Little League Baseball and Softball in West Windsor Plainsboro and Cranbury NJ

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West Windsor Little League
Board Meeting minutes
October 16, 2007

In attendance:  Executive Board Members – Andy Lupo, Chris Thornton , Harlan Greenman , Ellen Vogt, Kevin Chapman, Holly Shemitz. 

Also in attendance:  Lori Plotkin, Nick Schiera, Bob Sacco, Colleen O’Cone, Jeff Weinberg, Ron Russell, Larry Charlip, Allan Bensky, Linda DeMilt, Scott Cochrane, Brian Foley, Bill Kramer, Andrew Klein, Steven Lichtenstein, Suresh Jaswal, Thomas Carroll, Rich Betz, Frank Pilkiewicz, Robert Bacall, Ron Rumack, Jeff Weinberg.

Meeting scheduled to start at .  Prior to meeting, all in attendance invited to pick up ballots for VP softball election.,

Call to order []  (By Kevin Chapman)

VP Softball Election 

Statement from Harlan Greenman – candidate’s presentation for VP Softball election.  {details omitted}

Statement from Ron Russell – candidate’s presentation for VP Softball election {details omitted}

Opportunity for public comment on candidates:  Allan Bensky – question about what candidates intend to increase participation in the program.  Question re: efforts to better coordinate schedules between WWLL and Wildcats and what candidates intend to do to harmonize the relationships between the two teams.  Jeff Weinberg:  comments about lack of travel program for younger girls in the township.  Question re: problems with schedule changes last year, and rule changes, which disrupted the flow of the games and was difficult for the parents.  Question about intent regarding all-stars – whether it’s intended to be more competitive, or whether all girls who try out should be allowed to play.  Question about plans to keep the girls interested during the season and get more of the better girls to try out for all-stars.  Question about last year’s 12-year-old all-star team and whether WW merely put together a non-competitive team for the purpose of having a team, or whether candidates think that the team was, really, competitive.  Chris Thornton commented on several issues including challenges of all-star teams and managing pitching problems during the year.  Comment about better scheduling for teams and avoidance of forfeits.  Question about philosophy regarding whether lower-skilled players should be allowed to play “majors” and whether majors should be more or less competitive.

Ballots for in-person voting were distributed and collected.  Proxy (absentee) ballots had been collected and counted prior to meeting.  Announcement of VP Softball (Ron Russell).  Vote count was not disclosed.  (Ron had more votes both among proxy ballots and among in-person voters.)

Treasurer’s report – Tabled.  Ed O’Connor will report at next meeting.

Board Positions -- Explanation given by Andy about election of Executive Board members and appointment of Board positions.

Volunteer Bonds -- Ellen reports on current status.  Some volunteer assignments are still available.  Year-end clean-up is coming up Nov. 4th.  Anyone who has not fulfilled volunteer obligation can do so by volunteering on clean-up day.

Softball Report. – comments about doing a better job of keeping the league coordinators informed about field supplies at Community Park. Harlan (outgoing VP) reports that clinics are organized and will be starting soon.  Fall ball is wrapping up and doing well.  New clinics, including softball pitching clinics, are organized and being scheduled.  Ron offered to meet with coordinators after the meeting.

Baseball Report – Fall Ball coordinators (Frank P and Steve L) report on the success of the current Fall Ball program.  Steve reports that teams are competitive with other towns in games and that 9/10 teams have been very competitive and good games.  Frank reports that many boys have been able to pitch and the large rosters (15) have not been a big problem.  Frank reports that umpires have been available for games and it’s been a successful program.  Rick Betz and Tom Carroll reported on preparation for Majors 2008.  Expectation of putting out a letter to parents about self-selection of players for Majors/Minors.  Chris reports ongoing discussions about whether the league should bat all players in Majors (rather than batting only 9).  Suggestion that the coordinators should make a recommendation to the Board about league rules for 2008.  Rob Bahash reports on preparation for T-ball season.  Mickey Grover will be co-coordinator.  Scott Schoenblum and Randy Kertes have had meetings for Minors.  Rookies and AAA will be discussed at next meeting.  Chris reports that Suresh Jaswal and Larry Charlip will be taking responsibility for post-season coordination for 7, 8, and 9s.

Player development – Comment that we need to develop more catchers as a league.  Discussion about holding catching clinics available for more boys.  Chris reports that Bob Sacco is now overall in charge of player clinics for upcoming. 

Indoor Facility – Andy reports that facility is well booked for the fall with clinics, school teams, and travel teams.  Saturdays and Sundays are generally open for public use on a drop-in basis.  We are renting out the facility for travel teams when time permits.  We are considering replacement of the current floor (putting in a higher quality astro-turf).  Also working on the walls and other fixtures in the indoor facility.  Reminder to let Andy know (or Randy Kertes) if there are any repairs necessary in the indoor.

Fall Ball – (Included in Baseball report above)  Harlan reports on softball fall ball program.  General feeling that teams from other towns are much better than our fall ball teams.

Projects – Andy reports that Ward Field scoreboards should be repaired and ready for next season.  We have been working on them.  Athletic Fields have been working on the fields and will be doing other work at the field.  We will be putting in pitching mounds (LL size) behind the indoor facility for pitching practice.

Equipment – Discussion of batting cages at Ward Field – need for nets or cushions so that batted balls will not bounce as much.  Also request for repaired pitching screens for batting cages.  Discussion about having faceguards for girls, and helmets with faceguards.  Pros and cons, and getting the girls to wear them.  Rob Bacall reports that we have no pony-tail helmets at the moment, but that we have provided faceguards as needed.  The league also sells facemask helmets.

Rob Bacall reports that he needs a volunteer to take over equipment coordinator duty beginning this spring.  Rob will be available to assist, but needs somebody else to take over major responsibility.

Comments/new issues – Rob Bacall comments on first aid kits.  We need a volunteer to re-stock first aid kits for the spring season.

Chris Thornton .  Brings up the announcing booths.  Need a volunteer to put a plan in place regarding how the booths should function and how we want them to run for next year.  Coordinator/volunteer could make suggestions.  E.g., have one parent designated to be responsible for operation of scoreboard and/or coordinating who will be in the booth, etc.  Could have an “official” schedule for booth duty.  

Comment about trying to recruit some female umpires for youth umps for softball games.

Adjourn:  []

Note that Ward Field year-end cleanup day is Saturday, November 4 to .

Next Board meeting is November 13th – WW Municipal Center (Council Room)