The YAC travel program conducts workouts for Spring Baseball immediately following the Fall Baseball Season (Typically Late October/Early November)
We anticipate having teams in the following age divisions:8U, 9U, 10U, 11U, 12U, 13U, & 14U, 15U & older depending on interest. In general, we expect to field one team in each age group. In the event that the baseball leadership feels there are enough travel caliber players to field a second team, we reserve the right to do so. The leadership looks to create competitive teams in each age division.
Head coaches will be determined and assigned AFTER the player evaluations in each division. This is a volunteer program and your assistance is required for the program to work. Anyone who has an interest coaching should complete the Head Coach Application found on the YAC Baseball Website, under Travel Program, Head Coach Application.
Tryouts are conducted by a third party without knowledge of who they are grading. Each candidate receives a blank tryout shirt with only a # so the paid evaluator does not know who they are. The top eight (8) players in each age group will automatically make the team. The appointed coach will be the most qualified individual possible. This coach will then have four (4) discretionary picks to round a team of twelve (12). The coach may select 11 or 13, depending on the pool of travel caliber kids.
As is tradition, the 12U team will be going to Dreams Park in Cooperstown, New York for a week, to compete against more than 100 teams from all over the country. Some teams travel from as far as Hawaii to compete and we are happy to be able to provide our 12U team this opportunity in what is their final year of little league eligibility. At 13U they will play on the full 90 foot diamond.
Travel players in the 10, 11, 12, and 13 age groups will not be required to participate in the in-house program, however, it is strongly recommended that they do. Playing spring travel will give those players a greater opportunity to play at a higher level and provide the competition to elevate their skills even further. Playing in the in-house program will provide an opportunity for additional practices, at-bats, and to play positions that they might not get to play on a travel team, or to work to improve on a particular position for their travel team.
The Yorktown Athletic Club participates in the Greater Hudson Valley Baseball League - a league made up of over 400 teams in the NY Westchester, Putnam, Rockland, Orange, Dutchess, and Connecticut's Fairfield County.
We will look to minimize scheduling conflicts between in-house and travel by scheduling travel games at times when in-house teams have already completed their games, or on days when in-house team don’t participate, such as Sunday.
If you have any questions that are not answered below please feel free to contact the travel coordinator...
Frequently Asked Questions
What is Travel Baseball?
YAC Travel Baseball provides an opportunity for YAC athletes to play baseball in a competitive environment. Unlike the YAC in-house baseball program, travel players “try out” for a team and are not automatically guaranteed a spot on a team. Trying Out does not guarantee that a player will be chosen to play if there are more applicants than positions available on a given team.
Yorktown Travel Teams of various ages compete against teams from other towns, clubs and associations during the spring (middle April through first week of June) and summer (middle of June until the second week of August) seasons. On average, the spring season consists of 14-16 games, and the summer season averages about 20-24 games. During the spring, games are played on the weekends. Often, they are doubleheaders. During the summer, you can expect to play approximately three games each week both on week nights and weekends. Approximately half of each team’s games are played on Yorktown fields with the other half being played on the fields geographically spread between Fairfield County, Connecticut, and Westchester, Putnam and Dutchess Counties, New York. In addition, teams practice and sometimes participate in tournaments before, during and after the season.
In addition, many of the teams go on to play in a fall season consisting of 12 games, held on weekends. The fall season is usually a continuation of the summer team, but sometimes exceptions are made to fill-in open roster positions.
YAC Travel Baseball is different than in-house baseball in that travel baseball is a competitive environment which focuses on wins and losses, and the league in which it is played provides a playoff format culminating in a championship game at each age division based on wins and losses. While the in-house program focuses on providing players with the basic skill sets designed to “teach” the game of baseball to players of all skill levels with the emphasis on learning and not competition, Travel is for players who already have the basic skill sets and are looking to improve on their abilities through competitive play, advanced practice and a greater frequency of practice and play.
Unlike in-house, players are not rotated for equal playing time or equal opportunity at a position. Up to and through the age of 12, players are guaranteed two innings in the field and one at-bat per game. From 12 and up there are no minimum play requirements. As mentioned, Travel Baseball is a more competitive form of baseball. Scores and standings are kept in all divisions, and only the top teams will make it to the playoffs. Only nine (9) players play in the field, and typically you can only bat ten (10). In the in-house program, we have “free” substitution rules. In travel, substitutions are closely tracked. As a result of this, we strive to put 12 players on a team. Due to the amount of pitchers that are needed, some coaches may opt for a larger roster. In addition, some rules such as stealing, bunting, and tagging-up at the 9-12 year old age groups will be different than those of our in-house program, meaning that they are closer to the rules followed by Little League Baseball or even High School Baseball. Although the league itself is competitive, our coaching staff will work with the players to advance their skills while providing a safe and fun environment and not focus solely on winning.
In order to be eligible to play YAC Travel Baseball all players must be a YAC member in good standing, registered. In the 14U, 16U and 18U divisions, the player must participate in either the in-house program or be a member of the Yorktown high school (or other attending high school ) baseball teams. The 11U, 12U and 13U divisions require that the player submit their deposit and participate in the evaluations/try-outs to be selected to play on a team. It is recommended that 11U, 12U and 13 only players should register for the in-house program if they intend to play baseball this season since travel spots are not guaranteed. Any payment made to in-house will be credited to the travel fee if a player from the 11U, 12U and 13 only divisions makes the travel team and elects not to play in-house.
YAC intends to field teams in the following age groups:
8U, 9U, 10U, 11U, 12U, 13U, 14U, 16U and 18U.
The YAC in-house program has traditionally grouped players by their school grade. For example, there have been players that are 11 years of age that play with 12 year olds of the same school grade, both being considered as in their last year of “majors” as 6th graders. Reciprocally, there are 11 years olds that are in fifth grade that are considered in their first year of “majors.” However, travel baseball does not contemplate a child’s grade, only their age. As a result, very often, travel teams have a mix of children from the grades within the age grouping. May 1st is the date set by Little League and is honored virtually among every travel league. Thus, children from a higher grade may be playing with children from a lower grade. Example: When trying out for the 11U travel division, the 6th grader whose birthday is on or after May 1st, 1999 and the 5th grader whose birthday after is on or before April 30th 2000 are both 11 and qualify for the same division. These 11 year olds qualify for the 11U division for travel purposes.
YAC Travel has had to review this situation annually. Other towns rarely play their players up as it typically weakens the teams. The intent of Travel is to field the most competitive teams possible. When a particular age group has strong talent playing up will be considered. In most instances where players have “played up” in the past, with a particular YAC Travel Team, strong consideration to continue to do so will be made on a player by player basis by YAC Travel Baseball. In instances where players have not played up before there will be a strong inclination to have that player play age appropriate. YAC Baseball will reserve the right to make a final determination on which age group a player will play in. That determination will be primarily on the basis of what will field, collectively, the strongest YAC Travel Teams.
Applications & Deposits
Applications will be provided via the YAC Baseball website. The information provided on the application must be complete and accurate. A deposit in the amount of $175.00 will be taken when the child is named to a team via the website link. If a player is chosen to play and otherwise chooses not to play, the deposit will not be refunded.
If there are extenuating circumstances that are medically related, YAC Baseball at its sole discretion will consider a refund of a travel deposit if and when the position is filled by another player.
Payment of the deposit is due upon being named to the team - the deposit will be credited toward Winter Training or Spring Baseball.
There will be two tryout dates posted on the website for each age division. There will be two times posted for each group on the YAC website. A player needs only to try out on one of the two dates. If a player wishes to try out a second time he may but is not required to. All players are to bring their own gloves. Bats and batting helmets will be available but if a player has his own it is suggested that he bring them.
What is the commitment to play travel?
Commitment is the operative word. Travel teams simply don’t have success if players, coaches and parents aren’t committed to them. It is expected that players attend all practices and games. Of course, there are times when a child is ill, or a family emergency prevents them from being there, but attendance on a regular basis is a must. The spring Travel Baseball season typically runs from the middle of April through the first week of June. The summer season typically runs from the middle June through the middle of August. The YAC does not allow for “part-time” players. If a player makes the team, it is expected that they will be at all of the practices and games, and dedicate the YAC team as their “primary” team. Should a conflict exist with another team, it is expected that the player will play for the YAC team. If your family schedule means that your child will miss more than two games in a 20 game season, we ask that you not deprive another potential player of that roster spot. Failure to attend all scheduled practices and games may effect your child’s playing time which is at the sole discretion of your child’s coaching staff.
My husband and I both work and we are unsure that we will be available to transport our player ?
Parent involvement is extremely necessary for this program to be enjoyable for all participants. At times, drivers will be needed to take teams to away games. As always, parents are welcome to provide their assistance for those children that might need some help in getting to games. While that cannot be guaranteed by the YAC, it is a perfect example of how parents pull together and help each other out so that the kids can have fun.
How are the travel evaluations structured?
Undoubtedly, this is the most challenging and unenviable aspect to the process of running Travel Baseball. Inherently, “evaluations” are subjective to the person who is making the judgments. Some programs in the area avoid this step by implementing an “invitation only” tryout. The YAC feels that all players deserve an opportunity to tryout for travel. The down side to this approach is that sometimes “cuts” are made. Making that decision is the hardest part for all those involved, and a position that we don’t like to be in. The YAC will be seeking the assistance of independent evaluators to implement a fair try-out process. Head coach applicants are welcome to observe but will not contribute to the scoring process. In addition to the tryout, the baseball leadership will consider coaches stack ranking of current teams and statistics of the prior baseball seasons.
Is there more than 1 travel team at each age level ?
If the baseball leadership feels two competitive teams can be fielded, we will name two teams.
Is there a fee to play travel? If so, how much?
A participation fee usually ranging from $350 to $450 will be required of each player that makes the team. The fee will cover all of the expenses associated with running the team, as well as their custom uniform. The non-refundable deposit of $175.00 is required upon being named to the team.
Does the YAC carry over the teams each year?
No. However, this year the YAC has grandfathered last year’s 11U team (now the 12U team) which will represent the YAC in Cooperstown. This gives those team members, coaches and parents an opportunity to work throughout the winter, both on and off the field, including fundraising. We will, however, hold an open try-out for the one remaining spot on that team.
The opportunity to tryout for travel baseball goes to all club members. In addition, for divisions other than the 12U team, all players, regardless of prior Travel Baseball experience, are required to tryout.
I heard that if my child had not played travel at nine there is no room for him at ten?
This is not true. Each child is on a level playing field at the tryout. While prior players may have experience - and their results in prior seasons are considered, all players are evaluated at the tryout exactly the same way.