2016 Season Wrap Up

Updated Tuesday August 2, 2016 by John Hand.

A Message from Chris Mennillo, President of Niskayuna Baseball:


Niskayuna Baseball,

It’s hard to believe that another season has come to an end. The 2016 season wrapped up in style with a great year at all levels in our rec program, some fantastic championship games from AA through Babe Ruth, and an All-Star season that saw every age group advance to the New York State Tournament.  Some notable achievements during that run include: State Finalist: 11U, 9U, and 8U and two teams (8U & 13U) advancing to the Mid-Atlantic Regionals

I am proud to say that our league continues to have a large enrollment with over 500 players and 50 teams. Our sponsorship grew this year and our in house raffle was a success. In every organization there are bumps along the way and picture night was certainly one of those. However the learning process is one that both our league and BLP has taken to heart and believe that the experience in future years will prove worthy. By the time the season ended BLP provided over 10,000 league pictures on their web-site that are available for download. Many of the shots are simply amazing and capture the essence of youth baseball. I’ve personally viewed many of the pictures and found the lower levels to be priceless. I encourage you to check them out at BLP Pictures.

The league worked hard to institute some new rules and playing guidelines with special attention at the T-Ball through AA levels and specifically with pitching at the older levels. Many of the enhancements made for a more enjoyable game at our lower levels and we will continue to expand on those guidelines as we seek continuous improvement in our program. The pitching rules were met with some growing pains as they are very different from those that we have experienced in our league and throughout the Cal Ripken organization over the years. In the end we believe the step is a progressive one and needed to promote the safety and development of our players. Our league has worked closely with the Niskayuna School administration to adopt safe pitching practices. This move in conjunction with new New York State Public High School Athletic Association rules on the way will continue to keep Niskayuna Baseball ahead of the “curve” with respect to how we handle young arms. I encourage those interested in learning more about this topic to read the  Daily Gazette Article.  An interesting note on the topic found our friends from Clifton Park Baseball inquiring on and eventually adopting our rules, metrics, and reporting in their league. I’m proud to say that Niskayuna is the league leading the way.

As we enter the Fall season please watch for playing options offered by the league. We are looking at fall sandlot at the Cal Ripken levels and Travel games.  We will set those plans by Aug 15.    In addition the Board of Directors will be meeting to debrief on the season and begin setting the agenda for the 2017 season. I anticipate openings on the Board and ask that if anyone is interested to please contact me at UNLV4@yahoo.com. A general membership meeting will be held the week of September 12th where seasons debrief and future outlook on projects and enhancements will be shared.

Thank you to all our Niskayuna families and sponsors for making 2016 a success. Enjoy the offseason, see you soon.