Livermore, Calif., Chosen as Site of New World Series Tournament in 2013
In today’s meeting of the Little League International Board of Directors, the site of a new World Series baseball tournament of Little League was named.
Livermore, Calif., and Granada Little League, will host in August 2013 the first World Series in the newest division of play. The new division, which will have a pitching distance of 50 feet, and base paths of 70 feet, is to be named later this year.
Several cities were considered over the past few months for the new baseball division’s World Series, including Vancouver, Wash., and Chicago.
“It was a difficult choice, since all the cities are so close in terms of what they have to offer,” Stephen D. Keener, President and Chief Executive Officer of Little League Baseball and Softball, said. “Any of them, we are confident, would do a terrific job of hosting such a high-profile event. Ultimately, the Board of Directors settled on Northern California, the greater San Francisco area, Livermore, and Granada Little League, as its top choice.”
Operated as the 50/70 Pilot Program, local leagues worldwide have chartered teams in the experimental division since 2010. After each season since then, Little League International has gathered information from local leagues and districts on best practices, allowing it to refine the guidelines in preparation for establishing the new division of play, and the ninth World Series tournament of Little League.
As with all of its World Series tournaments in baseball and softball, all of the travel expenses for the players, manager, and coaches, will be provided by Little League International.
The World Series Tournament Director will be California District 57 Administrator Dave Wetmore, who has been an advocate of such a program for years, and has successfully implemented several levels of the 50-70 Pilot Program throughout his district. He also annually leads the committee that operates the California Challenger Division Jamboree.
“The 50/70 Pilot Program has been welcomed with open arms here,” Mr. Wetmore, who operated a similar 80-foot program in his district starting in 2000, said. “People see it as a great way to make the transition from the Little League field to the standard baseball diamond. For us, it has kept more players in our programs into their teenage years.”
Mr. Wetmore, from San Ramon, Calif., has been a Little League volunteer for 26 years. He began his association with Little League in 1987 as the Player Agent and Vice President for the San Ramon (Calif.) Little League. The following year, Mr. Wetmore served as President of the league for one year before joining the district staff. He has been the District Administrator for California District 57 for the last 11 years. Mr. Wetmore is the Director of Purchasing and Contracts at the Contra Costa Community College District.
The next step is for Little League International’s Operations Division to finalize the rules for the new division of play.
“We expect to be able to let our leagues know the rules of this new division before the end of September,” Patrick W. Wilson, Senior Vice President of Operations and Program Development, said. “We realize thousands of local leagues will want to be a part of this program, and we want to get the information they will need to them as soon as possible.”