Greetings from Kalamazoo, MI. First, a little background on me. My profile name might give you the hint that I work for Active.com and I do. I also have one of the best jobs you could ask for - working with Little League headquarters and the thousands of local leagues around the country. I was hired by Active chiefly because of my Little League background having been a President, Vice President, Player Agent, Manager/Coach, Equipment Manager, District Umpire Consultant and just an umpire. Having this background helps us (Active) help you, the local league official. Being in your shoes so to speak, I've become the "go to" resource in all things Little League related. Didn't I say I had one of the best jobs?
As a Little League baseball umpire, I have had the honor to umpire in all levels of every Michigan State tournament and completed my last Regional tournament last year (Big League). I also had the really great pleasure and honor to represent the Central Region and umpire in the 2001 Little League World Series in Williamsport. My goal next would be to umpire in the Senior League World Series in Bangor, ME but that could be a long time off. So, this brings me to the reason for this blog.
As a corporate sponsor and partner with Little League Baseball, Active attends the Little League World Series each year and so do I. This will be my 9th year and as always, I'm really looking forward to it. Of course, I'm also umpiring in my district tournament (Michigan District 2 (www.llbmidistrict2.org) and will be umpiring in the Michigan State Major tournament later this month. My plan with the blog is to try and give you some "behind the plate" coverage of 2008 tournament season. I will attempt to provide some coverage of our local district games followed by the Major State. We have 16 districts in Michigan and all 16 district champion teams advance to the State tournament (www.llbmichigan.org) which will be held in Bay City, MI. Our local district champion should be decided on July 14 and begin play in Bay City on July 18. As I said, all 16 champions will be represented in the tournament and will be using a 2 pool format of 8 teams each followed by a 4 team single elimination to decided the ultimate Michigan champion. The Michigan champion will then move on to the Central Region tournament (www.eteamz.com/llbcentral) in Indianapolis, IN where 2 champions (Great Lakes and Midwest) will represent Michigan at the World Series.
My goal of this blog then is to provide some coverage of our district games leading up to the final game on July 14 and follow the team as they move on to the State. I hope which ever team wins does well at the State and I'll hopefully be able to give you some insight into the games, meet the team members, coaches and parents. But win or lose, my next step would then be to cover the State champion as they compete in Indianapolis. Once the 2 champions are decided, I will pick them up in Williamsport at the Little League World Series and continue my coverage. I told you I had one of the best jobs around!
I hope you enjoy the blog but let me just say, I am not the best writer but will do my best. Feel free to leave comments anytime but try to keep things positive - It is Little League after all.
By the way, I also maintain my local league (www.npll.org) and both our District (www.llbmidistrict2.org) and State (www.llbmichigan.org) eteamz web sites so check us out and don't forget to sign the guestbooks!