Rules

Official Rules - Year 2017

The Field

  1. The bases shall be 60' 0" apart and/or from home plate. Correct positioning of the bases will create a distance from 1st to 3rd base, and from home plate to second base, of about 84'10".

  2. An “interior diamond” shall be delineated by a point 20'0" from home along both base lines, extended parallel to the standard base lines and connected near the pitching mound.

  3. The commitment line shall be drawn 20'0" from home plate and perpendicular to the 3rd base line and the scoring line shall be parallel to the commitment line and extended from the front corner of home plate.

  4. The pitcher's mark shall be about 40.0 ft. from the back of home plate.

  5. Prior to the start of the game, team captains should agree to the out-of-bounds areas on the field.

  6. Field-specific rules:

    1. Millbank, Langtry: A ball hit over the fence is a home run.

    2. Clearview, Eastview: wide open.

    3. Nottinghill: Right field forest in the air is home run, if it rolls in is a double.

    4. Wynten Way: Left of the centre field tree – home run if the ball lands over the hill, ground-rule double if it rolls down.  Right of the tree is open.

    5. Gladys Speers: Hitting any part of the left field tree is a dead ball.  Ball hit on the school roof is a home run. An untouched ball that goes on the pavement is a double (outfielders should not play on pavement).

  7. Town bylaws state that smoking and drinking are not permitted at the fields.

Game play

  1. Games shall start at the scheduled times (6:30 for games in May, 7:00 p.m. during the rest of the regular schedule, and 6:30 p.m. for playoffs) with no more than a 15 minute grace time period to be given. Exception : Championship finals will begin at 7 :00 pm.

  2. The game will consist of 9 innings. There will a 5-run maximum (mercy rule) per inning (except for the final inning, which will be a 10-run mercy rule) during the regular schedule and the playoffs. The A & B Championship Finals will continue to have a 5-run mercy rule for all innings except the final inning, which will be unlimited runs.

  3. A minimum of 5 complete innings must be played before a game can become official (4 at bats for the home team if the home team is leading in the bottom of the 5th inning). If the team captains, in agreement, call the game before 5 innings have been completed, the game must be declared a tie, with a final score of 9-9.

  4. In the event of a tie after the 9th inning, the team captains will agree to accept the tie as the final score, or may agree to play extra innings in order to determine the game winner, at their option. Neither team shall be forced to play extra innings.

  5. Home teams are responsible for supplying the (new, "gold dot") game ball, the bases, and two outfield baseline cone/markers. It is also advised that a first base "safety" bag (supplied by the visiting team - if necessary) be used.

  6. The pitcher will pitch to his or her own team, a maximum of three pitches allowed.

  7. Lead-offs and stealing bases are not permitted. If noticed by the umpire, the base runner shall automatically be called "out". Once the pitcher has control of the ball prior to the next pitch, base runners shall not leave their base, for any reason, until contact of the pitch with the bat (whether fair or foul) is made or if an umpire has called a time-out.

  8. Bunting is not permitted. If “intent to bunt” was committed, the batter shall be called "out".

  9. If a batted ball ends up in the interior diamond area, the same rules apply as if it were a foul ball.

  10. A foul ball must reach the backstop/cage height in order to be eligible to be caught by the catcher for an out.

  11. All batters must earn 1st base before a pinch runner may be substituted. A pinch runner must be the last "out" player of the same gender.

  12. Runners shall receive one (1) free base if the ball, during play, is thrown beyond any base (excluding 2nd base) provided that the ball goes out-of-bounds as determined by the umpire. Out-of-bounds boundaries are to have been agreed upon by the team captains prior to the game start.

  13. If a base runner interferes with the ball, or a fielder interferes with a runner, then the umpire shall determine whether the runner shall be called as "out" or "safe".

  14. Sliding into 2nd or 3rd base is permitted; however, any player demonstrating unsafe or inconsiderate behaviour towards the safety of others shall be at risk of reprimand and/or expulsion from the game by the umpire.

  15. Once crossing the commitment line, a base runner is obligated to continue towards home. If, after crossing the commitment line, the base runner stops, turns around and/or attempts to return towards 3rd base, the runner shall be called "out".

  16. Home plate shall not be touched by the base runner. The runner must cross the scoring line (prior to the catcher touching home plate while possessing the ball) to count as a run. If the runner touches home plate as opposed to running beyond the scoring line, the runner shall be called "out".

  17. The catcher shall be the only fielding team member allowed within the area of the interior diamond. In the event that another fielder enters the interior diamond safety zone, except for an injury replacement situation, any runners shall automatically be called "safe" and will receive the base they were heading to.

  18. Home Run Rule: MATCH + 2 rule. In simplicity this means that a team cannot have more than two more "awarded" home runs than the other team at any time in the game. An "awarded" home run means that the ball is hit over a home run fence or the ball is hit into an area that is treated as a home run fence as stated in the specific field rules. If the diamond is open, meaning all areas are in play, this rule is not applicable. The penalty for hitting an "awarded" home run when your team does not have one left is that the batter is given a strike. If it is their third strike, then they are out. Eg: TEAM A has three home runs and TEAM B has 5 home runs, TEAM B cannot hit any more home runs until TEAM A hits one or more home run(s). One quick note: If a batter hits a home run and effectively is awarded a home run and then proceeds to step on the plate, for which he gets called out, then his hit is still considered an "awarded" home run and is included in their count of home runs.

Rainouts

  1. If the weather is bad enough, the Town may declare the fields unplayable.  In this event, the League Committee will alert team captains at the earliest time possible and games will be declared a 9-9 tie.  This information can also be found on the Town’s website for sports fields (http://www.oakville.ca/culturerec/sports-field-closures.html)

  2. In the event of foul weather, the home team captain should contact the visiting team captain at least one hour prior to game time. It will be up to the team captains to decide whether or not the game will be played. If the game is not to be played, it is up to each team's captain to notify his/her players and the League scorekeeper of this decision. There is no re-scheduling during the regular season. Any rained out games during the regular schedule shall be declared a 9-9 tie.

  3. In the event of rained out games during the first playoff round, teams must be available, at the final discretion of the League Committee, for the possible re-scheduling of games, subject to times and field locations as arranged.

Umpiring

  1. Batting team will supply 1 umpire for each inning (they will be situated behind home plate and are responsible for fair / foul / out / safe calls / and lead offs at all bases).

  2. In all cases, judgement calls (ie: out/safe, fair/foul, lead off) are the decisions of the umpire and will be final. Where there is a rule interpretation issue, the two managers of the teams should discuss with the umpire to ensure the right ruling is made (this is not considered a judgement call – refer to the league’s rule book to get the proper rule administered).

  3. The League Committee will be notified of any unsportsmanlike conduct. Only one incident or misunderstanding may be permitted. However, any additional occurrences shall be dealt with severely at the discretion of the League Committee. Team captains shall have the right (and obligation) to expel their own players from a game, if a player or players continue to use profanity or misbehave.

Players

  1. Each team must field at least seven (7) players. Failure to provide seven (7) players by the start time (including the 15-min grace period) causes the team to default.

  2. Additional (late) team members may not play after completion of the 3rd inning.

  3. All players, in order to play, must have signed the waiver sheet. All signed waivers are to be the responsibility of each team captain and be available for delivery to (and review by) the League Committee after the first game of the season.

  4. All players must occupy a regular spot in the batting order and each player must occupy a fielding position for at least one inning during the game.

  5. A minimum of 2 female players must play to constitute a non-defaulting team.

  6. A minimum of three fielding positions per inning and three batting order spots must be occupied by a female. If teams are unable to field three female players, the position in the field must remain unoccupied and every inning will begin with an automatic "out". This applies to regular season games and playoff games.

  7. Team captains should exchange their batting order prior to the start of each game. Batting orders cannot be altered once the game has begun, except in the event of late arriving players who can then only be added to the end of the order(s).

  8. No batting order for a team shall include more than four consecutive males. If there are only 2 females, they will rotate to fill the empty slot in the batting order.

  9. Infield players may not encroach on the base line (ie: line up closer to the batter than the 60'0" infield line that exists between each consecutive base).

  10. Outfield players, including the rover, may not encroach on the outfield grass line (ie. line up closer to the batter than the grass line denoting or separating the infield from the outfield).

  11. Fielders shall not exchange their position (i.e. from outfield to infield or vice versa) during an inning, except for replacement after a significant injury.

  12. All playoff players must have participated in at least four (4) regular season games for their team and have signed the League's designated waiver form. There may be exceptions made for players who were injured during the year and were unable to play the minimum 4 games required (this may be remedied by contacting the League Committee to advise of the returning injured player). This rule is based on the honour system; however, in the event that there is a problem with player eligibility, this will be brought to the Dispute committee and the League Committee to make a ruling on. If the offending team is found to have played with an ineligible player, that team will be penalized with a default loss.

Pitcher

  1. The pitcher may not touch the ball except to pitch, however, if the pitcher is unavoidably hit by a batted ball, the play is to be called dead and a re-pitch shall be allowed.

  2. Where an intentional interference by the pitcher occurs, as deemed by the umpire(s), the batter shall automatically be called "out".

  3. The pitcher shall only be obligated to receive throws from the infielders.

  4. Teams will have the option of using a pitcher's screen. The use of a designated screen by either or both teams for the game shall be declared prior to the start. If both teams are using a screen, it is suggested that they use the same screen for consistency.  If a batted ball comes into contact with, or goes under, the pitcher protection screen, the play is to be called dead and a re-pitch shall be allowed.  Screens may not be moved to avoid contact with a ball.

  5. All play shall end, with no extra base(s) allowed to a baserunner, either upon reasonable delivery of the ball to the pitcher from an infielder, or when a throw by the fielding team contacts the pitcher protection screen.

Miscellaneous

  1. It is the responsibility of the winning team's captain to submit the game score by 6:00 pm of the next game day to the League scorekeeper. If the game score is not submitted by that time, the winning team will forfeit any points that may have been awarded for the win. The home team is to submit the score for tie games. You can submit your scores by using the Score Submission page on the League website.

  2. Head-to-head records (between teams that are tied) will decide the final standings at the end of the regular schedule. In the event that three (3) or more teams are tied, after a consideration for the head-to-head records between each other, the Convener will draw team names to determine the final standings.

  3. All championship teams will be responsible for the engraving of their own trophies.

Disputes

Significant disputes, at the discretion of the League Committee, shall be settled via the Dispute and Resolution Committee. This committee shall be comprised of three league members, but where the dispute involves a committee member or when a member is unavailable, an alternate shall be appointed. For the present year, Dispute and Resolution Committee members shall be: Yvon Caissie, Tyler Kloet and Steve Bang.

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