Board OKs Little League Affiliation, Will Create Separate Competitive League

Mike Bowman X K Shy Ii Tn Jk Unsplash

The Indianola (Iowa) Baseball board on Wednesday voted to stick with its Little League affiliation after previously floating the idea of moving to the United States Specialty Sport Association. 

According to KCCI, the board agreed to remain affiliated with Little League at least through 2024, but it also said it will start an optional competitive league. 

"After much discussion and research, the Indianola Baseball Inc board has voted to continue with Little League International for the 2024 recreational baseball season," the league wrote in a post of Facebook. "In addition, a new, separate Competitive Baseball League will be established for the 2024 year. This league will not in any way affect the recreational baseball season. It will allow us to utilize our fields and facilities when not in use by the recreational league. Finally, the board has voted in favor of a coupon card fundraiser to help us keep down costs for our athletes and families. We look forward to the upcoming season!"

The result appears to be a compromise, as the board said in late October that it was considering changing  its affiliation to USSSA. However, parents were worried it would be more expensive and require more travel. 

"We just want to know the benefit to moving to USSSA for the player. And that has not been communicated," Emily Fox, a mother with three sons in the league, told KCCI back in October. 

The USSSA is a more competitive league, and Fox said not all players would get the same amount of playing time. She also said it's more expensive. "There is a significant cost between little league and travel ball." 

At the time, some parents told KCCI that they were considering legal action against the Indianola Baseball Board for violating rules and bylaws of the league. 

"No kid is ever told you're not good enough to play. That happens all the time in USSSA," said Bill Fox, a former coach and board member.

He says under the Little League umbrella, registration is $180 for the season, whereas USSSA could cost thousands of dollars to join a travel team, as well as entry fees for weekend tournaments. 

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