News

Player of the Week: Week 1 Nominees (Su15)

Written by - Posted 2015-09-01 12:52 in POTW

Is this really late? Yes. Have you been following the updates and delays? Then you know why.

*One automatic nomination this week, although he did well at the plate too, goes to Connor Dierman of Chicken & Wiffle who threw a perfect game vs the Garbage Plates (6 IP, 6 strikeouts). To add to that, Connor batted .643, had 6 doubles, and 4 RBIs.

*No new face here, Jack Shannon of the new Jackhammers once again gets nominated. Picking up where he left off, Jack batted .700 with an OPS of 2.600, had 3 home runs, a double, and 5 RBIs.

*Now on opposing teams, the brotherly competition continues. Jim Shannon joined Dupont Circle Jerks and continued his tear at the plate. He batted .667, hit a homerun (only one?) and had 3 RBIs with an OPS of 1.833

*This could be a huge pickup for the Jackhammers if Matt Gagnon proves his worth like this every week. Gagnon pitched 11 innings of 3 hit ball, striking out 14, and going 2-0 with an ERA of 0.55. He also batted .500, hit 2 homeruns, had 4 RBIs and 2 doubles.

  • Nick West of Wolfpack fell a triple short of the cycle in the first game of the season. Although he fell short of the cycle, he had himself a day at the plate. West batted .533, had 2 homeruns, 7 RBIs, 3 doubles, and an OPS of 1.667.

VOTING CLOSES AT NOON MONDAY

The public vote counts for 50% of the overall total, and the league managers vote counts for the remaining 50%.


POTW Week 1 Su15
Connor Dierman
15%
Jack Shannon
15%
Jim Shannon
8%
Matt Gagnon
35%
Nicholas West
27%
total_votes: 48

About POTW: Each week five nominees will be announced for Player of the Week. The league, fans, and press will vote for the winner. Winners receive a very limited edition wiffleball keychain. For a history of the award, check out Player of the Week History.

Week 3 Postponed: New Location Announced

Written by - Posted 2015-08-28 11:33 in News

It is with a heavy heart that I have to announce we will be postponing the Week 3 games. Issues at Ossian have led us to look elsewhere now also.

We will be moving fields… again. To accommodate this, I wanted to postpone the games and hit reset.

The new fields we are solidifying are a bit further, adding an extra 5-10 minutes of driving time to our commutes. We are working on the details and everything with them. Have a look for yourself, 7701 Beulah St, Alexandria, VA 22315.

With these two postponements come schedule changes. To make everything still finish on time, we will make Super Sundays where each team will play 3-4 games (possibly expanding to 3 fields).

Our possible “Field of Dreams” is still our targeted goal, but the Summer season is temporary. If you think it’s messy, you have no idea.

Keep an eye on Twitter, Facebook, and here for more updates.

Week 2 Postponed

Written by - Posted 2015-08-21 11:14 in News

In a tough series of events, Commissioner Hudson has decided to postpone week 2.

A make up date is being worked out, deciding between using the rain/make up date (October 10th or 11th), or combining the games into a massive 4 game week. Talks with the managers will help decide this.

Please stay tuned, I’ll be in touch with your managers with any updates as I get them.

Around the League: Week 1 Recap (Summer 2015)

Written by - Posted 2015-08-17 13:52 in Blog

The Hudson Era kicked off smoothly at Ossian Hill Park no thanks to the two scorers who called out last minute, thanks a lot guys. Seven of the eight games were shutouts, unofficially the highest percentage in PWL history. Early reports have the pitchers praising the “fair” conditions and the stats would seem to agree. Let’s break down what else we saw at the new digs.

- The new team, old faces Jackhammers put on an offensive clinic though anyone that has ever watched wiffleball knows not to expect two homers out of Matt Gagnon every week.

- Connor Dierman threw the first perfect game at Ossian, shutting down the Garbage Plates but not before giving up 14 hits to the Wolfpack in an opening 8-0 loss. Parity anyone?

- DC Twits are 2-0 despite totaling 7 hits, 0 HRs and batting .259 against the possibly hapless Master Batters and Janitors. So nothing has changed in Twits-world.

- Circle Jerks got a whole week and two games on the mound without a Felix Fernandez meltdown so they’re playing with house money at this point. Jim Shannon provided the entire offensive boost he was signed for and none of the pitching prowess as he was ejected on his first batter. Nice.

- Tough day for the Master Batters, Garbage Plates and Higman-less Janitors. All veteran teams but in a smaller league one of them will have to beat up on the other two and pull a few upsets to secure a playoff berth.

What do we see after Week 1? Jackhammers and Wolfpack are the clear top 2 while Chicken and Wiffle, Circle Jerks and Twits will duke it out for the wild card spots. It’s only Week 1 and a lot can change, nobody really knows what tricks Ossian might still be hiding.

Summer 2015 Season Begins: A New Era

Written by - Posted 2015-08-14 11:11 in News

A lot has changed since the end of the Spring 2015 season.

First — Chris Gallaway retired after 20 seasons. His passion and leadership have helped pave the way for the league to continue. And continue it shall.

Second — we are no longer playing at Gravelly Point. Maybe you’ve heard, but things didn’t end so well there. We instead will be playing at Ossian Park in Annandale.

Lastly — Greg Hudson is the new commissioner. I have already enacted a few changes (as you can tell) but I can tell you I am focused on making this league continue in the best possible form. With our current fields at Ossian, we have a real chance to setup something permanent. Our very own Field of Dreams. I’ll be there all day Sunday so feel free to come talk to me about anything.

Leave some time for traffic, get there early to get comfortable, and let’s have some fun on Sunday! Make sure you’re following us on twitter @potomacwiffle for any updates.

Weather right now will be a little warm, 93, sunny, no rain, light wind. Bring some sunscreen.

Ossian Hall Park
Softball Field #2
7900 Heritage Dr
Annandale, VA 22003

See you all Sunday!

Greg Hudson Elected Commissioner

Written by - Posted 2015-08-11 21:48 in News

Greg Hudson was elected as the 2nd Commissioner of the Potomac Wiffleball League.

The Summer 2015 Managers voted 8-0 to elect Hudson.

The term of Commissioner is for two years, and is elected between the Spring and Summer seasons.

NO SPRING TRAINING: CANCELLED

Written by - Posted 2015-08-08 13:14 in News

Only 3 people signed up for Spring Training this Sunday, so we’re cancelling it.

The field will be open and available if anyone wants to practice there anytime on Sunday.

However, we won’t be setting up the equipment.

NEW FIELDS/TEAM DEADLINE EXTENDED/SPRING TRAINING

Written by - Posted 2015-08-05 11:08 in News

NEW FIELDS FOR SUMMER 2015

The PWL is moving! For the Summer 2015 Season we are relocating to Ossian Hall Park.

The new fields are a 25 minute drive west of Gravelly Point. This is a one season commitment, until a long term home is found for the 2016 Season and beyond.

The PWL is working to finalize a partnership with Fairfax Adult Softball, the largest softball organization in the country. FAS is interested in developing winter, and weeknight wiffleball options in the DC area in the future, and has expressed interest in partnering with the PWL in both the short and long term. While we are exploring options around the entire metro area for long term fields, a potential partnership with an organization with the connections and field access as FAS has could be a tremendous advantage in this search.

Any players who have registered for Summer who don’t wish to play at the new field location will be given a full refund. Just email commissioner@potomacwiffleball.org to ask for one. But, we strongly encourage everyone to join us this Summer.

TEAM DEADLINE EXTENDED

We are extending the deadline to register for the Summer Season to this Sunday! Please get your teams and players registered. Or, come out to Spring Training, see what it’s all about, test out the new fields, and then get everyone signed up!

SPRING TRAINING

We’ll be hosting a “Spring” Training this Sunday, August 9th, from 1 PM to 3 PM at the new fields to give people a chance to take some hacks, and test out the new setup.

Please make plans to join us to work out the kinks, mostly in your swing.

Please RSVP on Facebook so we know how many to expect.

Everyone is welcome, you don’t need to have a full team. We’ll take batting practice and then do some pick-up scrimmage games.

Hope to see you this Sunday at 1 PM.

FEEDBACK NEEDED: FIELDS

Written by - Posted 2015-07-31 12:39 in News

We need your quick feedback about our playing fields! Please take our quick survey, as we need to finalize our field locations for the summer season. If you’ve got a few minutes, please read the following background too…but if not, take the survey anyway.

Why are we asking?

As you are probably aware, playing wiffleball at Gravelly Point has been both a blessing and a curse for the league since we returned in 2010.

There is certainly no more scenic place to play, and there are always plenty of spectators wondering what we’re doing. Game videos feature the Capitol, and Washington Monument. And the planes are fun.

On the con side, there is the wind, the parking, the portajohns, the non-maintained fields, the mowing 12 times a year, the airport beacon radar interference, and the National Park Service themselves.

Earlier this year, the Park Service altered our permit to not allow anything to be inserted into the ground. Gravelly, which is not historic property, but rather a landfill dumping ground from past area excavations, is apparently too precious to allow the insertion of bases, fence poles, or stakes. We’re pretty sure even in Yellowstone you can stake your tent into the ground.

We ignored this permit provision for the Spring Season, but the NPS is insistent on it moving forward, and will be sending a monitor to our games each week to ensure we comply with this provision. They will also be enforcing a provision that doesn’t allow us to “alter the grass”, something they refer to as “landscaping” which we generally call actually mowing the grass. Meaning some weeks, the grass will be 6-8 inches long, and we won’t be able to alter it, or claim that aliens did it making a crop circle.

That leaves us needing to dramatically alter our setup, or to find a new place to play.

While we are confident we could buy replacement fences that stand up on their own, and don’t need to go in the ground. We could switch to the throw down rubber bases, and a pitching rubber that doesn’t go into the ground. And we could change strike board to stand up on its own. These things are all possible, and would likely necessitate upgrading the uhaul cargo van to an even larger vehicle. Neither is the acquisition cost of this new equipment reasonable, or the added cost to store, transport, and set it up weekly.

Since the NPS informed us of the “don’t hurt the dirt” rule enforcement, Commissioner-Election Hudson and Commissioner Gallaway have been looking for other fields. Not only for the short term for this summer season, but to have a long term, permanent home, where we can build fences, and leave fields setup all the time, not just for 6 hours on a Sunday.

In DC, land is a premium. If we were in Columbus, OH, or Dwight, KS, we’d have already built wiffleball stadiums that rival MLB parks. But alas, that’s not where we live, or want to live.

We’ve been looking for partners, either governments, or private parties, who might be willing to share our crazy wiffleball dream. We’ve gotten more aggressive in this search as my retirement looms, and as Gravelly has increasingly become problematic. If you want to read the proposal we sent out to all the local governments and several private partners, you can here

While we have several leads, and hope that we’ll find a local Parks and Rec director who’s just a little bit crazy and wants to work with us, that’s obviously a solution for 2016, and not for this Summer.

For this summer, we are likely in a similar position we’ve been in the last 20 seasons. Just being a tenant, and getting a field permit assigned to us. While there are a few jurisdictions that are willing to work with us on this, doing this season with a partner who wants to work with us long term is obviously preferred.

During the Spring Season, we began conversations with the non-profit Fairfax Adult Softball. They run adult softball leagues in Fairfax County. In addition to already having permitted control of lots of fields, their own field maintenance crew, and a deep relationship in working with Fairfax County Parks, they are looking to expand their sports offerings to wiffleball. They plan to offer winter indoor wiffleball, and weeknight wiffleball leagues starting next year to grow their base of sports.

They have approached us to partner with them for this Summer season, and potentially for the long term. They’re willing to provide us a field to use, and also promote the league to their players.

Though these conversations, we’ve also become aware that Fairfax County Parks is interested in having leagues “adopt” a field. In these arrangements they are willing to give control of a field to a league as long as they agree to maintain it, mow the grass, clean up the trash, etc. While there are lots of conversations that would need to be had before we adopted a field, and broke ground building permanent fences (with or without green monsters) the potential of this partnership is an amazing opportunity, and almost exactly what we were proposing in our “Field of Dreams” memo.

Over the next few months, we are going to continue to meet with several other jurisdictions that have expressed some interest. Alexandria, Prince Georges County, Gaithersburg. We hope there will be more. And that by early next year, we’ll have a strong partnership with an entity that will let us build the fields we want and maintain them the way we want.

In the short term though, we have to decide what we’re doing when our season starts in 2 weeks.

Both Hudson and Gallaway believe, that while the distance it a little farther away from Gravelly than we’d like to be, that doing a summer partnership with Fairfax Adult Softball is the way to go. They’ll give us use of Ossian Hall Park. (Shockingly, Fairfax mows this park 2-3 times a WEEK…rather than 12 times a year like Gravelly is mowed.)

Ossian Hall Park
7830 Heritage Dr
Annandale VA 22003

While we are still having conversations with several governments, we would be very surprised if an opportunity as good as this one presents itself to us in time for our summer season. We’re planning to make a final decision on Wednesday, August 5th.

We wanted to get your feedback before then about this situation. We have created a brief survey about our playing fields, and would like to ask you to give us your feedback SOON. The sooner the better.

Thanks for your time and your feedback. And for continuing to help make the PWL a success.

2nd Try for London

Written by - Posted 2015-07-30 16:36 in News

The London Wiffleball Tournament was originally scheduled for coincide with the NWLA tournament in mid-July in Ohio. However, rain and “wet ground” pushed the tournament to mid-August.

The event is the largest slow-pitch wiffleball tournament in the world, with close to 80 teams meeting at a farm in the middle of cornfields outside of London, Ohio.

The reschedule also changed the rosters of the PWL participants. The PWL sent two all star teams, the Nationals and the Senators, to Ohio in July, but will only send one team back in August.

Former Commissioner Gallaway, or he will have been former for three days when the team lands in Ohio, will manage a single PWL team. It will be his first return to the London tournament since 2012. He has managed at least one team from 2007 to 2012.

Returning to London for the first time since 2012 will also be Hall of Famers Jack and Jim Shannon. The brothers were London staples before moving to the NWLA tournament teams. Pre-NWLA, the whole Barnburners team played in London as the Senators franchise from 2009 to 2012.

The only two players to return from the July rosters are two other veterans, Adriano DeSorrento and Joe Gortenburg. DeSorrento was a Senator in 2013 and 2014. Gortenburg was one of the original six PWL players to attend the tournament. He played from 2007 to 2010. Returned in 2012 and 2013 before taking last season off.

Two rookies will round out the Nationals roster. Daniel Lockbaum, of the DC Twits, led an offensive barrage that gave the Barnburners their only postseason loss. John Hamlett, of the Dupont Circle Jerks, looks good in a uniform, and was willing to share a hotel room.

It’s unclear if any of these guys can play the field, but are all expected to be able to hit slow pitch home runs.

You’ll be able to follow the Nationals live on twitter and periscope. The tournament is Saturday the 15th, the day before Opening Day of the Summer 2015 PWL Season.