2014 Winter HDL Meeting Recap

Initial Discussions held  Sunday, January 19, 2013

Larry Rutledge, Bo McMinn, John “Jocko” DiGiacomo and Don Hinkle met Sunday, January 19, to review existing HDL rules and our “game plan” for the 2014 HDL Season.

  1. HDL Finances:  Dues in 2014 will remain $135 per player.  New Sponsors will be $350 per sponsor for their first year. A budget of expenses has been estimated based on 2013 operating format.  Our main variable is Umpires and Field maintenance costs.  In order to maintain dues at $135, we must continue to play approximately 10% -20% of games with only one (1) umpire and use a player volunteer to umpire the bases. Other costs, such as new jersey/shirts and new dirt-sand on the infield, must be managed to keep budget favorable.  Wood Bat games have added slightly to league costs, however, we should be able to manage the extra costs if we stick with quality bats that can last more than a few games.

  2. 2014 Draft – The success of last two years, where we invited the top 4 pitchers from prior year to lead the team draft process will continue in 2014. These “draft captains” will automatically be on the team they help organize. The issue of Sponsor involvement in the draft has been controversial and will  be allowed in this year’s draft.  Player-Sponsors are considered “consultants”.  They can offer suggestions but designated “Draft Captains” will have ultimate authority of all players drafted.  After teams are selected, Sponsors will be assigned to the final teams.  At that point, the Sponsors and team members will select a player to manage their team for the 2014 season. If any of the top 4 pitchers decline or are unable to participate in the draft, A league officer will draft a suitable substitute to participate in the draft. Draft Day is tentatively March 16th or 23rd.

  3. The 2012 Preliminary Game Schedule was reviewed. (See hdlmemphisblog/home page for copy of schedule when it is posted.)

  4. HDL Fund Raiser events were discussed.  a.)  Golf Tournament in March          b.) Marathon Charity Baseball Game played at Tobey on a Saturday (Date TBD) c.) Home Run Derby in conjunction with Marathon Charity Game.   Jocko volunteered to coordinate these special events.  If anyone has any suggestions for a fund raiser, please contact Jocko.

  5. Current and New Players and possible additional team?  Every year there are changes in membership.  We expect there will be players who played last year who may not return but we hope this will be off-set with new and former players will join/re-join the HDL and choose to make playing baseball their summer fun activity.  Last year Cesar Roman indicated there is possibility some of his friends from the Latino league might be interested in playing in the HDL if they could play their first year as an independent team.  The officers discussed this unique arrangement.  We agreed to allow this to happen if Cesar’s Friends meet our stipulation: a.) After 1st year of playing as an independent team, the 2nd year (2015) all players from Latino team would become integrated into standard HDL team draft format.  b.) Conduct and sportmanship must meet established HDL standards.  c.) All players must follow HDL game rules and schedule.

  6. WOOD BAT Games.  In 2014, since MSBL decided to hold their Wood Bat Tournament in October, at same time HDL would be finishing Playoffs, our Wood Bat designated games will be scheduled at our discretion.  Since MLB holds their Hall of Fame Ceremony in July, in honor of traditional baseball, the HDL will use Wood Bats during the entire month of July.  Just to remind everyone, any HDL player may use wood bats at anytime during the season.  Metal bats are always OPTIONAL.

  7. Post Season Tournament Seeding:  Last year there was some confusion about the Home Team guidelines for tournament.  Teams with the best won-lost record during the regular season will be rewarded (or punished) since all teams will be “seeded” in the playoffs based on regular season W-L record.  The team with higher seed (in Playoffs) will automatically be “Home Team”, UNTIL, they lose in the winners bracket to the winner of the Loser’s Bracket. Therefore, the “IF” game Home Team will be decided by Coin Toss since winner of the Loser Bracket would have a better Play-off record than the team that lost their first game in the Winners Bracket.

  8. HDL RULE REVISIONS:  The meeting committee that met last Sunday went through the posted HDL By-Laws and Player-Game rules to make sure the descriptions are clear and easy to understand.  For anyone who is interested, visit the “HDL Rules” webpage to see the changes.       http://hdlmemphis.org/home/hdl-rules/              Some of the revisions to check out:

  • Game Time Limits
  • Tie game guidelines
  • Post Season eligibility
  • Uniform options  (Gray or White pants)
  • Courtesy Runner (Current – minor updates)  A proposed major change will be posted separately and voted on by all HDL members.

The HDL Officers are asking all players to start recruiting players who you think would enjoy playing in the HDL.  Tell interested players to follow this Blog for latest updates.  (Also: links to web posts will be on Facebook at Hernando DeSoto)

ATTENTION:  During February, when weather conditions are comfortable, anyone who can come out to help clean up the leaves will be appreciated.  Be alert for an email, text, or Blog post that will notify you when help will be needed.

Remember:  Post your comments when you have a question or your personal opinion related to HDL Baseball.

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