Frequently Asked Questions
Junior Baseball Organization Inc. is not your traditional youth baseball organization. As a result, a variety of questions arise about how the program operates. League administrators have had to repeatedly field the same questions many times. Those (volunteer) administrators are always glad to answer questions, but we have assembled many of those frequently asked questions and answers here. Before picking up the phone to call someone, please browse through our collection here to find your question and answer. If you can't find your question in our list, please then ask your question at the lowest possible level, i.e., your local Association or District Commissioner.
What is "Junior Baseball Organization,Inc.?
J.B.O. is a non-profit organization formed to provide an opportunity for Oregon youth from ages 9-16 to participate in an organized baseball experience. The goal of J.B.O.is to provide each child, regardless of skill level, an ability to compete in baseball against other players of similar skill and age. As such, players are divided into separate divisions based on age and skill level (see "Junior Baseball Divisions"). J.B.O. games are played according to the rules of the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) with some modifications to tailor the rules to the age and skill level of the players. For example, J.B.O. base lengths and pitching distances are reduced from the High School level to accommodate younger players, but increase progressively with the age of the players. The intent is to provide all ages of players the opportunity to play the complete game of baseball (leading off, stealing, etc.) but to progressively increase playing distances as the age and skill of players increase. The J.B.O. program revolves around local Associations creating community-based programs to meet local needs for summer baseball programs within the broader framework of J.B.O.. The J.B.O. organization is made up of separate Districts, and local Associations (also known as Areas). Four elected officers, six Commissioners from the J.B.O. Districts, and one At-Large Commissioner administer J.B.O.. These administrative members of J.B.O. are responsible for the overall governance of the organization including activities such as establishing rules for player participation, league formation, game play, etc. Junior Baseball Organization,Inc. is independent of any of the other traditional, nationwide youth baseball organizations
What is a Junior Baseball District?
J.B.O. is divided up into Districts, with no exact geographic boundaries. The District boundaries are annually reviewed and adjusted as needed. Each District holds at least one "Commissioner" seat on the J.B.O. State Board. Each District is allotted a set number of seeds in the J.B.O. State Tournaments.
How is J.B.O. governed and decisions made?
J.B.O. is composed of an elected Board of Directors and Commissioners from each approved District. Board members are elected annually through a vote of the Commissioners. J.B.O. is governed through participation by the Board and District Commissioners. The District Commissioners provide input and vote on proposals brought before them by the J.B.O. Board of Directors. The Board independently handles "sensitive" or confidential matters (in consultation with the affected Areas) that are not appropriate for general communication. The Board also oversees contracted positions necessary for the operation of the J.B.O.
Who do I contact if I have a concern or question?
Questions or concerns should be addressed to the appropriate District Commissioner for your local community. The Commissioner may forward issues that cannot be resolved locally to J.B.O. for consideration.
How do I get my child signed up to play in Junior Baseball?
Contact your local District Commissioner to find out when they hold sign-ups and tryouts (skill evaluations) for Junior Baseball. If your community does not have a Junior Baseball program, contact the Commissioner from the District closest to your community to determine if they have opportunities for your child to participate. If you cannot determine the appropriate Area, send an E-mail message to one of the Board members members listed on this site and they will attempt to direct you to the appropriate J.B.O. District.
What are the major differences between other youth baseball leagues and Junior Baseball?
The primary difference is that J.B.O. plays by amended high school rules, as opposed to most of the other youth league rules. Probably one of the most prominent rule differences is about base stealing.In the other traditional leagues, a player cannot steal a base on a pitched ball until the ball crosses home plate. In J.B.O, a player may take a lead off the base and steal at any time during the pitch. As the kids get older and more experienced, the "base stealing" rule makes for some very exciting baseball. The rule also teaches the kids smart base running techniques. They will need the techniques if they continue playing baseball as they get older. Possibly the best thing about Junior Baseball, is that when it comes to playoff time, a team goes as a unit. No "all-star" team is created. Another major difference is the size of the field. In other youth leagues, the field size remains the same through the age of 12 (46Õ pitching and 60Õ bases). In J.B.O. the field size grows as the kids grow. 9-10 years olds play on a field with 45ft pitching and 60ft bases. 11-12 year olds play on a field with 50ft pitching and 70ft bases. Thus, pitching does not dominate J.B.O. because of the mound distance.
I like the principles of Junior Baseball. How should my community evaluate whether a switch to "JBO" would be beneficial to our children?
Any successful move to Junior Baseball from Little League, Babe Ruth or other organizations always occurs because of strong local support. If people are hesitant (and they probably will be since change is always difficult) suggest that the area put together an independent Federal level team (probably Midget or Junior Federal) to participate in J.B.O. invitational tournaments. In these tournaments, they will get to see how High School baseball is played, and will see how good the competition is in J.B.O.. If there appears to be some interest, contact the District in your area to see if they can send some Board members to explain J.B.O. to a local group. Then, if you eventually get to the point of a possible transition, contact an Area that has recently "made the switch" to get advice on how to make the transition to a new association. The conclusion—it's not simple, but it can be done and it's well worth the effort!!!
What are the different Age Divisions?
J.B.O. provides opportunities for players 9-16 years of age. Players are grouped into four distinct age divisions, Midget, Junior, Senior and Cubs. The Midget Division is made up of players aged 9 and 10, Juniors are aged 11 and 12, Seniors are aged 13 and 14, and Cubs are aged 15 and 16. The age of the players are generally determined by their age on July 31 of the year of the baseball season, though there are exceptions for older players who wish to participate with their school classmates (see the J.B.O. rules). Within each age group (except Cubs), players are also separated into three distinct skill levels (See "What are the Different Skill Divisions")
Are there opportunities for players younger than 9 years of age?
Most of the local Areas within each District, offer developmental leagues, often referred to as "T-Ball" programs for players younger than nine years of age. These leagues are governed by the local Area and are totally independent of J.B.O. Contact your local Area Head to obtain information on programs that may be available in your community.
What are the different Skill Divisions?
Within each Age Division, Junior Baseball teams are also separated by the relative skill level of the players. This separation is necessary to meet the J.B.O. goal of assuring that all players participate against other players of equal age and skill. For all Divisions except Cubs, players are separated into three distinct levels: National, American and Federal. Generally, the National level is for players with beginning or recreation level skills. The American level is for intermediate skills, and the Federal level is for players with the highest skill level. Cubs players are not separated by skill level.
I believe that my child has skills suited for the Federal level of play but my local Area does not have a Federal team. What can I do?
J.B.O. rules provide that if an Association (Area) does not field a Federal team, Federal players from Areas without a Federal program must play in the next closest Association (no "skipping" to another Area). The intent is to prevent player recruitment.
How are players assigned to teams of the correct Skill Level?
J.B.O. rules require that each Association (Area) conduct a skill evaluation of players prior to forming teams, and that teams be formed by placing players on teams of equal age and skill. At these player skill assessments, coaches or Area officers are responsible for evaluating the players and placing them on teams of the proper skill level. J.B.O. has found that where player skill evaluations are completed and teams are formed according to these evaluations, the need to "move" teams during the season is very rare.
How long is a Junior Baseball season?
The length of a normal J.B.O. season will vary according to the age/skill level of the team being considered, and whether a team advances to post-season play. In general, regular league play normally begins in early May and continues through late June or early July. Teams that advance to a District tournament will continue until approximately mid-July. Teams that further advance to the State tournament may continue playing into the first weekend of August.
If a player is late in arriving to a game, can he play?
Yes. He is put in the bottom of the batting order, and may be inserted at time of arrival, regardless of inning. This is a J.B.O. exception. High school rules differ.
How can a baseball game end in a tie?
A game can end up in a tie because of time restriction, darkness, or weather. Details are in the "J.B.O." and "NFHS" rule rulebooks.
How are league game results reported and tracked?
J.B.O. does not track each individual team throughout the regular season. This responsibility is left up to each District. Each District has their own system for reporting and tracking regular season games.
Why are pitching / innings recorded on game results cards?
Junior Baseball rules limit the number of innings that a player can pitch during a game or in seven consecutive days (depending on the age/skill level). These rules are intended to protect the health of the players. Each District tracks this information closely. Coaches that "over-pitch" any player may have to forfeit the game where the innings pitched exceeded the maximum innings allowed by rule.
Do invitational tournament games count against regular game pitching limits?
No. The Junior Baseball rules that limit the number of innings that a player can pitch only applies to league games. The number of innings pitched by a player during invitational tournaments DO NOT count in subsequent games played in the regular season schedule. Coaches are strongly encouraged to consider the innings pitched in invitational tournaments, however, when using pitchers in the subsequent league games so that the health of any player is not threatened!
What opportunities does Junior Baseball Organization offer for post-season play?
Junior Baseball Organization annually hosts Championship Tournaments for each age/skill Division within J.B.O.. The teams entering these tournaments advance from each of the J.B.O. Districts based upon their success at District Tournaments, or their standings resulting from regular league play.
How are teams selected for participation in the JBO Championship Tournament?
Junior Baseball Organization is divided up into "Districts". At each level of play, every District is allowed a set number of seeds in each of the final "State" tournaments. The method a District uses to send their team(s) to "State" varies. One method is that at a given level, the District can merely send their team(s) with the best regular season record. The other method is to hold a post season "District" tournament to decide the team(s) that will advance to the "State" tournament. The District tournaments are held no later than the weekend prior to the final State tournament for the given level.
Where are the J.B.O. Championship tournaments held?
The sites for State tournaments are determined annually by the J.B.O. State Board based upon requests by the Districts to host these tournaments. The State Board tries to select tournament sites that have top grade facilities. The selected tournament sites are reported elsewhere on this website.