The Valley League was formed in 1923 and became an NCAA-sanctioned league in 1961. Although the NCAA no longer has direct involvement with summer leagues, the league still operates under NCAA rules. The league adopted wooden bats in 1993. Each VBL team plays a 40-game schedule June through August concluding with a top-eight-team playoff to determine The Lineweaver Cup Championship.
The VBL is funded in part by a grant from Major League Baseball and is a member of the National Alliance of College Summer Baseball, a national affiliation of summer leagues. The league has produced well over 1,000 professional baseball players, including a record 79 former players drafted in the 2008 Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft. Last year 27 Valley League alumni were playing in the Major Leagues.
In 2011, the VBL began a process of transitioning to not-for-profit status. All teams as well as the League are now not-for-profit. The Valley League name is derived from the beautiful Shenandoah Valley, which is nestled between the Blue Ridge Mountains to the east and the Allegheny Mountains to the west in Virginia and West Virginia. We are a short drive from Washington, DC.
The league is playing in an 11-team, one division format in 2014. It will return to a 12-team format in 2015. Current franchises include Covington Lumberjacks, Harrisonburg Turks, New Market Rebels, Staunton Braves, Waynesboro Generals, Front Royal Cardinals, Aldie Senators, Charles Town Canons, Strasburg Express, Winchester Royals and Woodstock River Bandits.
The league will play a 40-game schedule beginning May 30th with playoffs beginning in the last week of July and extending into early August. Last possible date for play is August 9th.
There are many former Valley Leaguers now playing in the Major Leagues, but the league stands for more than just great baseball. It is a very community-oriented venture. Each area involves itself with the team by housing players, providing summer jobs, financially supporting the teams, and regularly attending games.