American Legion Baseball is the oldest and largest, nationwide, baseball program in America, having begun as a national program in 1925. Over eight million teenagers have played American Legion Baseball since its inception. Nearly 90,000 players, ages 15 to 18, participated in 1997. On an average, 65 percent of Major League Baseball players played American Legion Baseball as teenagers and nearly 75 percent of all college players played American Legion Baseball as teenagers.
The average annual budget for teams participating in league play is $12,000. The average annual budget for teams winning their state tournament is $20,000. Over seventeen million dollars is spent annually by local American Legion Posts to sponsor these athletic teams. The American Legion National Headquarters spends approximately 1.2 million dollars annually to operate and host 64 teams that qualify for the National Tournament. Each year, 1,500 players and coaches on 64 teams compete at eight Regional Tournaments.
Bourque-Lanigan Post #5 has sponsored the Waterville team each year. This sponsorship cost the post about $5,000 plus any post-season costs. The last two years we have not sponsored a team because of lack of participants. We would like to change this and get our youth again interested in Legion baseball.