Numbers are down, and for a while it looked as if there wouldn't be a baseball season for Dawson Creek youths, but the season is on and officials have made some changes to accommodate the drop in numbers and welcome any late registrants.
"We are short on numbers. We won't have as many teams. But it will be similar to what we have done in the past," said Dawson Creek Minor Ball president Randy Carlstad.
"We won't have as many teams, and we won't have a ton of extra players, but we are hoping that once people see the kids out on the diamonds we will have some late registrations and it will help fill up the teams a little bit more."
Initially, in the April registration period, it looked as if there wouldn't be a minor ball season. At first minor ball was in need of adult volunteers to sit on the board. After that shortage was solved when more volunteers stepped forward and some took on two board positions, the organization was faced with the challenge of filling the divisions with players. For some reason the number of kids wanting to play ball had fallen.
However, by the time the season began last week, about 70 players had signed up and the officials began the process of dividing the players into teams for the May-June season.
"The first week we do drills and practices and things like that and evaluate the kids and make sure that the teams are fair, and the second week we will start with games."
The DCMB's bantam and midget divisions are combined, as happened last year, and there will be two teams in that single division.
As well, some of the midget players may be brought up for the odd game with the Diamondbacks, the local senior men's team.
Some local midget and bantam-level players may join a regional midget team based out of Peace River. And local midget-level players Dillon Remenyk and Andres Carlstad are expected to play for a Grande Prairie midget rep team.
There will be two teams in each of the DCMB peewee, mosquito and T-ball divisions.
In some divisions, the local teams will play against each other and also possibly meet other Peace Country teams for exhibition games.
"There won't be as many teams, so we are hoping to do some interlocking games with Grande Prairie, Beaverlodge and Fort St. John and play some games with them on the weekends."
There were not enough players in the rookie division, so Carlstad and his executive have divided the players from that division into the divisions above and below.
"We didn't have very many rookies this year, so some of the more advanced ones will play mosquito and some of the ones who are just starting will play T-ball. I think that will work quite well," said Carlstad.
"The lack of numbers in T-ball and rookie is particularly concerning for us because we don't have a lot right there and it doesn't look good, but you never know when things will turn around."
The ball teams are on the local diamonds two nights a week for games or practices.
Anyone who wants to play ball can pick up and drop off a registration form at AJ's Sports Cellar or Griffins or mail it to the address on the form.