Play begins Thursday in Williamsport, Pa., in the 2013 Little League World Series -- the 67th annual tournament.
Sixteen teams have qualified for the Little League World Series, eight from the United States and eight international squads. Both groups will play in their own double-elimination brackets, with the U.S. champion meeting the international champ for the World Series crown.
Each team in the series is guaranteed to play at least three games in Williamsport. Teams that lose their first two contests will play a consolation game against an international opponent.
The title game between winners of the U.S. and international brackets is scheduled for Aug. 25 at 3 p.m. on ABC.
Westport's opening game is Thursday at 7 p.m. at Lamade Stadium against the Southeast champion, Nashville, Tenn., on ESPN2.
If Westport wins its opener, it will play Sunday at 2 p.m. on ABC against the winner of the game between Southwest champion Corpus Christi, Texas, and Northwest champion Sammamish, Wash.
If Westport wins both contests, it will be just one win from the U.S. championship game, to be played Aug. 24 at 3:30 p.m. on ABC. The loser of that game will play the loser of the international final in a third-place game on Aug. 25 at 11 a.m.
If Westport loses its opener, it will play the loser of Corpus Christi and Sammamish on Saturday at 3 p.m. on ABC in an elimination game. The loser of that contest will play its consolation game on Monday at noon against an international opponent.
As in previous tournaments, the Little League World Series has pitch counts and mandatory participation rules.
Pitchers may not throw more than 85 pitches in any game. Those who throw 66 or more may not pitch for the next four days; 51-65 pitches, three days; 36-50, two days; and 21-25, one day. Throwing fewer than 21 pitches does not require a day off.
Every player must play three consecutive defensive outs and bat at least once in every game. A player may exit and re-enter a game once; after a second removal, he may not re-enter.
Teams may use one special pinch runner per inning that does not count as the player's entry.
email@example.com; 203-255-4561 ext. 114; twitter.com/DougBonjour