Press Release: 2018 Durham Softball Season Announcement

All 8 of Durham Softball's non-profit sponsor organizations

New Durham Softball League Supports Local Non-Profit Organizations

DURHAM, NC – Durham Softball is a new co-ed recreational softball league that benefits local non-profit organizations in Durham. Players will compete each game for donations to their team’s sponsor organization and help raise awareness for their cause. Thanks to the RTP Foundation, Durham Softball will donate an average of more than $300/team each season to these great local non-profit sponsors.

Durham Softball features a diverse group of local non-profit organizations:

“Our sponsor organizations represent some of the best causes in Durham, so I thought it would be a cool idea to bring them together in one league,” said Ryan Mentock, commissioner of the Durham Softball League. “We believe that each of the sponsors represents a different type of need in our community and they all share the same basic mission of helping Durham. I think it makes the competition more meaningful and fun if we can help support local charities while playing the game.”

Sponsors will earn minimum donations for their participation and teams will compete to earn larger donations by winning games during the season, finishing in the Top 4, or winning the Championship. The goal of the league is to have fun while helping these non-profits improve Durham.

“None of this would be possible without the support of the RTP Foundation, so we are extremely grateful for their help,” said Mentock. “The RTP Foundation’s contributions reflect their commitment to our community and their ability to bring people together to solve society’s toughest problems.”

If you are interested in helping one of these local non-profit sponsor organizations by playing softball, visit durhamsoftball.com for more information!

$55/Player Single-Season Player Registration Fee includes a Team Jersey, 14 Regular Season Games, at least 1 Playoff Game, and a free drink for all players at our sponsor bar after every game.

Registrations Begin February 1, 2018. The first game of the Regular Season is April 1, 2018. Games will be played on Sundays between 11am and 5pm from April through October at the RTP Softball Fields.

Sponsor Donation Pool

The basic concept of the Durham Softball sponsor donations is for the teams to compete to earn donations for their sponsor organization. Every sponsor is guaranteed a minimum donation for their participation, but the sponsor will receive a larger donation at the end of the season based on the number of games their team won, where they placed in the standings, and how well they did in the playoffs. Basically, the better the team performs, the more money the team will raise for their sponsored charity.

While the distributions are determined before the season, the actual dollar amount of the donation will vary based on our total player registration. Instead of a flat prize structure, the league will establish a Donation Pool from all additional funds remaining after the league pays its expenses. The size of the Donation Pool will vary based on the number of players, with a larger percentage of each registration fee going towards charity as more players sign up to play softball.

Because we want to help all of the organizations involved with the league, but we also want there to be enough incentive for the players to make league to be competitive, we have divided the distributions into two main categories: 50% PARTICIPATION and 50% PERFORMANCE.

Summer 2018 Donation Pool
Durham Softball’s Summer 2018 Donation Pool

Within the Performance category, the Donation Pool distributions are awarded for the single game, full season, and playoff performances of the teams, as follows:

  • 50% – Participation: Split evenly between all teams, regardless of performance.
  • 14% – Game Winners: The winner of each game during the regular season.
  • 8% – 1st Place: The 1st Place regular season team.
  • 6% – 2nd Place: The 2nd Place regular season team.
  • 4% – 3rd Place: The 3rd Place regular season team.
  • 2% – 4th Place: The 4th Place regular season team.
  • 6% – Championship Tournament Winner: The winner of the end-of-season championship tournament.
  • 4% – Championship Tournament Runner-Up: The runner-up of the end-of-season championship tournament.
  • 2% – Consolation Tournament Winner: The winner of the end-of-season consolation tournament.
  • 2% – Umpire’s Choice Award: The team in the league with the best attitude and sportsmanship, as voted on by the umpires.
  • 2% – Player’s Choice Award: The team in the league who best represented their non-profit sponsor organization, as voted on by the players.

Thanks to the generosity of the RTP Foundation, we will be able to create a high quality softball experience and raise money for local charities in the Durham community. Expenses are based on pre-season estimates and the final numbers will not be set until registrations are over, but the concept will stay the same. Our goal is to donate an average of at least $300/team per season, so we expect we’ll need at least 15 players per team to reach our target.

The more people we can recruit to play softball, the more we can help these great organizations!

2018 League Schedule

The Durham Softball League starts playing games during the first week of April each year. Easter is on April 1 this season, so the 2018 season will start on Sunday, April 8. The year will be split into two separate seasons, with the second season beginning one week after the first season’s Championship game.

Season Schedule

During 2018, there are 26 eligible weeks during the year where Durham Softball League games may be played:

Date Week
Sunday, April 1, 2018 Easter Sunday Today – OFF
Sunday, April 8, 2018 1
Sunday, April 15, 2018 2
Sunday, April 22, 2018 3
Sunday, April 29, 2018 4
Sunday, May 6, 2018 5
Sunday, May 13, 2018 Mother’s Day Today – OFF
Sunday, May 20, 2018 6
Sunday, May 27, 2018 Memorial Day on Monday – OFF
Sunday, June 3, 2018 7
Sunday, June 10, 2018 8
Sunday, June 17, 2018 Father’s Day Today – OFF
Sunday, June 24, 2018 9
Sunday, July 1, 2018 10
Sunday, July 8, 2018 11
Sunday, July 15, 2018 12
Sunday, July 22, 2018 13
Sunday, July 29, 2018 14
Sunday, August 5, 2018 15
Sunday, August 12, 2018 16
Sunday, August 19, 2018 17
Sunday, August 26, 2018 18
Sunday, September 2, 2018 Labor Day on Monday – OFF
Sunday, September 9, 2018 19
Sunday, September 16, 2018 20
Sunday, September 23, 2018 21
Sunday, September 30, 2018 22
Sunday, October 7, 2018 23
Sunday, October 14, 2018 24
Sunday, October 21, 2018 25
Sunday, October 28, 2018 26
TOTAL 26 Weeks to Play 18 Weeks
8 “Built-In” Rainout Dates

The league does not play games on Sunday when national holidays fall on a Sunday or Monday during the year.

With 8 Regular Season Weeks and 1 Playoff Week, the two seasons will require a total of 18 Sundays each year. With 26 Eligible Sundays between April 8 and November 1, we have 8 “built-in” weeks to accommodate rain-out reschedules and still get both seasons in before the end of the year.

Spring Season: Starts Sunday, April 8, 2018; ends after 9 eligible weeks.

The Spring league has the potential to finish on June 24th, which is the 9th eligible week of the season. With at least a couple rain-outs likely, a more realistic date for the 9th week’s Championship game might be July 1 or July 8, the 11th and 12th eligible weeks of the year. Whenever the Championship game from the Spring season is played, the Summer season will begin exactly one week later.

Summer Season: Starts 2 weeks after Spring Season; ends after 9 eligible weeks.

If the Summer season’s “one week later” start date lands on a holiday, the season will start two weeks later. This means the earliest that the Summer season might begin is June 24, because it is one week after the earliest date that the Spring season could end. Because it is unlikely for the Spring season to be completed with out any rain-outs, a more realistic date for the Summer season’s Opening Day is July 8 or July 15.

With good weather, it is possible to end both seasons as early as September 9th, the 19th eligible week of the season (one “Bye” week allowed between seasons). For each rain-out during the year, the seasons would get one week longer.

Weekly Schedule

Games are played on Sundays and start between 11am and 5pm, for a total of 7 games per week.

  • 6 of the 8 teams will play a double header, with one game immediately after the other.
  • The other two teams will play a single game at either 11am or 5pm.
  • Over the 8-week regular season, each team will have 6 double headers and 2 weeks with only a single game.
  • If you only play 1 game, it will be at either 11am or 5pm.
  • All teams will play each other twice, home and away.
  • The 9th week of each season will feature two single-elimination tournaments. The Consolation Tournament will be played between the Bottom 4 teams competing for 5th Place; the Championship Tournament will be played by the Top 4 teams competing for 1st Place.

Each week, scheduled games will follow the following format:

Game Team #1 Team #2
11:00am 1 8
12:00pm 1 2
1:00pm 3 2
2:00pm 3 4
3:00pm 5 4
4:00pm 5 6
5:00pm 7 6

One “Featured Organization” Each Week

With an 8-week regular season and 8 teams, all teams will have a single week where their non-profit is featured to highlight and promote their non-profit to the other members of the league. The featured organization plays the 11am/12pm double header during the first two games to start the week. The captain of the team, or a representative of the non-profit, is invited and encouraged to stay for the remaining games to talk with the other teams before their game, let them know more about your organization, and collect any donated items that teams may bring to the fields.

Rain-Outs / Rescheduling Games

When a week gets rained out, all games are rescheduled for the last week of the regular season. This makes sure that most games on the schedule are played as originally scheduled at the start of the season so players can better plan their weekends ahead of time.

If some games are played, but other games need to be rescheduled, those games would always be made up during the last week of the season, even if other games get rained out after them. In an emergency, alternate arrangements to play games earlier/later in the day may be considered if both teams agree to the accommodations.

Awards & Bonuses

In addition to the donations we’ll make to these sponsor organizations based on their participation and performance, teams in the league are also competing for a few nice prizes each season. The physical prizes will be awarded to the non-profit sponsor organization of the team that wins the award, as described below.

Umpire’s Choice Award

The Durham Softball Umpire’s Choice Award is an extra end-of-season bonus donation for one team in the league. The Award is voted on by the Umpires affiliated with the league at the end of the season.

The Umpire’s Choice Award pool is equal to 2% of the available Donation Pool at the end of the regular season. For 12 to 19 players per team, this donation would roughly be between $23 and $72, respectively, depending on the number of players in the league. The Umpires will vote for the team that most exemplifies the following characteristics during the season:

  • Sportsmanship. The players respect their opponents and do not seek conflict while playing the game.
  • Team Work. The players respect their teammates, speak positively, and encourage each other during the game.
  • Service. The players participate in weekly promotions and contribute to the causes of the other teams in the league.

To be eligible for the award, the team must have zero forfeits on the season. These requirements are meant to encourage fair play and allow the Umpires to also help give back and contribute to our cause.

Player’s Choice Award

The Durham Softball Player’s Choice Award is basically the exact same as the Umpire’s Choice Award, only voted on by the Players in the league, rather than the Umpires. The donation amounts, voting criteria, and eligibility requirements are all the same.

Regular Season / Tournament Champions

In addition to receiving the largest performance-based donation bonus for having the best record at the end of the season, the Regular Season Champion’s sponsor organization will receive a custom trophy. The trophy is being donated to the league by The Tockery, a local Durham custom wood and acrylic fabricating and engraving shop, and will be customized to include the name and logo of the winning organization.

The Tockery is also making Giant Checks to present to all teams at the end of the season. The check will be made out in the amount of the donation that the team earned for their non-profit sponsor that season. The teams won’t be able to keep the check, but it’ll still look cool for pictures. Everyone likes to take a picture with a giant check, right?

Drinks at Sponsor Bar

Each week, our sponsor bar has been gracious enough to offer a free pitcher of domestic brew to all teams on Sunday after their games! Just show up on Sunday afternoon with at least 4 people from your team wearing their Durham Softball jerseys. Since our Sponsor is kind enough to pay for the first drink each week, they hope you’ll stay for lunch and tip your server well!