Baseball & Softball Programs FAQ

1. What is my player's "League Age"?

Little League recently implemented new rules for determining League Age for the Baseball divisions, setting the age determination date to August 31.  What this means for your child’s League Age for the 2016 season:

  • For players born on or before August 31, 2005:  The new age determination date of August 31 will be effective starting with the 2018 Little League Baseball season.  For the 2016 and 2017 seasons, these players will continue to use the April 30 age determination date.
  • For players born on or after September 1, 2005 (grey highlighted cells below): The new age determination date of August 31 will be effective immediately, starting with the 2016 season.
Please see this page for more details on determining League Age for both Baseball and Softball. And if you have questions about your child’s League Age or what level of play is appropriate, please contact playeragent@bwll.org.

2. What division should I sign my player up to participate in?

BWLL offers several programs for players of all age and experience levels.  Divisions are primarily aligned by players’ League Age and school grade, and build upon the skills taught in the previous season’s division.  The general guidelines are as follows:

BASEBALL

League Age / Grade

Program

4-5 / Pre-K and K Tee Ball
5-8 / K-2nd Grade Machine Pitch
9-12 / 3rd-6th Grade Player Pitch
13-15 Intermediates/Juniors/Seniors
* BWLL encourages all League Age 9 year olds to start Player Pitch (AAA).  All League Age 9 year olds must attend skills assessment.  If a 9 year old has a strong desire to remain with their prior year team and play at the AA level, the League will make the effort to accommodate that request.  For 9 year olds not suited for AAA, the League will make the effort to accommodate requests to play on a specific AA team.

SOFTBALL

League Age / Grade

Program

4-5 / Pre-K and K Tee Ball
5-8 / K-2nd Grade Coach Pitch
8-12 / 3rd-6th Grade Player Pitch
13-14 Juniors
* There will not be a skills assessment for softball in 2016. (tbd 2017)

Please see our Baseball and Softball program pages at bwll.org for more information on each program and its divisions. If you have questions about your child’s League Age or what level of play is appropriate, or if you feel your child has the skill level or experience to play above or below these guidelines, please contact playeragent@bwll.org.

3. What are Bellevue West's geographical boundaries?

Bellevue West Little League serves players who live within the following boundaries:

  • South of State Route 520
  • North of I-90
  • West of Kelsey Creek
  • West to Lake Washington

Bellevue West includes the communities of Woodridge, Enatai, Clyde Hill, Medina, Yarrow Point, and Hunts Point. This includes children whose local elementary schools are: Bellevue Christian, Clyde Hill, Enatai, Medina, Sacred Heart, St. Thomas and Woodridge.   If you live or go to school within the Bellevue West boundaries you are welcome to play in Bellevue West Little League.

If there are questions, consult the Washington State Little League online tool to help determine from your home address which Little League is your proper league.

4. Can I play in Bellevue West if I live outside of BWLL's geographical boundaries?

Yes, if your child attends one of the schools above full time in the 2015/2016 school year.  Only under certain circumstances if your child doesn’t permanently reside in the boundary or physically attend these schools.

A player may request a waiver to continue to play in Bellevue West if:

a) A player previously lived within the league boundaries and played in Bellevue West; may qualify to continue to play in Bellevue West under Regulation II(d). You will have to fill out Waiver II (d) (Form and Instructions).  This waiver can be found on the Bellevue West website.

or

b) A parent lived within Bellevue West boundaries and coached in Bellevue West for at least 2 years prior to moving. The coach’s children may be eligible to continue to play in Bellevue West under Regulation IV(h). You will have to fill out Waiver IV (h), which can be found on the Bellevue West website.

If you feel you qualify under either of these regulations, you will need to fill out the appropriate form and send it to the Bellevue West Player Agent at playeragent@bwll.org.

Please note that waiver players are not eligible for All Star team selection.

5. What is the Washington Concussion Law?

On May 14, 2009 the Governor of Washington, Christine Gregoire, signed House Bill 1824, also known as the Zackery Lystedt Law. Effective July 26, 2009, the Lystedt Law directly affects youth sports and head injury policies. The new law requires that:

  • An informed consent must be signed annually by parents and youth athletes acknowledging the risk of head injury prior to practice or competition
  • A youth athlete who is suspected of sustaining a concussion or head injury must be removed from play - "when in doubt, sit them out"
  • A youth athlete who has been removed from play must receive written clearance from a licensed health care provider prior to returning to play

In the Bellevue West website document library there is a waiver form which contains valuable information for recognizing the symptoms of a concussion. Please see ConcussionWaiver.pdf.

6. What are the registration fees for Bellevue West Little League?

T-Ball -- $105
Baseball Machine Pitch / Softball Coach Pitch -- $205 (Early registration -- $190)
Baseball Player Pitch / Softball Player Pitch -- $220 (Early registration -- $205)
Baseball Intermediate / Juniors / Softball Juniors -- $265 (Early registration -- $250)
Baseball Seniors -- $275 (Early registration -- $260)

There are also multi-family discounts for families registering 2 and 3 children (save $10 if registering 2 players, save $20 if registering 3 players).

There are also lower cost options for students who participate in needs-based school and/or lunch subsidy programs.

There will be an additional fee for players choosing to play Summer Ball.

7. What is your refund policy?

Bellevue West’s refund policy is to issue no refunds after a player has:

  • attended a practice, or
  • played in a sanctioned game, or
  • been drafted to a player-pitch team

Prior to the occurrence of the above events, a refund of the registration fee will be issued, less an administrative handling fee.

8. What is the Bellevue West Little League Skills Evaluation?

Bellevue West Little League holds a skills evaluation during February ahead of the division drafts for every player who is eligible for the AAA - Majors Divisions of Little League Baseball. Our evaluation is administered by our Skills Evaluation Coordinators and allows us to assess each player's skill level for throwing, fielding and batting. Additionally, we time each player to assess his or her speed and rank our players to allow for the coaches to draft and build fairly balanced teams. The evaluation will be held Saturday morning, February 6th 2016.  We set an alternate make-up day to allow players who cannot make the evaluation an opportunity to be assessed prior to the draft. The skill evaluation is hosted at Bellevue College, and Bellevue West Little League makes every effort for this to be a fun, non-pressure event.

9. Can I request a certain coach or to be placed with a friend?

For baseball and softball at the Tee Ball and Machine/Coach Pitch levels (AK, A, and AA), we make every effort to accommodate a player’s teammate and coach requests. Requests will be handled on a best-effort basis and do not represent a commitment. Circumstances may dictate placement on another team. We appreciate your understanding.

In addition, the ability to request a friend or a coach is contingent on registration fees being paid in full. For more details, please see above.

For Player Pitch divisions where there is a skills evaluation and teams are built using a draft system, it is not possible to request placement with a friend or coach.  It’s also important to know that it’s highly likely that your child will be on a team with many fellow players he or she does not know.  At this level there is an explicit intent to create diverse, competitive teams without holding groups from similar areas together.

10. When do Winter Workouts start?

Winter Workouts for the 2016 BWLL season start on Jan 3, 2016.  They will be held at the Bellevue Baseball Club and times for different age levels will be provided as we get closer to the start of Winter Workouts.  Winter Workouts will be open to players who have registered for BWLL.

11. If I would like to coach or volunteer to assist with a team, how do I get involved?

If you’d like to coach or fill one of many volunteer positions with a team, you will be able to indicate your interest during the registration process and we will reach out to you afterward to discuss further.

12. What are the playing time requirements for Little League Baseball and Softball, and for Bellevue West Little League?

Little League® Baseball and Softball have minimum playing requirements which stipulate that each player must play a minimum six (6) defensive outs (eg 2 innings) each game.

Historically, Bellevue West Little League has aligned to Litlle League® Baseball and Softball playing requirements.  However, in 2016 BWLL is adopting new playing time requirements for maching pitch and player pitch divisions.

The purpose of the additional requirements is to create a richer and fuller experience for players of all skill levels in the machine and player pitch divisions.  These rules will ensure that players are able to experience more time on the field at multiple positions during every game.

The additional playing time requirements that will be used in the 2016 BWLL Regular Season are:

  • Each player must play at least three (3) defensive innings (9 defensive outs)
  • Each player must play at least one (1) inning in the infield (unless there is a legitimate safety issue).  This does not apply at the Majors or Intermediates/Juniors levels
  • No player may sit out for more than one (1) defensive inning until each player has sat out for at least one (1) inning
  • Each player will play in the outfield at least (1) inning per game
  • In the event of a shortened game, no penalty shall occur provided, however, that in the immediately following game, any “shorted” player shall bat in the top three of the lineup and start in the infield

For Bellevue West Tournament Play each player is not required to sit out at least one (1) inning before any player can sit out a second inning, but the other playing time requirements remain in effect.

For the All City Tournament, these rules will not apply and we will use Litlle League® Baseball and Softball have minimum playing requirements.

If you have any questions about these rules, please email playtime@bwll.org.