Player Eligibility, Tryouts and the Draft

Guaranteed Spot Rules (Amended in Fall 2014)

Spring Season

  • Players are guaranteed a spot on a team if they played at West Raleigh Baseball the prior spring season. If a Spring season is missed, that player is no longer guaranteed a spot.
  • New-to-West Raleigh siblings that are 7 years of age or older are guaranteed a spot on a West Raleigh team if they have a sibling who has a guaranteed spot in the Spring season, registers and plays that Spring.*
  • New-to-West Raleigh guaranteed siblings that are 6 years old in the Spring season are NOT guaranteed a spot but are eligible for the Minor League, and are guaranteed to the Modified Coach Pitch (MCP) League.
  • Siblings of MCP players of any age are NOT guaranteed a roster spot in any league.
  • Play in West Raleigh's Fall Baseball program does NOT guarantee a roster spot in the Spring program.

Fall Season

  • Players are guaranteed a spot on a Fall team if they played at West Raleigh Baseball the prior Fall or Spring season.
  • New-to-West Raleigh players that are 6 years of age or older are guaranteed a spot on a West Raleigh team if they have a sibling who has a guaranteed spot in the Fall season, registers and plays that Fall.*
  • New-to-West Raleigh guaranteed siblings that are 5 years old in the Fall season are NOT guaranteed a spot but are eligible for the Minor League, and are guaranteed to the MCP League.
  • Siblings of MCP players of any age are NOT guaranteed a roster spot in any league.

* The only exception is that Fall 6YOs and Spring 7YOs who are guaranteed siblings (GS) may be placed into MCP at the sole discretion of the League. This is typically based on safety concerns and is not appealable.

Player Tryouts

Typically approximately 500-600 players will register and more than half must attend tryouts. Tryouts are out the West Raleigh facility at 830 Barringer Drive, Raleigh, NC 27606. Tryout schedules are typically posted on the website a week prior to tryouts.

New-to-league players must submit a copy of their birth certificate by either mailing (a copy only) to WR, emailing to wrbaseba.reg@gmail.com or bringing it to check-in prior to the beginning of tryouts.

Many of the registrants are guaranteed placement but require evaluation because they are "aging up" to the next age group or because they are trying out for advanced play in National League in the Spring.

In the Spring, the tryouts are usually on a weekend day in mid-February, with players of different ages trying out on different days and times. A second weekend date is scheduled, but there are no guarantees that this second weekend will take place. Therefore, we strongly recommend making every effort to attend the first tryout date, particularly for new players, as the second weekend could be cancelled due to rainouts and not made up. With the tight early-season schedules and restricted field availability, the league has occasionally had to make the difficult decision to abandon the second tryout date.

New-to-league players who do not attend tryouts will NOT be eligible to be drafted until all guaranteed-spot players and all new players who did try out are drafted. If open spots still remain, these players may be selected by random drawing. This scenario, while possible, does not typically occur and should never be relied upon.

In the Fall, there is usually only one tryout date, though some accommodation may be made for Spring All Star players tht played into late Summer. In Fall as in Spring, making it to the tryouts is imperative for new-to-league players.

What to Expect at Tryouts

Tryouts are set up so that players are given the opportunity to demonstrate fielding (usually ground balls and/or pop-ups), throwing, catching, hitting and running. Older players are also usually given the opportunity to show pitching and catching skills. Coaches look for good technique in getting in front of the ball, getting off a good, accurate throw, being able to catch a thrown ball properly, good batting stance and swing. They also look at players speed and quickness, hustle and demeanor (e.g., if they miss a ball, they just get ready for the next play). Coaches, often along with their returning assistant coaches, score the players and then rank them according to their teams needs for the draft.

Players MUST bring their own glove, batting helmet, and bat to tryouts. Players trying out as catchers MUST bring their own catcher's gear. West Raleigh does not provide any equipment for tryouts. Players are strongly encouraged to wear baseball pants, baseball hat, and cleats.

Player Spot Availability

West Raleigh never really knows exactly how many new-player spots will be available until registration is complete. It will depend on the number of returning players, guaranteed spots, the amount of roster spots on teams and the amount of teams in each league.

Draft Process

For each league, the coaches draft players in the inverse order of finish from the prior year's regular season, so the team that finished last will draft first and so on. By the time of the draft, each league will know how many new-to-West Raleigh players can be drafted, and once the specific number of new players are drafted, all subsequent draft picks are from among the players who are guaranteed spots based on prior play in the league or siblings in the league. When the numbers of teams in a league is increased or decreased, normal draft rules may be supplemented to try to ensure fairness.

Draft Notification

If a player has been drafted, they will be contacted by their new coach, usually within a day of the draft. The coach will introduce themselves and let the player (or parent) know when and where the first practice will be held, and what the expectations for players on the team will be. A team's first meeting usually occurs the week following the draft.

If a player has not heard from a coach within 2-3 days of the draft date, the likelihood is that they were not drafted. Registration fees for undrafted players WILL be reimbursed within 7-10 days of the draft.