Eastern Region Tournament Milestones

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The Eastern Region tournament series structure has changed several times since the first region tournament was held in 1957. Key events in the evolution of this structure include the following:

YEARMILESTONE
1957The Eastern Region tournament is inaugurated as a four-team, single-elimination tournament. Qualifiers for the tournament include the state champions of New York and Pennsylvania, the winner of a playoff between the Connecticut and New Jersey state champions, and the winner of the New England divisional tournament. The New England Divisional encompasses Eastern Canada, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, and Vermont.
1958Two changes are made in the New England Divisional: Eastern Canadian leagues move to the Canadian Region tournament, and the Massachusetts state champions automatically earn a berth in the finals of the divisional tournament. They face the winner of a playoff between the champions of the remaining four states in the divisional.
1963Puerto Rico competes in the New England divisional, as it would continue to do through 1967.
1968Delaware and Maryland are moved from the Southern Region to the East, and Puerto Rico is moved from the East to the Latin American region. Connecticut is added to the New England divisional, while the other divisional is a playoff between Delaware, Maryland, and New Jersey.
1970The Eastern Region tournament is expanded to encompass a twelve-team field. State champions from each state in the region compete in the region tournament, and the divisional tournament structure is dissolved. The region establishes a tradition of allowing the host state to enter two leagues in the region tournament, bringing the field to a twelve team.
1975The region tournament reverts to the four-team format for the 1975 and 1976 tournament seasons.
1977The region tournament begins a ten year stay at the Town of Newburgh LL Complex in Newburgh, New York. Players are billetted at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, and the tournament is again expanded to encompass all state champions, including champions from Metro and Upstate New York.
1987The region tournament is moved to Bristol, Connecticut, where Little League is establishing a permanent Eastern Region headquarters. Connecticut sends two entrants to the state tournament, while New York now only sends its state champion.
1992The Eastern Region tournament converts to a double-elimination format.
1992Connecticut reduces its entry in the tournament to a single state champion, reducing the tournament field to 11 teams.
1997The region tournament's format is changed again, as officials establish two pools and conduct round-robin competition within each pool during preliminary round competition. The top two teams in each pool compete in single-elimination semifinal and championship round matchups.
1998After years of competing through the Maryland state tournament series, Washington D.C. is given its own berth in the region tournament.
2001Little League Baseball expands the World Series field from eight to sixteen teams. As a result, each of the four U.S. regions is split into two divisions. The East is split into New England and Mid-Atlantic divisions, and the winners of these two tournaments advance to the World Series. Both tournaments continue to be held at the A. Bartlett Giamatti Little League Leadership Training Center in Bristol.

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Last revision: 06/03/2003