How To Join
So you want to be a Pirate? We'd love to have you on board!
The Croydon Pirates are welcoming to players of all levels of skill and experience; men and women, boys and girls. We play in the British Baseball Federation in the spring and summer and then offer a Fall Ball programme in the autumn. Whether you're new to the sport or a seasoned old timer, you'll find something you love with us: great fresh air and exercise, fantastic team atmosphere and competition, and a terrific excuse to hit balls really far with sticks!
Building on our 2022 championship season, the Pirates in 2023 will compete at both the Triple-A and the Double-A level, as well as offering a Youth programme.
If you have any questions about getting involved, you'll find most of the answers in the FAQs section below. If there is still something we haven't covered or you need some clarification, let us know how we can help. Otherwise, send us some details of your current situation, playing experience, levels of interest, preferred position etc. to get started!
Baseball in the UK...?
We know, we’re as surprised as you!
Actually - though undoubtedly a more high-profile sport in North/Central America and Asia - baseball’s origins can be traced right back here to the UK. And it’s growing again… One of the fastest developing team sports in recent years on our shores, the BBF has now become a thriving community of dozens of active teams and thousands of dedicated players and coaches across the country, with many more joining every year.
What are the joining requirements?
Very few! However, you MUST be a team player with a positive attitude and enthusiasm to learn the game and improve your skills. Get in touch to show your interest.
How much does it cost to join?
2023 Adult Prices:
Club Membership: £180 (covers all trainings and BBF league games)
Uniform (jersey and cap): £50
2023 Youth Prices (ages 8-13 inclusive):
Club Membership: £50 (£75 for two children; an additional £25 for a third child)
(Please be aware: non-BBF tournaments and indoor winter training may incur additional charges. You will be informed of these.)
When do you play and train?
League game days run from March to September (usually, depending on season and post-season schedules) and are on Sundays.
Non-league game days (tournaments, friendlies, intrasquad games) are less fixed and can vary, but are almost always on weekends.
Training takes place twice a week, on Thursday evening and Saturday morning/midday, at Roundshaw Playing Fields; it is an opportunity to work on technical drills, game theory, and situational plays. We also offer indoor winter trainings from late January to early March on Saturday or Saturday mornings in the training facilities at Crystal Palace.
We keep our players posted throughout the season via Whatsapp and Teamer.
Where do games and training take place?
Our home games are played at Dave Ward Field, a dedicated baseball diamond just outside of Croydon. We have two diamonds available to us during the summer season and they sit side by side within the Roundshaw Playing Fields, located at the end of Hannibal Way, Croydon, CR0 4RW.
Do I need previous baseball experience to play?
In short, no. Of course it helps if you know a little about the sport, or have played before, as does a natural sporting ability or a history of playing other bat/ball sports such as cricket. You MUST be a team player with a positive attitude and enthusiasm to learn the game and improve your skills. We offer excellent training and coaching - come with a growth mindset!
Will everyone who applies get added to the roster?
Not necessarily. There are some requirements for being included in the game-day team. These are relatively easy to meet, but they need to be met all the same. Firstly, you will need to be a paid member of the club (see above for costs) to play league games. You will also need to have the correct uniform/equipment to play (see below).
Secondly, while this is not the MLB or anything, we are still a competitive team and you will have to prove you are able to compete to the standards that are expected of our division. The coaching staff are transparent about operating on a meritocratic basis and will make the ultimate call on who plays. But don't fret if you haven't played before, or feel you may be rusty! Our coaches will get to know you at training sessions and are there to help you improve. Likewise, the beauty of baseball is that having depth is absolutely essential given the intensity of the season, and so if you show the right attitude and an intent to improve, you will have nothing to worry about.
What uniform/equipment do I need?
If you just want to come along and try the game, we can lend you pretty much everything. However, if you want to play in organised fixtures, you will need the uniform and a glove. Our uniform consists of a Pirates jersey, a 'P' cap, grey trousers, a protective box/cup, cleats or astroturf trainers, and optionally black/yellow socks. The club will provide bats, helmets, baseballs and catcher's gear. However, more seasoned players may choose to invest in their own personal gear.
N.B. There are different types of gloves depending on the position that you play, and certain brands, styles and sizes will suit not only different positions but different playing styles. If you need help choosing, sourcing, or even understanding the differences in the plethora of equipment available please contact us for assistance!
Where can I get the equipment I need?
One of our former players owns and runs Comet Sports which carries a huge selection of baseball equipment. He is occasionally able to offer discounts on certain items for registered club members. Alternatively, you can talk to any of the other players at practices for advice on where they picked up those fancy new batting gloves or that dope training bag. We're always scouring the internet for deals!
Show us your interest in joining, either through the Contact link in the menu
or by emailing us at croydonpirates [at] gmail [dot] com.
The Croydon Pirates are predominantly self-funded. Our members pay an annual fee to cover the costs of running a ball club; costs like field rental, equipment purchases, insurance, and league membership.
We are currently looking into assistance programs and grants in order to help us grow the team.
Show your support for the Pirates by donating £3 (or whatever you like) to the club right from your browser. Your contribution will help us pay for essential gear like bats, protective equipment and baseballs, and will directly go towards growing the sport of baseball in the UK.
You can check the progress of our current target and make a contribution at ko-fi.com/croydonpirates.
Learn more about how the team operates, including who is on our Committee and current roster, here.