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Our Major division is for boys and girls between the ages of 10 and 12 (January 1st cutoff). We participate in the Wayne County Rural League each season with a season ending tournament that is held on a rotating schedule between all of the communities. The community youth leagues that participate include: Fountain City, Lynn, Seton, and Williamsburg.

Wayne County Rural League

2021 Baseball Rules

Majors (12u)

Wayne County Rural League follows the IHSAA rules for baseball with the following modifications/additions. Any other rules are not valid or enforceable.

Rule 1 – Field & Equipment

Section 1 - Field

·         Base lines will be 70’

·         Pitching Rubber or chalk line will be 50’

·         Running Lane – 30’ from first base to home and 3’ wide

Section 2 – Baseballs

·         Regular baseballs- not rubber

·         Home team will provide 2-ball for every game (1 new & 1 used)

Section 3 – Bats

·         2 ¼” diameter wood or non-wood

·         2 5/8” diameter or 2 ¾” diameter allowed with USA Engraved/Stamped Logo

·         No Bamboo bats

·         Penalty for illegal bat is automatic out and coach restricted to dugout for reminder of game

Section 4 – Helmets-Must have on while batting and running the bases

Section 5 – Catcher’s Equipment- Every team must have full set

·         Complete catching gear including protective cup

Section 6 – Other Equipment

·         Heart Guard/Chest Protector for Pitcher

Rule 2 – Players, Substitutes and Coaches

Section 1 – Players, Positions

·         Age of player is determined by age on January 1st.

·         Minimum of 7 players to start game

·         9 Players on the field

·         All rostered players must bat once and field 6 outs

·         Rostered player must play in 50% of their rostered teams regular season games to participate in the tournament. (Scorebook will be used if questioned)

Section 2 – Substituting

·         Player(s) may be brought up from a lower division ONLY to bring a team to 10 players

o   Lower division commitment comes 1st – if game scheduled, player is not eligible to play up (pull up players cannot pitch, catch, or bat before 5th in lineup)

o   Must be a registered player on a league team and on a roster in the community

o   Opposing coach must be notified at the start of game of move up player(s)

o   Permanent move up – league commissioner must be notified – player cannot return to lower division

o   If you pull up a player, and the regular team player shows up to game, pull up player remains in the game and not the player they are subbing up for.

·         No automatic out if team is playing with a minimum of 9 players. 8th and 9th spot are automatic outs if player is missing. If a player leaves during the game or is out with an injury, their spot in the line up will be an automatic out, regardless of their place in the lineup.

Section 4 – Coaching

·         No swearing or obscene gestures at practice or games

o   Penalty

§  Automatic ejection and suspended from next game

·         No smoking or chewing tobacco products on the field or in the dugout

o   Penalties

§  1st- Warning

§  2nd offense – Automatic ejection from game and suspended from following game

§  3rd offense – Banned from participation in any game function (i.e. scorekeeper)

·         Must be off the playing field and remain behind the fence or in the dugout while on defense

·         Only base coaches allowed on playing field

·         1-minute time limit between innings for team to take the field

·         Allowed 2-trips to the mound

o   3rd trip in the same inning, pitcher is removed.

o   Crosses foul line or goes onto field of play, considered trip to the mound, except to tend to an injured player.

Rule 3 – Pitching

·         Three innings per game

o   Penalties

§  If pitching a player over the three-inning limit in regular innings, the coach will be confined to the bench and pitcher pulled from pitching position. The batter will automatically take a base.

·         Pitcher can be non-consecutive

·         One additional inning allowed if game goes more than 6 innings

·         One pitch equals one inning

·         No batting gloves under glove

·         Straddle rubber and throw to base as long as not in contact with pitching rubber

o   1st Balk offense – Warning

o   2nd Balk offense – Base runners advance 1 base

·         Hits 2 batters in the same inning; Pitcher is pulled from the mound and may return the next inning, if maximum innings hasn’t been reached.

Rule 3 – Starting and Ending Game

Section 1 – Games

·         6 inning game

·         6 run limit per inning/per team

o   Exception: during the championship game of tournament, 6 runs per inning, unlimited in the 6th.

·         120-minute time limit

·         All tournament games will be played to completion, with run rule.

·         Umpire must be on the field

·         All regular season games must be played prior to season ending tournament

Section 2 – Staring a Game

·         15-minute grace period is allowed before game is called a forfeit.

·         No communication of game cancellation by home team to visitor, will result in home team forfeit.

·         Umpire(s) and head coaches will have a plate meeting to discuss ground rules and answer questions prior to starting game.

Section 3 – Ending a Game

·         Time limit is reached, and current inning is completed

·         Run Rule:

o   Up 13 at end of 3 ½ (home team) or 4 innings

o   Up 7 at end of 4 ½ (home team) or 5 innings

·         Game is tied at end of 6 innings – umpire’s discretion to continue or call due to darkness

o   If called due to darkness – reschedule at earliest convenient time to complete (games restart with new ball/strike count and point in inning and lineup where game was postponed) *If player is missing from rescheduled game, it’s an automatic out

·         15-minute warning is to be given prior to time limit expiring

·         Upon reaching time limit – inning is to be completed

Rule 4 – Suspension of Play

·         When thunder is heard or lightning in any form (cloud-to-cloud, cloud-to-ground, etc.) is seen, which means that the thunderstorm is close enough to strike your location with lightning, play will be suspended.

·         Once play has been suspended, resumption of play, if warranted, should not occur until at least 30 minutes has passed since the last thunder was heard or last flash of lightning was witnessed.

·         30-minute clock restarts when thunder is heard, or lightning witnessed again.

o   If 15 mins has passed and then there is another delay restarting the 30 min delay, game will be called complete or rescheduled. We will not wait longer than 45mins to play a game.

·         Games cancelled due to rain or the above conditions

o   Less than 4 innings completed – game starts over

§  3.5 innings completed; home team is up then game is considered complete.

o   4 or more completed innings (top of the 5th or more) will be considered a complete game

Rule 5 – Batter & Defense

Section 1 – Batter

·         3rd strike, catcher drops, but there is a runner on 1st, with less than 2 outs – batter out

·         Batter may attempt to reach 1st base if catcher drops 3rd strike, a runner doesn’t occupy 1st base, and there are 2 outs.

Section 2 – Defense

·         Infield Fly Rule – Ball is popped up in the infield with runners on 1st and 2nd base or bases are loaded, less than 2 outs – batter is out. Runners may advance at own risk. Cannot be a bunt attempt and ball must be an easily catchable fair ball.

Rule 6 – Batter- Runner and Runner

·         Open leadoffs are allowed

·         Thrown Bat

o   1st Offense – batter is warned and play stands

o   2nd Offense – batter is out. All runners return to original base

o   Warning is per batter not per team

o   Umpire determines bat was thrown in anger, player may be ejected without warning

·         Sliding

o   Avoid contact with fielder that has the ball

o   Runner will not be called out simply by not sliding but called on basis of intentional contact being made.

o   No headfirst slides, or runner will be called out.

o   Dive back to bases are allowed

Rule 7 – Scoring and Record Keeping

·        All teams must keep score.

·        Home teams book is official game book

·         All regular season games must be played prior to the tournament

Rule 8 – Umpiring

·         Minimum of 1 IHSAA patched umpire

·         Umpires control games

o   If a coach argues a call in a disrespectful manner – warning will be given, and coach is restricted to the bench

o   If a 2nd warning is given, the coach will be ejected

o   Upon 2nd warning, commissioners will be notified, and a verbal warning will be given

o   If conduct is repeated after above verbal warning, commissioners will determine if the coach may return in the future.

Rule 9 – Others specific to WCRL

·         Only games cancelled due to rain will be rescheduled

·         Games need rescheduled, but not necessarily played, within 7 days

·         Games will not be postponed if a team is short players

·         All other reschedules must be approved

·         Season Standings Tie- Head to head, runs allowed, runs scored

·         End of season Tourney- List of approved subs must be submitted to WCRL board by noon 2 days prior to tourney start. If an illegal player (not on approved list) is playing, that team will be disqualified.

Rule 10 – Zero Tolerance

No tolerance is defined as any action including but not limited to swearing, arguing, fighting, heckling, threatening, acting out or not following the rules in any way.

Head coaches may discuss a call within a controlled and respectful manner only. Prior to the start of every game the umpire will notify the coaches of this rule and the coach is responsible for his/her team and their fans. An announcement will also be made by the umpire to the crowd before the start of the game.

The umpire or commissioner has the authority to remove the violator

Commissioner can over-rule the umpire decision on a case by case basis

Consequences of violation:

·         Coach or Player – 1 game suspension (next scheduled game)

·         Spectator(s) – Anyone causing a disturbance with umpires or coaches will be asked to leave the property of the ball diamond. If they refuse to leave, their team will forfeit the game. If offending spectator is a parent/guardian, both parent/guardian and player will be ejected from that game and the commissioners will be notified. The player may return to the next game. If the same parent repeatedly causes issues, they will be banned from all WCRL properties for one year.

An ejected person has the right to dispute the suspension by contacting their league’s commissioner

The Wayne County Rural League Board reserves the right to change, edit, and modify these rules at any time throughout the season without warning. You will be notified immediately of any changes.