Girls Bring Their Game to the LLWS

Mo’Ne Davis (Philadelphia’s Taney Dragons) and Emma March (Canada) will play on the big stage that is the Little League World Series starting on Friday, August 15. Click a link below to read about it:

March 30 League Updates

All,

Although the weather doesn’t seem to ever want to cooperate at some point it should stop raining, snowing, sleeting and being overall yucky (that is a technical weather term) so that we can play some ball. With that hope in mind here are some important league info and updates:

Kick Off Scrimmage and Party on SUNDAY, APRIL 27 AT KELLY PARK we will have our first (of what we hope will be an annual tradition) season kick off game. At 3pm we will have a VA vs. MD scrimmage. It will be followed by a potluck party. Details for the event will be forthcoming, but please mark your calendars now to bring along your family, friends and join us.

League Schedule: I know many of you are anxiously awaiting our league schedule so you can begin making plans for the summer. We are waiting to confirm a few last field details and hope to have the schedule out to you by April 11th. I appreciate everyone’s patience, I would like to make sure that we publish an accurate schedule so all of you can make your plans accordingly.

Board Meeting: The next meeting of the Board will be on SUNDAY, APRIL 13 FROM 3-5PM. The meeting will take place in the conference room of South Paws Veterinary Hospital ( 8500 Arlington Blvd, Fairfax, VA). As we are using the Hospital’s conference room and the hospital will be open for business at that time, I ask everyone interested in attending to please arrive by 3pm so we can be escorted to the conference room together. If you are late, please contact me at 703-501-6056 so arrangements can be made for someone to meet you at the front desk.

The Board meeting is open to everyone and we encourage players to attend the meetings and participate in the operation of your league. If you are unable to attend, you can share your ideas, thoughts, opinions, etc with your team rep or you can contact me directly at bonnie.hoffman.

Of significance on April’s agenda is a discussion of the rules for the 2014 season. Your team rep should provide you with information on rules under consideration for amendment, review, removal or inclusion this year. If you have rules you wish to place on the agenda for consideration, please provide that information to either your team rep or to myself by Friday, 4/4 so that they can be included on the agenda.

A copy of the 2013 rules is available on the website www.easternwomensbaseball.org under the heading for Player Info.

Survey: In an effort to improve the quality of the league, to find new and better avenues for recruiting and marketing and to make the league more responsive and representative of the interests of the players in the coming weeks you will be asked to complete a brief survey that will be distributed through an on line survey instrument. Please take the time to complete the survey as your input is vital in our continued efforts to improve the league.

Thunder: For the past several years Dave Fyfe has very generously given of his time and energy to coach the Thunder and both the team and the league are very appreciative of the same. He will be stepping aside this year as the Thunder coach in order to pursue some other interests, although he will continue to coach the Flames so we can all look forward to seeing him out on the field.

As a result, we are actively seeking a coach for the 2014 season. In the coming days you will all receive a separate email with a formal announcement of the coaching vacancy and the process the Board has adopted to fill that vacancy.

In the interim, the Thunder will still hold tryouts on the following dates:

SUNDAY, APRIL 5 FROM 11-12:30 AT LANGLEY H.S., 6520 Georgetown Pike, McLean.

SATURDAY, APRIL 12 FROM 11-12:30 AT SPRING GROVE, 55 Wade Ave, Catonsville, MD (the field is on the grounds of Spring Grove Hospital. Follow signs on the grounds to the Ball Field)

If you are interested in trying out for the Thunder but are unable to attend either try out date (and have not already spoken with me) please contact me directly to discuss alternative tryout options.

**Please arrive in time to be dressed, stretched, warmed up and ready to begin at 11am**

As always, if you have any questions about the league, please feel free to reach out to either your team representative or to myself.

Here’s hoping for sunny skies and warm days!

Bonnie

March 2014 League Update

Although the snow is falling outside, your Board has been hard at work to try to get ready for the 2014 season. To that end, I want to update all of you about some matters:

1. Schedule: The league schedule will be set in the coming weeks. We have finalized the start and end dates and are currently working to secure fields so we can update you with the dates/times/locations of the games.

The season will officially begin the weekend of May 3/4. The last regular season game is scheduled for the weekend of August 16/17. The playoffs are scheduled for the weekend of August 23/24. We have two rain out make up dates in the schedule, the weekend of June 14/15 and August 23/24. In addition, there will be no league games Memorial Day weekend (May 24/25), July 4th weekend (July 5/6) and Labor Day weekend (Aug 30/Sept 1).

2. Kick off event: we are working on plans to host a league kick off event on Sunday, April 27 at Kelly Park. The event is planned to feature a picnic and a MD vs. VA scrimmage. Details will be sent at the event is finalized, but please plan to keep that date open to join us.

3. League Gear: in the coming weeks you will get an announcement about the opening of an on line store front that will allow you to purchase shirts, shorts and sweats with the league’s logo on it. This will be a great opportunity for you to help promote the league–wearing our gear will help spread the word of our league and hopefully help it to grow. Please watch your email for more info. The storefront will be open for about 10 days and allow you to individually place orders–selecting the items you want, the sizes, colors, materials, etc–pay for them individually and then have the items delivered to you by your team rep. We hope you will take advantage of this opportunity to support the league.

4. Thunder Update: Tryouts for this year’s Thunder will be held on SUNDAY, APRIL 6 AT LANGLEY H.S. 11am-12:30pm; and SATURDAY, APRIL 12 in Baltimore (time and location TBD). If you are interested in trying out but are unable to attend either tryout date, please contact me (bonnie.hoffman) to discuss other options.

The Thunder are currently slated to play in the following events:
Baltimore-Washington Diamond Classic, May 24-26 (Baltimore, MD)
Can-Am Invitiational, July 5-7 (Toronto, CA)
Peach Orchard Invitational, August 30-Sept. 1 (Rockford, IL)
National Championships, October 11-13 (Vero Beach, FL)

5. Equipment reminder: Beginning in 2015 we will be changing our equipment rules to require all bats to comply with either USSSA or BBCor certifications. As you being to replace your equipment in the coming year, please be sure to select bats that are compliant with these conditions. Most new models have a marker near the bat handle indicating they are USSSA or BBCor compliant.

6. Rules: In the coming days you will be contacted by your team rep about potential changes to the Rules for the 2014 season. Please respond to their request. Each year we make attempts to modify and adjust the rules to meet the changing needs of the league. Last year’s rules can be found on the website, www.easternwomensbaseball.org under the Player Info header. The 2014 rules will be finalized at our April Board meeting.

Areas of potential discussion will include: consideration of amending the time limits for games, currently set at no new inning to start after 2 1/2 hours; the use of the player pool, including whether to continue its usage and if so, for what period of time should it be available, and a potential new rule setting a per/inning run limit. This proposed new rule is used by several other adult leagues and is designed to make games more competitive. The proposal will be further detailed by your team reps, but would be used on an experimental basis this year for a few games early in the season.

If you have other areas of the rules you wish to be considered, please advise your team rep or contact me directly. We ask all proposed rule changes be submitted to your rep/me by March 30th so as to allow them to be circulated to the teams and players for consideration in advance of our next Board meeting.

7. Survey: In an effort to improve the league and make sure it best reflects the wants and needs of the players, in the coming weeks you will receive a link for a survey instrument. It will be used to help us get a better idea of what players like about the league, areas that you would like to see changed and ways in which we can make the league and your baseball experience better. Please be sure to take the time to complete the survey. It is vital to help this league grow that we have your thoughts and input.

8. Committees: To all of you who have volunteered to be a part of one of our committees, thank you. You will be receiving a communication (if you have not already) from the committee’s chair. for the rest of you, we truly need your help and input. In order for this league to operate, and to grow we need all of you to become more active members–this league’s continued viability is directly dependent on your willingness to help sustain it. By giving a few hours of your time, you can make a big difference –we are looking for volunteers to help with the following groups: Communication (this includes social media and traditional media, publicity, etc) and League Development (including growing and developing the league’s infrastructure).

We are also looking for volunteers to assist with this year’s tournament. As many of you know, each year we host the Diamond Classic over Memorial Day weekend. The event features teams from across the US and Canada and has become the premier women’s baseball event in North America. We anticipate as many as 12 teams playing in this year’s tournament with up to 4 venues for our games. In order to continue to have this event serve as the show case it is, we need volunteers to assist with both pre-tournament preparations and game weekend event management. Each volunteer gets not only my undying gratitude but also a goody bag and free admission to all tournament events. This year’s program will feature Jenanne Lesko, one of the original players from the AAGPBL. If you (or someone you know) is interest in helping with this event, please contact me directly.

9. Next Board Meeting: Our next Board meeting will be SUNDAY, APRIL 13 from 3-5pm. It will be in Virginia, location TBA.

10. Practices: Indoor practices at BASES will be held each Saturday in March from 11am-1pm. The practices are open to anyone who is interested. Cost is usually $10-$15/person. Please visit the website for directions to the complex. In the coming weeks we hope the weather will cooperate and teams will begin outdoor practices. As we get additional information we will advise you/your team managers.

As always, remember this is your league, so please be involved! (and please think warm thoughts to help usher spring here)

Baltimore-Washington Diamond Classic Updates

I appreciate everyone’s patience as we try to finalize details about this year’s tournament. We are very excited to see that we may have several new groups joining us for the event. Our goal is to host a total of 12 teams this year-we have three fields secured, which will allow us to host up to 10 teams and we are working on securing a 4th field to allow us to do 12.

We will be hosting this year’s Diamond Classic over Memorial Day weekend–May 23rd through 26th–in Baltimore, Maryland. The tournament will be tiered into two levels--with teams being grouped based on their ability (which will come from a combination of past regional and national tournament performances along with self-reported information regarding the team’s composition for this tournament)

We are accepting deposits and will reserve spots in the tournament on a first come, first serve basis. The deposit will be $500. Any team that we are unable to accommodate will have their deposit returned in full.

The total fee is still to be determined, but is anticipated to be approximately $1150. This includes a 4 game guarantee; water/gatorade for all games; individual and team awards; player and team registration packets; and a special event dinner for all players and coaches. Each of the two divisions will have its own championship game.

We have not yet finalized the scheduling of these championship games–as our preference is for both division championships to be played at Joe Cannon Stadium on Monday. In order to do so, we would start the first championship game at 9am and the second at noon. This would be 2 hours later than our traditional 10am start–while I realize that may impact travel for some teams, our preference is to do what we can to host the two division’s championship games at a single venue allowing players and fans to watch both games and allowing both divisions the chance to crown their champion in the stadium. However, we recognize that travel plans for teams may make this later completion time difficult. As a result, we are asking you to notify us about whether your team will be able to manage a later completion time on Monday as we want to do our best to accommodate the teams’ travel needs.

We are excited about a few things that are in the works for this year’s event–first, Jeneane Lesko, a pitcher with the Rapid City Chicks of the AAGPBL, will be joining us for this year’s tournament. In connection with her attendance at this year’s tournament we will be hosting a special event for all players and coaches (tickets will be available for family and friends to purchase as well) on either Saturday or Sunday night.

In addition, we are currently working with the Baltimore Orioles to host a kick off event at Camden Yards on Friday, May 23rd. Our goal will be to offer players, coaches, family and friends, a special ticket package that will include admission to the Orioles Friday night game against the Cleveland Indians. The game starts at 7pm. These tickets are NOT included in the entry fee, but will be available to interested players, coaches, family and friends at a reduced rate.

It is our hope that you encourage your players as they begin go make preparations to attend this year’s Diamond Classic that they consider arriving in the Baltimore area in time to join us Friday night at Camden Yards. The field is located about 20 minutes from the host hotel location and we are currently working on arranging shuttle bus transportation for those attending the game.

Deposits can be made via our PayPal account by going to our website: www.easternwomensbaseball.org and following the link to the donation page. When you pay your deposit, please note that payment is for the 2014 Diamond Classic, provide your name and your team’s name.

If you would prefer to mail payment to us–please make the check payable to: Eastern Women’s Baseball Conference and send it to my attention at: P.O. Box 464, Leesburg, VA 20176. Please include in your envelope a notation as to your team’s name and your name/contact information.

If you are mailing payment, please send me an email indicating you are mailing in your payment. We will put you on the waiting list based on the date you advise you have mailed payment (rather than the date it is received)

Over the coming weeks you will receive additional emails with information about the event, including hotel information. We anticipate securing King and Double rooms at several area hotels and will pass along the hotel information as soon as it is finalized.

If you have any questions about the tournament or the fees, please feel free to contact me at; bonnie.hoffman

We look forward to seeing all of you at this year’s tournament.

Bonnie

“Thank you” to all who supported the Coed Baseball Battles Cancer fundraiser

To The 2013 Coed Baseball Battles Cancer Participants and Supporters-

I wanted to take this opportunity to express my sincerest thanks for your participation and support of this year’s Annual Coed Baseball Battles Cancer fundraiser that took place on Saturday October 5th, 2013 at Nike Park in Great Falls, VA. As promised, I wanted to update you on the final totals for this year’s fundraising efforts…

I am thrilled to report that this year’s game and Silent Auction generated more than $1,500 in donations for our selected charities! Those donations will be split between three cancer-related charities serving the DC Metro area – Zero: The End of Prostate Cancer; Capital Breast Care Center and Life With Cancer. The spirit of giving was contagious among the more than 35 players who participated along with family, friends and supporters – I could not have hand-picked a better group of people – and am thankful to call many of you friends! And a special thanks again to umpires Lynn and Andy who graciously volunteered their time to be a part of the Coed Baseball Battles Cancer game. You are all to be commended for not only making time to participate, but for your generosity. Photos and a write up of the event will be posted at http://www.easternwomensbaseball.org if you’d like to check them out.

We would love to have you join us again next year as the event continues to grow – we have big plans as we move forward with this annual tradition. As always, please do not hesitate to contact me with any comments or questions.

With appreciation,

-Jennifer R. Hammond

Coed Baseball Battles Cancer game a success!!

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There’s nothing like October baseball – when the games all have meaning and players can’t wait to take the field. While this past weekend’s Coed Baseball Battles Cancer game may not have featured major league ballplayers in the midst of a postseason run, this game had great significance on it’s own – to raise awareness and funds in the fight against cancer.

More than 35 male and female baseball players from the Eastern Women’s Baseball Conference (EWBC), the DC Men’s Senior Baseball League (DCMSBL) and Legends Sports Leagues came together on the field for a very special cause on Saturday October 5, 2013. The annual Coed Baseball Battles Cancer fundraiser game and Silent Auction helped promote awareness and raised almost $1500 for three cancer-related charities and donations are still trickling in! All proceeds will be split amongst Zero: The End of Prostate Cancer; Capital Breast Care Center and Life With Cancer – Charities chosen because of their connection to the DC Metro area. This event is particularly near and dear to the hearts of the EWBC who lost their dear friend and teammate, #10, Carmen Dominguez to breast cancer in 2011. This event was about far more than the EWBC’s personal loss – the reality is that virtually everyone has had their lives impacted by cancer in some way. While this was a relatively small community affair, the motto of the organization founded in Carmen’s honor “It’s Not About How Much You Have – It’s About What You Do With It” best captured the generous spirit of the all event. Give 10 for 10 and event organizers worked together to encourage players to recognize that each of them had the power to make a meaningful difference, even through the smallest of gestures or donations, and everyone involved exemplified this giving community spirit. This is the first year that the event has been held in Virginia. In previous years, the Chesapeake Men’s Baseball League hosted the event at Joe Cannon Stadium in Anne Arundel, Maryland. Due to scheduling conflicts, the CMSBL was unable to participate in the 2013 event. While the presence of the CMSBL was missed, the venue change allowed an entirely new group of baseball players from DCMSBL and Legends Sports Leagues to join the cause. “While we were disappointed that we weren’t able to take the field with our friends from the CMSBL, the response from Legends Sports Leagues and DCMSBL was overwhelmingly positive,” said organizer Jennifer Hammond. “Initially,” Hammond continued, “there was concern about not being able to hold the event at all this year, but once we realized there was strong enough interest among potential players and supporters in the Northern Virginia area, we were determined to make it happen.” With field space ever elusive during the busy fall season, organizers were fortunate to secure Nike Field for this year’s game and with the field secured and just under two weeks to make it happen, all the pieces quickly fell into place.

Seasoned umpires Lynn Voigt and Andy Hannon volunteered their time to the cause; dozens of players signed up for the game; local business donated items for the Silent Auction and player bags; and even the weather cooperated as Saturday proved an unseasonably warm and sunshine-filled day.

Players were split into two teams – Team Pink coached by Codi Dudley and Bonnie Hoffman; and Team Blue coached by Renee Hudson and Dave Fyfe. Players took the field with their coed teammates and plenty of good baseball and good fun followed. Coach Codi Dudley gave umpire Lynn Voigt a hard time for a questionable call and even threw a little dirt on home plate while jokingly complaining that “we got what we paid for – and we didn’t pay ‘em!” – but it was all in good fun. Despite all the smiles and laughter, no one lost sight of the event’s focus. A sign at the field featured the names of those who have lost their battle with cancer; those who are still fighting; and those who are survivors. Some players wore these names on smaller signs on their uniforms while playing. At the end of the day, Team Blue won the game and Eric Purser and Susan McCarthy were named Most Valuable Players/People. Everyone who participated in the event were part of a winning effort to support the battle against cancer. Event organizers are planning an even bigger event next year – and many of this year’s participants said they are eager to return and make this an annual tradition.

Jennifer Hammond, EWBC
(photo credits: Jackie Kido and Chris Miller)