District 27 Junior-Senior Baseball Interleague Play Operating Guidelines 2017
1.0 OPERATING GUIDELINES
1.1 As charter members of Little League International, interleague teams will play in conformance to the rules established by Little League Baseball and published in the 2015 “Baseball Official Regulations and Playing Rules,” unless changes or modifications are specified as exceptions in this document. Every manager must have an official printed 2015 Rule Book—or a LL Rulebook app for iPhone or Android— in his possession.
1.2. Interleague play will take place in two groups (Varsity and JV) in the Junior (13-14 year old) division and one group in the Senior (14, 15, 16 year old) division. Leagues may elect to have their Senior divisions include 13 year olds. Regulation IV (pp. 35-36). Team rosters shall be submitted to the Assistant District Administrator within 14 days after the first scheduled game.
1.3. Each local League is expected to balance the talent of its teams in each division. The deliberate “loading” of a team with “all-star” caliber players at the expense of other teams is strictly prohibited. Each local League is required to abide by an open enrollment policy. The cutting of players based upon a lack of playing ability is not permitted.
1.4. The team manager is responsible for the conduct of his or her players, coaches, and spectators. Any misconduct by a manager, coach, player, or spectator should be brought to the attention of the local League V-P’s/Commissioners who will be responsible for disciplining any individual(s) who display(s) unsportsmanlike behavior. Disciplinary action can include oral and written warnings, suspensions (ranging from one game to the entire season), and/or forfeiture of one or more games.
1.5. Ejections. When a manager, coach, or player is ejected from a game, the person ejected shall leave the field immediately and take no further part in that game. Persons ejected may not sit in the stands and may not be recalled. Any manager, coach, or player ejected from a game is suspended for his or her team’s next physically played game and may not be in attendance at the game site from which he or she is suspended.
1.6. Cancelling Games Due to Weather. The home team manager is responsible for the cancellation of any game due to inclement weather or wet fields. He or she is responsible for contacting the opposing manager and the umpire at least two hours—preferably much more—before the scheduled start of the game. After contacting the umpire, the home team manager must then notify the Assistant District Administrator by e-mail of the cancellation and which umpire was contacted. Both managers are responsible to be sure the umpire is notified. The Assistant District Administrator will reschedule the game only if the two teams agree on a time and field.
1.7. Official protests must be made in conformance with Rule 4.19 (p. 76-77). The Protest Committee shall consist of the District Administrator and two Assistant District Administrators. A $25.00 fee shall be imposed on the protesting team if the protest is not allowed.
2.0 PREGAME ACTIVITIES
2.1 The home team shall supply a sufficient number of “Senior Little League” or equivalent baseballs for the game. In addition, the home (host) team is responsible for ensuring that the playing field is properly prepared.
2.2 The visiting team shall be provided a minimum of 15 minutes of infield practice immediately before the game if time permits. Priority is to be given to the visitors. The home team should make the necessary arrangements to warm up in advance of the visiting team or forego warm-ups if time is not available. Remember that the visiting team members are your guests.
2.3 The participating managers and umpire shall meet immediately before the start of the game to discuss ground rules. At this time, the opposing manager should be made aware of any players in attendance that will not play due to illness, injury, or for disciplinary reasons. The opposing manager should be made aware of any replacement players who will be playing in the game. At this pre-game conference, each manager should be prepared to exchange pitching logs, if requested.
2.4 Start games on time. In your umpire is late, begin with a parent volunteer.
3.0 PLAYING RULE ADMENDMENTS
3.1 Mandatory Play. Each player is required to play a minimum of six defensive outs in the field, and have at least one at-bat in each game. See Rule Book Regulation IV(i) (p. 35). EXCEPTION: A player who does not play the minimum amount of time as set forth in this rule due to the termination of a game by the ten-run mercy rule, or due to the termination for any other reason of a game that is nonetheless declared a “complete game” must start the next game he is in attendance. This exception applies to games terminated early due to darkness, weather, and similar, unanticipated conditions, but does not apply to the situation in which a home-team player does not get his required at-bat because he is due to bat in the bottom of the last inning and his team is ahead. It is the home-team manager’s duty to assume such a possibility, and should therefore ensure each player an at-bat within six innings. The manager must make every effort to play each player in attendance the minimum amount of time in each game.
3.3 Replacement Players Allowed. If a team does not have a sufficient number of players to play a game, replacement players may be used. In the Senior division, replacement players shall be obtained from the Junior division if possible (14 year olds only); otherwise players from another Senior division team in the same local League may be used. In the Junior Division, replacement players shall be obtained from another team in the local League’s Junior division only. At no time shall a team use replacement players from a team in another local League.
3.4 Replacement Player Procedures. A team may use up to three replacement players in a game. Should it become necessary for a replacement player to start a game, his position in the batting order shall be behind all regular team members in attendance. No replacement player may play in favor of a regular team member in attendance, except that once a replacement player enters the game, he or she must remain in the game until satisfying the minimum play requirements of Regulation IV(i) (p. 35) (six defensive outs and one at-bat). If a regular team member arrives after the game begins, the replacement player is required to leave the game immediately to make room for the regular player, unless the replacement player has played fewer than six consecutive defensive outs or has not yet batted. Replacement players are not permitted to pitch.
3.5 $100 Fine for Last-Minute Cancellation. A team must have 9 players to start a game (see Rule 4.16 (p. 76)), but may finish a game with 8 players, notwithstanding Rule 4.17 (p. 76). A team may not “borrow” a player or players from the opposing team unless that team is from the same local League; if 9 players are not present when the game begins it is forfeited to the other team if present and ready to play within 15 minutes of starting time. If a team cannot field 9 players to start the game, the manager shall notify the Assistant District Administrator no later than the preceding Wednesday by 8:00 p.m. so that the game can be cancelled in advance and a new game scheduled for the opposing team, if possible. A team cancelling later will pay a $100 fine. If a team arrives at the field but cannot field 9 players to start a game, the umpire shall not be obligated to call the game but may agree to call a practice game in which one or more players is borrowed from the other team.
3.6 Mercy Rule. The ten-run mercy rule after five innings (4½ if home team ahead) is in effect for all games. The manager of the team with the least runs shall concede the victory to the opponent. If the visiting team has a lead of ten runs or more, the home team must bat in its half of the inning. See Rule 4.10(e) (p. 73).
3.7 Time Limit. Any game that remains tied after the two and one-half hour time limit has expired will play one additional inning if the field is available without preventing the timely beginning of the next scheduled game. Should the game remain tied at the end of the extra inning, or the field be unavailable for an extra inning, the score shall be recorded as a tie.
3.8 Report Score Promptly. The winning manager is responsible for reporting game results to the Webmaster via the District 27 Web site at http://www.padistrict27.org no later than Sunday evening at 8:00 p.m. at the conclusion of the weekly schedule. Results will be posted on the District Web site as soon as possible. Any problems or concerns about the game should be made known to the Assistant District Administrator (not the Webmaster) by this time.
4.1 Pitching Record. Each team manager shall maintain and attach to the scorebook a completed pitcher eligibility tracking form. At the conclusion of each game, these forms shall be exchanged and signed by the opposing manager. Failure to produce a properly completed pitching eligibility form could result in the game being protested and forfeited at the Assistant District Administrator’s discretion. Obtain the form at http://www.littleleague.org/Assets/forms_pubs/Pitching_EligibilityTracking_Form.pdf.
4.3 Regulation VI (pp. 37-39) governs pitchers. It limits the number of pitches to 95 per day and requires the following days of rest:
Pitchers league age 14 and under (league age is player’s age on April 30, 2017):
Pitches Days of Rest
66 or more 4
Pitchers league age 15-18:
Pitches Days of Rest
76 or more 4
A balk counts as a pitch, whether or not the ball is thrown. (Rule 2.00, definition of pitch, p. 58.)
Violation of this rule could result in forfeiture of the game in which the violation occurs. A protest for violation must be made in conformance with Rule 4.19 (pp. 76-77).
Playing Both Pitcher and Catcher: Any player who has played the position of catcher in four (4) or more innings in a game is not eligible to pitch on that calendar day. Regulation VI(a) (p. 37). And a pitcher who delivers 41 or more pitches in a game cannot play catcher for the remainder of that day. Regulation VI(c) (p. 37).
Double-elimination playoffs, for teams that wish to participate, will be scheduled at the conclusion of the regular season. Playoffs will end about June 28.
Every manager must have a printed copy of the 2015 Little League Baseball Official Regulations and Playing Rules book—or a LL Rulebook app for iPhone or Android—at the field for every game. The rules listed below are most often misunderstood or misinterpreted. They are listed with the Rule number, page number, and subject matter.
Bats. Rule 1.10 (pp. 53-54):
Senior division bats must be “–3” or less—shall not weigh more than 3 ounces less than their length in inches (e.g., a 33-inch-long bat cannot weigh less than 30 ounces). Bats may be no longer than 36 inches (Seniors) and no more than 2-5/8 inches in diameter. Non-wood Senior division bats must meet and be labeled with the BBCOR performance standard.
The weight of bats in the Junior division is not regulated. Bats may be no longer than 34 inches (Juniors) and no more than 2-5/8 inches in diameter. Composite barrel Junior division bats must meet and be labeled with the BBCOR performance standard. A composite barrel bat has a metal shell, but a woven composite of fibers on the inside of the barrel.
Rule 1.17 (p. 56) – Refers in part to all catchers wearing the dangling type throat guard regardless of the type of mask. Requires catcher’s helmets to bear the NOCSAE stamp for compliance with safety standards.
Rule 2.0 – Interference and obstruction (pp. 62-63).
Substitutions. REVISED March 15th, 2017; Teams can use a rolling 9 free substitution. Players can be moved in and out during the game and only can be re-enter the game once his spot in the batting order has reached the plate. All players are required to play a minimum of six consecutive outs on defense.
Rule 3.03 (pp. 66-67) – For Regular Season Playoffs and All Star Tournaments Basically, starters removed from the game may not re-enter until the substitute who entered for that starter has played defensively for six consecutive outs and batted once. This means that starters removed from the game need to sit for two consecutive innings (or more if that starter’s substitute has not yet batted). Only starters may re-enter, and they may re-enter only once. Upon re-entering, the starter does not have to return to his original spot in the batting order. Pitchers remaining in the game but moving to another position can return as a pitcher later in the game. Managers are NOT permitted to agree among themselves to waive the substitution rule and use a continuous batting order instead.
Designated hitters are permitted in Seniors (not Juniors). See Rule 3.03 (Senior/Big League Designated Hitter Rule) (p. 67). Mandatory play (Regulation IV(i) (pp. 34-35) continues for Seniors; the designated hitter must play six defensive outs in addition to batting once.
Special Pinch Runner. Rule 3.04 (p. 67) – Courtesy runner not permitted. But special pinch runners are allowed once per inning. See Rule 7.14 (p. 96). A player may be removed for a special pinch runner only once during a game.
Rule 3.17 (p. 69) – Occupying the bench and/or dugout.
Rule 4.05 (p. 71) – Two adult base coaches are permitted if at least one adult manager or coach remains in the dugout.
Rule 4.06 (p. 71) – Conduct—good sportsmanship at all times.
Rule 4.16 (p. 76) – Game cannot start with fewer than 9 players. D27 Operating Guideline 3.5 permits a game to end with 8, notwithstanding Rule 4.17 (p. 76).
Slide or Avoid. Rule 7.08(a)(3) (p. 90) – A runner is out when . . . (3) the runner does not slide or attempt to get around a fielder who has the ball and is waiting to make the tag.
Special Pinch Runner. Rule 7.14 (p. 96) – Special pinch runner permitted once per inning. A player may be removed for a special pinch runner only once during a game.
Pitching Hand. Rule 8.01(f) (p. 99) – A pitcher must indicate which hand the player intends to pitch with to a batter. He may not change pitching hands while pitching to that batter.
Intentional Walk. Rule 8.05(k) (p. 101) – The pitcher will NO longer need to throw 4 pitches to walk a batter intentionally. The catcher will inform the umpire and the batter will take his base. The pitcher will still have the four pitches added to his pitch count.
Rule 8.05(l) & (m) (p. 101) – Balk. D27 amendment: one warning will be given per team per regular season game. No warnings in playoff games.
Daniel Stubanas, Ass’t District Administrator—Junior & Senior Baseball
Pennsylvania District 27, Little League Baseball International
March 26, 2017