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FALL BASEBALL PROGRAMS

Needham Baseball offers a variety of programs for players from 1st grade to 9th grade.

Fall Development League

Overview.  Needham Baseball now offers a Fall Development League to give younger players training in the fundamentals of baseball and an additional season to try-out these skills.  Establishing proper mechanics is critical at this age and the season will focus on skill development through drills, practices and intramural games.  Players are encouraged to attend as many practices as possible or desired and try their skills in games.    

Season.  The Fall season will begin with practices and games beginning in early September (after Labor Day).  Session dates will be announced in August.   

Schedule.  Practices are ONE HOUR in length and are expected to be held Tuesdays and Thursdays at 4:00pm and 5:00pm.  Teams will practice once per week, with occasional weeks allowing for two practices.  Practices are run by Frozen Ropes, with high school baseball and softball assistants.  Games are 90 minutes in length and will be Sunday afternoons at 4:00pm.  

Player expectations.  Players are expected to bring a desire to learn, a willingness to practice and a commitment to having fun!    

Registration.  Registration begins June 1st and closes on August 15th.  Late sign-ups will only be permitted if room is available.  It is highly advised that players sign up before the end of the school year in June.  Registration is done online at http://www.needhambaseball.com

Program Cost.  The program will cost $150. This will include (but is not limited to) insurance, league fees, umpire fees, training and player shirt and hat. 
 

Freshman Wood Bat League

Overview.  Needham Baseball now offers a fall program designed to prepare high school freshmen for wood bat play.  Needham High School plays in the Bay State League, which requires wood bats at all levels.  One team is selected for this program and plays competitive travel baseball in Needham and surrounding towns.  This is not a "show up and play" league - players are expected to attend most practices and games. 

Season.  The Fall season will begin with practices in late August and games beginning in early September (after Labor Day).  The season typically consists of seven 9 inning games.  All games are scheduled for Sundays; practices will be held on weekday evenings and/or Saturdays. 

Player expectations.  Players will be expected to participate in most team practices and games.  The roster size will be based on the number of registrations, but will be large to more closely match the high school experience.  Consequently, it is not acceptable for players to attend occasionally or only when other conflicts do not arise.  If registration numbers are high, tryouts may be held and cuts may be made.  Only one team will be entered for the 2017 season. 

Registration.  Registration begins June 1st and closes on August 15th.  Late sign-ups will only be permitted if room is available within the roster size guidelines.  It is highly advised that players sign up before the end of the school year in June.  Registration is done online at http://www.needhambaseball.com

Program Cost.  The program will cost $195. This will include (but is not limited to) insurance, league fees, umpire fees, training and uniforms.  All players in the wood bat league also receive a wood bat to personalize to their tastes.
 

Fall Competitive Travel Leagues

Overview.  Needham Baseball provides a competitive travel baseball program in September and October for 9-15 year olds (grades 3-10 in the 2017-2018 school year).  This program is for committed baseball players who want to fit in another season of baseball, get additional playing time and compete at a high level.  This is not a "show up and play" league - players are expected to attend most practices and games.  This program will stress skill development and competition.  

Season.  The Fall season will begin with practices in late August and games beginning in early September (after Labor Day).  The season typically consists of 9-10 games.  Games are typically scheduled once during the week and once on weekends.  Weeknight games begin as early as 5:00 to be completed prior to darkness. (Fall Big Diamond Prep games are scheduled for Friday night under the lights, Saturday and Sunday only). 

The season culminates with play-offs for eligible teams in early to mid-October (the same time as MLB playoffs). 

Fall Big Diamond Prep is a strictly developmental league with no standings and no playoffs.  This program is designed to give players additional chances to learn and practice the new skills required of Babe Ruth players on the big (90') diamond in the following spring season and for current Babe Ruth players to get an additional season of competitive baseball.  All games are on weekends, with practice during the week.  

Please note: High School freshmen may register for either the Freshman Wood Bat team OR the Fall Big Diamond Prep team.  One cannot do both.  If cuts are required for the Freshman Wood Bat team, those players will be automatically placed in the Fall Big Diamond Prep League (or given a refund if preferred).  

Player expectations.  Players will be expected to participate in most team practices and games.  Rosters will be kept to 11-13 players (12 preferred), depending on availability at each level (slightly larger for big diamond prep teams).  Consequently, it is not acceptable for players to attend occasionally or only when other conflicts do not arise. 

Teams.  Teams are evenly balanced under the rules of the Fall League.  For players aged 9-12, there are three leagues: AA, AAA and Majors.  These leagues are organized by Newton Little League.  Games are played in surrounding towns (in 2014, teams from Newton, Needham and Savin Hill participated).  For 13, 14, and 15 year olds, the League is based in Norwood, all games are played in Norwood and practices are held in Needham. 

Registration.  Registration begins June 1st and closes on August 15th.  Late sign-ups will only be permitted if room is available within the roster size guidelines of 11-13 (12 preferred) players.  It is highly advised that players sign up before the end of the school year in June.  Registration is done online at http://www.needhambaseball.com

Program Cost.  The program will cost $175 for all age groups. This will include (but is not limited to) insurance, league fees, umpire fees, training and uniforms.

Team Assignments.  Needham Baseball treats the Fall League as an opportunity for baseball players to gain additional experience in a high level, competitive environment.  It is the practice of Needham Baseball not to "play up" in the Fall League.  As there are no tryouts and no cuts for the Fall season, league assignments are based on age, previous playing experience and roster size, as follows.

U15 team: All players that will turn 13, 14 or 15 prior to May 1, 2018 will be assigned to a u15 (Norwood League) team.  Players that turn 16 prior to May 1, 2018 are not eligible for this program.

Majors: 1) All players that will turn 12 prior to September 1, 2018 will be assigned to Majors; and 2) Any player that played in the Majors Division of Needham Little League in Spring 2017 will be assigned to Majors.  It is not anticipated that late sign-ups will be accommodated at the Majors level. 

AAA:  All players who will be 11 years old prior to September 1, 2018 will be placed in AAA, regardless of grade level, unless that player played Needham Majors level in Spring of 2017.  All players who will turn 9 or 10 years old prior to September 1, 2018, are in 4th grade in Fall 2017 and have previous baseball experience will be placed in AAA.  Note: AAA teams consist of multiple age groups and grade levels. 

AA: All players who are in third or fourth grade for the 2017-2018 school year and do NOT fall into one of the above categories will be placed in AA.

NOTE: Players in first or second grade should register for our Fall Development League as the Fall Travel League is not appropriate for players who have not experienced player-pitch baseball.  However, 2nd graders with demonstrated experience AND a coach recommendation may apply for consideration to play in AA.  Acceptance to "play up" is solely at the discretion of the Fall Placement Committee and decisions are final.    

Within each Division, the Fall League requires Needham to enter evenly balanced teams.  This is done by sorting players by age and previously evaluated ability.  There are NO tryouts and NO cuts for Fall baseball.

ALL PLAYER ASSIGNMENTS AT ALL AGE GROUPS ARE FINAL.
No refunds will be provided after August 15th except in the case of injury prior to the season start date.

Coaching Upon registration parents are encouraged to express interest in a fall Manager position.  Because of a need to balance teams, no more than one "co-Manager or coach" may be considered for each Manager request and such "co-Managing or coaching" is not guaranteed. 

Any questions – please contact the Fall League Director.