How old do I have to be? - It all depends on which league (18+/28+/38+/48+) you want to play in but as long as you turn 28/38/48 years of age before December 31 of the current year, you are eligible to play. As far as the 18+ league goes you need to be 18 years of age before you can participate. When it comes to the aging weekend warrior, you can play in a younger league as there are no restrictions (e.g. A 32 year old can play in the 18+ league).
How old is too old? - You are never too old, you're only as old as you feel!! You may compete at this level for as long as you feel competitive. If your skills start to dwindle and you are old enough to move up to the next age bracket feel free to do so. At the national level, some leagues are forming teams in a 58+ age bracket. A gentleman by the name of Jim Tyler participated in Atlanta MSBL well into his seventies - as a pitcher!
How do I get on a team? - Each year an open workout (some would call it a tryout) is held in early March and possibly one in September for any fall leagues that may develop. Don't worry, the workout format just gives the team managers a chance to look everyone over and try to match your skills with their needs. After the workout, there is a draft, just like in the professional leagues, with managers taking turns picking players. To obtain information on the next draft keep an eye on the main page at www.atlantamsbl.com .
How often do you play? - We play almost every Sunday between late March and early September, with time off for holidays like Easter, Mother's Day, Father's Day and Independence Day. After the regular season ends, playoffs begin, going into early October. In years that we have fields with lights, we will play Wednesday, Friday, and Sunday nights for makeup games and to avoid the summer heat. There are two game times on Sundays - usually around 12noon and 4:00pm. Night games begin at 7:00. Once or twice a year may have to play a double header (and many players believe the answer to the question "How old is too old?" is answered by how they feel after a double header!).
How much does it cost? - The league fees are determined each year. Currently, the fees are set at between $210-$250 PER PLAYER depending on which league you participate in. These fees cover field rental, balls and umpires for the entire season, membership in the national MSBL organization (which allows you to play in tournaments) and a subscription to Hardball magazine. Some teams charge a team fee to purchase team equipment, such as catcher's equipment or team bats. This fee can range from $10.00 to $50.00. In addition, first year players need to purchase a uniform, which can be as little as $35.00 to as much as $150.00.
What do the uniforms look like? - In most cases, very good - almost professional like. The uniforms are quality materials with sewn lettering and numbers - no iron ons are allowed. You will look like a professional baseball player. Some players have been known to be solicited for autographs!! Although sometimes players were just being 'served' papers but not to worry our 38/48 league has an abundance of legal representation from which to choose. It is also possible that the autograph seeker is actually the waiter/waitress from a local watering hole that the team frequents after a hard fought battle between the lines and just wants to get paid.
What do I need to play? - All you need is a glove, a pair of spikes/cleats, a good attitude, and the desire to play baseball. Yes some play with metal spikes, but you do not have to wear them (you do have to wear shoes - sorry, Joe). We play with both metal and wooden bats. Since bats are expensive, some players don't mind sharing (just ask first, and don't use up all the hits!). Usually with a wood bat, if you broke it, you bought. Catching gear and helmets are provided by the teams. If you already have your own gear, then you are ready to play now!!
How fast is the pitching? - Not as fast as you (or the pitchers) think!! In the 28+ and above the pitchers range in speed from mid 50's to mid 70's. Most guys have already used up their arms by the time they get into the league (otherwise they'd be tossing at Turner field, right?). In the 18+ you can see various speeds some ranging into upper 80's. You may hear about some guy throwing 90's but if this happens it will not last long because he will either be signed, blow it out or the myth will be revealed and you will realized that he only throws 71mph.
What positions are most in demand? - All positions are in demand. Good pitchers are like gold in the league (one definition of a good pitcher: more strikes than balls) and have the highest demand. Catchers probably come next, especially when those late season double headers roll around.
What happens if I do not get drafted? - Every effort is made to place players from the draft on a team. In the event there are too many players in the draft to fill existing team rosters, we will either form a new team from those left or form a pool of players to be drawn from during the season in case a team runs short on players due to injury or relocation. There is also the chance, as with the last two years, that a Saturday league will be formed to help fill the demand.
What if I want to submit an entire team? - Then you will want to keep an eye on the website in December for our first manager's meeting of the year which is usually the second week of January. Also, look for Fall leagues that crop up each year - info for these would be available in last August/early September.
Where do you play? - We use high school and college fields around the Atlanta metropolitan area. We pay the schools for the use of their facilities using your league fees. Some fields we play on are Southern Polytech, Marietta H.S., North Cobb H.S., Clarkston H.S., and Dunwoody H.S. - see the Directions page for an extensive list of the fields we use.
How competitive is the league? - Most players have some baseball experience, ranging from little league to a stint at the professional level. You can bet your Tony Conigliaro rookie card that every team will be trying to win, but 'Having Fun is Goal Number One'. Also there is a sense of family within the league. A dysfunctional family, but family none the less.
We have various fall leagues that crop up each year. This is a good time to get back into the game in a more relaxed atmosphere. The games are still competitive, but players are a little more relaxed because they just came off a long season or as stated before, are just getting back into the game. Information regarding fall leagues usually begins to be posted on the website in late August/early September.