1. Who is eligible to play Babe Ruth?
Anyone who lives within our geographical boundaries and is between 13 and 19 years old. Please check the Age Chart to make sure your player qualifies.
2. When is the season?
Babe Ruth’s Spring season starts for 13 year olds (the Prep league), and most 14 year olds (if there is a National League) around the beginning of April and lasts until the end of June. The American League and the Senior League do not start until the middle of May, and lasts until the end of June. Greater Vienna-Falls Church-Annandale Babe Ruth also participates in a Northern Virginia Fall Ball league, which lasts from just after Labor Day to the end of October/beginning of November.
The Fall Ball season begins in September and continues until the end of October, sometimes through the first week of November. There are two games a week, one on Saturday and one during the week. Practices locations for Fall Ball will vary depending on field availability. There will likely be one or two practices per week, but frequency varies by coach and manager.
3. Where are the games?
During the Spring season the games are held predominately at Waters Field, but may be played at area high school fields as well as Nottoway Park.
In the Fall the games are played all over Northern Virginia, but an attempt is made to keep at least the weekday games close to Vienna (Nottoway Park, and area High Schools).
4. What times are the games played?
Weekday games start at either 6:00pm or 8:30pm. Saturday games start at 9:00am and continue on every 2 ½ hours. The rare games on Sunday do not start until the afternoon.
5. How long are the games?
The games are 7 innings long. The game time cannot exceed 2 ¼ hours.
6. What shoes are allowed?
Metal cleats are banned on all turf fields and Waters Field. The batter's box and base areas are getting damaged and we have had to replace the batters box twice in the past 4 years, at quite an expense. Flat sole shoes are not allowed. Spikes, cleats and flat sole shoes are allowed on any of the non-turf fields. Read our shoe policy.
7. What other equipment and clothing does my player need?
Gloves, bats, belts and socks.
8. What type of bats are approved to use?
You must get Babe Ruth approved bats, which generally have a lower differential than Little League bats. Babe Ruth approved bats usually are stamped as Babe Ruth approved. All high school approved bats are also Babe Ruth approved bats. We started using wooden bats in the Senior League in 2007, and all wooden bats are approved for Babe Ruth. You may use a wooden bat at any level, but it is currently required in the Senior League.
9. Why are there different leagues, and who plays in which league?
Babe Ruth is broken up into age appropriate leagues. The number of leagues is mainly determined by the number of ball players registered and their ages. Ideally there are 4 leagues.
The Prep league is made up exclusively of 13 year olds. This league is to help in the transition between the small Little League fields with 60 foot base paths to the standard 90 foot base path of traditional baseball. The Prep league starts in the beginning of April and ends the last week of June. Because both the American and Senior Leagues do not start until mid May there is an abundance of field availability until then, so the majority of the Prep schedule is played in the first 6 weeks of the season. We need at least 48 13-year-olds to have a Prep league.
The National League and American Leagues are for 14 and 15 year olds, predominately 8th graders and high school freshmen. If we have at least 96 14 and 15-year-olds, then we will have 2 leagues. The National League is made up mostly of 14 year olds (8th graders), and its season starts when the Prep season does, and runs until the end of June. As with the Prep league, the majority of the games are usually played in the first 6 weeks. Both the Prep and National league teams play between 17 and 21 games, depending on the season. The American League is made up predominately of 15-year-olds (High School Freshmen). Since may of our players in this age are on High School teams, we do not start our season until after the JV season is over, in the middle of May. If we do not have enough players (96) in the 14-15 year old age category, then we just have an American League, which starts in mid-May. The American League usually plays about 15 games.
The Senior League is for players 16 and above. An exception is made for those high school sophomores who are still 15 and play on their high school team, and want to play with their classmates. Those players have a choice of playing up in the Senior League or playing in the American League. Since we have many players in the Senior League who play both varsity and junior varsity high school baseball, the Senior season also starts in mid-May. Seniors usually play about 15 games. Depending on when your birthday is you can be eligible to play Babe Ruth the summer after your first year in college.
10. How are teams formed?
Prep, National and American Leagues are formed by a draft. Once you are drafted onto a Senior League team you may stay on that team as long as you are eligible to play Babe Ruth.
10. Are there games with other Babe Ruth Leagues?
Every year we attempt to play teams from other Babe Ruth Leagues, some years we are more successful than others. Generally, if we play other leagues the games will be on the weekends to decrease traveling during the week.
11. Are there All-Star and Travel teams?
Yes. There is at least 1 All Star team per league, sometimes more. The All Star teams start playing in early July. Over the past few years Vienna has done very well, capturing state titles in the 14 year old, 15 year old and Senior leagues. You must be a registered Babe Ruth player to be eligible to play on these teams, and you must play in at least 50% of the games on your Babe Ruth team that you are eligible to play in to play for the All Stars at the end of the season. We also have Sunday travel teams during the season with 13, 14, 15, and Senior teams. These teams play in tournaments as well as double-header competitions.
12. Where does my registration fee go?
Greater Vienna-Falls Church-Annandale Babe Ruth is totally self-funded. We pay dues to both the national Babe Ruth organization, as well as to Fairfax County to use the fields. Income from registration fees also go towards field maintenance of Waters Field, uniform, balls, equipment, insurance, etc. One large additional fee that Babe Ruth incurs is the cost of umpires at all of its games. We do not have volunteer or student umpires, and must contract to a regional umpire service.
13. How can I get involved?
Babe Ruth is a volunteer organization and we always need help, both at the field level (managers, coaches, team coofinators, snack bar, and at the board level. The board meets about 8 times a year, and individual imput really can make a huge difference. The board is cronically short of volunteers and we need for parents to step up.