Eleven Veto League members were in attendance to discuss equipment purchases, rule changes, team captains, divisions and the date for the start of the season.
This year's team captains will be Scott Raes, DJ Borkovec, and Jeff Kilgard for the Saukie Division. Josh Paul, Michael Holst, and Anthony Reese will compete in the Blackhawk division. Team captains are decided by the top 6 players the previous season in terms of games played. Mark Wishnia and Ryan Barton were among the top 6 but both opted not to be captains. The torch was then passed to Michael Holst and Scott Ellefritz. Holst accepted but Ellefritz declined. The last captain spot was then offered to Keith Youngs who also declined and Josh Kilgard took the final slot. Had Kilgard also declined, Kevin Powell would have been next in line.
In terms of equipment needs, the league decided to purchase a new L-screen. The current L-screen has suffered significant structural damage due to years of use as well as exposure to all kinds of weather conditions. Last year many games were played without the screen because pieces had broken off and it did not stand very well on its own. Player safety is at jeopardy without the screen so the members at the winter meeting voted to purchase a new one. During play, all balls that hit the L-screen are considered dead balls and a do over is called for.
A new tarp will also be purchased. The tarp is usually used on very hot days to cover the top of the dugout. Last year a player volunteered a tarp but a bigger tarp owned by the league will be purchased for this year.
The league will also purchase Quick Dry (or a similar product) for days when puddles plague the field.
Additionally there will be new purchases of more rubber bases, a new rake, and a new water jug. More baseballs will also be purchased.
Three significant rule changes have been made.
A foul ball limit has also been put in place. This rule required a lengthy discussion. In the past there was an "unwritten rule" that after a certain amount of foul balls a player would be called out. It was nicknamed "The Carlson Rule" after former player Brett Carlson would consistently have long at-bats due to many foul balls. Now a written rule is in place where after a hitter has two strikes, they can only foul off 5 pitches. On that 5th foul ball, they will be called out. Some members wanted the rule to be limited to 3 or 4 foul balls, but it was ultimately decided that 5 would be the number. Some argued that it is no longer baseball with a foul ball limit but others argued that Veto League does not have a "need" to extend at-bats and foul off pitches since all pitches are thrown at batting practice speed. Veto League still has no called balls or strikes but strikes can be obtained by swinging and missing or fouling pitches off.