Willards Little League’s 6th Annual Hitting Derby Fund Raiser began on Friday night with our Tee Ball division. Players demonstrated the skills they’ve been learning by wowing the audience and fans with good form, great hits and most importantly, awesome attitudes. We saw several balls hit so hard they hit the back fence!
Our Hitting Derby continued into Saturday with our Instructional Softball division. In addition to a new field to hit on, the girls were challenged with hitting off a machine (as opposed to coach pitching that they’ve seen all year). Despite the new challenge, everyone did great!
Following the Instructional Softball was the Instructional Baseball division. Many players took advantage of the shorter field and treated the fans to a few home run shots. It was a great competition again, with quite a few balls hitting the fence with force.
The day continued with Minor/Major Softball on Field 1. Like the Instructional division, the girls hit off the machine for the first time this year. It was immediately clear after the first few batters, that these girls meant business, delivering hard ground balls, shots to the outfield, and numerous line drives. This competition came down to the wire with a “hit-off” needed to determine the winners.
The Minor League Baseball division took to the plate next – and the rain started to fall. Players in this competition faced numerous challenges as the coaches struggled to deliver good pitches. As the balls became water logged, muddy and slippery, so did the machine’s wheel. This caused many balls to drop low, fall straight down, or even shoot back out of the machine towards the coach. Helpers worked to keep the balls dry and sanded the wheel several times in an effort to add enough friction to get through the competition. This division was also extremely close, and not one, but two hit offs were needed to determine our winners.
The Junior division followed by our Major division rounded out the day. Again, these players faced multiple challenges with the rain, batter’s box condition and the manual pitching machine making the deliveries. Nonetheless, home runs were had and plenty of warning track shots. In addition several rocket ground balls were hit all throughout the infield.
Despite the ever deteriorating conditions, our players and fans toughed it out and continued to play and cheer hard. Our league raised over $8000, of which over $1000 came from the Minor League Blue Jays! They are the winners of the pizza pary this year!
Thank you to the participants, parents/guardians and sponsors, and the many volunteers that put in their time and efforts to make this year’s derby a huge success.
Click any photo to view the entire gallery. (Sorry, but no photos of the Major/Junior Baseball, as the rain was coming down too hard to get clear shots.)
It’s time to gear up for the 6th Annual Willards Little League Hitting Derby scheduled for Friday, May 17th for Tee Ball Teams and Saturday, May 18th for Instructional, Minors, Majors and Jr. Teams. Saturday, May 18th will also be the hitting derby for Instructional, Minor and Major League Girls Softball.
All Willards Little League players can actively participate in one fundraiser per year and the Hitting Derby is it! All Hitting Derby proceeds will be used for the WLL operating budget including but not limited to new baseball/softball equipment, uniforms, field maintenance and upkeep, Little League Charter Fees, insurance, league activities, All Star tournament fees and Family Fun Day. Willards Little League is constantly growing – we have a total of 24 teams this year. We would love to finish our new tee ball field and add a pitching machine field to our facilities for next season and we still want to add a scoreboard to field 2. WLL relies on dedicated parents, coaches and the community and businesses to help our organization thrive. We hope that you will do everything possible to support your Little League! Without these fundraisers, Willards Little League would not exist!
2013 Willards Little League Fundraiser Procedures and Prizes
Each player’s goal is to raise $50 in pre-paid donations. Prepaid donations may be obtained from neighbors, friends, family members, co-workers and/or local businesses. (Examples: 10 people give $5 each, 5 people give $10 each, 2 people give $25 each). THE DONATION MUST BE COLLECTED AT THE TIME OF COMMITMENT BY THE SPONSOR. Checks can be made payable to the Willards Little League.
Pre-paid donations should be attached to each player’s sponsor form and returned to your Team Mom by/on Thursday, May 16, 2013. Each Team Mom is expected to turn all packets in to Lisa Elliott or Lisa Morris by FRIDAY, MAY 17th.
Each team will have an assigned time to bat – about 1/2 an hour per team. Teams should arrive 15 minutes before your scheduled time to check in. Players should wear at least their uniform shirt. A pitching machine will be used to ensure fairness among all participating players (except for the Tee-ball League). Coaches are expected to feed the pitching machine for their team. Players are expected to help pick up baseballs as needed, after their team’s batting round. While a player is batting for points, the only person allowed on the field are the batter, coaches and WLL Board Members. Players may make one or more trips to the batting cage to prepare for our Hitting Derby.
Each player will receive 1 at bat for every $10 received in pre-paid donations (up to $50), that’s five swings if you reach the $50 goal! IF YOU RAISE $100 or MORE IN PRE-PAID DONATIONS YOU WILL EARN 3 EXTRA SWINGS (that’s 8 balls for $100)!! Each player will receive 2 warm up swings before batting for points. It is a HITTING DERBY so we will try our best to have everyone HIT the ball!!!
Points will be awarded as follows:
Foul Ball – 10 points
Pop Up – 25 points
Grounder – 50 points
Fly Ball to Outfield – 75 points
Line Drive – 100 points
Bounce over the Outfield Fence – 150 points
Over the Fence – 200 points
BONUS POINTS WILL BE AWARDED FOR VARIOUS ITEMS – TBD ON THE DAY OF THE EVENT
In the event of a tie, there will be a head to head hit-off between players involved. Dale White, President of Willards Little League, is the official that will determine the winners. Winners will be determined at the end of each division’s round.
Trophies will be awarded to the 1st – 4th place individual players with the most batting points from each division (TBall, Instructional League Baseball, Instructional League Softball, Minors Baseball, Minors/Majors Softball, Majors Baseball and Jr. Baseball). Trophies will be given at the end of each division’s round.
The one TEAM that brings in the most pre-paid donations will win a PIZZA PARTY!
**Please note that several previously scheduled games have been shifted to accomodate the derby. Please check with your coaches or the calendar webpage for your Saturday game time.
All games in Willards are cancelled for Saturday, May 11, 2013.
All games in Willards are cancelled for tonight, Tuesday May 7th.
Willards Little League enjoyed a night out at the Shorebirds stadium on Saturday night. Over 100 kids participated with their families despite the cold temperature and bone chilling wind. Players walked the field like “big-leaguers” as their teams were announced and fans cheered!
Check out the photo gallery for more pictures!