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Majors

Majors

Majors represents the pinnacle of the Little League system. While there are groups that also travel (Juniors and Seniors) it is the Majors level players that have the opportunity to travel to Williamsport, PA for the Little League World Series via the All Star program.

Majors teams play 15-18 competitive games  during the season usually at 530pm and 730pm on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday nights.  

All Games are at the Tempe Sports Complex (TSC).

Practices are generally held at TSC on the same days as games and at similar times, however, the head coaches have discretion to move the practices to other locations, days and times.

The Majors Division is a competitive division intended for 11 and 12 year old players. Teams are ranked, and a there is a double elimination tournament at the end of the season for the Major Division Champions. There are a number of key differences between Majors and Minors.

Key Differences FROM Minors

  • Stealing Home! The Ball is always live
  • Adult Umpires
  • Players are drafted by the Managers. 
  • Players must show case and be drafted onto a team.

The biggest real difference between Minors and Majors however is not a rule change, but a change in the players themselves. There is a marked difference in size and strength between the 12 year olds and the 10 year olds. Pitching can become much faster and it is not uncommon to see baseballs leaving the yard on a solid hit.

Rule Synopsis

Note that these are local rules, and this description is intended to give you a flavor of the play. It is not intended to be an official set of rules. Every year Little League publishes “The Green Book” which is handed out to Coaches and Managers. That book, and it’s addendum’s constitute the official rules. These are the “local” rules for Tempe South.

  • Bases are at 60 Feet.
  • Players pitch to player catchers.
  • Pitching distance is 46 feet. (as measured from the back tip of home plate to the front of the pitching rubber)
  • During the regular season, Adult Umpires work the plate and teenage umpire works the field in a two man team.
  • During playoffs Adult Umpires call the game from behind the plate.
  • Runners may steal second and third and home. However, there are no lead offs.
  • Players may only headfirst dive BACK to a base (to avoid being tagged out). If the player head first dives into the next base they may be called out.
  • There are no balks.
  • Only players may warm up the pitcher. This is to get more kids involved in the game.
  • Teams may be “run ruled”. If a team gives up too many runs, they are “Mercy-ed” and the game is over.
  • Games have a time limit. No new inning will be started after 1:40 minutes of play. It is not uncommon to see games that last only 4 or 5 innings.
  • During the regular season, games may end in a tie. During the playoffs a winner must be decided.

Emphasis

The Emphasis for Majors is to start to build upon fundamental baseball skills with more competitive play.  At this level the players are being expected to compete. While player enjoyment is always a priority, and Tempe South we believe strongly in as many players playing as much baseball as possible, the Majors program is designed to expose the players to baseball as a competitive sport.

Even with the emphasis on competition, there is ample opportunity for players to develop advanced skills, and begin to discover the joys of competition. At this level players will need to learn:

  • How to pitch, (with an umpire calling balls and strikes)
  • How to hit a ball (with an umpire calling balls and strikes)
  • Proper base running techniques
  • How to tag out runners on the bases
  • Offensive and Defensive Strategy
  • How to react to the live ball

In the Majors Division, players learn that they have to work as a team to achieve success.  Player development is still the top priority for the League, however now it occurs in the context of a coordinated team effort against balanced opposition.

Playoffs

Tempe South Majors is one of the most fun divisions to participate in because of the playoffs, which year in and year out provide tremendous excitement and drama as teams advance. There is always a Cinderella in the mix, and truly anyone can win the Championship. But more than winning, are the memories that are formed as the boys play with, and against their school friends. Little League is one of the last opportunities many of these boys will have to play competitive baseball with their friends and classmates before they see cut sports in Middle School and High School.

All Stars

Finally, at the end of every season, after the championships the best 11 and 12 year olds are selected to participate in the District 13 all star tournament. Teams are announced and practices begin in early June.  District pool play begins  in late June, and the best 4 teams earn a spot in a single elimination championship tournament. The team that wins that tournament will advance to the state championship. This group of players will receive advanced baseball training and conditioning to prepare for some very advanced tournament play. 

For All Stars, the Majors are generally split into two groups. 11U and 12U. The 12U team is the only team that may leave the state. If they win the district they play in a sectional tournament. If they win their ladder they can play for the state championship. Winners of the Arizona State Championship advance to the Western Regional tournament in California. Winners of the Western Region advance to Williamsport, PA. In the history of little league 6 teams from Arizona have advanced to Williamsport.