Introducing Albany Little League
Albany Little League was founded in 1956 as a baseball program for 10- to 12-year-old boys. Four teams played that first year. In 2016, more than 800 boys and girls, ages 5 to 14, are playing on 60+ teams.
Albany Little League is a community for kids to learn baseball, make friends, and most of all, have fun! Albany Little League is recognized as one of the best community baseball programs in the Bay Area, balancing developmental and competitive goals. The league is open to residents of Albany, El Cerrito, Kensington and North Berkeley.
The league is divided into the following divisions: Albany Junior League (13s, 14s and advanced 12s), Albany Little League’s Intermediate Divsion (13s, 12s & some 11s), Albany Little League’s Major League (12s, 11s & some 10s), and Albany Little League’s Minor Leagues (T-Ball, Rookie, Single-A, Double-A and Triple-A with players ages 5-12). Little League (Majors, AAA, AA, A, Rookie and T-Ball ) teams for younger children, 12 and under, play their games at Ocean View Park, University Village and Cougar Field in Albany. Junior League teams play home games at Memorial Park in Albany.
Teams are formed by age group and skill level. Players ages 8-14 participate in evaluations prior to the season, providing the league and coaches an opportunity to evaluate the level of all the players. Unlike many Little Leagues, Albany Little League is not a “property league”. Players in AAA, Majors, Intermediate, and Juniors are redistributed each year via a draft and AA players are assigned such that teams have players with roughly the same range of skills and experience. This system promotes competitive balance and fosters a spirit of community, with players, coaches and parents getting to know each other in different combinations as kids progress through the various age groups. We understand that for younger players playing with friends can be important, and in T, Rookie and A we try to accommodate friend requests where possible. Teams generally meet two or three times a week after school and on weekends for games and practices. The days and times vary from week to week according to field availability and, or course, weather. Play begins in March and continues through the middle of June when schools recess. Thereafter, select teams play tournament and all-star games in June and July.
Albany Little League is a recreational league, set up and run to provide an enjoyable baseball experience for players at all skill levels. The league champion teams in AA, AAA, Majors, Intermediate, and Juniors participate in the District 4 Tournament of Champions, so every player in those divisions has a possibiity of experiencing postseason baseball. More advanced players have the opportunity to play in Little League All-Star tournaments in June and July. At the close of the season, players and managers select All-Star teams in several age groups. Albany Little League All-Star teams typically progress deep into Little League District 4 postseason play, and in recent years several teams have won District 4 championships and gone on to compete in LL Section 1. The 2006 Juniors All-Stars were Section 1 champions, and the 2008 10-11 All-Stars won District 4, Section 1 and Division 1 championships.
Many players go on to play for Albany, Berkeley and other local high schools, and a number of Albany LL alumni are currently playing in Division I and Division III college programs. Several Albany LL players have gone on to play professional baseball (including one now in the Oakland A’s organization).
Volunteers are the backbone of Albany Little League. In all age groups, teams are organized and supervised by an adult manager, assisted on the field by adult coaches, and off the field by the Team Parent, who informs and coordinates the participation of players and families.
Playing rules are the rules of baseball as modified by Little League International to suit the needs of youngsters. Twelve year olds, for example, pitch from 46 feet, rather than 60, and bases are 60 feet apart, rather than 90.
Operating rules are established by a local league Constitution and the Regulations of Little League International. Constitutional league officers are President, Vice President, Secretary, Treasurer, and Player Agent. These five officers sit with other elected volunteers who operate the league as its Board of Directors. They, like all other adult volunteers, are unpaid.
Albany Little League is incorporated as a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization, and contributions to the league are tax deductible.