BGRA T-Ball 2021 Season FAQ
How soon should I register for the upcoming season?
As soon as possible, but preferably prior to January 1st. By registering early you help tremendously in the planning required for the upcoming season. Additionally, early registration makes it far more likely that any friend requests you made will be able to be accommodated. However, we understand that late registrations are common in T-Ball right up until the start of the games in May, and we will make every effort to get your child assigned to a team so they can play.
How much does it cost?
To celebrate BGRA's 60th anniversary we have special pricing this season. The price for the 2021 season is $60.
My child has already played T-Ball and has the skills mastered, can they move up to the next level?
Possibly, these requests are carefully evaluated on a case-by-case basis. The BGRA divisions are designed so that players can play alongside their classmates. So moving to Pinto a year early might result in them needing to spend an extra year in that division to allow their classmates to “catch-up,” but every decision is made individually and requires the approval of both the T-Ball and Pinto league directors.
My child is too young to make the age cutoff; can an exception be made so he can play?
Possibly, the age range for T-Ball for the 2020 season are birth dates between 9/1/14 and 8/31/16, but we do consider exceptions on a case-by-case basis. Please contact the League Director at firstname.lastname@example.org
My child has a special medical, or developmental needs, can they play?
Almost certainly yes, but please contact the League Director at email@example.com so we can talk about the specifics of the situation and determine the best way to ensure a positive experience for your child.
Friend requests – My child has two best buddies, is it possible for them all to play together?
Yes, if roster space is available we will try to accommodate your request. Please include them on your registration or contact the League Director at firstname.lastname@example.org
There is a player / coach / family I don’t get along with can I make sure my child isn’t assigned to that team?
Yes, please contact the League Director at email@example.com and we’ll make sure to accommodate your request.
How many teams are there, and how many players are there on each team?
This varies with the number of players registering to play and the number of volunteers able to manage teams. Recently it has been typical to have eight to twelve teams of about ten to twelve players each.
Is there a limit on how many players can play each year?
We prefer to keep rosters as small as possible with a goal of ten players per team. Once rosters get too large the experience begins to suffer for the players. So please register as soon as possible so you don’t risk having to be placed on a waiting list.
My child doesn’t know the first thing about baseball will they be able to play?
Absolutely, every year we have kids that understand force plays and cutoffs and others that don’t know which way to run when they hit the ball. The goal is to work with each child at the level they’re ready to handle and to improve their knowledge and skills over the course of the season. Hopefully they’ll enjoy it so much they’ll want to continue to play and learn more in future seasons.
My daughter wants to play, do many girls play?
In a typical year we’ll have about half a dozen girls who play (though we’d love to have even more). When forming team rosters we do try to place at least two girls together on the same team. It’s not always possible, but we try.
When is the season?
The T-Ball season consists of 14 games, lasting from the first weekend in May until the last week in June.
When do the practices begin?
As soon as the snow melts, the fields are playable, and the temperatures mild enough for the kids to be comfortable. Sometimes this is in late March through early to mid-April is more common.
When will the schedule be available?
The season schedule is typically available by April 1st, about a month prior to start of games.
Where are the games and practices held?
Both games and practices are most commonly held at Kendrigan field (Aptakisic & Buffalo Grove Road), Mill Creek park (Arlington Heights road & Old Arlington Heights road) & Apple Hill Park (Apple Hill Ln, south of Stevenson High School). Each team will also play at least one game each season on the Jay Jones field at BGRA’s Emmerich complex.
When are the practices and games held?
Practices are typically held twice a week during the period prior to regular season games beginning. There will generally be one practice held on a weeknight beginning at 5:30 and another on a weekend day at a regular time. Games are most often played twice a week once on a weeknight beginning at 5:30 (usually Tuesday through Thursdays) and then a weekend game usually starting at either 12:15, 2:45, or 5:15.
Do practices continue after the games have started?
The regular practice schedule ceases once the regular season games begin. Occasional practices may be held during the regular season as well.
What equipment do I need to purchase?
Each player should have their own glove, bat, and a water bottle. The team has batting helmets, though many parents choose to purchase their own. A gear bag and a few T-Balls to practice with at home would also be helpful. Rubber cleats are not required and may not be worn on the rubberized field surface at Kendrigan Park. The use of additional safety equipment such as protective cups for the boys and protective “heart guard” shirts is up to the individual families.
Are there guidelines for bats and gloves that you recommend?
For gloves you should look at a size between 9 and 11 inches. The most important thing is that it is well broken-in or soft enough for the player to be able close it. It should be large enough for a baseball to easily fit inside yet not too big and heavy for the young player to be able to control easily.
T-Ball bats generally range between 24 and 28 inches long with a weight ranging from 13 to 18oz. The most commonly used bats are 24-26 inches long and 14-16oz in weight. The most important consideration is that the bat is not too heavy for the child to control. Too light is much better than too heavy, because attempting to swing a too heavy bat will make the instruction of good hitting mechanics very difficult and the child is likely to develop bad habits that they will only have to “unlearn” later.
One thing to keep in mind especially with the less expensive T-Ball bats is that they tend to be made with very thin metal to keep them as light as possible. If used to hit hard baseballs they will oftentimes dent easily.
What type of baseball do you play with?
We use soft rubber core Tee balls for player safety.
What is the game play like?
Scores are not kept and it’s very informal. It’s a mixture of hitting off a batting tee and hitting coach pitching tailored to skill level of the individual players. At this age most of the players require extensive on the field instruction as well as adult assistance in the dugout. The kids get a lot of positive feedback and encouragement. We want every player to go home feeling like they had fun and looking forward to the next game.
Is there a time limit on games and /or practices?
Yes, there is a ninety minute time limit. Additionally on days where the weather deteriorates the managers have been instructed to end the game or practice early if it appears that the conditions are getting to be uncomfortable for the kids.
What skills are emphasized?
Being a supportive member of a team.
Fielding: Getting into the “ready position,” catching with two hands (fingers up/ fingers down), fielding ground balls in the center of their body and out in front, watching the ball all the way into their glove.
Throwing: A proper grip on the ball and we want the players to learn to point their front shoulders at their target and get their elbow up with good arm extension so they’re throwing instead of pushing the ball.
Hitting: A good grip and stance with weight transfer and hip rotation with the bat taking a good path to the ball.
I’m interested in potentially managing a team, what would be involved?
Good managers are key to making T-Ball a successful experience for the players and their families. It’s not a small amount of effort, but the season passes very quickly, and it’s extremely rewarding. With the help of your assistants you’d teach the kids the very basics of the game during practices and then during the regular season you’ll work with the other managers and assistants to ensure the games are a safe and enjoyable experience for the players. Please contact the T-Ball League Director at firstname.lastname@example.org and he’ll discuss with you the specifics of what is involved.
How can I help?
Every T-Ball manager needs support from the other team parents. They will need reliable assistant coaches as well as other assistance with the kids both on the field and in the dugouts. If baseball isn’t your thing you may be able to able to help by organizing team outings, or events, or after game snacks.
Can I sponsor my child’s team?
We’d love to talk with you about it, BGRA couldn’t continue to exist without the support of our wonderful sponsors, and of course we’re always looking for new partners. Please contact our VP of Sponsors and Advertisers at email@example.com and he’ll let you know what would be involved.
I have questions that weren’t covered here, how can I get them answered?
Please contact the T-Ball League Director at firstname.lastname@example.org and he’ll be more than happy to answer any questions you may have.