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FIELD SCHEDULING

Integrating the schedules is a major focus at the start of the year.  With varying start dates for the different divisions, the schedules tend to get released in phases:

  • Upper Divisions Early Practice Schedules

  • Lower Divisions Early Practice Schedules 

  • Upper Divisions Game Schedules + Full Practice Schedules

  • Lower Divisions Game Schedules + Full Practice Schedules

  • Playoffs & All-Star Practices

Schedules are released with as much notice as possible, but sometimes with only 1-3 weeks of notice.  With Interleague play, the scheduling effort requires coordination across as many as 7-8 total leagues and the amount of time between solidifying team counts and the start of game play is tight. 

We use primarily City of Seattle ball fields, but also use Ballard Boys & Girls Club.  The reservations we get from the city are not always uniform from week-to-week.  While efforts are made to keep schedules as consistent as possible for scheduling stability for players and families, there are inevitable variations in practice days and times; the upper divisions tend to see more variation.  Game days can vary, from the plan, but those are minimized to the greatest extent possible.

Field Sharing

With field time being limited and games taking higher priority, practices often require field sharing with multiple teams.  In general, the lower divisions will see more sharing, as the older kids benefit from the extra space.  Coaches are expected to work with one another to negotiate equitable time on the diamond and utilize the entire field space when the other teams have the diamond.  Efforts are made to evenly distribute practices that require sharing vs. those that have only one team using the field.  There is more “solo time” at the early part of the season.

Beyond sharing time within Ballard Little League, our field assignments often start or end with another organization ending or starting their own reservations.  Please be respectful of other organizations' field times.  Allow them to finish their games within their time slots and exit the fields quickly at the end of ours.  For games, we attempt to provide adequate warm-up time within our assigned time slot, but sometimes teams may have to do most of their warm-ups off the field.  If this is needed, it should be noted in the schedule.

Interleague

The upper divisions of baseball (typically AA and above) and all of softball participate in Interleague play to varying degrees, depending on how many teams are in each division.  This requires travel outside of the Ballard Little League area for away games.  Softball and Intermediates and Junior baseball will effectively be all Interleague play.  AA through Majors baseball have about 40%-60% league play, with the rest Interleague play, depending on the team count.  Attempts are made to keep weekday games relatively close, in neighboring leagues (Magnolia, Queen Anne, North Central, and North West), with further travel on the weekends.  On rare occasions, travel to RUG, Shoreline, or North East Little Leagues may be required on a weekday.


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