The Mount Olive Baseball Softball Association (MOBSA) is an affiliated member of Cal Ripken Baseball, Babe Ruth Baseball and Babe Ruth Softball, divisions of Babe Ruth League Inc., as well as American Legion Baseball. We are a volunteer organization which provides baseball and softball instruction and competition to 900+ children in Mount Olive Township, NJ. The Association is divided into baseball and softball leagues and is managed by a fifteen member Board of Directors.
Recreation Baseball & Softball Leagues
Teams are established for play within the Township of Mount Olive based on the number of players registered for play within a specific League Age Bracket. Whoever signs up is assigned to a team regardless of skill or experience, and is guaranteed playing time.
The Recreation Program operates spring, summer and fall seasons each year.
Baseball Age Eligibility
Players must be at least 5 years old,and not older than 18, by April 30th of the year they wish to play.
Divisions are formed by age and play according to rules designated by Babe Ruth Inc. The divisions are often sub-divided based on the number of players enrolled and skill level. Typical divisions are:
Farms: Ages 5 & 6
Rookie: Age 7
Minors: Ages 8 & 9
Majors: Ages 10, 11, & 12
Junior Babe Ruth: Ages 13-15
Senior Babe Ruth: Ages 16-18
Softball Age Eligibility
Players must be at least 5 years old,and not older than 16, by January 1st of the year they wish to play. Typical softball divisions are:
Farms: Ages 5, 6, & 7
Minors: Ages 8, 9, & 10
Majors: Ages 11 & 14
Travel Baseball Program
The purpose of the Travel Program is to provide a more competitive environment to further develop the baseball knowledge and skills of the more highly skilled players, further develop their sportsmanship by teaching them to play in a environment where a cohesive, balanced team is more important than the individual, and to represent Mount Olive with dignity in competitive play with teams from other towns/leagues.
Travel teams play spring/summer and fall seasons. Teams are formed on the basis of open tryouts prior to each season. Candidate players must also participate on a team in the Recreation Program spring season.
Travel teams are formed for every age level starting:
- 8 and under
-18 and under
The teams typically participate in the Cerbo or Montville Baseball Leagues during the spring and fall seasons and various local tournaments in the summer. They compete in the Cal Ripken national tournament each June. The 12U team makes an annual pilgrimage to the Cooperstown Dreams Park to play against teams from across the nation.
Travel Softball Program
The girls' softball division of Mount Olive Junior Baseball and Softball Association sponsors girls' traveling softball teams. Our traveling program is increasingly successful, and is rapidly growing.
The philosophy of the traveling program is to field competitive teams. The level of play is higher and more competitive than the play in the township recreational program.
Our teams play in anywhere between 4 and 10 tournaments. Practices are held year round - less often in the winter, more often in the spring, summer and fall. The tournaments typically begin in May and end at the end of July.
If you are interested in trying to qualify for one of the teams, we suggest you get involved now. Player evaluations and team selections will be made in late March or early April. Since our goal is to field the most competitive teams possible, the winter practices are very helpful for the girls, as they are great at improving basic skills. Note that you must also play in the township recreational softball program in order to be eligible to play in the traveling program.
Frequently Asked Questions
How can I become a manager or coach?
The Association By-laws describe the process. Basically, the respective League Vice-President is responsible to identify the best candidates for Manager and coaching positions. If you are interested, the best course of action is to attend the Monthly Association Meetings, the first Tuesday of the month at the Municipal building, and introduce yourself to the respective VP. There will also be a requirement for obtaining Coaching Certification by attending the appropriate instruction, and our Association may require that Managers participate in a background check prior to assignment to the position
Can I attend Association Meetings or may only coaches attend?
All Association Meetings are open to the public. In fact, one does not need even need to have children active in the Association to be a member. Anyone interested in making the Association more beneficial to the children of Mount Olive is welcome to join. We don't charge monetary dues, only time.
What does my child have to wear? What do I have to buy?
The Association will supply all necessary equipment except baseball/softball gloves. We will provide batting helmets, bats, balls, and catching equipment for the teams to use. Parents may wish to purchase personal use helmets, bats, or catching equipment for the child, but should check with the respective manager to ensure that such items are approved for play within the respective league and division. It is recommended that boys wear an athletic supporter with a protective cup.
We caution parents to not buy a glove that is too large for the child to use. Our experience tells us that too often the child will become frustrated at not being able to use the larger glove very well and will subsequently lose interest in playing. Kids really don’t grow into gloves well.
The Association will provide each player a uniform consisting of a hat, jersey (Shirt with Team Sponsor Information), and socks. We ask that all players provide their own baseball pants, WHITE pants only. Once you are in the Babe Ruth League, you will then be required to wear Gray pants. Either may be obtained from almost any local sporting goods store. These uniforms will become the child’s property.
What does a Team Parent do?
The Team Parent assists the Manager in any manner the two can agree. Many help with telephone calls to notify players of changes to scheduled games, practices, or upcoming events. Others may organize Parents to bring snacks to the games. It’s really whatever you can do to help.
What kind of shoes should my child wear? Does my child need to have baseball shoes? Are soccer shoes OK?
This is a personal decision. For the older children, it may be appropriate to have baseball shoes; for Farms level, probably not necessary. We tend to cancel games during inclement weather and avoid messing-up the fields when they are “soft”. Most Athletic Shoes provide adequate traction for most kids. There doesn’t seem to be a significant difference between baseball and soccer shoes for most kids. Talk it over with your manager and other parents to make the right decision for your child.
Will my children be on the same team?
If the children are within the same age division, our policy is to assign them to the same team unless the parents request otherwise. Please let us know such request by writing it in one of the blank areas of the registration form.
Can my child be on the same team as a friend?
We will try to accommodate such requests at the Farm Division Levels. We recognize that this may be the first time that the child is joining a team, and at that age the transition may be easier if some teammates are known. However, we have over 900 players and over 70 teams to populate each year. Attempting to accommodate such a request for all is just too difficult to manage. Consequently, our policy is to accommodate as many such requests as possible for Farm Divisions only. We cannot guarantee success in all instances.
How are teams organized?
At the end of each season, the manager is required to submit an assessment of each team member’s skills, focusing on:
- Batting (knowledge of the strike zone, technique, consistency)
- Fielding (glove control, ability to complete plays)
- Throwing (strength, control, accuracy)
- Running (base running ability, awareness of coaches and situation, not speed)
- Pitching (accuracy, control, technique)
The Player Agent will accumulate information to provide a listing of players to be drafted. Teams are assigned a Draft Number and will select a player in turns until all players have been assigned.
We try to establish the number of teams for a division so that each will have at least one opening to accommodate late registrations. However, once all teams within the division are at maximum roster positions, we will not be able to accommodate late registrations. These will be put on a waiting list should openings occur because of family relocation, injury, or someone decides to quit a team.
For Farm Divisions, the Player Agent and respective league VP will assign players to teams. While we attempt to be sensitive to assigning players from same general locations to the same team, this is not always possible.
Will my child be on the same manager's team next year?
Our by-laws put limits on the maximum number of players a Manager may retain each year. So, your child may not be placed on the same Manager’s team as last year, but may be re-assigned through the draft process. For Farms Division, we tend to return players unless requested otherwise by parents. For any player, if a parent desires that the child not play for the same manager, please let the Player Agent know. This can be done by writing such requests in a blank portion of the registration form or via email. The Player Agent will ensure that the Manager is made aware of such a request and that it is honored. The player will be eligible to be drafted by another team. Normally, knowledge of such a request is kept between the Player Agent and losing Manager. However, the Player Agent may follow-up to ask for specific rationale of the request to determine if the respective League VP should be advised of the situation.
What is the Bump-Up Program?
We want to give the maximum number of kids the opportunity to participate in games. When we establish the number of teams per division, we want to ensure each has open positions to accommodate late registrations. Consequently, many teams may begin, or play the entire season, with less than the maximum allowable roster positions filled. During the course of the season, there are numerous situations where a team may find itself without sufficient players to play the game. The Bump-up program allows a team to receive up to 2 additional players from the lower division so that the game can be played.
In this program, Managers may nominate players that they feel comfortable will be able to safely play at the next higher level. The Player Agent will accumulate these names into a roster for each division. Parents will have the opportunity to decline their child being selected for the Bump-up Program, and if appropriate, the child may be removed from the roster at any time. The ability of the child to play safely at the next level is the primary concern; not if the child will excel.
In general, if a Manager determines that he/she may not have enough players to play a game, he/she may request up to two bump-up players from the lower division. The Manager will contact the Player Agent who will provide the next player on the roster for that game. For the Normal Bump-up program, the Player Agent will rotate the bump-up players so that everyone on the list as equal opportunity to play at the next level. A Manager may not request a bump-up player by name. The Bump-up Player does not leave his/her normally assigned team. If there is a conflict with a regular game, the Bump-up Player must play for the assigned team, and may not choose to play at the higher level division game instead. Participation in a game as a Bump-up Player is on a non-interference basis only. The Bump-up Player, must be included in the batting order, must play a minimum of two innings in the field, but may not play more innings than any of the regularly assigned players, and may not pitch at the higher division.
Why can't my child play with kids from his/her same grade?
Our Association is affiliated with the National Babe Ruth and ASA Organizations and must establish our divisions along the prescribed ages directed by their charters. Subsequently, our by-laws identify the official dates for age determination. For example, for the boys baseball program, the child’s age for that season is determined by his age on April 30th of the season. Our Cal Ripken program supports boys up to 12 years of age. If the child turns 13 on May 1st, he is still eligible to play; if he is 13 on April 30th, he is eligible to play in the Babe Ruth league. For the girls’ Softball program that date is 1 January. This age is established for equity across the nation. Since many school districts establish different age criteria, it occasionally happens that a child may be ahead or behind his/her classmates with respect to “playing age”.
Why are there two divisions for boys Major Baseball? What is the difference between Black and Red?
The Boys’ Major Division is from ages 10 – 12. Our experience shows that 10 year olds batting against 12 year-old pitchers can be a bit intimidated. Not all 10, or even 11, year olds are comfortable with, or capable of, playing against 12 year olds. Consequently, we have split up the age group into two divisions to allow the skills to be more consistent. Our Black Division will consist of all 12 year old players and the better skilled 11 year olds. Our Red Division will normally be 10 and 11 year olds. It is possible, but rare, for exceptional 10 year olds to play in the Black Division.
||Mt. Olive Baseball & Softball Association