Hillcrest Softball League


Captain’s Guide



            Welcome to the Hillcrest Softball League!  As a captain, you have a unique opportunity to take part in a rewarding experience.  Being a captain in the Hillcrest Softball League will give you the opportunity to be a leader, an organizer and a mentor.  You will improve your knowledge of the game of baseball, while gaining valuable interaction experience.  Some former captains have included their role in our organization on their professional resume, and have used this experience to help get a job, or for other capacities.  You will get the real opportunity to manage a team of your own, which many have only dreamt about.  Making your lineup, and managing field positions can be a very enjoyable experience.  With opportunity and enjoyment also comes responsibility.  Being a captain will require some work on your part – which makes both your team, and the league as a whole operate and function properly. 

As a captain, you have two responsibilities – your team, and the league.  As for your team, it is your responsibility to look out for their needs and concerns during the season, as well as managing a winning team.  Most importantly, your duty to your team is to provide a pleasant and enjoyable experience for all of your teammates.  How you do this is largely up to your methods and attitudes, but there are a few basic principles that a captain should follow.  A few such principles are to: Get everyone involved in the game in a capacity that they can have a positive impact on the team.  Never put a player in a position that will make them look bad.  Never call attention to errors or to poor hitting, unless it can be used in a constructive manner.  Encourage teamwork, and encourage teammates to bond on and off the field.  These are only a few principles – there are many more, and only you can determine the best way to make the game both fun and enjoyable, while producing a winning team.

The other responsibility that you have is to the league.  The game of baseball is played against another team, possibly a different team every week, of whom you might not know many of the players.  Baseball is a universal sport, and even though you might not know your opponent on a personal level, you still share the same respect for the game as they do.  Your responsibility as a captain, is also to ensure that other teams get the same enjoyment as you provide for your team.  For example, during the game, you must make sure that the conduct of your players is appropriate, because the way your players act – affects the way other players enjoy their experience of the game.  The way that your players conduct themselves also has an affect on the reputation of the league.  The league encourages the captains to get to know one another, and become comfortable with interacting with each other.  Captains will have to interact at the field, and off the field (for example – rain situations).

A large part of your responsibility to the league, will involve the Commissioner, Ariel Cohen.  As the Commissioner, Ariel Cohen brings the experience of over half a decade of sports organization to the league.  The Commissioner organizes and schedules games for all teams, supplies equipment, maintains the website, and many other tasks which make the league run.  He is also the complaint department.  In order to make the league work, captains are often called to assist him with some operations of the league.  Most importantly, information (such as rosters, contact information, game scores, etc.) must be relayed to the Commissioner in a timely fashion, in order to get the proper information out to the other captains, and to the rest of the league.  Cooperation between captains, and between captain and Commissioner, is essential to making the league work.

As a part of your guide to being a captain in the Hillcrest Softball League, we have assembled below a list of descriptive responsibilities that you have before and after each game, both on and off the field.  Although many of your responsibilities as captain are hard to list, we can list many of them.  Please take the list as a part of your checklist of what you need to do as a captain.  These items are deemed as required by the Hillcrest Softball League, although some should be fairly obvious to you.  There are other required responsibilities which are not listed, but these are the ones that we thought noteworthy to list out.  It is essential that this list, at the very least, be followed.  All captains will have this list, and thus can know and expect at least this much from the other teams in the league.


Before Coming to the Game

1)      Equipment and Items you must take to each game:

a.       The League Schedule – May be updated periodically during the season.  Please take the most recent one with you.

b.      Scorebook

c.       League Rules

d.      Contact Info for Other Captains – Please do not use the Commissioner as the middleman for getting in touch with another captain.  Where possible and applicable, please contact the other captains directly.

e.       Team Rosters – All teams rosters in the league.

f.        Bats, Gloves, Sunglasses, Cleats for your team members – These items are not provided by the league.  Sometimes games are changed from one field to another – you must be prepared for all types of field conditions.

g.       Catcher’s Mask – Each team must bring its own.

h.       Bases and Cones – The team listed as the “Home Team” must bring these items.  It is a good idea to have them just incase a team forgets.  These items must be brought even if you are playing a game at a concrete field.  Sometimes the bases and foul lines are not easily visible, and sometimes for whatever reason – you need to switch to a dirt field.

i.         Softballs – The home team is required to provide all balls during the game.  The home team must provide at least one ball at the start of the game, and if conditions dictate, possibly one, two or more balls may be necessary.  In the playoffs, the visiting team is required to provide one ball in the middle of the game.

j.        Permits

k.      Medical Equipment – Each team is required to bring to each game:

                                                                           i.      First Aid Kit

                                                                         ii.      At least 2 Instant Cold Packs – These really do get used, and must be replenished during the season.  We recommend that you buy extra ones before the season.

                                                                           i.      Ace Bandage or Wrap

                                                                         ii.      Hydrogen Peroxide (Recommended)

l.         Captain’s Guide and Checklist

2)      Make sure that you have a full team to play your game by the preceding Wednesday.  This might cost you a penalty loss if you do not have enough players to play (see the league rules).

3)      Check the Weather Forecast in Hillcrest (Zip: 11365)

4)      On Days with possible inclement weather :

a.       Check with the other captain first, if you still wish to play.  Unless you are called directly by the Commissioner, or by an assistant, the game is still on. 

b.      Please do not call the Commissioner to see if the game is on.  If it is postponed, you will be notified.  Games will be cancelled as early as possible, when it is clear that the field conditions will not allow the game to be played. A field or game time might be changed, in lieu of a postponement.  Games will not be cancelled unless it is clear that the game cannot take place.  This is often tricky – we do the best job that we can.

c.       If the two Captains agree to postpone a game, you must notify:

                                                                           i.      The Commissioner

                                                                         ii.      The Umpire

                                                                        iii.      The Players

d.      Postponing a game should be done with enough time to cancel the umpire, and with enough time to notify players from coming to the game.

e.       If Captains cannot agree to postpone a game, then the game is still on – until the Commissioner or an assistant says otherwise.

f.        Sometimes rain showers are short which might only delay a game.  Please use good judgment in deciding to postpone a game.


Before the Game – At the Field

1)      Check Field Conditions – Players play at their own risk.  As a safety precaution, captains and players must inspect the field for unknown objects, dangerous conditions or other hazards on the field.  One such example (that most players do not know), is that there is one or two sewers in the middle of the outfield at Peck #5.  Outfielders should be cautioned and made aware of these sewers.

2)      Arrive Early to Games – Players should arrive early to properly warm up, and to secure the field.

3)      Put out equipment – The home team is responsible for putting out the equipment early enough to be used in some pre-game practice and warm-ups.

4)      Write down your lineup in the scorebook – This is both for your benefit, and in case that an umpire or the other captain asks to see your lineup.

5)      Make sure that only valid roster players are playing for your team, and for the other team.  You cannot protest a game for non-roster players after a game has been played.  Please check rosters before the game starts.  Teams who use non-roster players will forfeit their games.

6)      Go over the Ground Rules and “Rules Summary” with the Umpire and other Captain.


During the Game

1)      Do not argue with umpires.  Do not have team members crowd or approach umpires.  Only the Captain may argue a game rule, not a judgment decision.

2)      A league rulebook must be shown in order to argue a Hillcrest Softball League specific rule.

3)      Control your players conduct.  Some teams bring their families to the game – a family acceptable atmosphere must be maintained.

4)      If there are 8 players present – games will start on-time.  If 7 players cannot be produced within 15 minutes of the official start time, then that team forfeits.  This rule does not apply to teams that are coming from a different field playing another game first.

5)      If you wish to protest a game, you must immediately:

a.       Notify the Umpire

b.      Notify the Opposing Captain

c.       Notify the Commissioner

6)      An upheld protest (which has happened), may result in only a few innings to be replayed, or the entire game to be replayed, or the game to be forfeited.  An upheld protest may not necessarily be brought back to the spot of the protest – the rest of the game may still count.

7)      No Alcohol is permitted to be brought to ANY field or game under ANY circumstance.  The penalty is an automatic suspension, and possible expulsion from the league.


After the Game – At the Field

1)      Check with the other Captain (and possibly Umpire) as to the final score and number of innings played.  The score and number of innings have playoff Tie-Breaker implications.

2)      Somehow, getting the score correct – is not as easy as it sounds.  Almost 40% of the games in which the Commissioner is not present, are reported incorrectly.

3)      Separately (each team) record the official final score and number of innings played.

4)      Make sure that the dugout and field are left clean.  Permits can be lost for leaving messy fields.  Please throw out all of your garbage – bring garbage bags if necessary.


After the Game – At Home

1)      Send the recorded scores AND number of innings played via E-mail to the Commissioner at ATCROCKIES@aol.com.

2)      Both teams should separately send in their scores.

3)      Scores must be sent in no later than Monday at Noon.


Miscellaneous Items

1)      Before the season, make sure that you have the proper equipment that you need.

2)      Do not photocopy any permits.

3)      Give your team their schedule, and the league website address: http://www.hillcrestsoftball.net/

4)      Give the Commissioner your player’s E-mails, if they want to be put on the league mailing list for important information.

5)      If you need the schedule to be changed during the season, please give the Commissioner enough advance notice.

6)      Equipment AND permits should be returned at the end of the season.



            Thank you for all of your efforts as a captain.  Your help and cooperation does not go unnoticed.  We hope that this experience as a captain will shape your organizational skills, and the way that you interact with others.  At any point in time, please feel free to discuss any item which you like with the Commissioner, or with another captain.  We hope that these guidelines will make the league run smoothly, and allow each participant in the league to enjoy every aspect of the league to its fullest.  Good luck to you and your team in the season.



Many Thanks and Best of Luck,

Ariel Cohen

Commissioner, Hillcrest Softball League








Last Updated on :
March 11, 2007 at 9:00 AM ET