The Delaware State Tournament
Little League Baseball grew rapidly throughout the United States in the years following World War II, and Delaware was quick to join in, forming the state's first charters in the early 1950s. Delaware has the distinction of being the smallest state in the U.S. and is also know as the “First State. Delaware's leagues initially competed against counterparts from New Jersey and Maryland in the early stages of the international tournament, but in 1957, five leagues met in the First State's first-ever state tournament. Newark American Little League won the title, with left-hander Ronnie Hart setting a high standard for excellence by throwing a no-hitter in a 3-0 championship game win over cross-town rival Newark National Little League.
As more charters were formed in Delaware, Lower Delaware leagues were placed in a separate district, and Sussex County leagues were further split into a third district in 1996. Today, Delaware's three district champions meet in a double-elimination tournament that determines the state's champion.
The Delaware state champion advances to the Mid-Atlantic Region tournament in Bristol, Connecticut, where it competes against champions from neighboring states for the right to advance to the Little League World Series in South Williamsport, Pennsylvania.
Naamans Little League in Wilmington became the first Delaware league to reach the Little League World Series when it won the Mid-Atlantic Region championship in 2003. Six teams have reached the Eastern Region Championship game (1980-Newark National, 1988-Brandywine, 1989-Brandywine, 1990-Newark American, 1995-Brandywine, and 1998-Georgetown), but no Delaware team has ever won the Little League World Series.
There are 29-chartered leagues in Delaware and these leagues are organized into three districts.