronic offenders.
Why have an Attendance Policy?
Respect -- Respect for your coach, your teammates and yourself. Coaches spend considerable time planning practices to teach skills and prepare for games. A practice plan relies on consistent attendance from all players. With just a few late or missing players, a practice or game plan can be thrown out the window.
Teamwork -- Baseball is a team sport. Teamwork is a life skill that stays with young athletes long after they stop playing sports. It often makes them better in social, educational and, eventually, professional environments.
Commitment -- On a team, the group suffers unless everyone is committed to the team. Commitment requires that everyone show up ready to play on time every session. Showing up "when you feel like it" is no more acceptable in Weston Little League than it would be for activities such as membership in a musical band, a theatrical ensemble, or any other group. Making commitments and fulfilling them are important in both sports and life. We want to send the right message to our players.
Players who do not attend every practice, do not show up on time, do not try their hardest and do not show respect for coaches, officials, opponents, and teammates will not get as much playing time as teammates. Please discuss this policy with your child. Coaches will report excessive absences to the Board, and players may be suspended. Further, players who are withdrawn subsequent to rosters being set, regardless of reason, will be investigated and similarly considered for suspension.
District Teams and Summer All-Stars
If you are playing on any Weston Little League All Star Team you can’t be on any other baseball team that is not sanctioned by Weston Little League. Only players who participate on a Weston Little League team are eligible for District teams.
Coaches, Board members and other volunteers may come into contact with or be given sensitive and personal information about other members of the Weston Little League community. All members of Little League are required to maintain confidentiality of the information, to use such information only for its intended purpose, to disseminate when required for official purposes only, and to shred, delete, or securely dispose of information when it is no longer needed (typically at season end).