Big Apple Softball League: New York City's LGBTQ+ Softball League

Frequently Asked Questions

Tips for New Players and Teams Looking to Join Big Apple Softball League.

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Is Big Apple Softball League (BASL) Only Open to the LGBT Community?

No. While the league is marketed predominantly in the LGBT community, anyone, regardless of sexual orientation, is welcome to play in our league. Playing in our league should not be considered an indicator of any particular sexual orientation.

How do I know if my playing ability (or lack thereof) is appropriate for BASL?

The Big Apple Softball League offers a place for players of all skill levels to play softball in a friendly and fun environment.

The league is currently divided into open (co-ed) divisions and women’s divisions. Each division is based on a different skill level and competitive attitude, from the highly competitive to purely recreational. We have a place for everyone.

How much does it cost to play in BASL?

Our player membership fee is $105. This fee covers the cost of field rentals, bases, softballs, first aid kits, and trophies among other league expenses.

The cost of uniforms, supplementary insurance and umpire fees are the responsibility of individual teams. Some teams elect to wear basic tee shirts and others wear more elaborate uniforms. Expect to pay about an extra $100 -$200 usually paid out over the course of the season. Some teams defray this cost by getting sponsors such as local bars, restaurants or small businesses. The more sponsors pay, the less you do!

Check out the “Sponsors” section of our website to see who the most recent team sponsors are. Most teams have bats to share or buy them collectively out of team funds. You are expected to provide your own playing glove and rubber soled cleats at all games.

How long is the BASL playing season?

The regular Spring season is from mid April to late July with a playoff weekend(s) following that.

We also have a Shortened Fall Season, also called "Fall Ball",  that usually starts after Labor Day (Early/Mid Sept) and ends around Halloween (Oct 31). For more information about fall ball contact fallball@bigapplesoftball.com.

Where are the games played?

We play a large percentage of our games on Randall’s Island. (All of our Fall Ball Games are on Randall's Island)

In Manhattan, we also play in East River Park and Hudson River Park. We also play a few games in nearby New Jersey. Game locations are listed on our website. This may change as availability does. The league is always looking for good fields that are convenient to all.

Note: Playing Fields are within city parks so there is no alcohol or smoking permitted on or near the playing fields.

You can review the schedule from previous seasons.

When are the games?

All games are played during the day on weekends.

Most Spring softball games are on Saturday but some are on Sunday. Playing is usually between 9 A.M. and 7 P.M. Game times are listed on website.

Fall Ball Games are ONLY on Saturdays.

You can review the schedule from previous seasons.

How many games do teams play each week?

Most weekends teams will play two 90 minute games. Games are usually consecutive, we try to avoid this but there are sometimes 90 minute breaks between games.

Am I required to be at every game?

That is certainly ideal but not expected. People have major social events they are expected to attend; illness occurs; emergencies happen and we all make vacation plans. Players are expected to make a concerted effort to be at as many games as possible, regardless of time or location. Your team depends on you and if too many players do not show up, the team may be forced to forfeit the games to the opponent and pay all umpire fees.

Players Must Note: To be eligible to play for your team in the Spring Season Playoffs  players are required to attend AT LEAST half of the teams regular season games.

How do I know if games are cancelled due to inclement weather?

There are several ways to check the field status.

  1. Official announcements are posted on bigapplesoftball.com Home page look for a green or red bar.
  2. You may also call the BASL Hotline at (212) 696-7327 for game status the morning of your games.
  3. We also post updates to games on our Facebook Page.
  4. Emails are sent out to players through teamsnap emails.

Note: Messages are usually sent out around 7:30AM for early morning games. It may be recommended you check back if you have late afternoon games, fields may become playable again on sunny days.

Protip: If you have games on Randall's Island. The Randall's Island Twitter account usually posts about their field status in the early morning.

Is this all softball and no socializing?

Absolutely not! BASL is a great way to meet people.

There are many organized BASL events such as:

  • the season opening party
  • the Variety Show, which is a league talent show held mid-season
  • the awards party/elections held in the fall
  • holigay party in December
  • Individual teams hold fundraisers to help defray their playing costs.
  • Teams frequently go out together after games
  •  BASL also sponsors the Gotham tournament Labor Day Weekend which brings in teams from all over the country and several social events are planned around that.

Check out the BASL Facebook Page to keep up with League Events & Fundraisers.

Follow us on Meetup!

Are there ways to develop leadership skills or opportunities to volunteer?

Thanks for asking!

Yes, teams elect managers who are usually experienced players and each team can have two Team Representatives who liaison among the team, the manager and the league. and attend our General Body meetings.

Although league General Body meetings are open to all, usually one or more of these folks attend the meeting and report league information back to the team.

There are also division representatives and four league executive officers.

Volunteers are always needed for committees that help with various needs such as running league social events and other specific projects. Tell your manager if you are interested in getting involved in league activities or email us at hello@bigapplesoftball.com and we'll do our best to get you involved!

I don’t want to play but I’d like to be involved with a team. Is that an option?

Yes, the team has a status called “non-player.”

These individuals contribute in ways such as keeping score, coaching a base or serving as cheerleader. These folks pay $35 non-players membership fees primarily to be covered under the league’s insurance.

Note: If you are not registered as a Non-Player or Regular Player through the league you are not covered by our league's insurance and therefore cannot be in the team's dugout or on the field during games.

OK, I’m sold! I want to play! What do I do?

Fall Only - NEW THIS YEAR! You just have to sign up

Spring Seasons start with two weekends of new player drafts.

Come to one of our drafts. We have two in late March/early April!

You have your best chance of getting on a team there. Please check bigapplesoftball.com for the dates, times and locations.

If you can’t make either of those, please email our Recruiting Chair at join@bigapplesoftball.com and we will do our best to assist you.

I'm a new player, do I need to Pay a Registration Fee before the Draft?

No, only new and returning players that already have made arrangements with a team manager should register.

Any new players who do not have a team must attend the New Player Draft. (Please see the events calendar for dates and locations for the new player draft). They usually happen on two Saturdays in late March/early April.

What is the New Player draft like?

The new player drafts exists to make sure players of various skill levels are assigned to the proper division. It isn't exactly a "try-out".
Players are selected by division managers based on division need and skill level. The draft lasts for about two hours and will consist of light fielding and ground ball drills and some hitting.
On the day of please get the the draft early so you can register and get a name and number. Try to bring at least a glove of your own but if you do not have one ask the BASL staff to see if you may borrow an extra glove at the field.

Can I start a new team?

We accept new teams for the Spring Season Only!
We accept new team applications up until January 30th and then review teams on a case-by-case basis depending on division availability.
See the New Team Page for more info.

What are the costs for a new team?

All costs are the same for new and old teams.
Every team has to cover the $670 league fee along with a $70 umpire fee every weekend.
Teams are also responsible for their own jerseys with numbers required to be on the back. BASL supplies each team with a set of bases and game balls that they are required to bring to every game.

More questions?

Head over to our ASK BASL page to send a question to our BASL Expert!

Our annual HoliGay HoliGive Party is Sat. Dec 2nd from 5pm - 9pmClick to Learn More
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