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FAQ

Where are games played?

At T&C each age division has its own field, so almost all recreation league games will be played on the same field at the T&C complex. There are some exceptions to this with interleague games, open team leagues, tournament games and others so it is best to confirm game location with your coach if you are unsure. To see a map of the Town & Country complex, click on "Fields and Maps" on the left hand-side of this website.

When are games played?

Times may change from season to season depending on issues like the number of teams and availability of umpires. You should always follow the schedule handed out by your coach. During the season, each team typically plays one game during the week and one on Saturday. During the week, the first game typically starts at 6:00 pm and the second game begins 10 or 15 min. after the first game is completed. On Saturday, games for all leagues typically start at either 9:00 am and are played all day with the last games starting around 5:00 pm. To check on the status of a particular game, you can also click on "Documents" on the left hand-side of this website and click on Master Field Schedule to a listing of all games by age division and field.

Remember each league's games last different lengths: 5-6U games are 1 hour, 7-8U games are 1:10, 9-10U games are 1:25, 11-12U games are 1:35, 13-14U games are 1:45 and 15-18U games are 1:50. It is recommended that players arrive at the field 1 hour prior to game time so managers can warm them up and get the line-up cards ready prior to the start of the game.

How often and where will my child practice?

Prior to the beginning of the season, teams will usually practice twice during the week and once on the weekend. When the season starts and you're playing two games a week, usually practice will be once or twice a week. However, this can vary due to the individual manager's particular schedule. You should expect practices to last 2 hours for older children and 1 to 1 1/2 hrs for younger children. In the fall, we try to have one practice a week and one game a week.

Generally speaking, coaches need to find their own practice facility. To help our coaches, kids, and parents with practice space, T&C will attempt to schedule practices at its fields where there is availability in the scheduling. Practice slots cost $15 for 5-6U (1 hour slots) and $20 for all other age divisions with those durations usually consistent with their actual game durations. To schedule practices, Head Coaches can send an email to "tcbaseballpractice@gmail.com" with their age division, team name, requested date & time after they have checked the Master Field Schedule (see "Documents") for availability.

When will practices begin?

Depending on the date of the league's team drafts, we try to start practicing 2-3 weeks prior to the start of the season. Practices typically start the week after draft night once the manager has his roster and contacts his team members and parents.

When will the season begin?

Please check the calendar page for league dates and events. The Spring season typically starts near the beginning of March while the Fall season typically starts after Labor Day weekend.

How long will the season last?

The Spring season has about 12-13 games and usually lasts about 10 to 12 weeks while the Fall season has 8-10 games and usually lasts 6-8 weeks.

What equipment will my child need before the first practice or game?

The registration fee includes a jersey and cap for each player to use during league games. A uniform consists of a pair of baseball pants, a baseball jersey and a baseball cap. You will need to purchase a belt, socks, pants and cleats. The pants are usually gray or white, but some teams also choose pinstriped pants. Be sure to check with your coach and team mom prior to buying new pants for the season. Only players in 14U and 16U divisions are allowed to wear metal cleats. All other divisions must wear rubber molded cleats.

A quality leather glove is a must. Vinyl and simulated leather gloves may be cheaper, but tend to cause the player a great deal of frustration, because it's very difficult to form a pocket in gloves made of vinyl or simulated leather and the ball tends to pop out when the player attempts to catch it. You shouldn't buy a glove that is too big for the player. Gloves range in size from about 10" to 14". You shouldn't buy a large glove anticipating that "he/she will grow into it". The glove should be bought to last for about 2 years of play. 4U/6U players should have about a 10" -10 1/2" glove; 8U, 10 1/2 to 11" glove; 10U 10 3/4" to 11 1/2" glove; and 12U, 14U and 16U will be sized with a glove according to the positions they play. Middle infielders usually wear a 10 3/4" to 11 1/2 glove. Pitchers and 3rd baseman may have a little larger glove. Outfielders may have a 12" to 13" glove.

You will also need a bat. Aluminum bats come in a wide range of prices, sizes and quality. You can consult with your local sporting good suppliers for a size chart or see the bat manufacturers on their web page. As with gloves, bats need to be appropriate for the age and size of the player.

All players should bring a windbreaker, jacket or sweatshirt to games and practices during early spring and late fall.

New Bat Rule:

New bat rules are in effect starting Spring 2016.

Bat Rule (2012) - remains in effect for 4U, 6U, and 8U leagues in 2016

The official bat shall be round in cross section for its entire length, straight from end to end for its entire length and smooth surfaced in the hitting area.

The maximum diameter shall not exceed two and five eights (2 ⅝) inches.

All bats larger in diameter than two and one quarter (2 ¼) inches must be equal to or heavier than minus 10 (-10) for U4 thru U14. For example, -10, -9, -8, -7, -6 or -5 would be acceptable length to weight ratios whereas -11, -12 and -13 would not.

The maximum length shall not exceed thirty-six (36) inches.

The bat shall be constructed of wood, aluminum, or any other material or combination of materials as defined for baseball bats by ASTM standards.

Any material to improve the grip may be used for a distance not to exceed eighteen (18) inches from the handle end.

All bats must be commercially manufactured for baseball play.

Softball bats or bats altered after manufacture to reduce or add weight will not be allowed.

New Bat Rule (ages 10U and older) as of Spring 2016
The official bat shall be round in cross section for its entire length, straight from end to end for its entire length and smooth surfaced in the hitting area. The maximum diameter shall not exceed two and three fourths (2 ¾) inches.   The maximum length shall not exceed thirty-six (36) inches. 

All bats larger in diameter than two and one quarter (2 ¼) inches must be equal to or heavier than minus 10 (-10) for U4 thru U14. For example, -10, -9, -8, -7, -6 or -5 would be acceptable length to weight ratios whereas -11, -12 and -13 would not.

All bats larger in diameter than two and one quarter (2 ¼) inches must have a clearly visible manufacturer's stamp with a Bat Performance Factor (BPF) rating of 1.15 or less. The bat shall be constructed of wood, aluminum, or any other material or combination of materials as defined for baseball bats by ASTM standards.

Any material to improve the grip may be used for a distance not to exceed eighteen (18) inches from the handle end.  All bats must be commercially manufactured for baseball play.

Softball bats or bats altered after manufacture to reduce or add weight will not be allowed

Who do I call if I have a problem that needs to be resolved by the league?

If at any time you have a problem or just want information, please go to the Baseball Board page and you'll find a list of baseball officers and coordinators. You'll also see job descriptions and e-mail addresses for them. Typically, you should bring up concerns or questions to your age division commissioner first. If the league commissioner can't resolve the issue, you should next contact the age division's Vice President (there is a VP for the 5-10 year old age divisions and another for the 11-18 year old age divisions). You can always contact any of the board members or officers if you feel you need to. Please note that our Baseball Board is an all volunteer organization and we may not be able to respond to you within the same day, however, we should be able to get back to you within 48 hours.

You are also welcome to attend a board meeting and express your concerns directly to the commissioners and officers. We usually meet on the second Monday of each month. Please e-mail the President if you wish to be added to the agenda for the next meeting and to confirm the meeting location and time.

Can my child be placed on a team with one of his friends?

WE CANNOT GUARANTEE PLACEMENT OF ANY PLAYER WITH ANY TEAM OR COACH. While we can't always honor these requests, we do our best to honor such requests in fall and spring. You need to express your wishes for such arrangements on your registration form. At this time, the registration form will be reviewed and an attempt will be made to honor your request. In 5-6U (T-ball) the teams are organized by neighborhoods and schools. There is a good chance that your child will play with friends. In 7U and older the players are generally drafted. The draft helps keep all teams competitive and to create a fair method of selecting teams. As players get older, there are fewer teams. We understand that parents have many different reasons to ask for special requests, and it would be great if we could always grant these requests. However, please understand that we simply are not able to.

How much do team pictures cost and when are they taken?

In the Spring, the league provides a memory mate package consisting of two individual pictures and one team picture to each player. This is included in the registration fee. Additional packages, trading cards, etc. may be ordered from the photographer on picture day. During the Fall season, the league does not arrange for pictures to be taken. The coach or team mom is responsible for getting a team picture taken if you want them. Many teams just have a parent take a picture and distribute copies. The prices and quantity of pictures included in the list above is subject to change. This web page data may not reflect the latest information so be sure to check with your team mom and coach.

If my child is unhappy with the team he has been placed on, can he be moved?

No, not after the draft. Only in extreme cases do we allow children to switch teams after the teams have been formed. Such requests must be made in writing to the league's Board of Directors. First you need to contact your league commissioner and give him the request in writing. The request should include the reasons why you would like to change. The commissioner will then bring this request to the board. If the commissioner thinks the issue can be worked out between any parties concerned or via a method of help, he my request your assistance in trying this first. If for any reason you feel you cannot go through your league's commissioner, then feel free to make the request directly to the board member (Director) that heads your child's league. See the Baseball Board page for assistance with who to contact.

If my child decides to quit, can I get a refund?

If you request to drop prior to player try-outs, then you will receive a refund of your paid registration fee less a 10% holdback due to hard costs associated with your player's online registration. If you request to drop after player try-outs, but before the first game, then you will receive a refund of your paid registration fee less a 25% holdback due to uniforms already having been ordered and costs incurred. Once games begin, no refunds will be given.  No refunds are given to decal orders, donations, late fees, or because of team placement.

What are protected players?

The manager (head coach) for each team is allowed to protect their own children as well as their assistant coach's child prior to draft. This so that the manager and assistant coach can work together to manage a team. Some divisions during some seasons allow for a few additional protections please contact your Coach or the specific division coordinator to find out how many Protections are allowed for your Division. (Additional protections usually only apply during the spring season.)

How are children placed on teams?

All players in all age divisions except 5-6U (T-ball) and coaches' children) are required to be evaluated prior to the draft. T-ball players are placed on teams by neighborhoods. At the "tryouts" both returning and new players are given the opportunity to show their skills in front of all of the coaches for their particular league. Each manager rates the players and all players are then scored by each coach. This score is only known by each coach. During the draft, the teams will draw a draft number out of a hat to determine drafting order. Then the coaches select their team members with the help of the draft scores and notes made during tryouts. The coaches with the first draft number picks first. During the second round the coaches with the last number picks first. This is called a "snake draft". This continues until all players are picked. This method allows for parity for all teams. If your child misses tryouts, then they are not draftable. Their name gets placed in a hat. Then all coaches will blindly pick from the hat in the order of their draft number, as described above, until all hat picks are taken. There are no guarantees a player will be place on a specific team or with a specific coach in either the fall or spring seasons. (Exception: see protected players).

What are player tryouts and when are they?

During both the fall and spring seasons, all players except 5-6U (T-ball) and protected players must attend a tryout session to be drafted onto a team. The tryouts gives the managers within the league an opportunity to evaluate each player prior to the draft. The tryouts consist of players fielding ground balls, throwing balls to first from shortstop, and hitting with a coach or a commissioner pitching. We try to hold tryouts in a non-intimidating environment. Please check the Calendar for tryout dates and click on "Documents" on the left hand-side of this web page to review Tryout Procedures.

If my child does poorly at tryout, will he/she be cut?

In all divisions, all children participating in player tryouts will be placed on teams during the draft. All players missing the tryout will be drawn blindly and placed on teams.

Are regulation baseballs used in 5-6U T-ball?

No, in 5-6U T-ball, we use a Reduced Injury Factor ("RIF") baseball. It is the same size as a regulation baseball, but softer. Your child's first introduction to a regulation baseball will occur in the 7-8U division.

Do children or coaches pitch in 5-6U T-ball?

No pitching is allowed in 5-6U T-ball. All players must hit the ball off the tee. For the specific rules, see the Rules page.

Is the 7-8U Coach Pitch league an instructional or competitive league?

This is the player's first introduction to competitive baseball with the primary focus of the AA division being more instructional. There is also a AAA division if we have more than 50 players who register to play in AAA. AAA teams are usually made up of 2nd year 7-8U players, but there may be some first year players. The AAA division is more competitive from an overall player performance perspective, although we keep track of the scores and standings in both leagues. AAA teams will sometimes play other AAA teams from area leagues such as Cedar Park with games being at either T&C and/or the other team’s league field.

Do children pitch in the 7-8U Coach Pitch league?

No kids pitch in the 7-8U Coach Pitch league. Only coaches are allowed to pitch in both the AA and AAA leagues of 7-8U. For the specific rules, see the Rules page.

How are Centex tournament teams selected?

During the spring season each coach will be allowed to nominate players from their team to participate on a June-only Tournament Team which competes with other area league teams. After the date to submit nominations has passed (usually some time during the first week of May) all the regular season coaches from each division will meet to vote on the players to be assigned to the tournament teams. All regular season coaches may apply to be the head coach of a tournament team. Coach selections will be done by the coach selection committee.

What is AA baseball?

AA leagues are regular "recreational" leagues. This is usually offered in the spring season for the 7-8U and the 9-10U year old divisions. They will play other AA T&C teams in their league. All the games will be held at the T&C fields. They may also play in mid-season tournaments. This is the division that most of the players in these age groups play in.

What is AAA baseball?

The AAA division is usually offered in the spring season for the 7-8U and the 9-10U year old divisions. AAA leagues offers the more experienced players a more competitive environment over our regular AA division. Teams will be picked through tryouts and a draft conducted at Town & Country. To be considered for the AAA division a player must attend tryouts. About 20% of the players in each of the two divisions will be selected to participate in the AAA division. If a player signed up for AAA is not selected in the AAA draft that player will automatically be place in the AA draft pool. AAA teams for the ages of 7-10 typically play only at T&C, but will occasionally travel to play other AAA teams from surrounding leagues.

What is open baseball?

Open leagues offer a highly-competitive environment compared to our regular league play. Players are usually between the ages of 11 to 14. Each team will typically be age specific. i.e. - All kids on the team will be of the same age. Player are selected by the teams coaches players are not drafted. Each team will conduct one tryout at Town & Country usually in the fall or January. Open teams will often travel to play other open teams from Georgetown, Old Settlers Express, Sam Bass Baseball, LCP, and Lake Travis. Most teams will play and travel to tournaments throughout the season. Each team will play approximately 8 games at T & C and 8 games at other league games elsewhere. The registration cost is approximately $180 however, open teams have additional costs for tournaments, uniforms, travel and equipment not included in the registration cost. If you have an interest in open baseball contact the team coach or the open coordinator. A list of open teams and information regarding those teams will be posted on our web site when the information becomes available.

What is Field Day?

This is the one day before each season starts (Spring and Fall) where we spruce up the fields and bring them to game-ready condition. We require all coaches - heads and assistants - to work field day. We also ask parents or anyone interested in helping to come out and help. Some seasons, it is as simple as putting down some new dirt, painting, raking, and cutting back some grass. Other seasons it may require replacing bases, mounds, fencing, batting cage nets, etc. T&C Baseball is a completely volunteer organization. All board members and commissioners are volunteers and don't get paid a dime for their hard work. We ask you to volunteer some of your time to help make T&C a great place to play for our kids. Thanks for your help.

How do I become a coach?

To become a coach, you must fill out a coaches application during registration. You are also required to give permission for a background check. You need to give coaching background, if any, and character references. The Baseball Board will review all applications and select the coaches for that season.

What is coach certification?

Our certification program provides training, support, and continuing education to adults who volunteer to coach out-of-school youth sports teams. Our program works to "sensitize" coaches to their responsibilities when working with children in sports and hold them accountable to a Coaches’ Code of Ethics. We require all coaches to become certified. See the Calendar page for dates. Coaches can renew their membership from their web page.

What are the age cutoffs for league play?

The league cutoff date is April 30th. A player's league age is determined by his or her age prior to May 1st. For example, if your player turns 9 on May 2, then the player is considered to be a 8 year old for that Fall or Spring's play. Another player who turns 9 on Apr 29th is considered a 9 year old since the birthday occurs before the cutoff date. View age chart.

How to read rain out information?

The web page will be updated as soon as we can get the information that games are canceled. On large rain event days, it will be an easy call for our baseball board to make. They will contact us and we will update the page between 3:00 & 5:00 PM weekdays, and between 7:30 and 8:30 AM on Saturdays. On days when there is thunder, lightning or light rain just before at or during game time, a commissioner will need to evaluate the fields and contact us with specific information about which fields are playable and which are not. We may not get the data updated until closer to or at game time on these days. Remember, the baseball board and the commissioners are volunteers and have regular jobs. On some days it may be impossible for them to leave work early to evaluate the fields and an update may be later than we all would like.

On the front page, you will see a section titled "Field Conditions". In this section you will see the date and time along with a message saying "All Games On". This message is the default message. It will say "All Games On" until we know if games are off. Other messages that may appear are: "All Games Off", "Some Games Off", "All Games/Practices Off", and "Some Games/Practices Off". Remember, until the page is updated or you've been contacted by your coach, you should assume games are being played.

Some people have told me that their browser is not updating when they access these pages, and that they are seeing old information. If you see that the "Last Updated" time and date fields are not current with today's date, then this is a feature of your browser. The new browsers cache information to a disk file so if you're accessing the same web page often it will load really fast. But what it is not doing is going out on the Internet and retrieving the latest information off web site. To be sure you are seeing the freshest information posted to the web page, click the refresh button in your browser's tool bar. Sometimes you may need to click it 2 or 3 times before it updates.

What is the T&C Lightning Policy?

The Town & Country Sports Complex is now monitored by a Thor Guard lightning prediction and warning system.  The Thor Guard system measures atmospheric conditions at the T&C campus and surrounding area.  When the conditions reach the threshold for potential lightning, an alarm will sound (one long blast of the sirens) and the strobe lights will begin to flash. 

Steps to take when the Thor Guard sirens and lights are activated:

1.  EVERYONE on the T&C campus must take immediate shelter, either in cars or in the T&C restrooms (these are the safest structures).

2. Only when the Thor Guard system gives the 'all clear' (3 short siren blasts and the lights go off), may activities resume.

It is the responsibilty of every adult on campus to comply with these steps, and to ensure that every child also complies.  This is a Zero Tolerance safety condition for participating at T&C.  Failure to comply is to do so at your own safety risk, and with possible expulsion from the T&C campus and future activities.

You may view the status of the T&C Thor Guard system from your smart phone or PC at this link:  tandcsports.thormobile7.net

 

Additional Common Sense Steps

In the unlikely event that you see lightning in the vicinity or hear thunder, and the Thor Guard system has not activated:

1.  Notify the Commissioner on Duty (COD) for your sport.  

2.  The COD will consider this information and determine if activities should be suspended.  The COD may use additional sources of information, such as the 'Weatherbug' app, in making the decision.  Lightning strikes within 10 miles identified by the app warrant suspension of activities.

3. If the COD decides to suspend activities, he/she will retrieve the bullhorn from the lightning box by the main office, and trigger 5 long blasts.  Upon hearing these blasts, EVERYONE on campus, across all sports, must immediately seek shelter in cars or restrooms.  

4. The COD who initiated the suspension of activities will communicate the 'all clear' 30 minutes after the last reported thunder or lighting.  This will be done through 2 blasts on the bullhorn.

For more detailed T&C Thunder and Lightning Policy and Procedure click here.  Your help on complying to this policy will be appreciated.