D1Baseball Pre-Season Top 25

Top-ranked TCU headlines the D1Baseball Preseason Top 25, released Tuesday. The Horned Frogs are coming off three consecutive College World Series appearances, and they bring back eight everyday regulars, two weekend starters and the closer from a club that reached the national semifinals in 2016.

No. 2 Florida enters the season ranked in the top two for the third consecutive year. The Gators backed up last year’s preseason No. 1 ranking by earning the No. 1 national seed for the NCAA tournament and reaching Omaha.

Including the Frogs and Gators, seven of the eight participants in the 2016 CWS are ranked in the preseason Top 25. Coastal Carolina opens its national title defense ranked 11th, and national runner-up Arizona begins at No. 19. Texas Tech (No. 14), Miami (No. 21) and UC Santa Barbara (No. 25) also begin the season in the rankings.

The SEC leads all conferences with four teams in the top 10: No. 2 Florida, No. 4 South Carolina, No. 5 LSU and No. 7 Vanderbilt.

The ACC leads all leagues with seven teams in the Top 25: No. 3 Florida State, No. 6 NC State, No. 9 North Carolina, No. 12 Louisville, No. 15 Clemson, No. 17 Virginia and No. 21 Miami. The SEC is next with five, followed by the Pac-12 with three. The Big 12, Big West and Sun Belt placed two teams apiece in the rankings, while the American Athletic Conference, Big Ten, Colonial Athletic Association and Conference USA each landed one team in the Top 25.


How to Garner Respect from Players, Coaches

Umpires believe that with the proper look, sound mechanics, and a consistent strike zone, umpires can earn four innings, which means they only need to be good for two innings. We all know that’s not true. But just as players make sure they look their best in their uniform when they hit the field, umpires who take their appearance seriously will get more respect from players, coaches, and fans.

An umpire’s uniform is not high fashion, and you certainly don’t have to have supermodel looks, but outward appearance plays a huge part in umpires getting the respect they deserve on the field. A clean, properly-fitted and pressed shirt and pants, polished shoes, well-maintained equipment, along with having a respectful demeanor, are effective ways to show the teams that you respect them and the game.

The recommended umpire uniform includes heather or charcoal gray umpire pants, pressed umpire shirt, black shoes, a black belt, and navy (softball) or black (baseball) umpire hat. The color of the shirt and hat are commonly determined by the league or district Umpire-In-Chief. Polo blue, with black and white stripes on the collar and sleeves is generally accepted for shirt color. Make sure the Little League patch is affixed on the left sleeve; the same as Little League players.

Umpires should never go behind the plate without the proper protection. Steel-toed plate shoes, properly-fitted shin guards, groin protection, chest protector, and a facemask or hockey-style helmet are all essential to a plate umpire’s safety.

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2017 Little League® World Series Umpires Announced

Little League® Baseball and Softball has announced the selection of 92 volunteer umpires for the seven Little League World Series tournaments in 2017. The events begin on July 30 with four of the seven tournaments kicking off and concludes with the Little League Baseball® World Series championship game in South Williamsport, Pa., on Aug. 27.

Volunteer umpires are one of the most important aspects in the success of Little League programs around the world and in the Little League International Tournament. As a way to continually develop these volunteer umpires throughout the year, Little League International offers a variety of digital training and educational resources available on LittleLeagueU.org, a bi-monthly Fairball Newsletter, access to the Little League Umpire Registry, and formal training through Umpire Clinics and Schools around the nation.

The selection process to become a World Series umpire is lengthy and rigorous. The process for selection to work a World Series begins with a recommendation from the District Administrator, within their district, to umpire in a Regional Tournament. Little League’s nine regional offices then consider all nominated umpires before selecting those who most closely meet the selection criteria.

The umpires volunteering at each Regional Tournament are then evaluated and can receive one of two recommendations: Recommend working another Regional Tournament or Recommend a World Series assignment. Once an umpire has earned a World Series recommendation, the umpire must indicate that they wish to be considered further. Individuals who are meet those qualifications are then screened annually by Little League International and Regional staffs for selection to umpire in a Little League World Series tournament.

Appointment as a member of the umpiring crew for a World Series is the highest honor that Little League can bestow on a volunteer umpire. An individual can be selected for a World Series assignment once every four years, but being chosen to work the Little League Baseball World Series is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. For the third consecutive year, Little League International will support all volunteer umpires at the seven World Series events with a $400 travel stipend to help offset the costs for the men and women to attend their respective World Series events.

The list of volunteer umpires at each of the seven Little League World Series tournaments is as follows:


2017 Little League Baseball World Series – August 17-27 (South Williamsport, Pa.)

(by name – place of residence – region)

• Edwin Carrasquillo Fernandez – Humacao, Puerto Rico – Latin America
• Robert Ciriello – East Brunswick, N.J. – East
• David J. Ducat, Jr. – Chicago, Ill. – Central
• Carlos Galarza-Cuevas – Juncos, Puerto Rico – Latin America
• Ricci Hall – Spencer, Mass. – East
• Raymond J. Hennessy – Ventura, Calif. – West
• Bruce Hicks – Sugar Land, Texas – Southwest
• Bryan Horne – Blountville, Tenn. – Southeast
• Brad Johnston – Calgary, Alberta – Canada
• Randall Kushner – Purcellville, Va. – Southeast
• Raul Martinez – Brownsville, Texas – Southwest
• Michael McCullough – St. Petersburg, Fla. – Southeast
• Austen Rigelman – Auburn, Ind. – Central
• Marc Roberts – Westleigh, New South Wales, Australia – Asia-Pacific
• Christopher Rutz – Oceanside, Calif. – West
• Jason D. Smith – Gresham, Ore. – West

2017 Little League Softball® World Series – August 9-16 (Portland, Ore.)

(by name – place of residence – region)

• Jose Casiano-Garcia – Guanica, Puerto Rico – Latin America
• John Cote – East Waterboro, Maine – East
• Patrick Fletcher – Victoria, British Columbia – Canada
• Sumner J. Hill, Jr. – LaGrande, Ore. – West
• Michelle Lafreniere – Westville, Ind. – Central
• Mark Lucas – Tallahassee, Fla. – Southeast
• Mark Pigg – Arvada, Colo. – Southwest
• Marc Richardson – San Antonio, Texas – Southwest
• Jean H. M. Rijksen – Soest, Netherlands – Europe and Africa
• Garth Sanders – Canyon Country, Calif. – West
• Jeff Schoettle – Lansing, Ill. – Central
• Vincent Yale – Colora, Md. – East
• Gary York – Lakemont, Ga. – Southeast

2017 Intermediate League (50/70) Baseball World Series – July 30-August 6 (Livermore, Calif.)

(by name – place of residence – region)

• Anthony Calcagno – Bolingbrook, Ill. – Central
• Robert K. Cass – Indianapolis, Ind. – Central
• Donald Escudero-Ocasio – Manati, Puerto Rico – Latin America
• Mark Garrison – Hondo, Texas – Southwest
• Jonathan Hagen – Tampa, Fla. – Southeast
• Timothy Hughes – Wurtsboro, N.Y. – East
• Tim McCullough – San Jose, Calif. – West
• Doug Pfaffenberger – Houston, Texas – Southwest
• Adam Smith – Calgary, Alberta – Canada
• Thomas Torrisi – Methuen, Mass. – East
• Nicky Trevino – Paradise, Calif. – West
• David Wooldridge – Tampa, Fla. – Southeast

2017 Junior League Baseball World Series – August 13-20 (Taylor, Mich.)

(by name – place of residence – region)

• Michael Barrow – Anthony, Fla. – Southeast
• Charles Bond – Centerville, Va. – Southeast
• Paul Carthy – Melbourne, Victoria, Australia – Asia-Pacific
• Wilfredo De la Cruz Vargas-Bracho – Maricaibo, Edo-Zulia, Venezuela – Latin America
• Duane Fox, Jr. – Milford, Del. – East
• Richard Gillenwaters – Colorado Springs, Colo. – Southwest
• Marty Ort – Old Forge, Pa. – East
• Matthew Ramsey – Rio Rancho, N.M. – Southwest
• Michael Roach – Brownstown, Mich. – Central
• Tom Saichek – Garden Valley, Calif. – West
• Kevin Swinhart – Placerville, Calif. – West
• Robert G. Thomas – Indianapolis, Ind. – Central
• Jamie Tiessen – Calgary, Alberta – Canada

2017 Junior League Softball World Series – July 30-August 5 (Kirkland, Wash.)

(by name – place of residence – region)

• Sharon Adams – Crestview, Fla. – Southeast
• Brian Chandler – Stratham, N.H. – East
• Richard Clark – Forest Grove, Ore. – West
• Alexander Hernandez – San Antonio, Texas – Southwest
• Anthony Lanzilotti – Bergenfield, N.J. – East
• Kenneth Martis – Willemstad, Curacao – Latin America
• John Scott Masloroff – Franklin, Wis. – Central
• Sammie D. McDonald – Moreno Valley, Calif. – West
• Tim Morace – Natchez, La. – Southwest
• Kevin Rielly – Sidney, British Columbia – Canada
• Edward Smith – Winter Garden, Fla. – Southeast
• Kevin Southall – South Point, Ohio – Central

2017 Senior League Baseball World Series – July 30 – August 5 (Easley, S.C.)

(by name – place of residence – region)

• Mark Bradley – Kanata, Ontario – Canada
• Michael Comeau – Glastonbury, Conn. – East
• Michael Haugsness – Keller, Texas – Southwest
• Dave Head – Melbourne, Fla. – Southeast
• Randy Jackson – Demorest, Ga. – Southeast
• Calvin Kidwell – White Hall, Ark. – Southwest
• Patrick J. King – San Jose, Calif. – West
• Alan Letourneau – Oaklawn, Ill. – Central
• Jose Melecio-Lopez – Maguayo Dorado, Puerto Rico – Latin America
• Tyrone Powell – Los Angeles, Calif. – West
• David Ryan – Hooksett, N.H. – East
• Jeffrey L. Stokoe – Kettering, Ohio – Central
• Matt Wagner – Appen, New South Wales, Australia – Asia-Pacific

2017 Senior League Softball World Series – July 30 – August 6 (Lower Sussex, Del.)

(by name – place of residence – region)

• Jim Gibson – Victoria, British Columbia – Canada
• James Gill – Mount Airy, Md. – East
• John Gleason – Jacksonville, Fla. – Southeast
• Jeffrey Lindhorst – Ingleside, Texas – Southwest
• Carlos Lugo-Soto – San Sebastian, Puerto Rico – Latin America
• Dan Magee – Cibolo, Texas – Southwest
• Michael McCarron – Benica, Calif. – West
• Jerome Perch – Blakeslee, Pa. – East
• James Rinehart – Fort Wayne, Ind. – Central
• John Rucinski – Grosse Point Farm, Mich. – Central
• Wout van der Horst – Wormer, Netherlands – Europe and Africa
• Robert Weiner – Cocoa, Fla. – Southeast
• Larry Young – Carson City, Nev. – West

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COACH OF THE YEAR: Burlington’s Staude won school’s first baseball state title

It’s been more than six months since the Burlington baseball team won the school’s first state championship, but the postseason awards keep piling up for head coach Scott Staude.

The 18-year head man had his ups and downs, including a total of seven victories in his first two seasons in the late 1990s.

But everything came together in 2016, as the Demons went 25-5 and enjoyed an unforgettable state tournament where they knocked off the defending state champion and overcame a 4-0 deficit in the sixth inning to win the state championship game.

Staude’s strategy in the title game, which included a clutch suicide squeeze to give Burlington the lead and the reliance on a senior pitcher that had only thrown a handful of innings all season, helped take the talented squad and turn it into one for the ages.

For his efforts, Staude is the area’s 2016 Coach of the Year, an award that considers Burlington, Catholic Central, Waterford and Union Grove high schools

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Each month, Little League® International is providing a quick look at important information and events for the month ahead. We invite you to review and share with your colleagues and friends. Another great resource for keeping up to date on Little League’s latest training and educational efforts is Little League University. Designed for volunteers, league and District Administrators, coaches, and parents, this free website is a wonderful portal for experiencing and learning about the Little League.

Rules and Regulation Changes for 2017

Each year, the Little League International Board of Directors submits proposed rule and regulation changes that the Little League International Rules Committee then approves. As part of the annual fall meeting of the Board of Directors, new rule changes and regulations have been approved for the 2017 season. Be sure to check out all of the changes for the 2017 season, including important updates on new mandatory background checks and updated residency requirements, and contact your District Administrator or Regional Office to find out if there are any Rule Seminars, League Administration Clinics, or Little League University on the Road events coming up in your area.

New Chartering and Insurance Enrollment Process for 2017

Due to unforeseen circumstances in updating the Little League Data Center for the 2017 season, online chartering for your league is not available this year. Completion and submission of a charter application and insurance enrollment form is the only method to charter and purchase insurance for 2017. These forms were included in the Local League Resource Guide mailed to your League President that Little League International currently has on file. If your league has not received its Local League Resource Guide including its chartering information, please contact your District Administrator or check with a past-League President. You are welcome to contact Little League International, as well. For those looking to sign up with your local league, visit PlayLittleLeague.org today and find one near you.

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