Your Voice: Answers to Questions About Tournament Play and Fall Ball


Your Voice is a way for readers to share questions with us, and an opportunity for Little League® to provide some important information and guidance. We are excited about our continued conversations, and, as always, we invite you to share your thoughts, suggestions, and questions to [email protected].

Justin from Pennsylvania – Is it fair to the children on the team that deserve to be all-stars to carry extra players, who may not be all-star caliber, just to get 12 players and three coaches?

Little League – The virtue of playing on a Little League® International Tournament team is that it creates additional opportunities to travel, play, and compete for a group of players who will represent their community. Every player on a Little League “all-star” team is chosen because he or she has the skill to contribute to its success, and it should be the intent of each team to give the maximum number of children the ability to be a part of that thrilling and fun tournament experience.

To assist with expanding that opportunity to more children each summer, it was decided to proportionally limit the number of coaches (see 2019 Rules and Regulation Changes) which, in turn, encourages leagues to carry a full roster of 14 players and requires more game involvement, through mandatory play, by players on teams with 12 or fewer players.

Any tournament team can have up to 14 players. The league, Player Agent, and team’s manager should have the best interests of each player at heart when going through the tournament team selection process. If any local league has a large compliment of age-eligible players, there is no reason why not to take 14 players, especially since Tournament Rule 9 (mandatory play) only requires each player to have a single at-bat in each game.

Mike from Oklahoma – If my home league’s team is hosting a tournament game, why is the team not the home team?

Little League – During the Little League® International Tournament, the game sites are predetermined by the District Administrator. The seeds are selected separately, typically by a blind draw, which makes it possible for a team to play on its home field.

A coin flip conducted by the Game Director approximately one hour prior to the start of the game, determines which team will be the home team for that game. Commonly, the team that travels the furthest to the game site, has the option to “call” the coin flip. The winner of the coin flip selects which dugout (home or visitor) the team will occupy during the game.

Barbara from Mississippi – Can parents sit in the stands and stream Little League all-star games using Internet social media platforms?

Little League – Yes. At the State level and below, unless posted otherwise at the game site, a parent who wants to stream a tournament game, may do so, provided the video is available only through that person’s personal social media page. The video cannot be distributed, gifted, or sold to anyone. The parent also may not impede anyone’s opportunity to watch the game.

It is also possible for that parent to stream the game on behalf of a local league, but the video can only be posted to the local league’s social media page or website. The league/team should also make the Game Director aware, so the other team can be made aware.

Additional direction is available by visiting Little League University a review the Internet Webcast and Streaming FAQs, Guidelines, and Policies.

Jeremy from Nebraska – Can a local league start fall ball registration before all-stars is over?

Little League – Sure. In fact, it is a best practice for local leagues to capitalize on the publicity and excitement of the District Tournament to promote player and adult volunteer registration for Fall Ball and the coming regular season. There are plenty of opportunities to increase awareness for the local league and district by using a variety promotional outlets.

Marcelle from North Dakota – Where does the money go that is collected during each Tournament game?

Little League – There are a few common fundraising methods that are used by local leagues and districts during the Little League International Tournament season. The district collection involves “passing the can,” allowing anyone attending the game to contribute a sum of money to help offset the cost of medals, tournament flags, and other general tournament operating expenses. Leagues hosting tournament(s) may also operate a “50-50” drawing during games, with the league’s amount going into its general funds.

Emilee from Washington – My daughter is 11, and plays on a travel ball team. The manager of the team is telling me, and her, she can’t play Little League and be on the travel team too. Is this true?

Little League – No. A travel ball or select team manager has no influence on a local Little League. If such a statement is made to you or your child, you should give serious consideration as to the reasoning, and make your local league’s Board of Directors aware. Little League and travel or select teams can independently co-exist because one play option has no bearing on the other.

Parents must be aware that there are individuals with ties to travel or select teams who may also be approved and appointed as coaches and managers in local Little Leagues. Even though these individuals can have a connection to select teams, in no way should that impact or be leveraged against your child’s opportunity to participate and enjoy Little League. In fact Little League has a policy statement regarding travel ball.

Bailey from North Carolina – Can a parent who volunteered in the league during the regular season, help coach a team during summer and fall ball seasons?

Little League – Yes. Anyone who is approved and appointed as a league volunteer for the current year, can continue to volunteer throughout the local league’s activities during the same year.

If you have questions that can be answered in a future edition of Your Voice, please email: [email protected].