Changes in store for Plymouth junior league baseball
PLYMOUTH – Plymouth’s Junior League Baseball has some changes in store for the year in several leagues.
The biggest change will involve “interleague” games for both the B and C leagues with area teams in Marshall and Starke county.
The league has entered into an agreement with some area leagues to play interleague games with an end of season tournament afterwards. The league will be split into East and West Divisions. Plymouth falls into the East Division along with Argos. The West Division consists of Culver, Knox and North Judson.
The regular season schedule will be similar to what it has been the last few years. Plymouth league teams will play games on Mondays, Tuesdays, and Thursdays and are currently in a conversation with Argos about their intentions of hosting games with the possibility that Plymouth teams could travel to Argos for some contests. With the projected set up, each team could be required to travel to Argos one time during the regular season. Once the season is concluded there will be a division tournament that would be seeded and might require travel to Argos.
The champion of the divisional tournament will play the champion of the other division for a league championship. The tournament will end the first week of August. The tournament will not replace the Blueberry Festival Tournament for the C-League division, that tournament will still determine a champion for the City of Plymouth.
Both the B and C leagues will also adopt the rules and regulations set forth by Town & Country Baseball the travel league that Plymouth teams play in during the regular season. The biggest changes will be that bat rules will follow USA baseball and still allow for the USSSA baseball rules this season only. USA baseball allows for a two and five eighths inch barrel bat but must have the USA Baseball stamp on it to be used. USSSA Baseball rules for this league only allow for two and a quarter inch barrel bats with a BPF rating of 1.15. That BPF rating needs to be stamped on the bat.
Helmets will be required to have face masks on them. The league is currently working on updating batting helmets to satisfy that requirement.
The league is also moving to have a single “patched” umpire for all games in these leagues. The league is working to find a pool of umpires that can officiate these games. There is a huge cost associated with this change but they anticipate it will allow our games to be better regulated and run more smoothly.
T-ball will see few changes and most of those will be with scheduling. With the recent flooding of Gill Park and the expectation that spring rains could cause it to be awhile before it gets dried changes are being made to the schedule to limit rescheduled events. The new schedule will require use of the Webster Center Field for games each night Monday-Thursday. The times of the games will still be the same at 5:30p.m. and 6:45 p.m.