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CHATHAM BASEBALL

AAA LEAGUE RULES

GAME PLAY

All games will be played in accordance with Ripken League Rules with the following local exceptions.

 

BASE RUNNING

  1. Stealing:
    1. Stealing is allowed from the first game
    2. Stealing of Third Base only:
      1. Players may steal third base only;
      2. No advance to home on overthrow to third; and
      3. No advance on overthrow back to the pitcher or delayed steal.
    3. No leading from any base until after the pitch reaches the batter.
    4. No running to first on a dropped third strike.
    5. Go over the stealing rule with the umpire before each game so that we are all on the same page.
  2. Slide or Avoid. It is the responsibility of the base runner to avoid contact with a fielder who is making or about to make a play.  A runner must not collide with or run into a fielder in any situation. The runner must slide or attempt to avoid contact by running around the fielder. Any collision with a fielder who is about to receive the ball results in the base runner being called out. First Basemen must be taught to stand on the corner of the bag, not right in the middle. This will help to avoid contact at first base.
  3. No head first slides into any base. Penalty: Runner is called out.
  4. On a ball hit into play, a runner can advance on an overthrow at his own risk to any base including home. (This rule is designed for Nash Field where the ball is always live inside the fences. On a different field where the ball goes out of play, a runner advances one base.)
  5. Runners can tag up from any base at their own risk

 

BATTING
Batting Order. All players who appear for the game will be included in the batting order. If a player arrives late, that player will be inserted into the lineup as the last batter when he arrives.

  1. Bat throwing is extremely dangerous and must be controlled. A player will receive one warning by the umpire for throwing a bat and will be called out for a second offense.
  2. Coaches must coach players to be aggressive at bat. We need to have the players swing at all good pitches and attempt to put the ball in play.
  3. There is no bunting.
  4. On deck batters may only swing the bat at Nash in the on-deck area adjacent to the dugouts.
  5. The bat may not exceed 33”in length, and the bat barrel may not exceed 2 ¼” in diameter.  Only 2 ¼” barrel non-wood bats marked BPF 1.15 will be allowed.  Wood 2 ¼” barrel bats are allowed.


FIELDING

  1. Infield fly rule will be called.
  2. Defensive obstruction needs to be avoided. A fielder cannot stand on a base or in the base path unless they are about to catch or make a play on a ball that was hit or thrown. If the fielder slows the runner in any manner, the runner is safe at the next base and could be awarded two or more bases at the discretion of the umpire if the umpire thinks the runner could have made it to those bases.

 

PITCHING
Pitching distance will be forty-six (46) feet. Coaches must work on developing pitchers at each of their practices so that the pitchers will be able to throw strikes, which makes for a better game for all concerned. Only use pitchers that can consistently throw strikes.

  1. Coaches should ask a child, before putting him on the mound to pitch, whether the child is wearing a heart guard. If the child is not, and the team-provided heart guard is not available for the child to wear, the child is not allowed to pitch.
  2. Pitching Rules “focus on maintaining healthy arms”:
  • The pitcher may pitch no more than two (2) innings per game or more than 40 pitches over those two innings. The innings must be consecutive in a given game.
  • The pitcher may pitch no more than (6) innings per week and should not pitch on consecutive days. This includes Spring Travel pitching. 
  • Even if a pitcher only throws only 1 pitch in an inning it still counts as a full inning pitched.
  • Balks are not called.
  • No intentional walks.
  • If a pitcher hits three batters in an appearance, he must be replaced.
  • Coaches may visit the mound once to talk to a pitcher. The second trip to the mound for the same pitcher in a given inning must result in a pitching change.
  • NO breaking pitches may be thrown.  Straight change-up is allowed.
     

GAME MANAGEMENT
A team must field at least 8 players to avoid a forfeit (playing two outfielders instead of three).

  1. Substitution. Any player who does not start in the field may not sit a second inning until all players who appear for the game have sat out one inning.
  2. Courtesy runner for the catcher. If the catcher who will be utilized at the start of the next half inning is on base with 2 outs, a pinch runner will be utilized to speed up play. The runner will be the person who made the last batted out.
  3. Before each game, both coaches should have a pre-game meeting with the umpire. The coaches should remind the umpire of the need for a large strike zone (upper chest down to the knees) to encourage aggressive swinging and maintain a healthy pace of play.
  4. Each team is responsible for keeping a game book to record hits, runs, outs and maintaining their batting order.
  5. Timing of Games
    1. A game will consist of six (6) innings unless it runs into the time limit below.
    2. Time limit on regular season games.  No inning can start after 1 hour and 45 minutes from the start of the game.  An inning is considered to start after the last out of the previous inning. At the two hour mark, the game is over if another game is scheduled on the field.  The partially completed inning is erased from the official score.
  6. No general mercy rule. The coaches who are involved in the game should not run up a score in any game. If you are way ahead, please give a less experienced pitcher on your team a chance to pitch.
  7. Players / Positions. An objective of Youth League baseball is to allow the players to get experience at multiple positions. But the safety of the players is always the number one priority. We should not put players in key positions if they cannot appropriately “catch / field”.  Those positions include pitcher, catcher, first base and third base.
  8. If at the end of 6 innings the score is tied, the game ends in a tie. Only the playoffs will use extra innings.

 

AAA LEAGUE GOVERNANCE

Schedules / Game Results / Records / Playoffs

  1. League Play: We expect our league play to be 2 games per week with one weeknight and one on Saturdays.  Rain-outs are expected and as a result we may schedule some weeks with games on other weekdays to ensure we play enough baseball during the spring.
  2. Sportsmanship and Conduct
    1. Each team is expected to line up after the game for the traditional “congratulations” handshake.
    2. All coaches are responsible for their own behavior, their coaches and their players. Poor sportsmanship will not be tolerated on any level including comments directed at the umpires and other teams/players.
    3. Also, coaches are expected to also help the umpire in controlling any unsportsmanlike behavior coming from parents.
  3. Each team is responsible for keeping a game book to record hits, runs, outs and maintaining their batting order.
  4. The final score and results should be verified by both teams at the end of the game. It would be strongly suggested to check in at the end of every other inning to ensure both teams have the same score.
  5. Final scores should be sent via email to AAA League Coordinator who will maintain league records.
    1. At least one coach should send email and cc: the other coach.
  6. Playoffs for AAA.
    1. Format will be “single elimination” tournament with early round byes based on regular season record.
    2. All teams will make the playoffs.
    3. Tie breakers for seeding will be based on head to head games and if still tied then a coin toss by the league coordinator.
  7. All in season rules will apply for the playoffs with no exceptions.

 

Affiliate Call-Up Policy:

  1. All coaches need to emphasize the importance of attending games.  Parents must notify coaches of absence or tardiness to games as early as possible and a minimum of 48 hours in advance.  All parents should be using the RSVP functionality of the website.  There should be 10 players present for every game if possible.  Coaches should activate call ups to get to 10 players for every game.
  2. AAA League team can call up a 4th grader from its AA League affiliate in case of a shortage of players for a given game.  Each AA coach should provide his AAA affiliate coach with the names and contact information of his top four 4th grade players, preferably in order.  On an exception basis, the best 3rd grader from the AA affiliate can be called up.
  3. AAA coaches will be notified as to who their AA affiliate team is by the AAA League Coordinator.
  4. All coaches should talk with their affiliate coach when trying to call up so the most appropriate player is identified to substitute.  There should not be any mismatches.  Please use good judgment and do what is best for the safety and development of all the players.

 

Coordination with Spring Travel

  1. You must identify those players on your team who are playing on Spring Travel teams.
  2. Spring Travel Rosters will be sent to the AAA League Coordinator who will distribute to the AAA Head Coaches.
  3. Reach out to Spring Travel Coaches to coordinate the following:
    1. Pitch Rules (see max innings and pitching notes above)
    2. Travel coaches will publish in advance their expected pitching rotation for Sunday games so that AAA coaches can adjust accordingly.
    3. Position Play – we should try to have the players focus on playing similar positions in both AAA and Travel. We recognize that, at times, due to the more broad distribution of talent level at AAA, it might not be possible, requiring our Travel players to play key AAA positions regardless of their Travel focus.

Other Miscellaneous

  1. Heart guards and cups are MANDATORY for all players. Players must have their own helmets.
  2. Bathrooms, Etc.

a.  “Shack” Bathrooms at Nash is “push 2 and 4 together and then push 3”

b.  Field Equipment Boxes/Sheds - Lock combos will be provided to coaches.