Player Agent’s Guide to MLL Leagues and Team Selection
MLL is committed to providing a safe, fun, and competitive environment for boys and girls to learn and play the games of baseball and softball. We are committed to developing the skills and sportsmanship for all MLL players. This works best when the kids learn and play with others at their skill level and age. In addition, Madison Little League (MLL) is chartered by Little League International (LLI), and must adhere to LLI rules regarding player age eligibility and league placement. We have established these guidelines to help us pursue our goals in terms of development, while complying with all LLI requirements. It’s not possible to cover every conceivable scenario in a short document, so if you have additional questions please contact our Player Agent, Mike Catalano.
Little League International determines a player’s League Age by birthdate: Your child’s age on the cut-off date is their League Age. To accurately determine your child's league age for the current or upcoming season, please consult the Little League Age Calculator.
The entire process starts with registration of your child using our online registration system. Programs are available for baseball, softball and Buddy Baseball and are further broken down by League Age (see below). Payment in full is required at the time of registration by credit or debit card. Financial assistance is available if needed.
The table below shows the targeted age groups for each league:
- Players who are League Age 9-12 (Baseball Majors, AAA Minors & AA Minors, and Softball Majors and Minors) are assigned to an appropriate league based on a combination of their League Age and skill level as determined by player evaluations.
- Younger players (Tee-ball, Rookie League & A Minors/Pee Wee) are assigned to a league based strictly on League Age alone.
- Buddy Baseball is a special program that is open to all players League Age 6-18.
- The age ranges established above will be followed for league assignments with few exceptions. School grade and parental requests are not considered when determining league assignments. Exceptions may only be made by the MLL Player Agent.
- Any reference to age in on this page (e.g. "9YO") means LEAGUE AGE as determined by LLI.
Prior to the new spring season, all baseball and softball players age 9-12YO are required to attend a skills evaluation. At the evaluations, all players will be assessed on hitting, fielding, and throwing, and players may choose to be evaluated at pitching if they wish. The baseball evaluations are usually held at the Brown School gym in the morning of the 1st and 2nd Saturdays in March. The softball evaluations are typically held in the afternoon of the 1st Saturday in March at the Brown School gym. Schedule details will be emailed to all registered players in February. Each age group will have a specific time slot, starting with the younger players. If you have a conflict with your time slot, please contact the Player Agent to arrange to attend another time slot. However, it’s generally best for the player to be evaluated with their age group. There are no make up sessions available if you can’t attend the scheduled evaluations.
- Players must be registered online in order to be eligible to participate in evaluations. Registration generally closes several days before evaluations to allow time for the Player Agent to organize the sessions. Players who have failed to register in time will not be allowed to participate in evaluations, and will not be guaranteed a spot in the upcoming season.
- The Player Agent may invite selected 8YO players to evaluations to try out for AA Minors (baseball) or Minors (softball). An invitation to evaluations does not guarantee that any 8YO will be drafted up - your child should be prepared to continue playing in their age-appropriate league.
Player Selection – Majors, AAA Minors & AA Minors:
Following registration and evaluation, each league will hold a draft in which the Manager and Coach from each team will select their players. Players are placed in the draft availability list for their assigned league according to their League Age and ranked by skill level as determined by the evaluations. Drafts for the older leagues (Majors) are held first, followed in order by the younger leagues. Team Managers and Coaches select players from the draft availability list according to the draft rules established by the Player Agent. It's possible for a small number of players who are assigned to a younger league but have shown advanced skills in the player evaluations to be included in draft availability list for the next league up. However, this does not guarantee the younger player a spot in the next league. In general, we try to limit the number of players we pull up to just those we need to fill out open spots in the league.
The following summarizes which players are eligible to be included on the draft availability list and who can be selected to teams.
Draft eligibility: All 12YO & 11YO, some advanced 10YO
Selection: All 12YO, All 11YO, plus a few advanced 10YO to fill out teams
Draft eligibility: All 10YO & 9YO, some advanced 8YO
Selection: All 10YO, All 9YO not drafted to Majors, plus a few advanced 8YO to fill out teams
Draft eligibility: All 12YO, All 11YO, some advanced 10YO
Selection: All 12YO, Some 11YO, plus a few select 10YO
Baseball AAA Minors:
Draft eligibility: All 11YO, All 10YO, some advanced 9YO
Selection: All 11YO & 10YO not drafted to Majors, plus a few select 9YO to fill out teams
Baseball AA Minors:
Draft eligibility: All 9 YO, some advanced 8YO
Selection: All 9YO not drafted to AAA Minors, plus a few select 8YO to fill out teams
- We do not allow a player to skip a league, i.e. go straight from AA to Majors without playing a season at AAA. In other words, a 10YO will only be drafted up to Majors if he has already completed a season at AAA (9YO) and AA (8YO).
- Not all 11YO boys will be drafted into Majors, even while an advanced 10YO may be drafted into Majors ahead of other 11YO boys. Draft selections are the decision of the team Manager and Coach and are based on relative skill levels.
Player Selection – Other Leagues:
Teams for Buddy Baseball, A Minors/Pee Wee, Rookie, and Tee-ball are formed by a combination of random selection and geographic neighborhood consideration without regards to skill level.
Once the teams are selected, the scheduling of practices and games will be handled by the Commissioner for each league, and the team manager will contact everyone to meet and begin practices.
The Player Agent is a member of the Executive Board of MLL and generally has responsibility for all matters related to player eligibility and assignments. This includes:
- Managing and organizing all player evaluations and try outs
- Ensuring eligibility of all players (birth records, league requirements)
- Supervising and coordinating all player drafts and team selections
- Overseeing the progression or transfer of players between Leagues
- Filing and maintaining rosters and player information with Little League International
If you still have general questions regarding ages, leagues, or assignments, of if you have specific questions regarding your child, please contact the Player Agent directly. Thank you.
MLL Player Agent