FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Got a question? Want to learn more about how the RAA operates? Please see our Frequently Asked Questions that have been compiled for your use.
Registration forms for each sport contain a section for a parent to volunteer as a coach, manager or referee (basketball). Each parent who requests an opportunity to serve as a coach, manager or referee is given consideration. If there are more volunteers than positions (not the usual situation) preference is given to those who have previously served as a coach, manager or assistant. All coaches must pass a criminal and Act 33 (child abuse) background check (paid for by the RAA).
All teams are selected by a draft conducted shortly after registration closes for the sport. Drafts are overseen by the commissioner of the league. The goal is to pick teams that are equally competitive.
A draft is the procedure used to pick teams. For example, if there are 44 players and 4 teams for the baseball league, each team will have 11 players, which means there will be 11 rounds to the draft. Each coach selects a player in the first round. In each of the following rounds the coaches pick in reverse order to the immediately preceding round. That procedure is followed until all 44 players are selected. Coaches and the commissioners attempt to rank players by round so that the teams that are selected are equally competitive.
As a guideline, basketball teams generally have 7 to 9 players (5 play at a time). Baseball and softball teams generally have 10 to 12 players (9 or 10 play in the field at any one time and teams generally use a continuous batting order). Flag football teams generally have 8 or 9 players (7 play on the field).
Coaches and managers have information on practices. Sometimes, practices are posted on the RAA website (www.raasports.org). However, practices are generally not on the website unless electronically published and made available to the webmaster. Practice schedules are provided to the coach at the time of the draft. Coaches are then responsible for providing the practice schedule to their players. Coaches can also call or email their players to let them know of any changes to the practice times. Game times are usually on the website since these schedules are generally less likely to be changed.
The commissioner of the sport gives out practice schedules to coaches. Coaches can switch times with other coaches. Coaches can also request additional practice times as their schedule and gym/field availability permits.
Baseball and in-house girls softball teams are usually selected in March. Practices are conducted in March and April. Opening day is usually the third Saturday of April. Baseball season continues through mid-June and playoffs take place the third or fourth week of June. Travel teams are selected in mid-May and play tournaments in late June and July.
Girls’ fast-pitch softball teams play in other leagues (e.g. Allegheny Valley). Girls’ fast-pitch softball follows a similar schedule but begins and ends the season in accordance with the schedule of the particular league.
Basketball clinics begin in October and teams are selected around the end of October. Practices and practice games are scheduled during November and December. The regular season begins after the Christmas and New Years Holidays and ends around mid-March.
Flag football season begins at the end of August and continues through late October.
Each coach has the discretion to decide what position each of his players should play. Rotating positions is not mandatory. However, as a general guideline and depending on game situations, coaches in the manager pitch and minor league are encouraged to move kids around so that they have opportunities to play different positions. Manager Pitch league rules stipulate that players cannot play one position for more than two consecutive innings.
New Board members are nominated and elected in August. Anyone interested in serving on the Board should let a Board member know of the interest. The RAA is always looking for Board members who are willing to donate their time and talents to the RAA.
Board meetings are usually held the first Wednesday or Thursday of the month at the Elks in Oakmont. Any participant in RAA programs can attend the Board meetings but should make arrangements in advance with a Board member.
Minutes of all Board meetings are prepared. A participant in RAA programs can request a copy of the minutes. Requests for copies of meeting minutes should be directed to an officer of the Board.
Other than for T-ball (baseball) and 1st/2nd grade basketball, requests for children to be on a team with a friend cannot be guaranteed. Any such request should be directed to a coach or noted on a registration form. A coach may then select the friends during the draft but will generally not be permitted to do so if such selection would upset the competitive balance of a league.
The mission of the RAA is identified on the website at www.raasports.org, as follows:
“The mission of the Association is to bring together the residents and students of the Oakmont and Verona communities to promote basketball, baseball and football athletic skills, positive relationship skills, good sportsmanship and community pride.”
Yes. RAA usually has a winter fundraiser (band, food, drinks and games) in February or March and a golf outing in August. Please review the website for information regarding these fundraisers. The RAA also seeks sponsors for all of our programs to defray the costs of the programs in an effort to keep the registration fees reasonable.
Baseball and Girl’s in-house softball accepts players that are five years old. Basketball accepts players beginning in first grade. Flag football accepts players beginning in third grade.
The RAA provides separate teams and leagues for boys and girls for all leagues other than T-ball.
Rules for manager-pitch, minor league and major league are posted in the Baseball Rules section of the website.
The sponsor fee varies based on the number of teams or sports sponsored. A sponsor’s name is imprinted prominently on the back of the players’ jerseys and a listing is added to the RAA website.
Anyone interested in sponsoring a team should let a Board member know. RAA accepts sponsorships for baseball teams from January through March.
Travel/tournament team coaches are selected from the coaches in the league. The commissioner selects the coach from those of the existing coaches who have expressed interest and makes a recommendation to the Board. The Board then approves the coach. Priority is given to coaches who have previously coached a travel/tournament team.
The RAA sports programs are open to all members of the public.
Problems with the way a coach handles something should generally be first addressed by the player (and parents) to the coach. If the problem cannot be resolved directly with the coach or the problem involves an issue that is not appropriate to bring directly to the coach, then the problem should be brought to the attention of a member of the Board of the RAA. The Board will not address issues committed to the discretion of the coach such as playing time or the field position of a player. Rather, the Board will only address problems that constitute a violation by a coach of RAA rules or policy or other similar matters.
A tournament/travel team is a team selected to play in tournaments or in a league outside the RAA. Players for those teams are selected from the eligible players in a particular age or grade. Players on travel teams must generally attend a school located in Oakmont and Verona.
Currently, the RAA selects travel/tournament teams in baseball for ages 7 and 8 (Manager Pitch), 9, 10, 11, 12. The RAA also selects travel teams for the Pony League teams (ages 13 and 14). For Basketball, there are travel teams for 5th and 6th grade boys and girls.
Playing up occurs when a player in a younger league is asked to play for a team in an older league. For example, if a team in the baseball minor leagues needs a player, the coach from that team can call up a player from the manager pitch league.
A coach should call a player up when he or she does not expect to have enough players to field a full baseball team. A coach may also call a player up in basketball if he or she will only have 5 or 6 players and believes an additional substitute is necessary. For basketball, call-ups are generally made on a rotating basis from a list of eligible players approved by the commissioner.
Coaches are responsible for notifying their players when a game is cancelled or rescheduled. Cancellations may be posted on the RAA website at www.raasports.org; however, not all cancellations may be updated to that site in time. As such, any time you are not sure if a game has been cancelled or re-scheduled, you should contact your coach. Many coaches prefer to communicate via email, so having a working email address that is checked with some regularity is important.
See the Board of Directors page for the most current list of commissioners.
All positions in the RAA are volunteer positions. Anyone interested in volunteering for any position should let an RAA Board member know of their interest.
Commissioners are selected from the Board members who express an interest in the position and are approved by the Board.
Basketball referees are volunteers and are generally selected by the commissioner from the coaches. RAA also uses referees who are not coaches but have knowledge of the rules and prior experience with refereeing. Football referees are other coaches from the league whose teams are not playing and/or Board members and other volunteers having an interest in helping the RAA.
Basketball and football referees are not paid. Using paid referees would require the RAA to substantially increase the registration fees for basketball and football. Umpires for all baseball leagues except Manager Pitch baseball and T-Ball are paid “patch” umpires.