By Nick Gerhardt
The Minnesota Baseball Association Board continued to review its classification criteria at its meeting Saturday in St. Cloud.
The board wants to implement a points-based criteria to determine the classification of teams for the 2019 season.
“The purpose of this formula is to collect information on how MBA teams are formed,” MBA Director Mark Forsman said. “We just everyone playing fair.”
The three criteria are:
Population -- Each town can pick the population of the city/township the ballpark is located or the school district where the ballpark sits. A team accrues a point per 1,000 people in its population.
Roster -- If teams choose to get players outside of the town/school district, they acquire points if they played college baseball at any level. Any player who has played professionally at any level is assigned five points. That number decreases as the level decreases, so a former Division I player is given four points, a D-II player gets three points and so on to the junior college level where a player would get a point.
There are some instances where those points don’t apply, such as if a player is over 35 years old or resides in the town of the team they play for during the season.
Performance -- Teams who have qualified for the state tournament will receive a point. Those that reach the final 16 get two points and those that get to the final four get three points. Those values for Class B teams increase to three, six and nine at each level.
At its November board meeting, the MBA revealed the Rochester Roadrunners, Winona, the Shakopee Coyotes, the Moorhead Miners, New Market, Hampton, Alexandria and Green Isle would have to move from Class C to Class B, if the points system was in place at the time. Isanti, the Sauk Rapids Cyclones, Red Wing, Anoka, Ramsey and Monticello would move from Class B to Class C. Red Wing has since been allowed to move from Class B to Class C.
Forsman reiterated that the move toward a points-based system is not designed to create a certain amount of Class B teams.
The board will rely on roster data from 2018 to determine classification for teams in 2019. Teams will have the ability to adjust their rosters by November for classification purposes.
“Every manager has the ability to determine what level they play based on how they form their roster,” MBA Secretary Dave Hartmann said.
The board anticipates having all of the data it needs to determine points for teams based on June 30 rosters.
“To get the accurate line we need all the people to fill in the data,” Forsman said.
As the roster fields get added to the MBA website teams will be able to see how many points they have. They will be alerted if they add a player that bumps their point total over the Class C level.
If a team moves up from Class C to Class B it will be up to the board at that point to determine which section it would move into.
The board continued discussion of the points formula during its league officer meeting where it was asked if creating a fourth class made sense.
“We talked about that,” Hartmann said. “Some want to see that, others don’t want. I don’t like what the high school league is doing so everyone can play in a tournament. I understand some teams feel like they don’t have an opportunity.”
Team registration will begin March 1 and rosters will be able to be entered beginning April 1. Forms for team registration will be online this season.