Friday, February 9, 2018

Expansions to Little League® International Tournament Set for 2018

Courtesy of www.LittleLeague.news
Australia Region to gain direct entry into Intermediate (50/70) Baseball World Series; Junior League Baseball World Series to add Host Team.
SOUTH WILLIAMSPORT, Pa. (February 9, 2018) – The Little League® International Tournament will see two new expansion changes coming in 2018 that will affect the Junior League Baseball and Intermediate (50/70) Baseball Divisions.


“We are excited to continue to grow the Little League International Tournament and offer more opportunities around the world in our teenage divisions of play,” said Pat Wilson, Senior Vice President of Operations and Program Development. “The International Tournament is the culmination of the many weeks of local league play and provides participants with opportunity to travel, make new friends, and engage in friendly competition-activities few other summer programs can provide. We believe these two changes will continue to grow these opportunities that we can offer to our international players and are excited for the future.”

Courtesy of www.LittleLeague.news
The first of two expansions will come at the Junior League Baseball World Series in Taylor, Mich., with the addition of a Host Team to even out the field with 12 participating teams. With this new expansion, six Little League World Series events in baseball and softball (excluding the Little League Baseball World Series) now has a participating host team within its field.

The second expansion implemented for the 2018 season is a direct entry opportunity for the Australia Region in the Little League Intermediate (50/70) Baseball Division in Livermore, Calif. Australia’s Little League program is one of the fastest growing in the world, with more than 1,000 Little League teams registered across the country. Starting in 2018, representatives from Australia will now gain direct entry in each of Little League’s four baseball World Series events. Because Australia’s direct entry creates an uneven number of teams in the field, representatives from Puerto Rico and Mexico, who have a comparable number of participation and tournament enrollment numbers, will be provided alternating direct entry into the tournament each year, with the opportunity to compete through the Latin America Region Tournament in years without direct entry.

About Little League®
Founded in 1939, Little League® Baseball and Softball is the world’s largest organized youth sports program, with nearly 2.4 million players and one million adult volunteers in every U.S. state and more than 80 other countries. During its nearly 80 years of existence, Little League has seen more than 40 million honored graduates, including political leaders, professional athletes, award-winning artists, and a variety of other influential members of society. Each year, millions of people follow the hard work, dedication, and sportsmanship that Little Leaguers® display at our seven baseball and softball World Series events, the premier tournaments in youth sports. For more information, visit LittleLeague.org, and follow Little League on Facebook (facebook.com/LittleLeague), Twitter (twitter.com/LittleLeague), and Instagram (Instagram.com/LittleLeague).