SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — VFW baseball has been around for 60 years and they will hope to play their 61st season this summer.
The VFW and American Legion have a solid connection and they work well together.
“The VFW helps the American Legion because we help with training and development of the players before they get to the legion level,” Chairman of South Dakota VFW Danny Frisby-Griffin said.
On an average year, VFW baseball supports four age levels, 16-under, 14-under, 12-under and 10-under.
“VFW is unique and different from other leagues because we don’t choose who you have to play during the season,” Frisby-Griffin said. “We run the postseason however, such as region and state tournaments.”
Following the announcement of a canceled legion season, the VFW made the decision to fill that void by having a class ‘B’ 19-U postseason.
“This is a one year event and it’s a chance for these kids to play,” Frisby-Griffin said. “It would look just like our 16-U postseason. There would be four regions and the top two teams from each region to go state, except in the hosts region.”
The state tournament consists of eight teams: seven teams and the host team.
Unlike legion baseball, the VFW doesn’t have a national organization as VFW baseball only exists in three states: Pennsylvania, South Dakota and Minnesota.
The Waiting Game
“We’re being very patient. We’ve been waiting and watching what other leagues are doing. Such as the MLB, amateur baseball and even legion baseball,” Frisby-Griffin said.
The South Dakota Legion Athletic Commission was planning to have a season, until the National Legion Headquarters suspended all play for 2020.
The South Dakota Amateur Baseball Association announced that they will have a 2020 season.
“It is an encouraging sign,” Frisby-Griffin said.
VFW hopes to follow amateur baseball’s lead and have a 2020 season.
“We want to play baseball, but we don’t want to cause a spike (in cases),” Frisby-Griffin said. “Baseball is a good sport to try and some risk out of it. I know we can’t take away all of the risk, but we can try and eliminate some risk.”
The league is planning to follow the guidelines of state and local leaders as they prepare for a season. Many cities are attempting to reopen parks and businesses and the VFW knows that they will need to follow each cities recommendations.
“We are planning to come up with a plan for the season by June 1, at the latest,” Frisby-Griffin said.
You can learn more about VFW baseball in South Dakota by visiting the South Dakota VFW Baseball website. You can also visit their Facebook page below: