In South Dakota, Legion baseball consists of two separate classes based on enrollment. Larger schools participate in Class ‘A’ and smaller schools are classified as Class ‘B’. Legion baseball in our state has changed drastically since Beresford won the first South Dakota State Championship in 1926. Today, two completely separate State Tournaments take place, with each Champion moving on to a bigger tournament. Five years ago, the State ‘B’ Champion moved on to the State ‘A’ Tournament. Thirty-five years ago, the ‘A’ Champion and the ‘B’ Champion faced off in a 3 game series to determine a State Champion.
South Dakota consists of about 60-70 Legion baseball teams. Class ‘A’ has exactly 15 teams, while Class ‘B’ is around 40-50 teams each year. In both classes, 8 teams make the double-elimination State Tournament.
Rapid City Post 22 currently owns the most Class ‘A’ State Championships with 30+ titles. They are also the only South Dakota team to win the American Legion World Series. They have hosted the LWS four times and Aberdeen has hosted once.
American Legion Baseball History
Believe it or not, but American Legion Baseball all got started in the state of South Dakota. Milbank, SD was the host of a 1925 convention where the idea of a baseball league was presented. The following year, the idea became a reality as 15 states formed leagues. Today, all 50 states participate in American Legion Baseball and over 5,000 teams. To learn more about the history of American Legion baseball click the links below.