Little League baseball teaches poignant life lessons -- teamwork, skill development, communication, hard work and sportsmanship. It's also a whole lot of fun, culminating every summer in a nationally televised tournament. But depending on your local charter's rules, your child may only have two years to qualify.
What is commonly referred to as "Little League" is actually the national Little League Organization's Major division, which enforces a 12-year-old age limit. And while some charters may allow 10-year-olds to play in the Major division, the minimum age is usually set at 11. Each local charter sets different Minor League divisions as well, which may include boys and girls ranging in ages from 7 to 11. But if you are looking to achieve national Little League World Series fame, you'll need to field a team full of tournament-qualifying 11- and 12-year-olds.
Little League's qualifying-age calendar rolls over at 12:01 a.m. on May 1 every year. So if your child is 12 at the stroke of midnight on April 30, then she is locked into that age through the entire baseball season, qualifying for Little League Baseball and its national tournaments, even if she turns 13 on May 1, or on any other day during that season. If her 13th birthday lands on April 30th or earlier, then she is too old for the Major division and must register for the next level of play.