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Bakersfield Southwest Baseball



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  The Foal Division is for 3 and 4 year old players with no prior baseball experience. Players learn the fundamentals of baseball. Players use a softer than usual baseball and is a Coach-Pitch / Tee Ball combination division.  It is our feeling that learning to hit a ball, pitched by the coach, teaches these youngsters to learn to "pick up" the ball from a throwing hand and meet it with the swinging bat at a much earlier age.  We allow use of the tee when the player misses 5 pitched balls, so the batter can still put the ball in play and run the bases.  By the end of the season there are very few players needing to use a tee. 

The diamond is 50 feet, and flexible rules expedite play. Play consists of two innings in which all team members bat and play the field each inning. No game score or standings are kept. When possible, players are assigned to teams with their schoolmates.  Each player receives a baseball jersey, hat, and a team photo.





(Click on Question Below)

We hope you will be able to find the answer you are looking for here, but if not, feel free to ask the Foal Commissioner. We'll try to update the list periodically with the good questions that parents continue to ask.

How old does my child have to be to play baseball?

Is my child ready to play baseball?

How do I register my child?

What is the difference between PONY Baseball and Little League?

When does the season start?

Where, when and how often are practices held?

Where, when and how often are games played?

How many games are scheduled?

What equipment is required to play?

What equipment is supplied by the league?

Do the kids keep the team hat and shirt?

Is there any additional fundraising required?

What and when is Picture Day?

Does my child need to tryout?

How are teams assigned?

How many kids are on a Foal team?

Can my child request a friend to play on the same team?

Are there girls playing in Foal?

Will my child be able to play with kids from the same school?

When will I be notified which team my child is on?

I am interested in coaching, what should I do?

What opportunities are there for parents to assist the coaches during the season?

What are the special rules for Foal division?




How Old Does My Child Have To Be To Play Baseball?

For the Spring Season (and the Previous Fall Season), children that are 3 or 4 years old on April 30, (of the Spring Season) will participate in the Foal Division.  We have many preschoolers play and this is a parental choice based on the child's desire to play sports and their physical and emotional maturity.[Back To Top]

Is My Child Ready To Play Baseball?

We encourage all players from age 3 on up, to register and play baseball at BSWB.  The earliest you can get them started, the better it is to develop the skills they need to be successful in High School and College Ball.  Not everyone agrees with this concept, so Foal (3-4 year olds) is not necessarily the age you might want to start them at.  But consider this, it is a proven fact, that the earlier you expose a child to anything, from sports to music, the more likely they are to succeed at it.  Most Olympic champions (especially gymnasts) start as early as 2 years old.

Most young kids can figure out quickly the fun of hitting a ball and with practices to emphasize throwing, hitting, fielding and game knowledge, they will learn the game quickly. The goal is to provide a fun, positive sports experience in a safe environment.  It's a good idea to get them started early so they learn to love the game. [Back To Top]

 How Do I Register My Child And What Does It Cost?

Registration and payment is performed entirely online. Complete information is provided on our Registration Page. In some divisions, there is always a shortage of coaches, causing us to put together teams outside of the draft.  The best way to ensure your child has a team to play on is to volunteer to coach! [Back To Top]


What Is The Difference Between PONY Baseball And Little League?

At the Foal Division at BSWB, the baseball experience that your child will have will be closer to “real baseball” than any other league (Little League, Babe Ruth, etc).  We aim to introduce your child to baseball by utilizing “coach pitch” (with Tee backup), and we've tailored the game for the child's age, safety, fun and many opportunities for success.  At the higher levels, the main differences are age based divisions (rather than skill based), incremental increases in the size of the playing field, and the introduction of leadoffs. [Back To Top]


When Does The Season Start?

Early in January the Foal Commissioner will put teams together based on areas, schools and parental requests.  Coaches can begin practice shortly after the Mandatory Coach’s meeting.  Our Opening Day Ceremony is towards the end of February with games beginning immediately after that.  Our season will end before Memorial Day each year. [Back To Top]


Where, When And How Often Are Practices Held?

Due to the number of teams in the lower divisions, Foal practices are held at a local park, selected by the coach.  If fields are available for practices, coaches will be allowed to pick one practice time per week at Aera Park.  [Back To Top]


Where, When And How Often Are Games Played?

All Foal Division games are played on Sunday Mornings on Fields 2 and 3.  [Back To Top]


How Many Games Are Scheduled?

The Foal season is 12 or 13 games. We start in early March, take off the Spring Break, and finish by Memorial Day.  Rain-outs are rescheduled by the commissioner only if an available date and time can be arranged.  Your coach/team parent will contact you if a game is called off, so always assume the game will be played unless you hear from your team.  [Back To Top]


What Equipment Is Required To Play?

The minimum equipment needed is a glove. You can expect to pay $30-40 for a relatively good quality beginner glove made of leather (not plastic).  Better quality gloves range from $40-200. Most kids (virtually all at the Mustang level and above) also need to purchase baseball shoes (about $30 for kids sizes up to size 6). Many players also purchase their own bats, which can range from $25-$250.  [Back To Top]


What Equipment Is Supplied By The League?

The league gives each team an equipment bag containing game baseballs and helmets. A hat and team Jersey are provided and the kids keep these at the end of the season. [Back To Top]


Do The Kids Keep The Team Hat And Shirt?

Yes, at the end of the season, the kids keep the hats and shirts. [Back To Top]


Is There Any Additional Fundraising Required?

As explained in “What Does My Fees Pay For?”, registration fees do not cover 100% of the costs to operate our league.  In order to keep our Registration Fees as low as possible we rely on donations, sponsors and fundraisers in order to provide a premier facility for our players.  Each team should secure a Sponsor, who gets a 4’x6’ banner on the field of their division, and a sponsor’s plaque with the team photo and a thank you for sponsoring wording.

In addition, each year we hold a fundraiser with the proceeds going towards facility upgrades.  For the past few years our “Disneyland Family-of-Four Annual Pass” raffle has been relatively successful.  The money from these fundraisers for the past two years, have paid for the construction of the batting cages for our teams to use during practice and before games.   A note here is that we were able to raise that money with a relatively low percentage of participation.  For example, last spring, we had approximately 19% participation and raised close to $30,000 for these projects.  Can you imagine how much we could collect and the upgrades we could afford, if we were to get even 50% participation by the players.  This fundraiser literally sells itself.  The first prize was the family pack of annual tickets for Disneyland (with park jumper passes) and the second place prize has been a 40” TV.  For 2016, we will be adding many more prizes that can be won during this raffle. [Back To Top]


What And When Is Picture Day?

Picture day is when the team and individual photos of the children are taken. A team photo is included in your registration fees. Additional photos (individual and packages), plaques, key chains, baseball cards, etc. can be purchased using the photo form handed out prior to picture day. [Back To Top]

Does My Child Need To Tryout?

There are no try-outs for Foal players. The Foal Commissioner assigns players to teams.  Foal is an introductory level and the games are skewed toward fun, player participation and success. [Back To Top]


How Are Teams Assigned?

The Foal Commissioner assigns the kids to the teams.  We take into account the requested teammates, school, and special requests to the extent possible.  Typically the division consists of 10 to 12 teams with twelve or thirteen players per team.  We attempt to accommodate all the requests, but cannot guarantee any specific request can be met. [Back To Top]


How Many Kids Are On A Foal Team?

We start with a goal of 12 kids per team, and then build as many teams as we can, up to the number of head coaches that have volunteered by the time teams are assigned.  If not enough parents volunteer to coach, teams may have 13 or more players.[Back To Top]

Can My Child Request A Friend To Play On The Same Team?

Each player can request a friend to be placed on the same team. The request has to be mutual; that is, the friend must request your child. We also look at the school the kids attend and try to place them with kids from the same school. If you have a special request, please list it on the registration form, but if it is elaborate, contact the Foal Commissioner. Please do not request that a child be placed on a team that practices or plays games at a specific time, as there is no way to accommodate such a request.  [Back To Top]

Are There Girls Playing Foal?

Every year several girls play in the Foal division, although not all teams will have girls assigned to them.  If you have a daughter who wishes to be assigned to a team with at least one other girl,  either cross-request a buddy, or indicate that you'd like to be assigned to a team with another girl.  We'll do our best to honor the request. [Back To Top]


Will My Child Be Able To Play With Kids From The Same School?

We use the child's school as a first try at assigning kids to teams.  For several schools there will be multiple teams with kids from that school.  The number and source of volunteer coaches also determines how teams are created, as some schools may have more or less coaches volunteer than the number of kids wanting to be on teams.  If your child is currently in pre-school, it usually helps if you put the school where he/she would attend kindergarten (closest public school) on the application and you'll most likely end up on a team of kids and parents from your general neighborhood.  If he/she has a buddy he'd like to play with, put that down on the registration form also. [Back To Top]


When Will I Be Notified Which Team My Child Is On?

Teams will be formed by the Foal commissioner from mid-January to early February. The Foal coaches meeting in early March is where the coaches will find out which kids have been assigned to their team. Once the coach's meeting has occurred it is our policy not to move kids from team to team unless an extraordinary situation exists. Coaches then contact their players over the next week and pass on the details such as team members and practice schedule. It is recommended that the coaches hold a parents meeting before or after the first team practice in order to introduce themselves and recruit assistance during the season.[Back To Top]


I'm Interested In Coaching, What Should I Do?

You may register to coach or manage a team by using the online registration for Manager/Coach, and clicking on the “201X Season” Tab and then the Registration Tab. When filling out the registration form, be sure to indicate which position (Manager/Coach) you would like, and note if there is someone you would like to coach with. It definitely helps to “know baseball”, but knowing how to deal with and motivate young players is equally important. We hold mandatory training clinics for coaches and provide links on line for assistance with planning materials.  Many parents doubt their ability to coach, but most who volunteer find the experience rewarding and return as coaches the following year. Our desire is to get one head coach (Manager) and one assistant (Coach) officially signed-up for each team.  If you would like additional information or have questions, please contact the Division Commissioner. [Back To Top]


What Opportunities Are There For Parents To Assist The Coaches During The Season?

Managing/Coaching a team is a time consuming and demanding job.  Coaches need your help, as parents in handling fundraisers, pictures packets, concession stand and opening day volunteer slots. A “Team-Mom” is great to handle these issues.  During practices, if you are waiting for your child, offer to assist the coach with drills, or just to assist with kid management.  During games, parents are not allowed to go onto the field or dugout areas, but the head coach may request your assistance in some way and most of the time, it will mean being involved in field preparation (dragging, watering, raking, etc.)or cleanup after the game.  A team of parents makes prepping the field (before and after the game) a breeze, and allows the manager and coach to concentrate on team warmups, lineups and meeting with umpires.  [Back To Top]


What Are The Special Rules For Foal Division?

The BSWB Foal program teaches the fundamentals of baseball, team spirit, and sportsmanship in a safe environment while having as much fun as possible. The following formal rules apply:

·        General Rules apply to all divisions, and are designed to help maintain the condition of our playing fields, help ensure everyone's safety, and supplement the Good Neighbor Policy.

·        Foal Local Rules specifically govern play within the Foal Division.

[Back To Top]

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