You can download the document from here: 2014_Official_Baseball_Rules_of_Canada.pdf

The Official
Rules of Baseball Canada
2014
www.baseball.ca
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL 1
The Canadian Baseball Program
Baseball Canada is the sport governing body for amateur baseball
throughout Canada. It is comprised of the ten provincial baseball
associations, representing over one million players, coaches and officials.
Players begin around five years of age and may progress through the many
age categories.
Baseball Canada is a member of the International Baseball
Association (I.B.A.F.), the Pan American Baseball Association (COPABE),
and the Canadian Olympic Committee.
Baseball Canada administers development programs for players in all
age categories, for coaches and for umpires.
Baseball Canada hosts seven Baseball Canada Championships,
including: 13U (Pee Wee); 15U (Bantam); 18U (Midget); Baseball Canada
Cup (17U All-Stars); 21U (Junior), Senior (open age group) and 16U Girls
(Bantam Girls).
Baseball Canada selects three national teams for international
competition. The National Women’s Team competes in IBAF sanctioned
tournaments. The National Junior Team (18 and under) competes at the
World AAA Championships and COPABE qualifiers, and other world
events. Team Canada represents Canada at open international events and
travels throughout the world preparing for the World Championships,
World Baseball Classic, and Pan American Games.
For more information on Baseball Canada and its programs, contact:
Baseball Canada
2212 Gladwin Cres., Ste A7
Ottawa, ON K1B 5N4
(613) 748-5606
(613) 748-5767 fax
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
www.baseball.ca
COVER PHOTO
Senior National Team
2013 WBC
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL 2
Baseball Canada
Provincial Directory 2014
BASEBALL BC
310-15225 104th Ave
Surrey, BC. V3R 6Y8
(604) 586-3310 (B)
(604) 586-3311 fax
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
www.baseball.bc.ca
BASEBALL ALBERTA
Percy Page Centre
11759 Groat Road
Edmonton, AB. T5M 3K6
(780) 427-8943 (B)
(780) 427-9032 fax
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
www.baseballalberta.com
SASKATCHEWAN BASEBALL
1870 Lorne Street
Regina, SK. S4P 2L7
(306) 780-9237 (B)
(306) 780-9222 (B)
(306) 352-3669 fax
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
www.saskbaseball.ca
BASEBALL MANITOBA
145 Pacific Avenue
Winnipeg, MB. R3B 2Z6
(204) 925-5763 (B)
(204) 925-5928 fax
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
www.baseballmanitoba.ca
BASEBALL ONTARIO
3-131 Sheldon Drive
Cambridge, ON. N1R 6S2
(519) 740-3900 (B)
(519) 740-6311 fax
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
www.baseballontario.com
BASEBALL QUEBEC
4545 Pierre de Coubertin
C.P.1000, Succ. M
Montréal, QC. H1V 3R2
(514) 252-3075 (B)
(514) 252-3134 fax
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
www.baseballquebec.com
BASEBALL NEW BRUNSWICK
900 Hanwell Rd. Unit 13
Fredericton, NB. E3B 6A3
(506) 451-1329 (B)
(506) 451-1325 (F)
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
www.baseballnb.ca
BASEBALL NOVA SCOTIA
5516 Spring Garden Road, 4th Floor
Halifax, NS. B3J 1G6
(902) 425-5450 ext 355 (B)
(902) 425-5606 fax
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
www.baseballnovascotia.com
BASEBALL PEI
P.O. Box 302
Charlottetown, PEI. C1A 7K7
Shipping address:
40 Enman Cres
Charlottetown, PEI . C1E 1E6
(902) 368-4203 (B)
(902) 368-4548 (F)
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
www.baseballpei.ca
NEWFOUNDLAND AMATEUR
BASEBALL
83 Ashford Drive
Mount Pearl, NL. A1N 3N7
(709) 368-2819 (B)
(709) 368-6080 fax
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
www.baseballnl.com
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL 3
Official Uniform, Apparel, and Batting Glove Supplier
To Baseball Canada’s National Teams
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL 4
Official Footwear, Glove, and Catcher’s Equipment Supplier
to Baseball Canada’s National Teams
__________________________________________________________________
Official Cap of Baseball Canada
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL 5
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL 6
Baseball Canada
Official Rules
Table of Contents Page
Section Divisions of the Code
1.00 Objective of the Games, the Playing Field, Equipment ................................ 12
2.00 Definition of Terms ...................................................................................... 20
3.00 Game Preliminaries ...................................................................................... 26
4.00 Starting and Ending the Game ...................................................................... 30
5.00 Putting the Ball in Play, Dead Ball and
Live Ball (in Play) ........................................................................................ 36
6.00 The Batter ..................................................................................................... 38
7.00 The Runner ................................................................................................... 46
8.00 The Pitcher ................................................................................................... 53
9.00 The Umpire .................................................................................................. 68
10.00 The Official Scorer ....................................................................................... 61
Section Canadian Content Addendum
2014 Baseball Canada Calendar of Events ................................................. cc 2
Canadian Age Categories ........................................................................... cc 3
Rules Interpretation .................................................................................... cc 3
11.00 Minor Divisional Play ................................................................................ cc 5
Baseball Canada’s Umpires Committee
Rule Interpretations / Case Studies…………………………..……...cc 12
Acknowledgement
The Canadian Federation of Amateur Baseball extends grateful thanks to the Office of the Commissioner
of Major League Baseball for their written permission allowing the use of this text for republication.
“Used with Permission of the Office of the Commissioner of Baseball”
Copyright © 2013
Baseball Canada
ISBNO-9686789-0-4
“Portions of the Official Rules of Baseball appearing in this book have been reprinted by special
permission of the Office of the Commissioner of Baseball. The copyright in the Official Rules of
Baseball is owned and has been registered by the Commissioner of Baseball. Any additional material in
this rule book has not been endorsed by the Commissioner of Baseball.”
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 7 ‐
Index
Rules 1.00 through 9.00
Note: For any items not listed and for additional information, see alphabetized entries of Rule 2.00.
Abandoning Effort to Run Bases—6.08, 6.09(b) Comment, 7.08(a)(2), 7.08(j), 7.10(c).
Accident to Player or Umpire—5.10(c, h).
Ambidextrous Pitcher—8.01(f).
Apparent Fourth Out—7.10.
Appeals—6.07, 7.04(d) Note, 7.05(i) Comment, 7.08(d, j-k), 7.10, 9.02(c).
Apparent Fourth Out—7.10(d).
Awarded Bases—
Appeal 7.10;
Overthrown ball, by infielder 7.05(g);
Overthrown ball, by pitcher from pitcher’s plate 7.05(h), 7.05(g-i), 8.01(e);
Ground rules 3.13;
Obstruction 7.06(a) Comment;
Spectator interference 3.16 Comment.
“Backswing (Follow-Through)” Interference—6.06(c) Comment.
Balk—4.03(a), 7.07, and various violations in Rule 8.00;
Penalty 5.09(c), 7.04(a), 8.05.
Base—1.04, 1.06, 2.00;
Dislodged 7.08(c) Approved Rulings 1 and 2.
Baseball—1.09;
Defaced 3.02, 8.02(a);
Official game balls 3.01(c-e).
Base Coaches—4.05;
Helmets 1.16(e);
Interference 3.15, 5.08, 7.09(h-i), 7.11;
Restrictions 3.17, 4.06(a).
Bat—1.10;
Altered 6.06(d).
Bat Boy/Girl—1.16(f), 3.15, 3.17.
Batter/Batter-Runner—
Backswing strikes catcher 6.06(c);
Fails to advance to first base 6.08, 6.09(b);
Hit by pitch 5.09(a), 6.05(f), 6.08(b), 2.00 (Ball, Strike);
Interference by 6.05(g-i, k), 6.06(c), 7.08(g), 7.09;
Interference with 6.08(c), 7.04(d);
Position in batter’s box 2.00, 6.02, 6.03, 6.06;
Struck by batted ball 5.09(f), 6.05(g), 7.09(k).
Batter’s Box—1.04, 2.00, 6.02, 6.03, 6.06.
Batting Order—3.03, 3.04, 3.05, 3.06, 3.07, 3.08, 4.01, 4.04, 6.01, 9.04(a)(8).
Batting Out of Order—6.07.
Bench/Dugout—1.08, 2.00;
Catch/Play attempts 2.00 (“Catch” Comment), 5.10(f), 6.05(a) Comment, 7.04(c), 7.11;
Equipment 3.14;
Live ball deflected into 7.05(h);
Occupants 3.06 Comment, 3.17, 4.06, 4.07, 4.08, 9.05(c).
Bounced Pitch—2.00 (Ball).
Catch—2.00, 6.05(a-b).
Catcher—
Interference by 2.00 (Interference (b)), 6.08(c), 7.04(d), 7.07;
Interference with 2.00 (Interference (c)), 5.09(b), 6.06(c), 7.08(g);
Pitch lodges in equipment 5.09(g), 7.05(i);
Position, 4.03.
Catcher’s Box—1.04 (Diagram 2), 2.00, 4.03(a), 8.05(l).
Checked Swing—9.02(c) Comment.
Coach—2.00, 2.00 (Manager (b)), 3.15 Comment, 4.05, 5.08, 7.09 (h-i), 7.11.
Curfew—4.12(a)(1), 4.12(a) Note.
Darkness/Field Lights—4.12(a)(4), 4.12(a) Note, 4.14, 5.10(a-b).
Dead Ball (“Time”) and Resuming Play—3.12, 5.02, 5.10, 5.11, 6.02(b) Comment.
Defacing, Discoloring Baseball—3.02, 8.02(a).
Delay of Game—
By batter 6.02(c-d);
By pitcher 6.02(b) Comment, 8.02(c), 8.04, 8.05(h);
Forfeit for delay 4.15.
Designated Hitter—6.10.
Detached Equipment—7.04(e), 7.05(a-e).
Disabled List Players—3.17 Comment.
Dislodged Base—7.08(c) Approved Rulings 1 and 2.
Doubleheader—3.10(b), 4.13.
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 8 ‐
Dropped Third Strike—2.00 (Ball), 5.09(g) Comment, 6.05(b-d, f, j, n), 6.09(b), 7.09(a).
Dugout—see Bench.
Ejection—4.06, 4.07, 4.08, 9.01, 9.02, 9.05.
Equipment—
Base 1.06;
Baseball 1.09;
Bat 1.10;
Bench 1.08;
Commercialization 1.17;
Glove/Mitt 1.12, 1.13, 1.14, 1.15;
Helmet 1.16;
Home base 1.05;
Pitcher’s plate 1.04, 1.07;
Uniforms 1.11.
Equipment Illegally Touches Live Ball—7.04(e), 7.05(a-e).
Fair Ball—2.00;
Bounces out of play 6.09(e-g), 7.05(f);
Deflected out of play 6.09(g-h), 7.05(a, f);
Intentionally dropped 6.05(l);
Touches runner or umpire 5.09(f) Comment, 6.08(d), 6.09(c), 7.04(b), 7.08(f), 7.09(k).
Fielder—
Falls out of play 5.10(f), 7.04(c);
Positioning on Field of Play 4.03;
Sleeves 1.11(c);
Throws glove at ball (detached equipment) 7.04(e), 7.05(a-e).
Fielder’s Choice—2.00, 10.12(f)(2).
Force Play/Force Out—2.00, 7.08(e);
Reinstated 7.08(e).
Forfeit—3.11, 3.18, 4.15, 4.16, 4.17, 9.04(a)(6), 10.03(e).
Foul Ball—2.00, 5.09(e), 6.05(h).
Foul Tip—2.00, 5.09(g), 6.05(b) Comment, 7.08(d) Comment.
Fraternization—3.09.
Game-Ending Runs—4.09(b), 4.11(c), 7.08(a) Comment, 7.10 Comment.
Glove/Mitt—1.12, 1.13, 1.14, 1.15;
Illegally touches live ball 7.05(a, c, e).
Ground Rules—3.13, 9.04(a)(9).
Groundskeepers—3.11, 4.01(e), 4.16.
Helmet—1.16, 6.05(h) Comment.
Hidden Ball Trick—8.05(i).
Home Run—6.09(d), 7.05(a).
Illegal Bat—1.10, 6.06(d).
Illegal Pitch—2.00 (Illegal Pitch and Quick Return), 8.01(b) Comment, 8.01(d), 8.05(e).
Illegally Batted Ball—5.09(d), 6.06(a).
Infield Fly—2.00, 6.05(e, l), 7.08(f) Exception.
Intentionally Dropped Ball—6.05(l).
Intentional Pitch at Batter—8.02(d).
Interference—
Authorized on-field personnel 3.15;
Backswing (Follow-Through) 6.06(c) Comment;
Batter’s 6.05(h), 6.06(c), 7.08(g), 7.09(c);
Catcher’s 6.08(c), 7.04(d), 7.07;
Coach’s 3.15 Comment, 5.08, 7.09(h);
Defensive 2.00, 3.15, 6.08(c), 7.04(d), 7.07;
Intentional (Double Play) 7.09(f), 6.05(m), 7.08(b) Comment;
Offensive 2.00, 3.15, 5.09(f-g), 6.05(h-i, m-n-o), 6.06(c), 6.08(d), 7.08(b, f-g, l), 7.09, 7.11;
Spectator 2.00 (Interference(d)), 3.16;
Umpire 2.00, 5.09(b, f), 6.08(d);
While in contact with base 7.08(b) Comment;
see also Base Coaches, Batter and Catcher.
League President—2.00, 1.11(i), 2.00 (Manager), 3.01(c), 4.12(b)(4), 4.13(c);
Illegal bat 6.06(d);
Pitching violations 8.02(a), 8.02(d);
Protest 4.18, 4.19;
Umpires 9.01(a), 9.04(c), 9.05.
Light Failure—4.12(a-b), 5.10(b).
Lineup Cards—4.01, 6.10(b)(1), 6.10(b)(11).
Missed Base or Home Plate—7.05(i) Comment, 7.08(k), 7.10(b, d);
see also Appeals and Runner (Touch requirements).
Obstruction—2.00, 7.06, 7.09(j) Comment;
By spectators 4.09(b).
Official Scorer—3.03, 9.04(a)(8);
see also Rule 10.00.
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 9 ‐
Overrunning/Oversliding—
First base, 7.08(c, j), 7.10(c);
Home plate 7.08(k), 7.10(d).
“Overzealous Runner”—7.04(b) Comment.
Pinch Hitter/Runner—see Substitutions.
Pitch—
Ball 2.00;
Goes out of play 7.05(h);
Intentionally thrown at batter 8.02(d);
Lodges in catcher’s or umpire’s equipment 5.09(g), 7.05(i);
Strike 2.00;
Touches batter 5.09(a), 6.05(f), 6.08(b), 2.00 (Ball, Strike);
Touches runner attempting to score 5.09(h), 6.05(n).
Pitcher—
Altered baseball 8.02(a)(6);
Ambidextrous 8.01(f);
Becomes infielder 8.01(e);
Changes to defensive position 3.03 Comment;
Injured 3.03 Comment, 3.05(a-b), 8.01(f), 8.03;
Intentionally pitches at batter 8.02(d);
Legal position 8.01(a-b);
Mouth, goes to on mound 8.02(a)(1);
Pitches visits by manager or coach 8.06;
Pivot foot 2.00, 8.01(a-b, e);
Possesses foreign object or substance 8.02(b);
Preparatory pitches 8.03, 8.06 Comment;
Sleeves 1.11(c);
Throws out of play from pitcher’s plate 7.05(h).
Pitcher’s Plate—1.04, 1.07.
Player or Umpire Incapacitated—5.10(c, h).
Player Restrictions—
Barred from stands 3.09;
Confined to bench 3.17;
Fraternizing 3.09;
General conduct 3.06 Comment, 4.06, 4.07, 4.08.
Playing Field—1.04.
Police Protection—3.18.
Postponement Responsibility—3.10.
Pregame Conference—4.01.
Protested Game—4.19, 9.02(b).
Quick Pitch—2.00 (Illegal Pitch, Quick Return), 8.01(b) Comment, 8.01(d), 8.05(e) Comment.
Rain Delays—4.01(e), 4.01(e) Comment.
Regulation Game—1.03, 4.10 , 4.11;
7-inning Game 4.10(a) Exception.
Rosin Bag—3.01(f), 8.02(a).
Runner—
Abandons effort to run bases 6.08, 6.09(b) Comment, 7.08(a)(2), 7.08(j), 7.10(c);
Entitled to base 7.01, 7.03, 7.08(b) Comment;
Injured 5.10(c)(1)
Interferes after scoring 7.09(e);
Interferes while in contact with base 7.08(b) Comment;
Leaves baseline to avoid tag 7.08(a)(1);
“Overzealous” 7.04(b);
Passes lead runner 7.08(h);
Retouch (tag up) requirements 2.00, 7.08(d), 7.10(a), 2.00 (Infield Fly), 5.09(e), 7.05(i) Comment;
Return prohibited 5.06 Comment, 7.01 Comment, 7.10(b);
Reverse base-running prohibited 7.08(i);
Struck by batted ball (after passing fielder) 5.09(f), 7.09(k);
Touch requirements 7.02, 7.08(c) Approved Ruling 2;
Touched by pitched ball 5.09(h); 6.05(n);
see also Batter-Runner.
Score of Game—4.11.
Scoring Rules (Official Scorer)—Rule 10.00.
Scoring Runs—4.09, 5.06, 6.05(n), 7.04(b) Comment, 7.07, 7.08(g), 7.10 Comment, 7.12;
“Fourth Out” Appeal 7.10.
Set Position—8.01(b).
Spectators—3.09, 3.13, 3.15, 3.18, 4.06(a)(1-2), 5.10(f), 7.04(c), 9.01(e)(2);
Interference 2.00 (Interference (d)), 3.16.
Strike/Strike Zone—2.00, 6.08(b).
Substitutions—3.03 - 3.08, 4.04.
Suspended Game—4.12, 4.10(d);
NAPBL rule (optional) 4.12(a)(7-9).
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 10 ‐
Tag—2.00, 7.08(c, e);
After awarded base (live ball) 6.08(a), 7.04(b);
After missed home plate 7.08(k) Comment, 7.10 Comment;
After overrunning first base 7.08(c, j), 7.10(c);
While two runners touch same base 7.03.
Tagging Up (Retouch)—2.00 (Infield Fly, Retouch), 5.09(e), 7.05(i) Comment, 7.08(d), 7.10(a).
Third Strike Situations—2.00 (Ball), 5.09(g) Comment, 6.05(b-d, f, j, n), 6.09(b), 7.09(a).
“Third-to-First” Move—8.05(c) Comment.
Three-Foot Lane—1.04, 6.05(k).
Throw—2.00 (Pitch–Comment and Throw);
Pitcher 8.01(a-c, e), 8.02(c), 8.05(a-d, j), Approved Ruling, Comment (b);
Interference with 5.08, 5.09(b), 6.05(h, k, m), 6.06(c), 7.05(e), 7.08(b), 7.09(j), 7.11.
Thrown Ball Out of Play—3.01(e) Comment, 7.05(g-i), 8.01(e);
Appeal, during 7.10;
Ground rules 3.13;
Obstruction, during 7.06(a) Comment;
Spectator interference 3.16 Comment.
Tie Game—2.00, 4.10(d), 4.12.
Time Limits—4.12(a)(2), 4.12(a) Note, 9.04(a)(7).
Trips to the Mound—8.06.
Umpire—9.00;
Changing call after consultation 9.02(c), 9.02(c) Comment;
Controls ground crew 3.11;
Field lights 4.14, 5.10(a-b);
Incapacitated 5.10(c, h);
Judge of playing conditions 3.10(b-c), 4.01(d), 5.10(a);
Pregame duties 3.01;
Struck by batted ball 5.09(f), 6.08(d), 6.09(c), 7.04(b);
Touched by pitch or throw 5.08, 5.09(g), 6.05(b) Comment, 7.05(i);
Written reports to League President 4.18, 9.05.
Uniforms—1.11, 1.17.
Visit of Manager to Pitcher—8.06.
Weather and Playing Conditions—3.10, 3.11, 4.01(e), 4.01(e) Comment, 4.12(a)(5), 4.12 Comment,
4.13(d), 5.10(a), 6.02(b) Comment, 8.02(a)(1);
Weather takes precedence 4.12(a) Note.
Windup Position—8.01(a).
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 11 ‐
Major League Baseball Rule changes
 Amended Rule 1.15(a) to clarify legal colors for fielding gloves.
 Amended Rule 2.00 (INFIELD FLY) Comment to include the situation when interference occurs during an
Infield Fly.
 Amended Rule 2.00 (INTERFERENCE (a) Comment) to include the situation where an intervening play
occurs at home plate prior to the batter‐runner being declared out for interference out of the three‐foot
lane.
 Amended Rule 2.00 (INTERFERENCE (d)) to clarify when a spectator is considered to have reached out of
the stands.
 Amended Rule 2.00 (INTERFERENCE) by deleting the last sentence, “On any interference the ball is
dead” in order to account for cases where interference does not result in an immediate dead ball (e.g.
batter’s interference, catcher’s interference, etc.)
 Amended Rule 3.05(d) regarding situations in which the pitcher is at bat or on base when an inning ends
and requirements of such pitcher to resume pitching the next half‐inning.
 Amended Rules 4.01(e) Comment, 4.10 Comment, 4.12(a) Comment, and 4.12(b) Comment to include
Wild Card games at the Major League level regarding non‐application of certain portions of Rules 4.01,
4.10 and 4.12.
 Amended Rule 4.12(b)(4) to explain the results of a suspended game that is not completed prior to the
last scheduled game between two clubs in a championship season.
 Amended Rule 6.05(h) to include foul territory in cases when a batter is called out for throwing his bat
and interfering with a fielder attempting to make a play.
 Amended Rule 6.06(c) Comment by deleting the phrase, “before the catcher has securely held the ball”
in cases when the batter’s swing (follow‐through) unintentionally strikes the catcher.
 Amended Rule 7.09(a) to clarify situations when a batter is called out for hindering the catcher after a
dropped third strike. Also added 7.09(a) Comment.
 Amended the PENALTY for violation of Rule 8.02(a)(1).
 Amended Rule 8.05(b) so that the pitcher, while in contact with the pitcher’s rubber is prohibited from
faking a throw to third base. Penalty: Balk when runners are on base.
 Amended Rule 8.05(c) Comment to agree with amended Rule 8.05(b) above.
Amended Rule 8.05(k) to include the ball slipping or falling out of the pitcher’s hand or glove, while the pitcher is
in contact with the rubber, as a balk
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 12 ‐
1.00 – Objectives of the Game
1.01 Baseball is a game between two teams of nine players each, under direction of a
manager, played on an enclosed field in accordance with these rules, under jurisdiction of
one or more umpires.
1.02 The objective of each team is to win by scoring more runs than the opponent.
1.03 The winner of the game shall be that team which shall have scored, in accordance
with these rules, the greater number of runs at the conclusion of a regulation game.
1.04 THE PLAYING FIELD. The field shall be laid out according to the instructions
below, supplemented by Diagrams No. 1, No. 2 and No. 3 on adjoining pages.
The infield shall be a 90-foot square. The outfield shall be the area between two
foul lines formed by extending two sides of the square, as in Diagram 1. The distance
from home base to the nearest fence, stand or other obstruction on fair territory shall be
250 feet or more. A distance of 320 feet or more along the foul lines, and 400 feet or
more to center field is preferable. The infield shall be graded so that the base lines and
home plate are level. The pitcher’s plate shall be 10 inches above the level of home
plate. The degree of slope from a point 6 inches in front of the pitcher’s plate to a point 6
feet toward home plate shall be 1 inch to 1 foot, and such degree of slope shall be
uniform. The infield and outfield, including the boundary lines, are fair territory and all
other area is foul territory.
It is desirable that the line from home base through the pitchers plate to second base shall
run East-Northeast.
It is recommended that the distance from home base to the backstop, and from the
base lines to the nearest fence, stand or other obstruction on foul territory shall be 60 feet
or more. See Diagram 1.
When location of home base is determined, with a steel tape measure 127 feet, 3⅜
inches in desired direction to establish second base. From home base, measure 90 feet
toward first base; from second base, measure 90 feet toward first base; the intersection of
these lines establishes first base. From home base, measure 90 feet toward third base;
from second base, measure 90 feet toward third base; the intersection of these lines
establishes third base. The distance between first base and third base is 127 feet, 3⅜
inches. All measurements from home base shall be taken from the point where the first
and third base lines intersect.
The catcher’s box, the batters’ boxes, the coaches’ boxes, the three-foot first base
lines and the next batter’s boxes shall be laid out as shown in Diagrams 1 and 2.
The foul lines and all other playing lines indicated in the diagrams by solid black
lines shall be marked with paint or non-toxic and non-burning chalk or other white
material.
The grass lines and dimensions shown on the diagrams are those used in many
fields, but they are not mandatory and each club shall determine the size and shape of the
grassed and bare areas of its playing field.
NOTE: (a) Any Playing Field constructed by a professional club after June 1, 1958, shall
provide a minimum distance of 325 feet from home base to the nearest fence, stand
or other obstruction on the right and left field foul lines, and a minimum distance
of 400 feet to the center field fence.
(b) No existing playing field shall be remodeled after June 1, 1958, in such manner as
to reduce the distance from home base to the foul poles and to the center field
fence below the minimum specified in paragraph (a) above.
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 13 ‐
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 14 ‐
1.05 Home base shall be marked by a five-sided slab of whitened rubber. It shall be a
17-inch square with two of the corners removed so that one edge is 17 inches long, two
adjacent sides are 8½ inches and the remaining two sides are 12 inches and set at an angle
to make a point. It shall be set in the ground with the point at the intersection of the lines
extending from home base to first base and to third base; with the 17-inch edge facing the
pitcher’s plate, and the two 12-inch edges coinciding with the first and third base lines.
The top edges of home base shall be beveled and the base shall be fixed in the ground
level with the ground surface. (See drawing D in Diagram 2.)
1.06 First, second and third bases shall be marked by white canvas or rubber-covered
bags, securely attached to the ground as indicated in Diagram 2. The first and third base
bags shall be entirely within the infield. The second base bag shall be centered on second
base. The bags shall be 15 inches square, not less than three nor more than five inches
thick, and filled with soft material.
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 15 ‐
1.07 The pitcher’s plate shall be a rectangular slab of whitened rubber, 24 inches by 6
inches. It shall be set in the ground as shown in Diagrams 1 and 2, so that the distance
between the pitcher’s plate and home base (the rear point of home plate) shall be 60 feet,
6 inches.
1.08 The home club shall furnish players’ benches, one each for the home and visiting
teams. Such benches shall not be less than twenty-five feet from the base lines. They
shall be roofed and shall be enclosed at the back and ends.
1.09 The ball shall be a sphere formed by yarn wound around a small core of cork,
rubber or similar material, covered with two strips of white horsehide or cowhide, tightly
stitched together. It shall weigh not less than five nor more than 5¼ ounces avoirdupois
and measure not less than nine nor more than 9¼ inches in circumference.
1.10 (a) The bat shall be a smooth, round stick not more than 2.61 inches in diameter at
the thickest part and not more than 42 inches in length. The bat shall be one piece
of solid wood.
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 16 ‐
NOTE: No laminated or experimental bats shall be used in a professional game (either
championship season or exhibition games) until the manufacturer has secured approval
from the Rules Committee of his design and methods of manufacture.
(b) Cupped Bats. An indentation in the end of the bat up to 1 ¼ inches in depth is
permitted and may be no wider than two inches and no less than one inch in
diameter. The indentation must be free of right angles and may not contain any
foreign substance.
(c) The bat handle, for not more than 18 inches from its end, may be covered or
treated with any material or substance to improve the grip. Any such material or
substance that extends past the 18-inch limitation shall cause the bat to be removed
from the game.
NOTE: If the umpire discovers that the bat does not conform to (c) above until a time
during or after which the bat has been used in play, it shall not be grounds for declaring
the batter out, or ejected from the game.
Rule 1.10(c) Comment: If pine tar extends past the 18-inch limitation, then the umpire, on
his own initiative or if alerted by the opposing team, shall order the batter to use a
different bat. The batter may use the bat later in the game only if the excess substance is
removed. If no objections are raised prior to a bat’s use, then a violation of Rule 1.10(c)
on that play does not nullify any action or play on the field and no protests of such play
shall be allowed.
(d) No colored bat may be used in a professional game unless approved by the Rules
Committee.
1.11(a)(1) All players on a team shall wear uniforms identical in color, trim and style, and
all players uniforms shall include minimal six-inch numbers on their backs.
(2) Any part of an undershirt exposed to view shall be of a uniform solid color for
all players on a team. Any player other than the pitcher may have numbers, letters,
insignia attached to the sleeve of the undershirt.
(3) No player whose uniform does not conform to that of his teammates shall be
permitted to participate in a game.
(b) A league may provide that (1) each team shall wear a distinctive uniform at all
times, or
(2) that each team shall have two sets of uniforms, white for home games and a
different color for road games.
(c) (1) Sleeve lengths may vary for individual players, but the sleeves of each
individual player shall be approximately the same length.
(2) No player shall wear ragged, frayed or slit sleeves.
(d) No player shall attach to his uniform tape or other material of a different color
from his uniform.
(e) No part of the uniform shall include a pattern that imitates or suggests the shape of
a baseball.
(f) Glass buttons and polished metal shall not be used on a uniform.
(g) No player shall attach anything to the heel or toe of his shoe other than the
ordinary shoe plate or toe plate. Shoes with pointed spikes similar to golf or track
shoes shall not be worn.
(h) No part of the uniform shall include patches or designs relating to commercial
advertisements.
(i) A league may provide that the uniforms of its member teams include the names of
its players on their backs. Any name other than the last name of the player must be
1.12 The catcher may wear a leather mitt not more than thirty-eight inches in
circumference, nor more than fifteen and one-half inches from top to bottom. Such limits
shall include all lacing and any leather band or facing attached to the outer edge of the
mitt. The space between the thumb section and the finger section of the mitt shall not
exceed six inches at the top of the mitt and four inches at the base of the thumb crotch.
The web shall measure not more than seven inches across the top or more than six inches
from its top to the base of the thumb crotch. The web may be either a lacing or lacing
through leather tunnels, or a center piece of leather which may be an extension of the
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 17 ‐
palm, connected to the mitt with lacing and constructed so that it will not exceed any of
the above mentioned measurements.
1.13 The first baseman may wear a leather glove or mitt not more than twelve inches
long from top to bottom and not more than eight inches wide across the palm, measured
from the base of the thumb crotch to the outer edge of the mitt. The space between the
thumb section and the finger section of the mitt shall not exceed four inches at the top of
the mitt and three and one-half inches at the base of the thumb crotch. The mitt shall be
constructed so that this space is permanently fixed and cannot be enlarged, extended,
widened, or deepened by the use of any materials or process whatever. The web of the
mitt shall measure not more than five inches from its top to the base of the thumb crotch.
The web may be either a lacing, lacing through leather tunnels, or a center piece of
leather which may be an extension of the palm connected to the mitt with lacing and
constructed so that it will not exceed the above mentioned measurements. The webbing
shall not be constructed of wound or wrapped lacing or deepened to make a net type of
trap. The glove may be of any weight.
1.14 Each fielder, other than the first baseman or catcher, may use or wear a leather
glove. The measurements covering size of glove shall be made by measuring front side or
ball receiving side of glove. The tool or measuring tape shall be placed to contact the
surface or feature of item being measured and follow all contours in the process. The
glove shall not measure more than 12" from the tip of any one of the 4 fingers, through
the ball pocket to the bottom edge or heel of glove. The glove shall not measure more
than 7¾" wide, measured from the inside seam at base of first finger, along base of other
fingers, to the outside edge of little finger edge of glove. The space or area between the
thumb and first finger, called crotch, may be filled with leather webbing or back stop.
The webbing may be constructed of two plies of standard leather to close the crotch area
entirely, or it may be constructed of a series of tunnels made of leather, or a series of
panels of leather, or of lacing leather thongs. The webbing may not be constructed of
wound or wrapped lacing to make a net type of trap. When webbing is made to cover
entire crotch area, the webbing can be constructed so as to be flexible. When constructed
of a series of sections, they must be joined together. These sections may not be so
constructed to allow depression to be developed by curvatures in the section sides. The
webbing shall be made to control the size of the crotch opening. The crotch opening
shall measure not more than 4½" at the top, not more than 5¾" deep, and shall be 3½"
wide at its bottom. The opening of crotch shall not be more than 4½" at any point below
its top. The webbing shall be secured at each side, and at top and bottom of crotch. The
attachment is to be made with leather lacing, these connections to be secured. If they
stretch or become loose, they shall be adjusted to their proper condition. The glove can
be of any weight. See Diagram No. 4.
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 18 ‐
1.15 (a) The pitcher’s glove may not, exclusive of piping, be white, gray, nor, in the
judgment of an umpire, distracting in any manner. No fielder, regardless of
position, may use a fielding glove that falls within a PANTONE ® color set lighter
than the current 14-series.
(b) No pitcher shall attach to his glove any foreign material of a color different from
the glove.
(c) The umpire-in-chief shall cause a glove that violates Rules 1.15(a) or 1.15(b) to be
removed from the game, either on his own initiative, at the recommendation of
another umpire or upon complaint of the opposing manager that the umpire-inchief
agrees has merit.
1.16 A Professional League shall adopt the following rule pertaining to the use of
helmets:
(a) All players shall use some type of protective helmet while at bat and while running
the bases.
(b) All players in National Association Leagues shall wear a double ear-flap helmet
while at bat.
(c) All Major League players must wear a single ear-flap helmet (or at the player’s
option, a double ear-flap helmet).
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 19 ‐
(d) All catchers shall wear a catcher’s protective helmet, while fielding their position.
(e) All bat/ball boys or girls shall wear a double ear-flap protective helmet while
performing their duties.
Rule 1.16 Comment: If the umpire observes any violation of these rules, he shall direct
the violation to be corrected. If the violation is not corrected within a reasonable time, in
the umpire’s judgment, the umpire shall eject the offender from the game, and
disciplinary action, as appropriate, will be recommended.
1.17 Playing equipment including but not limited to the bases, pitcher’s plate, baseball,
bats, uniforms, catcher’s mitts, first baseman’s gloves, infielders and outfielders gloves
and protective helmets, as detailed in the provisions of this rule, shall not contain any
undue commercialization of the product. Designations by the manufacturer on any such
equipment must be in good taste as to the size and content of the manufacturer’s logo or
the brand name of the item. The provisions of this Section 1.17 shall apply to
professional leagues only.
NOTE: Manufacturers who plan innovative changes in baseball equipment for
professional baseball leagues should submit same to the Official Playing Rules
Committee prior to production.
2.00—Definitions of Terms
(All definitions in Rule 2.00 are listed alphabetically.)
ADJUDGED is a judgment decision by the umpire.
An APPEAL is the act of a fielder in claiming violation of the rules by the offensive
team.
A BALK is an illegal act by the pitcher with a runner or runners on base, entitling all
runners to advance one base.
A BALL is a pitch which does not enter the strike zone in flight and is not struck at by
the batter.
Rule 2.00 (Ball) Comment: If the pitch touches the ground and bounces through the
strike zone it is a “ball.” If such a pitch touches the batter, he shall be awarded first
base. If the batter swings at such a pitch after two strikes, the ball cannot be caught, for
the purposes of Rule 6.05 (c) and 6.09 (b). If the batter hits such a pitch, the ensuing
action shall be the same as if he hit the ball in flight.
A BASE is one of four points which must be touched by a runner in order to score a run;
more usually applied to the canvas bags and the rubber plate which mark the base points.
A BASE COACH is a team member in uniform who is stationed in the coach’s box at
first or third base to direct the batter and the runners.
A BASE ON BALLS is an award of first base granted to a batter who, during his time at
bat, receives four pitches outside the strike zone.
A BATTER is an offensive player who takes his position in the batter’s box.
BATTER-RUNNER is a term that identifies the offensive player who has just finished
his time at bat until he is put out or until the play on which he became a runner ends.
The BATTER’S BOX is the area within which the batter shall stand during his time at
bat.
The BATTERY is the pitcher and catcher.
BENCH OR DUGOUT is the seating facilities reserved for players, substitutes and other
team members in uniform when they are not actively engaged on the playing field.
A BUNT is a batted ball not swung at, but intentionally met with the bat and tapped
slowly within the infield.
A CALLED GAME is one in which, for any reason, the umpire-in-chief terminates play.
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 20 ‐
A CATCH is the act of a fielder in getting secure possession in his hand or glove of a ball
in flight and firmly holding it; providing he does not use his cap, protector, pocket or any
other part of his uniform in getting possession. It is not a catch, however, if
simultaneously or immediately following his contact with the ball, he collides with a
player, or with a wall, or if he falls down, and as a result of such collision or falling,
drops the ball. It is not a catch if a fielder touches a fly ball which then hits a member of
the offensive team or an umpire and then is caught by another defensive player. In
establishing the validity of the catch, the fielder shall hold the ball long enough to prove
that he has complete control of the ball and that his release of the ball is voluntary and
intentional. If the fielder has made the catch and drops the ball while in the act of making
a throw following the catch, the ball shall be adjudged to have been caught.
Rule 2.00 (Catch) Comment: A catch is legal if the ball is finally held by any fielder,
even though juggled, or held by another fielder before it touches the ground. Runners
may leave their bases the instant the first fielder touches the ball. A fielder may reach
over a fence, railing, rope or other line of demarcation to make a catch. He may jump on
top of a railing, or canvas that may be in foul ground. No interference should be allowed
when a fielder reaches over a fence, railing, rope or into a stand to catch a ball. He does
so at his own risk.
If a fielder, attempting a catch at the edge of the dugout, is “held up” and kept from an
apparent fall by a player or players of either team and the catch is made, it shall be
allowed.
The CATCHER is the fielder who takes his position back of the home base.
The CATCHER’S BOX is that area within which the catcher shall stand until the pitcher
delivers the ball.
THE CLUB is a person or group of persons responsible for assembling the team
personnel, providing the playing field and required facilities, and representing the team in
relations with the league.
A COACH is a team member in uniform appointed by the manager to perform such
duties as the manager may designate, such as but not limited to acting as base coach.
A DEAD BALL is a ball out of play because of a legally created temporary suspension of
play.
The DEFENSE (or DEFENSIVE) is the team, or any player of the team, in the field.
A DOUBLE-HEADER is two regularly scheduled or rescheduled games, played in
immediate succession.
A DOUBLE PLAY is a play by the defense in which two offensive players are put out as
a result of continuous action, providing there is no error between putouts.
(a) A force double play is one in which both putouts are force plays.
(b) A reverse force double play is one in which the first out is a force play and the
second out is made on a runner for whom the force is removed by reason of the first out.
Examples of reverse force plays: runner on first, one out; batter grounds to first baseman,
who steps on first base (one out) and throws to second baseman or shortstop for the
second out (a tag play).
Another example: bases loaded, none out; batter grounds to third baseman, who steps on
third base (one out); then throws to catcher for the second out (tag play).
DUGOUT (See definition of BENCH)
A FAIR BALL is a batted ball that settles on fair ground between home and first base, or
between home and third base, or that is on or over fair territory when bounding to the
outfield past first or third base, or that touches first, second or third base, or that first falls
on fair territory on or beyond first base or third base, or that, while on or over fair
A fair fly shall be judged according to the relative position of the ball and the foul line,
including the foul pole, and not as to whether the fielder is on fair or foul territory at the
time he touches the ball.
Rule 2.00 (Fair Ball) Comment: If a fly ball lands in the infield between home and first
base, or home and third base, and then bounces to foul territory without touching a
player or umpire and before passing first or third base, it is a foul ball; or if the ball
settles on foul territory or is touched by a player on foul territory, it is a foul ball. If a fly
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 21 ‐
ball lands on or beyond first or third base and then bounces to foul territory, it is a fair
hit.
Clubs, increasingly, are erecting tall foul poles at the fence line with a wire netting
extending along the side of the pole on fair territory above the fence to enable the
umpires more accurately to judge fair and foul balls.
FAIR TERRITORY is that part of the playing field within, and including the first base
and third base lines, from home base to the bottom of the playing field fence and
perpendicularly upwards. All foul lines are in fair territory.
A FIELDER is any defensive player.
FIELDER’S CHOICE is the act of a fielder who handles a fair grounder and, instead of
throwing to first base to put out the batter-runner, throws to another base in an attempt to
put out a preceding runner. The term is also used by scorers (a) to account for the
advance of the batter-runner who takes one or more extra bases when the fielder who
handles his safe hit attempts to put out a preceding runner; (b) to account for the advance
of a runner (other than by stolen base or error) while a fielder is attempting to put out
another runner; and (c) to account for the advance of a runner made solely because of the
defensive team’s indifference (undefended steal).
A FLY BALL is a batted ball that goes high in the air in flight.
A FORCE PLAY is a play in which a runner legally loses his right to occupy a base by
reason of the batter becoming a runner.
Rule 2.00 (Force Play) Comment: Confusion regarding this play is removed by
remembering that frequently the “force” situation is removed during the play. Example:
Man on first, one out, ball hit sharply to first baseman who touches the bag and batterrunner
is out. The force is removed at that moment and runner advancing to second must
be tagged. If there had been a runner on third or second, and either of these runners
scored before the tag-out at second, the run counts. Had the first baseman thrown to
second and the ball then had been returned to first, the play at second was a force out,
making two outs, and the return throw to first ahead of the runner would have made three
outs. In that case, no run would score.
Example: Not a force out. One out. Runner on first and third. Batter flies out. Two out.
Runner on third tags up and scores. Runner on first tries to retouch before throw from
fielder reaches first baseman, but does not get back in time and is out. Three outs. If, in
umpire’s judgment, the runner from third touched home before the ball was held at first
base, the run counts.
A FORFEITED GAME is a game declared ended by the umpire-in-chief in favor of the
offended team by the score of 9 to 0, for violation of the rules.
A FOUL BALL is a batted ball that settles on foul territory between home and first base,
or between home and third base, or that bounds past first or third base on or over foul
territory, or that first falls on foul territory beyond first or third base, or that, while on or
over foul territory, touches the person of an umpire or player, or any object foreign to the
natural ground.
A foul fly shall be judged according to the relative position of the ball and the foul line,
including the foul pole, and not as to whether the infielder is on foul or fair territory at the
time he touches the ball.
Rule 2.00 (Foul Ball) Comment: A batted ball not touched by a fielder, which hits the
pitcher’s rubber and rebounds into foul territory, between home and first, or between
home and third base is a foul ball.
FOUL TERRITORY is that part of the playing field outside the first and third base lines
extended to the fence and perpendicularly upwards.
A FOUL TIP is a batted ball that goes sharp and direct from the bat to the catcher’s hands
and is legally caught. It is not a foul tip unless caught and any foul tip that is caught is a
strike, and the ball is in play. It is not a catch if it is a rebound, unless the ball has first
touched the catcher’s glove or hand.
A GROUND BALL is a batted ball that rolls or bounces close to the ground.
The HOME TEAM is the team on whose grounds the game is played, or if the game is
played on neutral grounds, the home team shall be designated by mutual agreement.
ILLEGAL (or ILLEGALLY) is contrary to these rules.
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 22 ‐
An ILLEGAL PITCH is (1) a pitch delivered to the batter when the pitcher does not have
his pivot foot in contact with the pitcher’s plate; (2) a quick return pitch. An illegal pitch
when runners are on base is a balk.
An INFIELDER is a fielder who occupies a position in the infield.
An INFIELD FLY is a fair fly ball (not including a line drive nor an attempted bunt)
which can be caught by an infielder with ordinary effort, when first and second, or first,
second and third bases are occupied, before two are out. The pitcher, catcher and any
outfielder who stations himself in the infield on the play shall be considered infielders for
the purpose of this rule.
When it seems apparent that a batted ball will be an Infield Fly, the umpire shall
immediately declare “Infield Fly” for the benefit of the runners. If the ball is near the
baselines, the umpire shall declare “Infield Fly, if Fair.”
The ball is alive and runners may advance at the risk of the ball being caught, or retouch
and advance after the ball is touched, the same as on any fly ball. If the hit becomes a
foul ball, it is treated the same as any foul.
If a declared Infield Fly is allowed to fall untouched to the ground, and bounces foul
before passing first or third base, it is a foul ball. If a declared Infield Fly falls untouched
to the ground outside the baseline, and bounces fair before passing first or third base, it is
an Infield Fly.
Rule 2.00 (Infield Fly) Comment: On the infield fly rule the umpire is to rule whether the
ball could ordinarily have been handled by an infielder—not by some arbitrary limitation
such as the grass, or the base lines. The umpire must rule also that a ball is an infield
fly, even if handled by an outfielder, if, in the umpire’s judgment, the ball could have
been as easily handled by an infielder. The infield fly is in no sense to be considered an
appeal play. The umpire’s judgment must govern, and the decision should be made
immediately.
When an infield fly rule is called, runners may advance at their own risk. If on an infield
fly rule, the infielder intentionally drops a fair ball, the ball remains in play despite the
provisions of Rule 6.05(l).The infield fly rule takes precedence.
If interference is called during an Infield Fly, the ball remains alive until it is determined
whether the ball is fair for foul. If fair, both the runner who interfered with the fielder
and the batter are out. If foul, even if caught, the runner is out and the batter returns to
bat.
IN FLIGHT describes a batted, thrown, or pitched ball which has not yet touched the
ground or some object other than a fielder.
IN JEOPARDY is a term indicating that the ball is in play and an offensive player may
be put out.
An INNING is that portion of a game within which the teams alternate on offense and
defense and in which there are three putouts for each team. Each team’s time at bat is a
half-inning.
INTERFERENCE
(a) Offensive interference is an act by the team at bat which interferes with, obstructs,
impedes, hinders or confuses any fielder attempting to make a play. If the umpire
declares the batter, batter-runner, or a runner out for interference, all other runners
shall return to the last base that was in the judgment of the umpire, legally touched
at the time of the interference, unless otherwise provided by these rules.
Rule 2.00 (Interference (a)) Comment: In the event the batter-runner has not reached
first base, all runners shall return to the base last occupied at the time of the pitch;
provided, however, if during an intervening play at the plate with less than two outs a
runner scores, and then the batter-runner is called out for interference outside the threefoot
lane, the runner is sage and the run shall count.
(b) Defensive interference is an act by a fielder that hinders or prevents a batter from
hitting a pitch.
(c) Umpire’s interference occurs (1) when a plate umpire hinders, impedes or prevents
a catcher’s throw attempting to prevent a stolen base or retire a runner on a pickoff
play, or (2) when a fair ball touches an umpire on fair territory before passing a
fielder.
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 23 ‐
Rule 2.00 (Interference (c)) Comment: Umpire interference may also occur when an
umpire interferes with a catcher returning the ball to the pitcher.
(d) Spectator interference occurs when a spectator reaches out of the stands and over
the playing field, or goes on the playing field, and (1) touches a live ball or (2) touches a
player and hinders an attempt to make a play on a live ball.
THE LEAGUE is a group of clubs whose teams play each other in a pre-arranged
schedule under these rules for the league championship.
THE LEAGUE PRESIDENT is the league official charged with enforcing these Rules,
fining or suspending any player, manager, coach or umpire for violation of these Rules,
resolving any disputes involving these Rules or determining any protested games.
Rule 2.00 (League President) Comment: With respect to the Major Leagues, the
functions of the League President pursuant to these Rules shall be carried out by the
designees of the Commissioner of Baseball. The Commissioner may designate different
officials to carry out different functions of a League President pursuant to these Rules.
LEGAL (or LEGALLY) is in accordance with these rules.
A LIVE BALL is a ball which is in play.
A LINE DRIVE is a batted ball that goes sharp and direct from the bat to a fielder
without touching the ground.
THE MANAGER is a person appointed by the club to be responsible for the team’s
actions on the field, and to represent the team in communications with the umpire and the
opposing team. A player may be appointed manager.
(a) The club shall designate the manager to the league president or the umpire-in-chief
not less than thirty minutes before the scheduled starting time of the game.
(b) The manager may advise the umpire-in-chief that he has delegated specific duties
prescribed by the rules to a player or coach, and any action of such designated
representative shall be official. The manager shall always be responsible for his team’s
conduct, observance of the official rules, and deference to the umpires.
(c) If a manager leaves the field, he shall designate a player or coach as his substitute,
and such substitute manager shall have the duties, rights and responsibilities of the
manager. If the manager fails or refuses to designate his substitute before leaving, the
umpire-in-chief shall designate a team member as substitute manager.
OBSTRUCTION is the act of a fielder who, while not in possession of the ball and not in
the act of fielding the ball, impedes the progress of any runner.
Rule 2.00 (Obstruction) Comment: If a fielder is about to receive a thrown ball and if the
ball is in flight directly toward and near enough to the fielder so he must occupy his
position to receive the ball he may be considered “in the act of fielding a ball.” It is
entirely up to the judgment of the umpire as to whether a fielder is in the act of fielding a
ball. After a fielder has made an attempt to field a ball and missed, he can no longer be
in the “act of fielding” the ball. For example: an infielder dives at a ground ball and the
ball passes him and he continues to lie on the ground and delays the progress of the
runner, he very likely has obstructed the runner."
OFFENSE is the team, or any player of the team, at bat.
OFFICIAL SCORER. See Rule 10.00.
ORDINARY EFFORT is the effort that a fielder of average skill at a position in that
league or classification of leagues should exhibit on a play, with due consideration given
to the condition of the field and weather conditions.
Rule 2.00 (Ordinary Effort) Comment: This standard, called for several times in the
Official Scoring Rules (e.g., Rules 10.05(a)(3), 10.05(a)(4), 10.05(a)(6), 10.05(b)(3)
(Base Hits); 10.08(b)(Sacrifices); 10.12(a)(1) Comment, 10.12(d)(2) (Errors); and
10.13(a), 10.13(b) (Wild Pitches and Passed Balls)) and in the Official Baseball Rules
(e.g., Rule 2.00 (Infield Fly)), is an objective standard in regard to any particular fielder.
In other words, even if a fielder makes his best effort, if that effort falls short of what an
average fielder at that position in that league would have made in a situation, the official
scorer should charge that fielder with an error.
An OUT is one of the three required retirements of an offensive team during its time at
bat.
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 24 ‐
An OUTFIELDER is a fielder who occupies a position in the outfield, which is the area
of the playing field most distant from home base.
OVERSLIDE (or OVERSLIDING) is the act of an offensive player when his slide to a
base, other than when advancing from home to first base, is with such momentum that he
loses contact with the base.
A PENALTY is the application of these rules following an illegal act.
The PERSON of a player or an umpire is any part of his body, his clothing or his
equipment.
A PITCH is a ball delivered to the batter by the pitcher.
Rule 2.00 (Pitch) Comment: All other deliveries of the ball by one player to another are
thrown balls.
A PITCHER is the fielder designated to deliver the pitch to the batter.
The pitcher’s PIVOT FOOT is that foot which is in contact with the pitcher’s plate as he
delivers the pitch.
“PLAY” is the umpire’s order to start the game or to resume action following any dead
ball.
A QUICK RETURN pitch is one made with obvious intent to catch a batter off balance.
It is an illegal pitch.
REGULATION GAME. See Rules 4.10 and 4.11.
A RETOUCH is the act of a runner in returning to a base as legally required.
A RUN (or SCORE) is the score made by an offensive player who advances from batter
to runner and touches first, second, third and home bases in that order.
A RUN-DOWN is the act of the defense in an attempt to put out a runner between bases.
A RUNNER is an offensive player who is advancing toward, or touching, or returning to
any base.
“SAFE” is a declaration by the umpire that a runner is entitled to the base for which he
was trying.
SET POSITION is one of the two legal pitching positions.
SQUEEZE PLAY is a term to designate a play when a team, with a runner on third base,
attempts to score that runner by means of a bunt.
A STRIKE is a legal pitch when so called by the umpire, which—
(a) Is struck at by the batter and is missed;
(b) Is not struck at, if any part of the ball passes through any part of the strike zone;
(c) Is fouled by the batter when he has less than two strikes;
(d) Is bunted foul;
(e) Touches the batter as he strikes at it;
(f) Touches the batter in flight in the strike zone; or
(g) Becomes a foul tip.
The STRIKE ZONE is that area over home plate the upper limit of which is a horizontal
line at the midpoint between the top of the shoulders and the top of the uniform pants,
and the lower level is a line at the hollow beneath the kneecap. The Strike Zone shall be
determined from the batter’s stance as the batter is prepared to swing at a pitched ball.
(For diagram of STRIKE ZONE see below.)
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 25 ‐
A SUSPENDED GAME is a called game which is to be completed at a later date.
A TAG is the action of a fielder in touching a base with his body while holding the ball
securely and firmly in his hand or glove; or touching a runner with the ball, or with his
hand or glove holding the ball, while holding the ball securely and firmly in his hand or
glove. It is not a tag, however, if simultaneously or immediately following his touching a
base or touching a runner, the fielder drops the ball. In establishing the validity of the
tag, the fielder shall hold the ball long enough to prove that he has complete control of
the ball. If the fielder has made a tag and drops the ball while in the act of making a
throw following the tag, the tag shall be adjudged to have been made.
A THROW is the act of propelling the ball with the hand and arm to a given objective
and is to be distinguished, always, from the pitch.
A TIE GAME is a regulation game which is called when each team has the same number
of runs.
“TIME” is the announcement by an umpire of a legal interruption of play, during which
the ball is dead.
TOUCH. To touch a player or umpire is to touch any part of his body, his clothing or his
equipment.
A TRIPLE PLAY is a play by the defense by which three offensive players are put out as
a result of continuous action, providing there is no error between putouts.
A WILD PITCH is one so high, so low, or so wide of the plate that it cannot be handled
with ordinary effort by the catcher.
WIND-UP POSITION is one of the two legal pitching positions.
Any reference in these Official Baseball Rules to “he,” “him” or “his” shall be deemed to
be a reference to “she,” “her” or “hers,” as the case may be, when the person is a female.
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 26 ‐
3.00—Game Preliminaries
3.01 Before the game begins the umpire shall—
(a) Require strict observance of all rules governing implements of play and equipment
of players;
(b) Be sure that all playing lines (heavy lines on Diagrams No. 1 and No. 2) are
marked with lime, chalk or other white material easily distinguishable from the
ground or grass;
(c) Receive from the home club a supply of regulation baseballs, the number and make
to be certified to the home club by the league president. The umpire shall inspect
the baseballs and ensure they are regulation baseballs and that they are properly
rubbed so that the gloss is removed. The umpire shall be the sole judge of the
fitness of the balls to be used in the game;
(d) Be assured by the home club that at least one dozen regulation reserve balls are
immediately available for use if required;
(e) Have in his possession at least two alternate balls and shall require replenishment
of such supply of alternate balls as needed throughout the game. Such alternate
balls shall be put in play when—
(1) A ball has been batted out of the playing field or into the spectator area;
(2) A ball has become discolored or unfit for further use;
(3) The pitcher requests such alternate ball.
Rule 3.01(e) Comment: The umpire shall not give an alternate ball to the pitcher until
play has ended and the previously used ball is dead. After a thrown or batted ball goes
out of the playing field, play shall not be resumed with an alternate ball until the runners
have reached the bases to which they are entitled. After a home run is hit out of the
playing grounds, the umpire shall not deliver a new ball to the pitcher or the catcher
until the batter hitting the home run has crossed the plate.
(f) Ensure that an official rosin bag is placed on the ground behind the pitcher’s plate
prior to the start of each game.
3.02 No player shall intentionally discolor or damage the ball by rubbing it with soil,
rosin, paraffin, licorice, sand-paper, emery-paper or other foreign substance.
PENALTY: The umpire shall demand the ball and remove the offender from the game.
In addition, the offender shall be suspended automatically for 10 games. For rules in
regard to a pitcher defacing the ball, see Rules 8.02(a)(2) through (6).
3.03 A player, or players, may be substituted during a game at any time the ball is dead.
A substitute player shall bat in the replaced player’s position in the team’s batting order.
A player once removed from a game shall not re-enter that game. If a player who has
been substituted for attempts to re-enter, or re-enters, the game in any capacity, the
umpire-in-chief shall direct the player’s manager to remove such player from the game
immediately upon noticing the player’s presence or upon being informed of the player’s
improper presence by another umpire or by either manager. If such direction to remove
the substituted-for player occurs before play commences with the substituted-for player
improperly in the game, then the substitute player may enter the game. If such direction
to remove the substituted-for player occurs after play has commenced with the
substituted-for player in the game, then the substitute player shall be deemed to have
been removed from the game (in addition to the removal of the substituted-for player)
and shall not enter the game. If a substitute enters the game in place of a player-manager,
the manager may thereafter go to the coaching lines at his discretion. When two or more
substitute players of the defensive team enter the game at the same time, the manager
shall, immediately before they take their positions as fielders, designate to the umpire-inchief
such players’ positions in the team’s batting order and the umpire-in-chief shall so
notify the official scorer. If this information is not immediately given to the umpire-inchief,
he shall have authority to designate the substitutes’ places in the batting order.
Rule 3.03 Comment: A pitcher may change to another position only once during the same inning;
e.g. the pitcher will not be allowed to assume a position other than a pitcher more than once in the same
inning.Any player other than a pitcher substituted for an injured player shall be allowed five warm-up
throws. (See Rule 8.03 for pitchers.)
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 27 ‐
Any play that occurs while a player appears in a game after having been substituted for shall count. If,
in an umpire’s judgment, the player re-entered the game knowing that he had been removed, the umpire
may eject the manager.
3.04 A player whose name is on his team’s batting order may not become a substitute
runner for another member of his team.
Rule 3.04 Comment: This rule is intended to eliminate the practice of using so-called courtesy runners.
No player in the game shall be permitted to act as a courtesy runner for a teammate. No player who has
been in the game and has been taken out for a substitute shall return as a courtesy runner.
3.05 (a) The pitcher named in the batting order handed the umpire-in-chief, as provided
in Rules 4.01 (a) and 4.01 (b), shall pitch to the first batter or any substitute batter
until such batter is put out or reaches first base, unless the pitcher sustains injury or
illness which, in the judgment of the umpire-in-chief, incapacitates him from
pitching.
(b) If the pitcher is replaced, the substitute pitcher shall pitch to the batter then at bat,
or any substitute batter, until such batter is put out or reaches first base, or until the
offensive team is put out, unless the substitute pitcher sustains injury or illness
which, in the umpire-in-chief’s judgment, incapacitates him for further play as a
pitcher.
(c) If an improper substitution is made for the pitcher, the umpire shall direct the
proper pitcher to return to the game until the provisions of this rule are fulfilled. If
the improper pitcher is permitted to pitch, any play that results is legal. The
improper pitcher becomes the proper pitcher as soon as he makes his first pitch to
the batter, or as soon as any runner is put out.
Rule 3.05(c) Comment: If a manager attempts to remove a pitcher in violation of Rule 3.05 (c) the
umpire shall notify the manager of the offending club that it cannot be done. If, by chance, the umpirein-
chief has, through oversight, announced the incoming improper pitcher, he should still correct the
situation before the improper pitcher pitches. Once the improper pitcher delivers a pitch he becomes the
proper pitcher.
(d) If a pitcher who is already in the game crosses the foul line on his way to take his
place on the pitchers plate to start an inning, he shall pitch to the first batter until
such batter is put out or reaches first base, unless the batter is substituted for, or the
pitcher sustains an injury or illness which, in the judgment of the umpire-in-chief,
incapacitates him from pitching. If the pitcher end the previous inning on base or
at bat and does not return to the dugout after the inning is completed, the pitcher is
not required to pitch to the first batter of the inning until he makes contact with the
pitcher’s plate to begin his warm-up pitches.
3.06 The manager shall immediately notify the umpire-in-chief of any substitution and
shall state to the umpire-in-chief the substitute’s place in the batting order.
Rule 3.06 Comment: Players for whom substitutions have been made may remain with their team on the
bench or may “warm-up” pitchers. If a manager substitutes another player for himself, he may
continue to direct his team from the bench or the coach’s box. Umpires should not permit players for
whom substitutes have been made, and who are permitted to remain on the bench, to address any
remarks to any opposing player or manager, or to the umpires.
3.07 The umpire-in-chief, after having been notified, shall immediately announce, or
cause to be announced, each substitution.
3.08 (a) If no announcement of a substitution is made, the substitute shall be considered
as having entered the game when—
(1) If a pitcher, he takes his place on the pitcher’s plate;
(2) If a batter, he takes his place in the batter’s box;
(3) If a fielder, he reaches the position usually occupied by the fielder he has
replaced, and play commences;
(4) If a runner, he takes the place of the runner he has replaced.
(b) Any play made by, or on, any of the above mentioned unannounced substitutes
shall be legal.
3.09 Players in uniform shall not address or mingle with spectators, nor sit in the stands
before, during, or after a game. No manager, coach or player shall address any spectator
before or during a game. Players of opposing teams shall not fraternize at any time while
in uniform.
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 28 ‐
3.10 (a) The home team shall be the sole judge as to whether a game shall not be started
because of unsuitable weather conditions or the unfit condition of the playing field,
except for the second game of a doubleheader. EXCEPTION: Any league may
permanently authorize its president to suspend the application of this rule as to that
league during the closing weeks of its championship season in order to assure that
the championship is decided each year on its merits. When the postponement of,
and possible failure to play, a game in the final series of a championship season
between any two teams might affect the final standing of any club in the league,
the president, on appeal from any league club, may assume the authority granted
the home team by this rule.
(b) The umpire-in-chief of the first game shall be the sole judge as to whether the
second game of a doubleheader shall not be started because of unsuitable weather
conditions or the unfit condition of the playing field.
3.11 Between games of a doubleheader, or whenever a game is suspended because of
the unfitness of the playing field, the umpire-in-chief shall have control of groundkeepers
and assistants for the purpose of making the playing field fit for play.
PENALTY: For violation, the umpire-in-chief may forfeit the game to the visiting team.
3.12 When an umpire suspends play, he shall call “Time.” At the umpire-in-chief’s call
of “Play,” the suspension is lifted and play resumes. Between the call of “Time” and the
call of “Play” the ball is dead.
3.13 The manager of the home team shall present to the umpire-in-chief and the
opposing manager any ground rules he thinks necessary covering the overflow of
spectators upon the playing field, batted or thrown balls into such overflow, or any other
contingencies. If these rules are acceptable to the opposing manager they shall be legal.
If these rules are unacceptable to the opposing manager, the umpire-in-chief shall make
and enforce any special ground rules he thinks are made necessary by ground conditions,
which shall not conflict with the official playing rules.
3.14 Members of the offensive team shall carry all gloves and other equipment off the
field and to the dugout while their team is at bat. No equipment shall be left lying on the
field, either in fair or foul territory.
3.15 No person shall be allowed on the playing field during a game except players and
coaches in uniform, managers, news photographers authorized by the home team,
umpires, officers of the law in uniform and watchmen or other employees of the home
club. In case of unintentional interference with play by any person herein authorized to
be on the playing field (except members of the team at bat who are participating in the
game, or a base coach, any of whom interfere with a fielder attempting to field a batted or
thrown ball; or an umpire) the ball is alive and in play. If the interference is intentional,
the ball shall be dead at the moment of the interference and the umpire shall impose such
penalties as in his opinion will nullify the act of interference.
Rule 3.15 Comment: For interference with a fielder attempting to field a batted or
thrown ball by members of the team at bat or base coaches, who are excepted in Rule
3.15, see Rule 7.11. See also Rules 5.09(b), 5.09(f) and 6.08(d), which cover interference
by an umpire, and Rule 7.08(b), which covers interference by a runner.
The question of intentional or unintentional interference shall be decided on the basis of
the person’s action. For example: a bat boy, ball attendant, policeman, etc., who tries to
avoid being touched by a thrown or batted ball but still is touched by the ball would be
involved in unintentional interference.
If, however, he kicks the ball or picks it up or pushes it, that is considered intentional
interference, regardless of what his thought may have been.
PLAY: Batter hits ball to shortstop, who fields ball but throws wild past first baseman.
The coach at first base, to avoid being hit by the ball, falls to the ground and the first
baseman on his way to retrieve the wild thrown ball, runs into the coach. The batterrunner
finally ends up on third base. Whether the umpire should call interference on the
part of the coach is up to the judgment of the umpire and if the umpire felt that the coach
did all he could to avoid interfering with the play, no interference need be called. If, in
the judgment of the umpire, the coach was attempting to make it appear that he was
trying not to interfere, the umpire should rule interference.
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 29 ‐
3.16 When there is spectator interference with any thrown or batted ball, the ball shall
be dead at the moment of interference and the umpire shall impose such penalties as in
his opinion will nullify the act of interference.
APPROVED RULING: If spectator interference clearly prevents a fielder from catching
a fly ball, the umpire shall declare the batter out.
Rule 3.16 Comment: There is a difference between a ball which has been thrown or
batted into the stands, touching a spectator thereby being out of play even though it
rebounds onto the field and a spectator going onto the field or reaching over, under or
through a barrier and touching a ball in play or touching or otherwise interfering with a
player. In the latter case it is clearly intentional and shall be dealt with as intentional
interference as in Rule 3.15. Batter and runners shall be placed where in the umpire’s
judgment they would have been had the interference not occurred.
No interference shall be allowed when a fielder reaches over a fence, railing, rope or
into a stand to catch a ball. He does so at his own risk. However, should a spectator
reach out on the playing field side of such fence, railing or rope, and plainly prevent the
fielder from catching the ball, then the batsman should be called out for the spectator’s
interference.
Example: Runner on third base, one out and a batter hits a fly ball deep to the outfield
(fair or foul). Spectator clearly interferes with the outfielder attempting to catch the fly
ball. Umpire calls the batter out for spectator interference. Ball is dead at the time of
the call. Umpire decides that because of the distance the ball was hit, the runner on third
base would have scored after the catch if the fielder had caught the ball which was
interfered with, therefore, the runner is permitted to score. This might not be the case if
such fly ball was interfered with a short distance from home plate.
3.17 Players and substitutes of both teams shall confine themselves to their team’s
benches unless actually participating in the play or preparing to enter the game, or
coaching at first or third base. No one except players, substitutes, managers, coaches,
trainers and bat boys shall occupy a bench during a game.
PENALTY: For violation the umpire may, after warning, remove the offender from the
field.
Rule 3.17 Comment: Players on the disabled list are permitted to participate in pregame
activity and sit on the bench during a game but may not take part in any activity
during the game such as warming up a pitcher, bench-jockeying, etc. Disabled players
are not allowed to enter the playing surface at any time or for any purpose during the
game.
3.18 The home team shall provide police protection sufficient to preserve order. If a
person, or persons, enter the playing field during a game and interfere in any way with
the play, the visiting team may refuse to play until the field is cleared.
PENALTY: If the field is not cleared in a reasonable length of time, which shall in no
case be less than 15 minutes after the visiting team’s refusal to play, the umpire-in-chief
may forfeit the game to the visiting team.
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 30 ‐
4.00—Starting and Ending a Game
4.01 Unless the home club shall have given previous notice that the game has been
postponed or will be delayed in starting, the umpire, or umpires, shall enter the playing
field five minutes before the hour set for the game to begin and proceed directly to home
base where they shall be met by the managers of the opposing teams. In sequence—
(a) First, the home manager, or his designee, shall give his batting order to the umpirein-
chief, in duplicate.
(b) Next, the visiting manager, or his designee, shall give his batting order to the
umpire-in-chief, in duplicate.
(c) As a courtesy, each lineup card presented to the umpire-in-chief should list the
fielding positions to be played by each player in the batting order. If a designated
hitter is to be used, the lineup card shall designate which hitter is to be the
designated hitter. See Rule 6.10(b). As a courtesy, potential substitute players
should also be listed, but the failure to list a potential substitute player shall not
make such potential substitute player ineligible to enter the game.
(d) The umpire-in-chief shall make certain that the original and copies of the
respective batting orders are identical, and then tender a copy of each batting order
to the opposing manager. The copy retained by the umpire shall be the official
batting order. The tender of the batting order by the umpire shall establish the
batting orders. Thereafter, no substitutions shall be made by either manager,
except as provided in the rules.
(e) As soon as the home team’s batting order is handed to the umpire-in-chief the
umpires are in charge of the playing field and from that moment the umpire-inchief
shall have sole authority to determine when a game shall be called,
suspended or resumed on account of weather or the condition of the playing field.
The umpire-in-chief shall not call the game until at least 30 minutes after he has
suspended play. The umpire-in-chief may continue the suspension so long as he
believes there is any chance to resume play.
Rule 4.01 Comment: Obvious errors in the batting order, which are noticed by the
umpire-in-chief before he calls “Play” for the start of the game, should be called to the
attention of the manager or captain of the team in error, so the correction can be made
before the game starts. For example, if a manager has inadvertently listed only eight
men in the batting order, or has listed two players with the same last name but without an
identifying initial and the errors are noticed by the umpire before he calls “play,” he
shall cause such error or errors to be corrected before he calls “play” to start the game.
Teams should not be “trapped” later by some mistake that obviously was inadvertent and
which can be corrected before the game starts.
The umpire-in-chief shall at all times try to complete a game. His authority to
resume play following one or more suspensions of as much as 30 minutes each
shall be absolute and he shall terminate a game only when there appears to be no
possibility of completing it.
The Major Leagues have determined that Rule 4.01(e) does not apply to any Wild
Card, Division Series, League Championship Series or World Series games or for
any additional Major League championship season game played to break a tie.
4.02 The players of the home team shall take their defensive positions, the first batter of
the visiting team shall take his position in the batter’s box, the umpire shall call “Play”
and the game shall start.
4.03 When the ball is put in play at the start of, or during a game, all fielders other than
the catcher shall be on fair territory.
(a) The catcher shall station himself directly back of the plate. He may leave his
position at any time to catch a pitch or make a play except that when the batter is
being given an intentional base on balls, the catcher must stand with both feet
within the lines of the catcher’s box until the ball leaves the pitcher’s hand.
PENALTY: Balk.
(b) The pitcher, while in the act of delivering the ball to the batter, shall take his legal
position;
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 31 ‐
(c) Except the pitcher and the catcher, any fielder may station himself anywhere in fair
territory.
4.04 The batting order shall be followed throughout the game unless a player is
substituted for another. In that case the substitute shall take the place of the replaced
player in the batting order.
4.05 (a) The team at bat shall station two base coaches on the field during its time at bat,
one near first base and one near third base.
(b) Base coaches shall be limited to two in number and shall (1) be in team uniform,
and (2) remain within the coach’s box at all times.
PENALTY: The offending base coach shall be removed from the game, and shall leave
the playing field
Rule 4.05 Comment: It has been common practice for many years for some coaches to
put one foot outside the coach’s box or stand astride or otherwise be slightly outside the
coaching box lines. Until a batted ball passes a coach, a coach is not permitted to
position himself closer to home plate than the coach’s box nor closer to fair territory
than the coach’s box. Otherwise, a coach shall not be considered out of the box unless
the opposing manager complains, in which case the umpire shall strictly enforce the rule
and require all coaches (on both teams) to remain in the coach’s box at all times.
It is also common practice for a coach who has a play at his base to leave the coach’s
box to signal the player to slide, advance or return to a base. This may be allowed if the
coach does not interfere with the play in any manner.
4.06 (a) No manager, player, substitute, coach, trainer or batboy shall at any time,
whether from the
bench, the coach’s box or on the playing field, or elsewhere—
(1) Incite, or try to incite, by word or sign a demonstration by spectators;
(2) Use language which will in any manner refer to or reflect upon opposing
players, an umpire, or any spectator;
(3) Call “Time,” or employ any other word or phrase or commit any act while
the ball is alive and in play for the obvious purpose of trying to make the pitcher
commit a balk.
(4) Make intentional contact with the umpire in any manner.
(b) No fielder shall take a position in the batter’s line of vision, and with deliberate
unsportsmanlike intent, act in a manner to distract the batter.
PENALTY: The offender shall be removed from the game and shall leave the playing
field, and, if a balk is made, it shall be nullified.
4.07 When a manager, player, coach or trainer is ejected from a game, he shall leave the
field immediately and take no further part in that game. He shall remain in the club house
or change to street clothes and either leave the park or take a seat in the grandstand well
removed from the vicinity of his team’s bench or bullpen.
Rule 4.07 Comment: If a manager, coach or player is under suspension he may not be in
the dugout or press box during the course of a game.
4.08 When the occupants of a player’s bench show violent disapproval of an umpire’s
decision, the umpire shall first give warning that such disapproval shall cease. If such
action continues—
PENALTY: The umpire shall order the offenders from the bench to the club house. If he
is unable to detect the offender, or offenders, he may clear the bench of all substitute
players. The manager of the offending team shall have the privilege of recalling to the
playing field only those players needed for substitution in the game.
4.09 HOW A TEAM SCORES.
(a) One run shall be scored each time a runner legally advances to and touches first,
second, third and home base before three men are put out to end the inning.
EXCEPTION: A run is not scored if the runner advances to home base during a
play in which the third out is made (1) by the batter-runner before he touches first
base; (2) by any runner being forced out; or (3) by a preceding runner who is
declared out because he failed to touch one of the bases.
(b) When the winning run is scored in the last half-inning of a regulation game, or in
the last half of an extra inning, as the result of a base on balls, hit batter or any
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 32 ‐
other play with the bases full which forces the runner on third to advance, the
umpire shall not declare the game ended until the runner forced to advance from
third has touched home base and the batter-runner has touched first base.
Rule 4.09(b) Comment: An exception will be if fans rush onto the field and physically
prevent the runner from touching home plate or the batter from touching first base. In
such cases, the umpires shall award the runner the base because of the obstruction by the
fans.
PENALTY: If the runner on third refuses to advance to and touch home base in a
reasonable time, the umpire shall disallow the run, call out the offending player and order
the game resumed. If, with two out, the batter-runner refuses to advance to and touch
first base, the umpire shall disallow the run, call out the offending player, and order the
game resumed. If, before two are out, the batter-runner refuses to advance to and touch
first base, the run shall count, but the offending player shall be called out.
Rule 4.09 Comment: APPROVED RULING: No run shall score during a play in which
the third out is made by the batter-runner before he touches first base. Example: One
out, Jones on second, Smith on first. The batter, Brown, hits safely. Jones scores. Smith
is out on the throw to the plate. Two outs. But Brown missed first base. The ball is
thrown to first, an appeal is made, and Brown is out. Three outs. Since Jones crossed the
plate during a play in which the third out was made by the batter-runner before he
touched first base, Jones’ run does not count.
APPROVED RULING: Following runners are not affected by an act of a preceding
runner unless two are out.
Example: One out, Jones on second, Smith on first, and batter, Brown, hits home run
inside the park. Jones fails to touch third on his way to the plate. Smith and Brown
score. The defense holds the ball on third, appeals to umpire, and Jones is out. Smith’s
and Brown’s runs count.
APPROVED RULING: Two out, Jones on second, Smith on first and batter, Brown, hits
home run inside the park. All three runs cross the plate. But Jones missed third base, and
on appeal is declared out. Three outs. Smith’s and Brown’s runs are voided. No score
on the play.
APPROVED RULING: One out, Jones on third, Smith on second. Batter Brown flies out
to center. Two out. Jones scores after catch and Smith scores on bad throw to plate. But
Jones, on appeal,is adjudged to have left third before the catch and is out. Three outs.
No runs.
APPROVED RULING: Two out, bases full, batter hits home run over fence. Batter, on
appeal, is declared out for missing first base. Three outs. No run counts.
Here is a general statement that covers:
When a runner misses a base and a fielder holds the ball on a missed base, or on the base
originally occupied by the runner if a fly ball is caught, and appeals for the umpire’s
decision, the runner is out when the umpire sustains the appeal; all runners may score if
possible, except that with two out the runner is out at the moment he misses the bag, if an
appeal is sustained as applied to the following runners.
APPROVED RULING: One out, Jones on third, Smith on first, and Brown flies out to
right field. Two outs. Jones tags up and scores after the catch. Smith attempted to return
to first but the right fielder’s throw beat him to the base. Three outs. But Jones scored
before the throw to catch Smith reached first base, hence Jones’ run counts. It was not a
force play.
4.10 (a) A regulation game consists of nine innings, unless extended because of a tie
score, or shortened (1) because the home team needs none of its half of the ninth
inning or only a fraction of it, or (2) because the umpire-in-chief calls the game.
EXCEPTION: National Association leagues may adopt a rule providing that one or
both games of a doubleheader shall be seven innings in length. In such games, any
of these rules applying to the ninth inning shall apply to the seventh inning.
(b) If the score is tied after nine completed innings play shall continue until (1) the
visiting team has scored more total runs than the home team at the end of a
completed inning, or (2) the home team scores the winning run in an uncompleted
inning.
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 33 ‐
(c) If a game is called, it is a regulation game:
(1) If five innings have been completed;
(2) If the home team has scored more runs in four or four and a fraction halfinnings
than the visiting team has scored in five completed half-innings;
(3) If the home team scores one or more runs in its half of the fifth inning to tie
the score.
(d) If a regulation game is called with the score tied, it shall become a suspended
game. See Rule 4.12.
(e) If a game is called before it has become a regulation game, the umpire-in-chief
shall declare it “No Game.”
(f) A League President may determine whether rain checks will be honored for any
regulation or suspended game that has progressed to or beyond a point of play
described in 4.10(c).
Rule 4.10 Comment: The Major Leagues have determined that Rules 4.10(c) and 4.10(e)
do not apply to any Wild Card, Division Series, League Championship Series or World
Series games or for any additional Major League championship season game played to
break a tie.
4.11 The score of a regulation game is the total number of runs scored by each team at
the moment the game ends.
(a) The game ends when the visiting team completes its half of the ninth inning if the
home team is ahead.
(b) The game ends when the ninth inning is completed, if the visiting team is ahead.
(c) If the home team scores the winning run in its half of the ninth inning (or its half of
an extra inning after a tie), the game ends immediately when the winning run is
scored. EXCEPTION: If the last batter in a game hits a home run out of the
playing field, the batter-runner and all runners on base are permitted to score, in
accordance with the base-running rules, and the game ends when the batter-runner
touches home plate.
APPROVED RULING: The batter hits a home run out of the playing field to win the
game in the last half of the ninth or an extra inning, but is called out for passing a
preceding runner. The game ends immediately when the winning run is scored, unless
there are two out and the winning run has not yet reached home plate when the runner
passes another, in which case the inning is over and only those runs that scored before the
runner passes another shall count.
(d) A called game ends at the moment the umpire terminates play, unless it becomes a
suspended game pursuant to Rule 4.12(a).
4.12 SUSPENDED GAMES.
(a) A game shall become a suspended game that must be completed at a future date if
the game is terminated for any of the following reasons:
(1) A curfew imposed by law;
(2) A time limit permissible under league rules;
(3) Light failure or malfunction of a mechanical field device under control of
the home club. (Mechanical field device shall include automatic tarpaulin or water
removal equipment);
(4) Darkness, when a law prevents the lights from being turned on;
(5) Weather, if a regulation game is called while an inning is in progress and
before the inning is completed, and the visiting team has scored one or more runs
to take the lead, and the home team has not retaken the lead; or
(6) It is a regulation game that is called with the score tied.
National Association Leagues may also adopt the following rules for suspended games.
(If adopted by a National Association League, Rule 4.10(e) would not apply to their
games.):
(7) The game has not become a regulation game (4½ innings with the home
team ahead, or 5 innings with the visiting club ahead or tied).
(8) If a game is suspended before it becomes a regulation game, and is
continued prior to another regularly scheduled game, the regularly scheduled game
shall be seven innings in length. See the exception described in Rule 4.10(a).
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 34 ‐
(9) If a game is suspended after it is a regulation game, and is continued prior to
another regularly scheduled game, the regularly scheduled game shall be a nineinning
game.
EXCEPTION: Optional Rules 4.12(a)(7), 4.12(a)(8) and 4.12(a)(9) for National
Association Leagues shall not apply to the last scheduled game between the two teams
during the championship season. A National
No game called because of a curfew (Rule 4.12(a)(1)), weather (Rule 4.12(a)(5)), a time
limit (Rule 4.12(a)(2)) or with a tied score (Rule 4.12(a)(6)) shall be a suspended game
unless it has progressed far enough to have been a regulation game pursuant to Rule
4.10(c). A game called pursuant to Rules 4.12(a)(3) or 4.12(a)(4) shall be a suspended
game at any time after it starts.
NOTE: Weather and similar conditions—Rules 4.12(a)(1) through 4.12(a)(5)— shall take
precedence in determining whether a called game shall be a suspended game. If a game is
halted by weather, and subsequent light failure or an intervening curfew or time limit
prevents its resumption, the game shall not be a suspended game. If a game is halted by
light failure, and weather or field conditions prevent its resumption, the game shall not be
a suspended game. A game can only be considered a suspended game if stopped for any
of the six reasons specified in Rule 4.12(a).
Rule 4.12(a) Comment: The Major Leagues have determined that Rule 4.12(a) does not
apply to any Wild Card, Division Series, League Championship Series or World Series
games or for any additional Major League championship season game played to break a
tie.
(b) A suspended game shall be resumed and completed as follows:
(1) Immediately preceding the next scheduled single game between the two
clubs on the same grounds; or
(2) Immediately preceding the next scheduled doubleheader between the two
clubs on the same grounds, if no single game remains on the schedule; or
(3) If suspended on the last scheduled date between the two clubs in that city,
transferred and played on the grounds of the opposing club, if possible;
(i) Immediately preceding the next scheduled single game, or
(ii) Immediately preceding the next scheduled doubleheader, if no single
game remains on the schedule.
(4) Any suspended game not completed prior to the last scheduled game
between the two teams during the championship season shall become a called
game, as follows:
(i) If such game has progressed far enough to become a regulation game,
and one team is ahead, the team that is ahead shall be declared the winner
(unless the game is called while an inning is in progress and before the
inning is completed, and the visiting team has scored one or more runs to
take the lead, and the home team has not retaken the lead, in which case the
score upon the completion of the last full inning shall stand for purposes of
this Rule 4.12 (b) (4));
(ii) If such game has progressed far enough to become a regulation game,
and the score is tied, the game shall be declared a “tie game.” A tie game is
to be replayed in its entirety, unless the league president determines that
playing the rescheduled game is not necessary to affect the league
championship; or
(iii) has not progressed far enough to become a regulation game, the game
shall be declared “No Game.” In such case, the game is to be replayed in its
entirety, unless the league president determines that playing the rescheduled
game is not necessary to affect the league championship.
Rule 4.12(b) Comment: The Major Leagues have determined that Rule 4.12(b) does not
apply to any Wild Card, Division Series, League Championship Series or World Series
games or for any additional Major League championship season game played to break a
tie.
(c) A suspended game shall be resumed at the exact point of suspension of the original
game. The completion of a suspended game is a continuation of the original game.
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 35 ‐
The lineup and batting order of both teams shall be exactly the same as the lineup
and batting order at the moment of suspension, subject to the rules governing
substitution. Any player may be replaced by a player who had not been in the
game prior to the suspension. No player removed before the suspension may be
returned to the lineup.
A player who was not with the club when the game was suspended may be used as
a substitute, even if he has taken the place of a player no longer with the club who
would not have been eligible because he had been removed from the lineup before
the game was suspended.
Rule 4.12(c) Comment: If immediately prior to the call of a suspended game, a substitute
pitcher has been announced but has not retired the side or pitched until the batter
becomes a base runner, such pitcher, when the suspended game is later resumed may, but
is not required to start the resumed portion of the game. However, if he does not start he
will be considered as having been substituted for and may not be used in that game.
4.13 RULES GOVERNING DOUBLEHEADERS.
(a) (1) Only two championship games shall be played on one date. Completion of a
suspended game shall not violate this rule.
(2) If two games are scheduled to be played for one admission on one date, the
first game shall be the regularly scheduled game for that date.
(b) After the start of the first game of a doubleheader, that game shall be completed
before the second game of the doubleheader shall begin.
(c) The second game of a doubleheader shall start twenty minutes after the first game
is completed, unless a longer interval (not to exceed thirty minutes) is declared by
the umpire-in-chief and announced to the opposing managers at the end of the first
game. EXCEPTION: If the league president has approved a request of the home
club for a longer interval between games for some special event, the umpire-inchief
shall declare such longer interval and announce it to the opposing managers.
The umpire-in-chief of the first game shall be the timekeeper controlling the
interval between games.
(d) The umpire shall start the second game of a doubleheader, if at all possible, and
play shall continue as long as ground conditions, local time restrictions, or weather
permit.
(e) When a regularly scheduled doubleheader is delayed in starting for any cause, any
game that is started is the first game of the doubleheader.
(f) When a rescheduled game is part of a doubleheader the rescheduled game shall be
the second game, and the first game shall be the regularly scheduled game for that
date.
4.14 The umpire-in-chief shall order the playing field lights turned on whenever in his
opinion darkness makes further play in daylight hazardous.
4.15 A game may be forfeited to the opposing team when a team—
(a) Fails to appear upon the field, or being upon the field, refuses to start play within
five minutes after the umpire-in-chief has called “Play” at the appointed hour for
beginning the game, unless such delayed appearance is, in the umpire-in-chief’s
judgment, unavoidable;
(b) Employs tactics palpably designed to delay or shorten the game;
(c) Refuses to continue play during a game unless the game has been suspended or
terminated by the umpire-in-chief;
(d) Fails to resume play, after a suspension, within one minute after the umpire-inchief
has called “Play;”
(e) After warning by the umpire, willfully and persistently violates any rules of the
game;
(f) Fails to obey within a reasonable time the umpire’s order for removal of a player
from the game;
(g) Fails to appear for the second game of a doubleheader within twenty minutes after
the close of the first game unless the umpire-in-chief of the first game shall have
extended the time of the intermission.
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 36 ‐
4.16 A game shall be forfeited to the visiting team if, after it has been suspended, the
order of the umpire to groundskeepers respecting preparation of the field for resumption
of play are not complied with.
4.17 A game shall be forfeited to the opposing team when a team is unable or refuses to
place nine players on the field.
4.18 If the umpire-in-chief declares a game forfeited he shall transmit a written report to
the league president within 24 hours thereafter, but failure of such transmittal shall not
affect the forfeiture.
4.19 PROTESTING GAMES. Each league shall adopt rules governing procedure for
protesting a game, when a manager claims that an umpire’s decision is in violation of
these rules. No protest shall ever be permitted on judgment decisions by the umpire. In all
protested games, the decision of the League President shall be final.
Even if it is held that the protested decision violated the rules, no replay of the game will
be ordered unless in the opinion of the League President the violation adversely affected
the protesting team’s chances of winning the game.
Rule 4.19 Comment: Whenever a manager protests a game because of alleged
misapplication of the rules the protest will not be recognized unless the umpires are
notified at the time the play under protest occurs and before the next pitch, play or
attempted play. A protest arising on a game-ending play may be filed until 12 noon the
following day with the league office.
5.00—Putting the Ball in Play - Live Ball
5.01 At the time set for beginning the game the umpire-in-chief shall call “Play.”
5.02 After the umpire calls “Play” the ball is alive and in play and remains alive and in
play until for legal cause, or at the umpire’s call of “Time” suspending play, the ball
becomes dead. While the ball is dead no player may be put out, no bases may be run and
no runs may be scored, except that runners may advance one or more bases as the result
of acts which occurred while the ball was alive (such as, but not limited to a balk, an
overthrow, interference, or a home run or other fair ball hit out of the playing field).
Rule 5.02 Comment: Should a ball come partially apart in a game, it is in play until the
play is completed.
5.03 The pitcher shall deliver the pitch to the batter who may elect to strike the ball, or
who may not offer at it, as he chooses.
5.04 The offensive team’s objective is to have its batter become a runner, and its
runners advance.
5.05 The defensive team’s objective is to prevent offensive players from becoming
runners, and to prevent their advance around the bases.
5.06 When a batter becomes a runner and touches all bases legally he shall score one
run for his team.
Rule 5.06 Comment: A run legally scored cannot be nullified by subsequent action of the
runner, such as but not limited to an effort to return to third base in the belief that he had
left the base before a caught fly ball.
5.07 When three offensive players are legally put out, that team takes the field and the
opposing team becomes the offensive team.
5.08 If a thrown ball accidentally touches a base coach, or a pitched or thrown ball
touches an umpire, the ball is alive and in play. However, if the coach interferes with a
thrown ball, the runner is out.
5.09 The ball becomes dead and runners advance one base, or return to their bases,
without liability to be put out, when—
(a) A pitched ball touches a batter, or his clothing, while in his legal batting position;
runners, if forced, advance;
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 37 ‐
(b) The plate umpire interferes with the catcher’s throw attempting to prevent a stolen
base or retire a runner on a pick-off play; runners may not advance.
NOTE: The interference shall be disregarded if the catcher’s throw retires the runner.
Rule 5.09(b) Comment: Umpire interference may also occur when an umpire interferes
with a catcher returning the ball to the pitcher.
(c) A balk is committed; runners advance; (See Penalty 8.05).
(d) A ball is illegally batted; runners return;
(e) A foul ball is not caught, in which case runners return to their bases. The umpirein-
chief shall not put the ball in play until all runners have retouched their bases;
(f) A fair ball touches a runner or an umpire on fair territory before it touches an
infielder including the pitcher, or touches an umpire before it has passed an
infielder other than the pitcher; runners advance, if forced.
If a fair ball goes through, or by, an infielder, no other infielder has a chance to
make a play on the ball and the ball touches a runner immediately behind the
infielder that the ball went through, or by, the ball is in play and the umpire shall
not declare the runner out. If a fair ball touches a runner after being deflected by
an infielder, the ball is in play and the umpire shall not declare the runner out;
Rule 5.09(f) Comment: If a fair ball touches an umpire working in the infield after it has
bounded past, or over, the pitcher, it is a dead ball. If a batted ball is deflected by a
fielder in fair territory and hits a runner or an umpire while still in flight and then caught
by an infielder it shall not be a catch, but the ball shall remain in play.
(g) A pitched ball lodges in the umpire’s or catcher’s mask or paraphernalia, and
remains out of play, runners advance one base;
Rule 5.09(g) Comment: If a foul tip hits the umpire and is caught by a fielder on the
rebound, the ball is “dead” and the batsman cannot be called out. The same shall apply
where such foul tip lodges in the umpire’s mask or other paraphernalia.
If a third strike (not a foul tip) passes the catcher and hits an umpire, the ball is in play.
If such ball rebounds and is caught by a fielder before it touches the ground, the batsman
is not out on such a catch, but the ball remains in play and the batsman may be retired at
first base, or touched with the ball for the out.
If a pitched ball lodges in the umpire’s or catcher’s mask or paraphernalia, and remains
out of play, on the third strike or fourth ball, then the batter is entitled to first base and
all runners advance one base. If the count on the batter is less than three balls, runners
advance one base.
(h) Any legal pitch touches a runner trying to score; runners advance.
5.10 The ball becomes dead when an umpire calls “Time.” The umpire-in-chief shall
call “Time”—
(a) When in his judgment weather, darkness or similar conditions make immediate
further play impossible;
(b) When light failure makes it difficult or impossible for the umpires to follow the
play;
NOTE: A league may adopt its own regulations governing games interrupted by light
failure.
(c) When an accident incapacitates a player or an umpire;
(1) If an accident to a runner is such as to prevent him from proceeding to a base
to which he is entitled, as on a home run hit out of the playing field, or an award of
one or more bases, a substitute runner shall be permitted to complete the play.
(d) When a manager requests “Time” for a substitution, or for a conference with one
of his players.
(e) When the umpire wishes to examine the ball, to consult with either manager, or for
any similar cause.
(f) When a fielder, after catching a fly ball, falls into a bench or stand, or falls across
ropes into a crowd when spectators are on the field. As pertains to runners, the
provisions of 7.04(c) shall prevail.
If a fielder after making a catch steps into a bench, but does not fall, the ball is in
play and runners may advance at their own peril.
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 38 ‐
(g) When an umpire orders a player or any other person removed from the playing
field.
(h) Except in the cases stated in paragraphs (b) and (c)(1) of this rule, no umpire shall
call “Time” while a play is in progress.
5.11 After the ball is dead, play shall be resumed when the pitcher takes his place on the
pitcher’s plate with a new ball or the same ball in his possession and the plate umpire
calls “Play.” The plate umpire shall call “Play” as soon as the pitcher takes his place on
his plate with the ball in his possession.
6.00 – The Batter
6.01 (a) Each player of the offensive team shall bat in the order that his name appears in
his team’s batting order.
(b) The first batter in each inning after the first inning shall be the player whose name
follows that of that last player who legally completed his time at bat in the
preceding inning.
6.02 (a) The batter shall take his position in the batter’s box promptly when it is his time
at bat.
(b) The batter shall not leave his position in the batter’s box after the pitcher comes to
Set Position, or starts his windup.
PENALTY: If the pitcher pitches, the umpire shall call “Ball” or “Strike”, as the case
may be.
Rule 6.02(b) Comment: The batter leaves the batter’s box at the risk of having a strike
delivered and called, unless he requests the umpire to call “Time.” The batter is not at
liberty to step in and out of the batter’s box at will.
Once a batter has taken his position in the batter’s box, he shall not be permitted to step
out of the batter’s box in order to use the resin or the pine tar rag, unless there is a delay
in the game action or, in the judgment of the umpires, weather conditions warrant an
exception.
Umpires will not call “Time” at the request of the batter or any member of his team once
the pitcher has started his windup or has come to a set position even though the batter
claims “dust in his eyes,” “steamed glasses,” “didn’t get the sign” or for any other
cause.
Umpires may grant a hitter’s request for “Time” once he is in the batter’s box, but the
umpire should eliminate hitters walking out of the batter’s box without reason. If
umpires are not lenient, batters will understand that they are in the batter’s box and they
must remain there until the ball is pitched. See Rule 6.02(d).
The following two paragraphs are additional material for Rule 6.02(b) Comment, for
Major League play only:
If pitcher delays once the batter is in his box and the umpire feels that the delay is not
justified he may allow the batter to step out of the box momentarily.
If after the pitcher starts his windup or comes to a “set position” with a runner on, he
does not go through with his pitch because the batter has stepped out of the box, it shall
not be called a balk. Both the pitcher and batter have violated a rule and the umpire shall
call time and both the batter and pitcher start over from “scratch.”
The following paragraph is additional material for Rule 6.02(b) Comment, for National
Association play (in lieu of the additional two paragraphs, above, that apply to Major
League play):
If after the pitcher starts his windup or comes to a “set position” with a runner on, he
does not go through with his pitch because the batter has stepped out of the box, the
umpire shall not call a balk. The umpire shall call an automatic strike if Rule 6.02(d)(1)
calls for such sanction.
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 39 ‐
(c) If the batter refuses to take his position in the batter’s box during his time at bat,
the umpire shall call a strike on the batter. The ball is dead, and no runners may
advance. After the penalty, the batter may take his proper position and the regular
ball and strike count shall continue. If the batter does not take his proper position
before three strikes have been called, the batter shall be declared out.
Rule 6.02(c) Comment: The umpire shall give the batter a reasonable opportunity to take
his proper position in the batter’s box after the umpire has called a strike pursuant to
Rule 6.02(c) and before the umpire calls a successive strike pursuant to Rule 6.02(c).
(d) The following rule shall be in effect for all National Association Leagues:
(1) The batter shall keep at least one foot in the batter’s box throughout the
batter’s time at bat, unless one of the following exceptions applies, in which case
the batter may leave the batter’s box but not the dirt area surrounding home plate:
(i) The batter swings at a pitch;
(ii) The batter is forced out of the batter’s box by a pitch;
(iii) A member of either team requests and is granted “Time”;
(iv) A defensive player attempts a play on a runner at any base;
(v) The batter feints a bunt;
(vi) A wild pitch or passed ball occurs;
(vii) The pitcher leaves the dirt area of the pitching mound after receiving
the ball; or
(viii) The catcher leaves the catcher’s box to give defensive signals.
If the batter intentionally leaves the batter’s box and delays play, and none of the
exceptions listed in Rule 6.02(d)(1)(i) through (viii) applies, the umpire shall
award a strike without the pitcher having to deliver the pitch. The ball is dead, and
no runners may advance. The umpire shall award additional strikes, without the
pitcher having to deliver the pitch, if the batter remains outside the batter’s box and
further delays play.
Rule 6.02(d)(1) Comment: The umpire has the discretion to issue a warning to a batter
in lieu of calling an automatic strike for the batter’s first violation of Rule 6.02(d)(1) in a
game, so long as the batter’s violation is judged to be brief and inadvertent. The umpire
shall give the batter a reasonable opportunity to take his proper position in the batter’s
box after the umpire has called a strike pursuant to Rule 6.02(d)(1) and before the
umpire calls a successful strike pursuant to Rule 6.02(d)(1).
(2) The batter may leave the batter’s box and the dirt area surrounding home
plate when “Time” is called for the purpose of
(i) making a substitution; or
(ii) a conference by either team.
Rule 6.02(d) Comment: Umpires shall encourage the on-deck batter to take a position in
the batter’s box quickly after the previous batter reaches base or is put out.
6.03 The batter’s legal position shall be with both feet within the batter’s box.
APPROVED RULING: The lines defining the box are within the batter’s box.
6.04 A batter has legally completed his time at bat when he is put out or becomes a
runner.
6.05 A batter is out when—
(a) His fair or foul fly ball (other than a foul tip) is legally caught by a fielder;
Rule 6.05(a) Comment: A fielder may reach into, but not step into, a dugout to make a
catch, and if he holds the ball, the catch shall be allowed. A fielder, in order to make a
catch on a foul ball nearing a dugout or other out-of-play area (such as the stands), must
have one or both feet on or over the playing surface (including the lip of the dugout) and
neither foot on the ground inside the dugout or in any other out-of-play area. Ball is in
play, unless the fielder, after making a legal catch, falls into a dugout or other out-ofplay
area, in which case the ball is dead. Status of runners shall be as described in Rule
7.04(c) Comment.
(b) A third strike is legally caught by the catcher;
Rule 6.05(b) Comment: “Legally caught” means in the catcher’s glove before the ball
touches the ground. It is not legal if the ball lodges in his clothing or paraphernalia; or
if it touches the umpire and is caught by the catcher on the rebound.
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 40 ‐
If a foul tip first strikes the catcher’s glove and then goes on through and is caught by
both hands against his body or protector, before the ball touches the ground, it is a
strike, and if third strike, batter is out. If smothered against his body or protector, it is a
catch provided the ball struck the catcher’s glove or hand first.
(c) A third strike is not caught by the catcher when first base is occupied before two
are out;
(d) He bunts foul on third strike;
(e) An Infield Fly is declared;
(f) He attempts to hit a third strike and the ball touches him;
(g) His fair ball touches him before touching a fielder. If the batter is in a legal
position in the batter’s box, see Rule 6.03, and, in the umpire’s judgment, there
was no intention to interfere with the course of the ball, a batted ball that strikes the
batter or his bat shall be ruled a foul ball;
(h) After hitting or bunting a fair ball, his bat hits the ball a second time in fair
territory. The ball is dead and no runners may advance. If the batter-runner drops
his bat and the ball rolls against the bat in fair territory and, in the umpire’s
judgment, there was no intention to interfere with the course of the ball, the ball is
alive and in play. If the batter is in a legal position in the batter’s box, see Rule
6.03, and, in the umpire’s judgment, there was no intention to interfere with the
course of the ball, a batted ball that strikes the batter or his bat shall be ruled a foul
ball;
Rule 6.05(h) Comment: If a bat breaks and part of it is in fair territory and is hit by a
batted ball or part of it hits a runner or fielder, play shall continue and no interference
called. If batted ball hits part of a broken bat in foul territory, it is a foul ball.
If a whole bat is thrown into fair or foul territory and interferes with a defensive player
attempting to make a play, interference shall be called, whether intentional or not.
In cases where the batting helmet is accidentally hit with a batted ball on or over fair
territory or a thrown ball, the ball remains in play the same as if it has not hit the helmet.
If a batted ball strikes a batting helmet or any other object foreign to the natural ground
while on foul territory, it is a foul ball and the ball is dead.
If, in the umpire’s judgment, there is intent on the part of a baserunner to interfere with a
batted or thrown ball by dropping the helmet or throwing it at the ball, then the runner
would be out, the ball dead and runners would return to last base legally touched.
(i) After hitting or bunting a ball that continues to move over foul territory, he
intentionally deflects the course of the ball in any manner while running to first
base. The ball is dead and no runners may advance;
(j) After a third strike or after he hits a fair ball, he or first base is tagged before he
touches first base;
(k) In running the last half of the distance from home base to first base, while the ball
is being fielded to first base, he runs outside (to the right of) the three-foot line, or
inside (to the left of) the foul line, and in the umpire’s judgment in so doing
interferes with the fielder taking the throw at first base, in which case the ball is
dead; except that he may run outside (to the right of) the three-foot line or inside
(to the left of) the foul line to avoid a fielder attempting to field a batted ball;
Rule 6.05(k) Comment: The lines marking the three-foot lane are a part of that lane and
a batter-runner is required to have both feet within the three-foot lane or on the lines
marking the lane. The batter-runner is permitted to exit the three-foot lane by means of a
step, stride, reach or slide in the immediate vicinity of first base for the sole purpose of
touching first base.
(l) An infielder intentionally drops a fair fly ball or line drive, with first, first and
second, first and third, or first, second and third base occupied before two are out.
The ball is dead and runner or runners shall return to their original base or bases;
APPROVED RULING: In this situation, the batter is not out if the infielder permits the
ball to drop untouched to the ground, except when the Infield Fly rule applies.
(m) A preceding runner shall, in the umpire’s judgment, intentionally interfere with a
fielder who is attempting to catch a thrown ball or to throw a ball in an attempt to
complete any play:
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 41 ‐
Rule 6.05(m) Comment: The objective of this rule is to penalize the offensive team for
deliberate, unwarranted, unsportsmanlike action by the runner in leaving the baseline for
the obvious purpose of crashing the pivot man on a double play, rather than trying to
reach the base. Obviously this is an umpire’s judgment play.
(n) With two out, a runner on third base, and two strikes on the batter, the runner
attempts to steal home base on a legal pitch and the ball touches the runner in the
batter’s strike zone. The umpire shall call “Strike Three,” the batter is out and the
run shall not count; before two are out, the umpire shall call “Strike Three,” the
ball is dead, and the run counts.
(o) A member of his team (other than a runner) hinders a fielder’s attempt to catch or
field a batted ball. See Rule 7.11. For interference by a runner, see Rule 7.08(b).
6.06 A batter is out for illegal action when—
(a) He hits a ball with one or both feet on the ground entirely outside the batter’s box.
Rule 6.06(a) Comment: If a batter hits a ball fair or foul while out of the batter’s box, he
shall be called out. Umpires should pay particular attention to the position of the
batter’s feet if he attempts to hit the ball while he is being intentionally passed. A batter
cannot jump or step out of the batter’s box and hit the ball.
(b) He steps from one batter’s box to the other while the pitcher is in position ready to
pitch;
(c) He interferes with the catcher’s fielding or throwing by stepping out of the batter’s
box or making any other movement that hinders the catcher’s play at home base.
EXCEPTION: Batter is not out if any runner attempting to advance is put out, or if
runner trying to score is called out for batter’s interference.
Rule 6.06(c) Comment: If the batter interferes with the catcher, the plate umpire shall
call “interference.” The batter is out and the ball dead. No player may advance on such
interference (offensive interference) and all runners must return to the last base that was,
in the judgment of the umpire, legally touched at the time of the interference.
If, however, the catcher makes a play and the runner attempting to advance is put out, it
is to be assumed there was no actual interference and that runner is out--not the batter.
Any other runners on the base at the time may advance as the ruling is that there is no
actual interference if a runner is retired. In that case play proceeds just as if no violation
had been called.
If a batter strikes at a ball and misses and swings so hard he carries the bat all the way
around and, in the umpire’s judgment, unintentionally hits the catcher or the ball in back
of him on the backswing, it shall be called a strike only (not interference). The ball will
be dead, however, and no runner shall advance on the play.
(d) He uses or attempts to use a bat that, in the umpire’s judgment, has been altered or
tampered with in such a way to improve the distance factor or cause an unusual
reaction on the baseball. This includes, bats that are filled, flat-surfaced, nailed,
hollowed, grooved or covered with a substance such as paraffin, wax, etc.
No advancement on the bases will be allowed and any out or outs made during a
play shall stand.
In addition to being called out, the player shall be ejected from the game and may
be subject to additional penalties as determined by his League President.
Rule 6.06(d) Comment: A batter shall be deemed to have used or attempted to use an
illegal bat if he brings such a bat into the batter’s box.
6.07 BATTING OUT OF TURN.
(a) A batter shall be called out, on appeal, when he fails to bat in his proper turn, and
another batter completes a time at bat in his place.
(1) The proper batter may take his place in the batter’s box at any time before
the improper batter becomes a runner or is put out, and any balls and strikes shall
be counted in the proper batter’s time at bat.
(b) When an improper batter becomes a runner or is put out, and the defensive team
appeals to the umpire before the first pitch to the next batter of either team, or
before any play or attempted play, the umpire shall (1) declare the proper batter
out; and (2) nullify any advance or score made because of a ball batted by the
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 42 ‐
improper batter or because of the improper batter’s advance to first base on a hit,
an error, a base on balls, a hit batter or otherwise.
NOTE: If a runner advances, while the improper batter is at bat, on a stolen base, balk,
wild pitch or passed ball, such advance is legal.
(c) When an improper batter becomes a runner or is put out, and a pitch is made to the
next batter of either team before an appeal is made, the improper batter thereby
becomes the proper batter, and the results of his time at bat become legal.
(d) (1) When the proper batter is called out because he has failed to bat in turn, the
next batter shall be the batter whose name follows that of the proper batter thus
called out;
(2) When an improper batter becomes a proper batter because no appeal is made
before the next pitch, the next batter shall be the batter whose name follows that of
such legalized improper batter. The instant an improper batter’s actions are
legalized, the batting order picks up with the name following that of the legalized
improper batter.
Rule 6.07 Comment: The umpire shall not direct the attention of any person to the
presence in the batter’s box of an improper batter. This rule is designed to require
constant vigilance by the players and managers of both teams.
There are two fundamentals to keep in mind: When a player bats out of turn, the proper
batter is the player called out. If an improper batter bats and reaches base or is out and
no appeal is made before a pitch to the next batter, or before any play or attempted play,
that improper batter is considered to have batted in proper turn and establishes the order
that is to follow.
APPROVED RULING
To illustrate various situations arising from batting out of turn, assume a first-inning
batting order as follows:
Abel-Baker-Charles-Daniel-Edward-Frank-George-Hooker-Irwin.
PLAY (1). Baker bats. With the count 2 balls and 1 strike, (a) the offensive team
discovers the error or (b) the defensive team appeals. RULING: In either case, Abel
replaces Baker, with the count on him 2 balls and 1 strike.
PLAY (2). Baker bats and doubles. The defensive team appeals (a) immediately or (b)
after a pitch to Charles. RULING: (a) Abel is called out and Baker is the proper batter;
(b) Baker stays on second and Charles is the proper batter.
PLAY (3). Abel walks. Baker walks. Charles forces Baker. Edward bats in Daniel’s
turn. While Edward is at bat, Abel scores and Charles goes to second on a wild pitch.
Edward grounds out, sending Charles to third. The defensive team appeals (a)
immediately or (b) after a pitch to Daniel. RULING: (a) Abel’s run counts and Charles is
entitled to second base since these advances were not made because of the improper
batter batting a ball or advancing to first base. Charles must return to second base
because his advance to third resulted from the improper batter batting a ball. Daniel is
called out, and Edward is the proper batter; (b) Abel’s run counts and Charles stays on
third. The proper batter is Frank.
PLAY (4). With the bases full and two out. Hooker bats in Frank’s turn, and triples,
scoring three runs. The defensive team appeals (a) immediately, or (b) after a pitch to
George. RULING: (a) Frank is called out and no runs score. George is the proper batter
to lead off the second inning; (b) Hooker stays on third and three runs score. Irwin is the
proper batter.
PLAY (5). After Play (4)(b) above, George continues at bat. (a) Hooker is picked off
third base for the third out, or (b) George flies out, and no appeal is made. Who is the
proper leadoff batter in the second inning? RULING: (a) Irwin. He became the proper
batter as soon as the first pitch to George legalized Hooker’s triple; (b) Hooker. When no
appeal was made, the first pitch to the leadoff batter of the opposing team legalized
George’s time at bat.
PLAY (6). Daniel walks and Abel comes to bat. Daniel was an improper batter, and if an
appeal is made before the first pitch to Abel, Abel is out, Daniel is removed from base,
and Baker is the proper batter. There is no appeal, and a pitch is made to Abel. Daniel’s
walk is now legalized, and Edward thereby becomes the proper batter. Edward can
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 43 ‐
replace Abel at any time before Abel is put out or becomes a runner. He does not do so.
Abel flies out, and Baker comes to bat. Abel was an improper batter, and if an appeal is
made before the first pitch to Baker, Edward is out, and the proper batter is Frank. There
is no appeal, and a pitch is made to Baker. Abel’s out is now legalized, and the proper
batter is Baker. Baker walks. Charles is the proper batter. Charles flies out. Now Daniel
is the proper batter, but he is on second base. Who is the proper batter? RULING: The
proper batter is Edward. When the proper batter is on base, he is passed over, and the
following batter becomes the proper batter.
6.08 The batter becomes a runner and is entitled to first base without liability to be put
out (provided he advances to and touches first base) when—
(a) Four “balls” have been called by the umpire;
Rule 6.08(a) Comment: A batter who is entitled to first base because of a base on balls
must go to first base and touch the base before other base runners are forced to advance.
This applies when bases are full and applies when a substitute runner is put into the
game.
If, in advancing, the base runner thinks there is a play and he slides past the base before
or after touching it he may be put out by the fielder tagging him. If he fails to touch the
base to which he is entitled and attempts to advance beyond that base he may be put out
by tagging him or the base he missed.
(b) He is touched by a pitched ball which he is not attempting to hit unless (1) The ball
is in the strike zone when it touches the batter, or (2) The batter makes no attempt
to avoid being touched by the ball;
If the ball is in the strike zone when it touches the batter, it shall be called a strike,
whether or not the batter tries to avoid the ball. If the ball is outside the strike zone
when it touches the batter, it shall be called a ball if he makes no attempt to avoid
being touched.
APPROVED RULING: When the batter is touched by a pitched ball which does not
entitle him to first base, the ball is dead and no runner may advance.
(c) The catcher or any fielder interferes with him. If a play follows the interference,
the manager of the offense may advise the plate umpire that he elects to decline the
interference penalty and accept the play. Such election shall be made immediately
at the end of the play. However, if the batter reaches first base on a hit, an error, a
base on balls, a hit batsman, or otherwise, and all other runners advance at least
one base, the play proceeds without reference to the interference.
Rule 6.08(c) Comment: If catcher’s interference is called with a play in progress the
umpire will allow the play to continue because the manager may elect to take the play. If
the batter-runner missed first base, or a runner misses his next base, he shall be
considered as having reached the base, as stated in Note of Rule 7.04 (d).
Examples of plays the manager might elect to take:
1. Runner on third, one out, batter hits fly ball to the outfield on which the runner scores
but catcher’s interference was called. The offensive manager may elect to take the run
and have batter called out or have runner remain at third and batter awarded first base.
2. Runner on second base. Catcher interferes with batter as he bunts ball fairly sending
runner to third base. The manager may rather have runner on third base with an out on
the play than have runners on second and first.
If a runner is trying to score by a steal or squeeze from third base, note the additional
penalty set forth in Rule 7.07.
If the catcher interferes with the batter before the pitcher delivers the ball, it shall not be
considered interference on the batter under Rule 6.08(c). In such cases, the umpire shall
call “Time” and the pitcher and batter start over from “scratch.”
(d) A fair ball touches an umpire or a runner on fair territory before touching a fielder.
If a fair ball touches an umpire after having passed a fielder other than the pitcher,
or having touched a fielder, including the pitcher, the ball is in play.
6.09 The batter becomes a runner when—
(a) He hits a fair ball;
(b) The third strike called by the umpire is not caught, providing (1) first base is
unoccupied, or (2) first base is occupied with two out;
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 44 ‐
Rule 6.09(b) Comment: A batter who does not realize his situation on a third strike not
caught, and who is not in the process of running to first base, shall be declared out once
he leaves the dirt circle surrounding home plate.
(c) A fair ball, after having passed a fielder other than the pitcher, or after having been
touched by a fielder, including the pitcher, shall touch an umpire or runner on fair
territory;
(d) A fair ball passes over a fence or into the stands at a distance from home base of
250 feet or more. Such hit entitles the batter to a home run when he shall have
touched al bases legally. A fair fly ball that passes out of the playing field at a
point less than 250 feet from home base shall entitle the batter to advance to
second base only;
(e) A fair ball, after touching the ground, bounds into the stands, or passes through,
over or under a fence, or through or under a scoreboard, or through or under
shrubbery, or vines on the fence, in which case the batter and the runners shall be
entitled to advance two bases;
(f) Any fair ball which, either before or after touching the ground, passes through or
under a fence, or through or under a scoreboard, or through any opening in the
fence or scoreboard, or through or under shrubbery, or vines on the fence, or which
sticks in a fence or scoreboard, in which case the batter and the runners shall be
entitled to two bases;
(g) Any bounding fair ball is deflected by the fielder into the stands, or over or under a
fence on fair or foul territory, in which case the batter and all runners shall be
entitled to advance two bases;
(h) Any fair fly ball is deflected by the fielder into the stands, or over the fence into
foul territory, in which case the batter shall be entitled to advance to second base;
but if deflected into the stands or over the fence in fair territory, the batter shall be
entitled to a home run. However, should such a fair fly be deflected at a point less
than 250 feet from home plate, the batter shall be entitled to two bases only.
6.10 Any League may elect to use Rule 6.10(b), which shall be called the Designated
Hitter Rule.
(a) In the event of inter-league competition between clubs of leagues using the
Designated Hitter Rule and clubs of leagues not using the Designated Hitter Rule,
the rule will be used as follows:
(1) In World Series or exhibition games, the rule will be used or not used as is
the practice of the league of the home team.
(2) In All-Star games, the rule will only be used if both teams and both Leagues
so agree.
(b) The Designated Hitter Rule provides as follows:
(1) A hitter may be designated to bat for the starting pitcher and all subsequent
pitchers in any game without otherwise affecting the status of the pitcher(s)
in the game. A Designated Hitter for the pitcher, if any, must be selected
prior to the game and must be included in the lineup cards presented to the
Umpire-in-Chief. If a manager lists 10 players in his team’s lineup card, but
fails to indicate one as the Designated Hitter, and an umpire or either
manager (or designee of either manager who presents his team’s lineup card)
notices the error before the umpire-in-chief calls “Play” to start the game,
the umpire-in-chief shall direct the manager who had made the omission to
designate which of the nine players, other than the pitcher, will be the
Designated Hitter.
Rule 6.10(b)(1) Comment: A correction of a failure to indicate a Designated Hitter when
10 players are listed in a batting order is an “obvious” error that may be corrected
before a game starts. See Rule 4.01 Comment.
(2) The Designated Hitter named in the starting lineup must come to bat at least
one time, unless the opposing club changes pitchers.
(3) It is not mandatory that a club designate a hitter for the pitcher, but failure to
do so prior to the game precludes the use of a Designated Hitter for that club
for that game.
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 45 ‐
(4) Pinch-hitters for a Designated Hitter may be used. Any substitute hitter for a
Designated Hitter becomes the Designated Hitter. A replaced Designated
Hitter shall not re-enter the game in any capacity.
(5) The Designated Hitter may be used on defense, continuing to bat in the same
position in the batting order, but the pitcher must then bat in the place of the
substituted defensive player, unless more than one substitution is made, and
the manager then must designate their spots in the batting order.
(6) A runner may be substituted for the Designated Hitter and the runner
assumes the role of Designated Hitter. A Designated Hitter may not pinchrun.
(7) A Designated Hitter is “locked” into the batting order. No multiple
substitutions may be made that will alter the batting rotation of the
Designated Hitter.
(8) Once the game pitcher is switched from the mound to a position on defense,
such move shall terminate the Designated Hitter role for that club for the
remainder of the game.
(9) Once a pinch-hitter bats for any player in the batting order and then enters
the game to pitch, such move shall terminate the Designated Hitter role for
that club for the remainder of the game.
(10) Once the game pitcher bats for the Designated Hitter, such move shall
terminate the Designated Hitter role for that club for the remainder of the
game. The game pitcher may pinch-hit only for the Designated Hitter.
(11) If a manager lists 10 players in his team’s lineup card, but fails to indicate
one as the Designated Hitter, and the opposing manager brings the failure to
list a Designated Hitter to the attention of the umpire-in-chief after the game
starts, then
(i) the pitcher will be required to bat in the batting order in the place of
the listed player who has not assumed a position on defense, if the team has
taken the field on defense, or
(ii) if the team has not yet taken the field on defense, the pitcher will be
placed in the batting order in place of any player, as chosen by the manager
of that team.
In either case, the player whom the pitcher replaces in the batting order shall
be considered to have been substituted for and is removed from the game
and the Designated Hitter role for that club shall be terminated for the
remainder of the game. Any play that occurred before the violation is
brought to the attention of the umpire-in-chief shall count, subject to Rule
6.07 (Batting Out of Turn).
(12) Once a Designated Hitter assumes a position on defense, such move shall
terminate the Designated Hitter role for that club for the remainder of the
game.
(13) A substitute for the Designated Hitter need not be announced until it is the
Designated Hitter’s turn to bat.
(14) If a player on defense goes to the mound (i.e., replaces the pitcher), this
move shall terminate the Designated Hitter’s role for that club for the
remainder of the game.
(15) The Designated Hitter may not sit in the bullpen unless serving as a catcher
in the bullpen.
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 46 ‐
7.00 – The Runner
7.01 A runner acquires the right to an unoccupied base when he touches it before he is
out. He is then entitled to it until he is put out, or forced to vacate it for another
runner legally entitled to that base.
Rule 7.01 Comment: If a runner legally acquires title to a base, and the pitcher assumes
his pitching position, the runner may not return to a previously occupied base.
7.02 In advancing, a runner shall touch first, second, third and home base in order. If
forced to return, he shall retouch all bases in reverse order, unless the ball is dead
under any provision of Rule 5.09. In such cases, the runner may go directly to his
original base.
7.03 (a) Two runners may not occupy a base, but if, while the ball is alive, two runners
are touching a base, the following runner shall be out when tagged and the
preceding runner is entitled to the base, unless Rule 7.03(b) applies.
(b) If a runner is forced to advance by reason of the batter becoming a runner and two
runners are touching a base to which the following runner is forced, the following
runner is entitled to the base and the preceding runner shall be out when tagged or
when a fielder possesses the ball and touches the base to which such preceding
runner is forced.
7.04 Each runner, other than the batter, may without liability to be put out, advance one
base when—
(a) There is a balk;
(b) The batter’s advance without liability to be put out forces the runner to vacate his
base, or when the batter hits a fair ball that touches another runner or the umpire
before such ball has been touched by, or has passed a fielder, if the runner is forced
to advance;
Rule 7.04(b) Comment: A runner forced to advance without liability to be put out may
advance past the base to which he is entitled only at his peril. If such a runner, forced to
advance, is put out for the third out before a preceding runner, also forced to advance,
touches home plate, the run shall score.
Play. Two out, bases full, batter walks but runner from second is overzealous and runs
past third base toward home and is tagged out on a throw by the catcher. Even though
two are out, the run would score on the theory that the run was forced home by the base
on balls and that all the runners needed to do was proceed and touch the next base.
(c) A fielder, after catching a fly ball, falls into a bench or stand, or falls across ropes
into a crowd when spectators are on the field;
Rule 7.04(c) Comment: If a fielder, after having made a legal catch, should fall into a
stand or among spectators or into the dugout or any other out-of-play area while in
possession of the ball after making a legal catch, or fall while in the dugout after making
a legal catch, the ball is dead and each runner shall advance one base, without liability
to be put out, from his last legally touched base at the time the fielder fell into, or in, such
out-of-play area.
(d) While he is attempting to steal a base, the batter is interfered with by the catcher or
any other fielder.
NOTE: When a runner is entitled to a base without liability to be put out, while the ball is
in play, or under any rule in which the ball is in play after the runner reaches the base to
which he is entitled, and the runner fails to touch the base to which he is entitled before
attempting to advance to the next base, the runner shall forfeit his exemption from
liability to be put out, and he may be put out by tagging the base or by tagging the runner
before he returns to the missed base;
(e) A fielder deliberately touches a pitched ball with his cap, mask or any part of his
uniform detached from its proper place on his person. The ball is in play, and the
award is made from the position of the runner at the time the ball was touched.
7.05 Each runner including the batter-runner may, without liability to be put out,
advance—
(a) To home base, scoring a run, if a fair ball goes out of the playing field in flight and
he touched all bases legally; or if a fair ball which, in the umpire’s judgment,
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 47 ‐
would have gone out of the playing field in flight, is deflected by the act of a
fielder in throwing his glove, cap, or any article of his apparel;
(b) Three bases, if a fielder deliberately touches a fair ball with his cap, mask or any
part of his uniform detached from its proper place on his person. The ball is in
play and the batter may advance to home base at his peril;
(c) Three bases, if a fielder deliberately throws his glove at and touches a fair ball. The
ball is in play and the batter may advance to home base at his peril.
(d) Two bases, if a fielder deliberately touches a thrown ball with his cap, mask or any
part of his uniform detached from its proper place on his person. The ball is in
play;
(e) Two bases, if a fielder deliberately throws his glove at and touches a thrown ball.
The ball is in play;
Rule 7.05(b) through 7.05(e) Comment: In applying (b-c-d-e) the umpire must rule that
the thrown glove or detached cap or mask has touched the ball. There is no penalty if the
ball is not touched.
Under (c-e) this penalty shall not be invoked against a fielder whose glove is carried off
his hand by the force of a batted or thrown ball, or when his glove flies off his hand as he
makes an obvious effort to make a legitimate catch.
(f) Two bases, if a fair ball bounces or is deflected into the stands outside the first or
third base foul lines; or if it goes through or under a field fence, or through or
under a scoreboard, or through or under shrubbery or vines on the fence; or if it
sticks in such fence, scoreboard, shrubbery or vines;
(g) Two bases when, with no spectators on the playing field, a thrown ball goes into
the stands, or into a bench (whether or not the ball rebounds into the field), or over
or under or through a field fence, or on a slanting part of the screen above the
backstop, or remains in the meshes of a wire screen protecting spectators. The ball
is dead. When such wild throw is the first play by an infielder, the umpire, in
awarding such bases, shall be governed by the position of the runners at the time
the ball was pitched; in all other cases the umpire shall be governed by the position
of the runners at the time the wild throw was made;
APPROVED RULING: If all runners, including the batter-runner, have advanced at least
one base when an infielder makes a wild throw on the first play after the pitch, the award
shall be governed by the position of the runners when the wild throw was made.
Rule 7.05(g) Comment: In certain circumstances it is impossible to award a runner two
bases. Example: Runner on first. Batter hits fly to short right. Runner holds up between
first and second and batter comes around first and pulls up behind him. Ball falls safely.
Outfielder, in throwing to first, throws ball into stand.
APPROVED RULING: Since no runner, when the ball is dead, may advance beyond the
base to which he is entitled, the runner originally on first base goes to third base and the
batter is held at second base.
The term “when the wild throw was made” means when the throw actually left the
player’s hand and not when the thrown ball hit the ground, passes a receiving fielder or
goes out of play into the stands.
The position of the batter-runner at the time the wild throw left the thrower’s hand is the
key in deciding the award of bases. If the batter-runner has not reached first base, the
award is two bases at the time the pitch was made for all runners. The decision as to
whether the batter-runner has reached first base before the throw is a judgment call.
If an unusual play arises where a first throw by an infielder goes into stands or dugout
but the batter did not become a runner (such as catcher throwing ball into stands in
attempt to get runner from third trying to score on passed ball or wild pitch) award of
two bases shall be from the position of the runners at the time of the throw. (For the
purpose of Rule 7.05 (g) a catcher is considered an infielder.)
PLAY. Runner on first base, batter hits a ball to the shortstop, who throws to second
base too late to get runner at second, and second baseman throws toward first base after
batter has crossed first base. Ruling—Runner at second scores. (On this play, only if
batter-runner is past first base when throw is made is he awarded third base.)
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 48 ‐
(h) One base, if a ball, pitched to the batter, or thrown by the pitcher from his position
on the pitcher’s plate to a base to catch a runner, goes into a stand or a bench, or
over or through a field fence or backstop. The ball is dead;
APPROVED RULING: When a wild pitch or passed ball goes through or by the catcher,
or deflects off the catcher, and goes directly into the dugout, stands, above the break, or
any area where the ball is dead, the awarding of bases shall be one base. One base shall
also be awarded if the pitcher while in contact with the rubber, throws to a base, and the
throw goes directly into the stands or into any area where the ball is dead.
If, however, the pitched or thrown ball goes through or by the catcher or through the
fielder, and remains on the playing field, and is subsequently kicked or deflected into the
dugout, stands or other area where the ball is dead, the awarding of bases shall be two
bases from position of runners at the time of the pitch or throw.
(i) One base, if the batter becomes a runner on Ball Four or Strike Three, when the
pitch passes the catcher and lodges in the umpire’s mask or paraphernalia.
If the batter becomes a runner on a wild pitch which entitles the runners to advance
one base, the batter-runner shall be entitled to first base only.
Rule 7.05(i) Comment: The fact a runner is awarded a base or bases without liability to
be put out does not relieve him of the responsibility to touch the base he is awarded and
all intervening bases. For example: batter hits a ground ball which an infielder throws
into the stands but the batter-runner missed first base. He may be called out on appeal
for missing first base after the ball is put in play even though he was “awarded” second
base.
If a runner is forced to return to a base after a catch, he must retouch his original base
even though, because of some ground rule or other rule, he is awarded additional bases.
He may retouch while the ball is dead and the award is then made from his original base.
7.06 When obstruction occurs, the umpire shall call or signal “Obstruction.”
(a) If a play is being made on the obstructed runner, or if the batter-runner is
obstructed before he touches first base, the ball is dead and all runners shall
advance, without liability to be put out, to the bases they would have reached, in
the umpire’s judgment, if there had been no obstruction. The obstructed runner
shall be awarded at least one base beyond the base he had last legally touched
before the obstruction.
Rule 7.06(a) Comment: When a play is being made on an obstructed runner, the umpire
shall signal obstruction in the same manner that he calls “Time,” with both hands
overhead. The ball is immediately dead when this signal is given; however, should a
thrown ball be in flight before the obstruction is called by the umpire, the runners are to
be awarded such bases on wild throws as they would have been awarded had not
obstruction occurred. On a play where a runner was trapped between second and third
and obstructed by the third baseman going into third base while the throw is in flight
from the shortstop, if such throw goes into the dugout the obstructed runner is to be
awarded home base. Any other runners on base in this situation would also be awarded
two bases from the base they last legally touched before obstruction was called.
(b) If no play is being made on the obstructed runner, the play shall proceed until no
further action is possible. The umpire shall then call “Time” and impose such
penalties, if any, as in his judgment will nullify the act of obstruction.
Rule 7.06(b) Comment: Under 7.06(b) when the ball is not dead on obstruction and an
obstructed runner advances beyond the base which, in the umpire’s judgment, he would
have been awarded because of being obstructed, he does so at his own peril and may be
tagged out. This is a judgment call.
NOTE: The catcher, without the ball in his possession, has no right to block the pathway
of the runner attempting to score. The base line belongs to the runner and the catcher
should be there only when he is fielding a ball or when he already has the ball in his
hand.
7.07 If, with a runner on third base and trying to score by means of a squeeze play or a
steal, the catcher or any other fielder steps on, or in front of home base without
possession of the ball, or touches the batter or his bat, the pitcher shall be charged
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 49 ‐
with a balk, the batter shall be awarded first base on the interference and the ball is
dead.
7.08 Any runner is out when—
(a) (1) He runs more than three feet away from his base path to avoid being tagged
unless his action is to avoid interference with a fielder fielding a batted ball. A
runner’s base path is established when the tag attempt occurs and is a straight line
from the runner to the base he is attempting to reach safely; or
(2) after touching first base, he leaves the base path, obviously abandoning his
effort to touch the next base;
Rule 7.08(a) Comment: Any runner after reaching first base who leaves the base path
heading for his dugout or his position believing that there is no further play, may be
declared out if the umpire judges the act of the runner to be considered abandoning his
efforts to run the bases. Even though an out is called, the ball remains in play in regard
to any other runner.
This rule also covers the following and similar plays: Less than two out, score tied last
of ninth inning, runner on first, batter hits a ball out of park for winning run, the runner
on first passes second and thinking the home run automatically wins the game, cuts
across diamond toward his bench as batter-runner circles bases. In this case, the base
runner would be called out “for abandoning his effort to touch the next base” and batterrunner
permitted to continue around bases to make his home run valid. If there are two
out, home run would not count (see Rule 7.12). This is not an appeal play.
PLAY. Runner believing he is called out on a tag at first or third base starts for the
dugout and progresses a reasonable distance still indicating by his actions that he is out,
shall be declared out for abandoning the bases.
(b) He intentionally interferes with a thrown ball; or hinders a fielder attempting to
make a play on a batted ball;
Rule 7.08(b) Comment: A runner who is adjudged to have hindered a fielder who is
attempting to make a play on a batted ball is out whether it was intentional or not.
If, however, the runner has contact with a legally occupied base when he hinders the
fielder, he shall not be called out unless, in the umpire’s judgment, such hindrance,
whether it occurs on fair or foul territory, is intentional. If the umpire declares the
hindrance intentional, the following penalty shall apply: With less than two out, the
umpire shall declare both the runner and batter out. With two out, the umpire shall
declare the batter out.
If, in a run-down between third base and home plate, the succeeding runner has
advanced and is standing on third base when the runner in a run-down is called out for
offensive interference, the umpire shall send the runner standing on third base back to
second base. This same principle applies if there is a run-down between second and third
base and succeeding runner has reached second (the reasoning is that no runner shall
advance on an interference play and a runner is considered to occupy a base until he
legally has reached the next succeeding base).
(c) He is tagged, when the ball is alive, while off his base. EXCEPTION: A batterrunner
cannot be tagged out after overrunning or oversliding first base if he returns
immediately to the base;
APPROVED RULING: (1) If the impact of a runner breaks a base loose from its
position, no play can be made on that runner at that base if he had reached the base
safely.
APPROVED RULING: (2) If a base is dislodged from its position during a play, any
following runner on the same play shall be considered as touching or occupying the base
if, in the umpire’s judgment, he touches or occupies the point marked by the dislodged
bag.
(d) He fails to retouch his base after a fair or foul ball is legally caught before he, or
his base, is tagged by a fielder. He shall not be called out for failure to retouch his
base after the first following pitch, or any play or attempted play. This is an appeal
play;
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 50 ‐
Rule 7.08(d) Comment: Runners need not “tag up” on a foul tip. They may steal on a
foul tip. If a so-called tip is not caught, it becomes an ordinary foul. Runners then return
to their bases.
(e) He or the next base is tagged before he touches the next base, after he has been
forced to advance by reason of the batter becoming a runner. However, if a
following runner is put out on a force play, the force is removed and the runner
must be tagged to be put out. The force is removed as soon as the runner touches
the base to which he is forced to advance, and if he overslides or overruns the base,
the runner must be tagged to be put out. However, if the forced runner, after
touching the next base, retreats for any reason towards the base he had last
occupied, the force play is reinstated, and he can again be put out if the defense
tags the base to which he is forced;
Rule 7.08(e) Comment: PLAY. Runner on first and three balls on batter: Runner steals
on the next pitch, which is fourth ball, but after having touched second he overslides or
overruns that base. Catcher’s throw catches him before he can return. Ruling is that
runner is out. (Force out is removed.)
Oversliding and overrunning situations arise at bases other than first base. For instance,
before two are out, and runners on first and second, or first, second and third, the ball is
hit to an infielder who tries for the double play. The runner on first beats the throw to
second base but overslides the base. The relay is made to first base and the batterrunner
is out. The first baseman, seeing the runner at second base off the bag, makes the
return throw to second and the runner is tagged off the base. Meanwhile runners have
crossed the plate. The question is: Is this a force play? Was the force removed when the
batter-runner was out at first base? Do the runs that crossed the plate during this play
and before the third out was made when the runner was tagged at second, count?
Answer: The runs score. It is not a force play. It is a tag play.
(f) He is touched by a fair ball in fair territory before the ball has touched or passed an
infielder. The ball is dead and no runner may score, nor runners advance, except
runners forced to advance. EXCEPTION: If a runner is touching his base when
touched by an Infield Fly, he is not out, although the batter is out;
Rule 7.08(f) Comment: If two runners are touched by the same fair ball, only the first
one is out because the ball is instantly dead.
If runner is touched by an Infield Fly when he is not touching his base, both runner
and batter are out.
(g) He attempts to score on a play in which the batter interferes with the play at home
base before two are out. With two out, the interference puts the batter out and no
score counts;
(h) He passes a preceding runner before such runner is out;
(i) After he has acquired legal possession of a base, he runs the bases in reverse order
for the purpose of confusing the defense or making a travesty of the game. The
umpire shall immediately call “Time” and declare the runner out;
Rule 7.08(i) Comment: If a runner touches an unoccupied base and then thinks the ball
was caught or is decoyed into returning to the base he last touched, he may be put out
running back to that base, but if he reaches the previously occupied base safely he cannot
be put out while in contact with that base.
(j) He fails to return at once to first base after overrunning or oversliding that base. If
he attempts to run to second he is out when tagged. If, after overrunning or
oversliding first base he starts toward the dugout, or toward his position, and fails
to return to first base at once, he is out, on appeal, when he or the base is tagged;
Rule 7.08(j) Comment: Runner who touches first base in overrunning and is declared
safe by the umpire has, within the intent of Rule 4.09(a) “reached first base” and any run
which scores on such a play counts, even though the runner subsequently becomes the
third out for failure to return “at once,” as covered in Rule 7.08(j).
(k) In running or sliding for home base, he fails to touch home base and makes no
attempt to return to the base, when a fielder holds the ball in his hand, while
touching home base, and appeals to the umpire for the decision.
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 51 ‐
Rule 7.08(k) Comment: This rule applies only where runner is on his way to the bench
and the catcher would be required to chase him. It does not apply to the ordinary play
where the runner misses the plate and then immediately makes an effort to touch the plate
before being tagged. In that case, runner must be tagged.
(l) A play on him is being made and a member of his team (other than a runner)
hinders a fielder’s attempt to field a thrown ball. See Rule 7.11. For interference
by a runner, see Rule 7.08(b).
7.09 It is interference by a batter or a runner when—
(a) After a third strike he clearly hinders the catcher in his attempt to field the ball.
Such batter-runner is out, the ball is dead, and all other runners return to the bases they
occupied at the time of the pitch.
Rule 7.09 (a) Comment: if the pitched ball deflects off the catcher or umpire and
subsequently touches the batter-runner, it is not considered interference unless, in the
judgment of the umpire, the batter-runner clearly hinders the catcher in his attempt to
field the ball.
(b) He intentionally deflects the course of a foul ball in any manner;
(c) Before two are out and a runner on third base, the batter hinders a fielder in making
a play at home base; the runner is out;
(d) Any member or members of the offensive team stand or gather around any base to
which a runner is advancing, to confuse, hinder or add to the difficulty of the
fielders. Such runner shall be declared out for the interference of his teammate or
teammates;
(e) Any batter or runner who has just been put out, or any runner who has just scored,
hinders or impedes any following play being made on a runner. Such runner shall
be declared out for the interference of his teammate;
Rule 7.09(e) Comment: If the batter or a runner continues to advance after he has been
put out, he shall not by that act alone be considered as confusing, hindering or impeding
the fielders.
(f) If, in the judgment of the umpire, a base runner willfully and deliberately interferes
with a batted ball or a fielder in the act of fielding a batted ball with the obvious
intent to break up a double play, the ball is dead. The umpire shall call the runner
out for interference and also call out the batter-runner because of the action of his
teammate. In no event may bases be run or runs scored because of such action by
a runner.
(g) If, in the judgment of the umpire, a batter-runner willfully and deliberately
interferes with a batted ball or a fielder in the act of fielding a batted ball, with the
obvious intent to break up a double play, the ball is dead; the umpire shall call the
batter-runner out for interference and shall also call out the runner who had
advanced closest to the home plate regardless where the double play might have
been possible. In no event shall bases be run because of such interference.
(h) In the judgment of the umpire, the base coach at third base, or first base, by
touching or holding the runner, physically assists him in returning to or leaving
third base or first base.
(i) With a runner on third base, the base coach leaves his box and acts in any manner
to draw a throw by a fielder;
(j) He fails to avoid a fielder who is attempting to field a batted ball, or intentionally
interferes with a thrown ball, provided that if two or more fielders attempt to field
a batted ball, and the runner comes in contact with one or more of them, the umpire
shall determine which fielder is entitled to the benefit of this rule, and shall not
declare the runner out for coming in contact with a fielder other than the one the
umpire determines to be entitled to field such a ball;
Rule 7.09(j) Comment: When a catcher and batter-runner going to first base have
contact when the catcher is fielding the ball, there is generally no violation and nothing
should be called. “Obstruction” by a fielder attempting to field a ball should be called
only in very flagrant and violent cases because the rules give him the right of way, but of
course such “right of way” is not a license to, for example, intentionally trip a runner
even though fielding the ball. If the catcher is fielding the ball and the first baseman or
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 52 ‐
pitcher obstructs a runner going to first base “obstruction” shall be called and the base
runner awarded first base.
(k) A fair ball touches him on fair territory before touching a fielder. If a fair ball goes
through, or by, an infielder, and touches a runner immediately back of him, or
touches the runner after having been deflected by a fielder, the umpire shall not
declare the runner out for being touched by a batted ball. In making such decision
the umpire must be convinced that the ball passed through, or by, the fielder, and
that no other infielder had the chance to make a play on the ball. If, in the
judgment of the umpire, the runner deliberately and intentionally kicks such a
batted ball on which the infielder has missed a play, then the runner shall be called
out for interference.
PENALTY FOR INTERFERENCE: The runner is out and the ball is dead.
7.10 Any runner shall be called out, on appeal, when—
(a) After a fly ball is caught, he fails to retouch his original base before he or his
original base is tagged;
Rule 7.10(a) Comment: “Retouch,” in this rule, means to tag up and start from a contact
with the base after the ball is caught. A runner is not permitted to take a flying start from
a position in back of his base.
(b) With the ball in play, while advancing or returning to a base, he fails to touch each
base in order before he, or a missed base, is tagged.
APPROVED RULING: (1) No runner may return to touch a missed base after a
following runner has scored. (2) When the ball is dead, no runner may return to touch a
missed base or one he has left after he has advanced to and touched a base beyond the
missed base.
Rule 7.10(b) Comment: PLAY. (a) Batter hits ball out of park or ground rule double and
misses first base (ball is dead)—he may return to first base to correct his mistake before
he touches second but if he touches second he may not return to first and if defensive
team appeals he is declared out at first.
PLAY. (b) Batter hits ball to shortstop who throws wild into stand (ball is dead)—batterrunner
misses first base but is awarded second base on the overthrow. Even though the
umpire has awarded the runner second base on the overthrow, the runner must touch
first base before he proceeds to second base.
These are appeal plays.
(c) He overruns or overslides first base and fails to return to the base immediately, and
he or the base is tagged;
(d) He fails to touch home base and makes no attempt to return to that base, and home
base is tagged.
Any appeal under this rule must be made before the next pitch, or any play or
attempted play. If the violation occurs during a play which ends a half-inning, the
appeal must be made before the defensive team leaves the field.
An appeal is not to be interpreted as a play or an attempted play.
Successive appeals may not be made on a runner at the same base. If the defensive
team on its first appeal errs, a request for a second appeal on the same runner at the
same base shall not be allowed by the umpire. (Intended meaning of the word “err”
is that the defensive team in making an appeal threw the ball out of play. For
example, if the pitcher threw to first base to appeal and threw the ball into the
stands, no second appeal would be allowed.)
Appeal plays may require an umpire to recognize an apparent “fourth out.” If the
third out is made during a play in which an appeal play is sustained on another
runner, the appeal play decision takes precedence in determining the out. If there
is more than one appeal during a play that ends a half-inning, the defense may elect
to take the out that gives it the advantage. For the purpose of this rule, the
defensive team has “left the field” when the pitcher and all infielders have left fair
territory on their way to the bench or clubhouse.
Rule 7.10 Comment: If two runners arrive at home base about the same time and the first
runner misses home plate but a second runner legally touches the plate, the runner is
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 53 ‐
tagged out on his attempt to come back and touch the base or is called out, on appeal,
then he shall be considered as having been put out before the second runner scored and
being the third out. Second runner’s run shall not count, as provided in Rule 7.12.
If a pitcher balks when making an appeal, such act shall be a play. An appeal should be
clearly intended as an appeal, either by a verbal request by the player or an act that
unmistakably indicates an appeal to the umpire. A player, inadvertently stepping on the
base with a ball in his hand, would not constitute an appeal. Time is not out when an
appeal is being made.
7.11 The players, coaches or any member of a team at bat shall vacate any space
(including both dugouts or bullpens) needed by a fielder who is attempting to field
a batted or thrown ball. If a member of the team at bat (other than a runner) hinders
a fielder’s attempt to catch or field a batted ball, the ball is dead, the batter is
declared out and all runners return to the bases occupied at the time of the pitch. If
a member of the team at bat (other than a runner) hinders a fielder’s attempt to
field a thrown ball, the ball is dead, the runner on whom the play is being made
shall be declared out and all runners return to the last legally occupied base at the
time of the interference.
7.12 Unless two are out, the status of a following runner is not affected by a preceding
runner’s failure to touch or retouch a base. If, upon appeal, the preceding runner is
the third out, no runners following him shall score. If such third out is the result of
a force play, neither preceding nor following runners shall score.
8.00 – The Pitcher
8.01 Legal pitching delivery. There are two legal pitching positions, the Windup
Position and the Set Position, and either position may be used at any time.
Pitchers shall take signs from the catcher while in contact with the pitcher’s plate.
Rule 8.01 Comment: Pitchers may disengage the rubber after taking their signs but may
not step quickly onto the rubber and pitch. This may be judged a quick pitch by the
umpire. When the pitcher disengages the rubber, he must drop his hands to his sides.
Pitchers will not be allowed to disengage the rubber after taking each sign.
(a) The Windup Position. The pitcher shall stand facing the batter, his pivot foot in
contact with the pitcher’s plate and the other foot free. From this position any
natural movement associated with his delivery of the ball to the batter commits him
to the pitch without interruption or alteration. He shall not raise either foot from
the ground, except that in his actual delivery of the ball to the batter, he may take
one step backward, and one step forward with his free foot.
When a pitcher holds the ball with both hands in front of his body, with his pivot
foot in contact with the pitcher’s plate and his other foot free, he will be considered
in the Windup Position.
Rule 8.01(a) Comment: In the Windup Position, a pitcher is permitted to have his “free”
foot on the rubber, in front of the rubber, behind the rubber or off the side of the rubber.
From the Windup Position, the pitcher may:
(1) deliver the ball to the batter, or
(2) step and throw to a base in an attempt to pick-off a runner, or
(3) disengage the rubber (if he does he must drop his hand to his sides).
In disengaging the rubber the pitcher must step off with his pivot foot and not his free
foot first.
He may not go into a set or stretch position—if he does it is a balk.
(b) The Set Position. Set Position shall be indicated by the pitcher when he stands
facing the batter
with his pivot foot in contact with, and his other foot in front of, the pitcher’s plate,
holding the ball in both hands in front of his body and coming to a complete stop.
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 54 ‐
From such Set Position he may deliver the ball to the batter, throw to a base or step
backward off the pitcher’s plate with his pivot foot. Before assuming Set Position,
the pitcher may elect to make any natural preliminary motion such as that known
as “the stretch.” But if he so elects, he shall come to Set Position before delivering
the ball to the batter. After assuming Set Position, any natural motion associated
with his delivery of the ball to the batter commits him to the pitch without
alteration or interruption.
Preparatory to coming to a set position, the pitcher shall have one hand on his side;
from this position he shall go to his set position as defined in Rule 8.01(b) without
interruption and in one continuous motion.
The pitcher, following his stretch, must (a) hold the ball in both hands in front of
his body and (b) come to a complete stop. This must be enforced. Umpires should
watch this closely. Pitchers are constantly attempting to “beat the rule” in their
efforts to hold runners on bases and in cases where the pitcher fails to make a
complete “stop” called for in the rules, the umpire should immediately call a
“Balk.”
Rule 8.01(b) Comment: With no runners on base, the pitcher is not required to come to a
complete stop when using the Set Position. If, however, in the umpire’s judgment, a
pitcher delivers the ball in a deliberate effort to catch the batter off guard, this delivery
shall be deemed a quick pitch, for which the penalty is a ball. See Rule 8.05(e) Comment.
(c) At any time during the pitcher’s preliminary movements and until his natural
pitching motion commits him to the pitch, he may throw to any base provided he
steps directly toward such base before making the throw.
Rule 8.01(c) Comment: The pitcher shall step “ahead of the throw.” A snap throw
followed by the step directly toward the base is a balk.
(d) If the pitcher makes an illegal pitch with the bases unoccupied, it shall be called a
ball unless the batter reaches first base on a hit, an error, a base on balls, a hit batter
or otherwise.
Rule 8.01(d) Comment: A ball which slips out of a pitcher’s hand and crosses the foul
line shall be called a ball; otherwise it will be called no pitch. This would be a balk with
men on base.
(e) If the pitcher removes his pivot foot from contact with the pitcher’s plate by
stepping backward with that foot, he thereby becomes an infielder and if he makes
a wild throw from that position, it shall be considered the same as a wild throw by
any other infielder.
Rule 8.01(e) Comment: The pitcher, while off the rubber, may throw to any base. If he
makes a wild throw, such throw is the throw of an infielder and what follows is governed
by the rules covering a ball thrown by a fielder.
(f) A pitcher must indicate visually to the umpire-in-chief, the batter and any runners
the hand with which he intends to pitch, which may be done by wearing his glove
on the other hand while touching the pitcher’s plate. The pitcher is not permitted
to pitch with the other hand until the batter is retired, the batter becomes a runner,
the inning ends, the batter is substituted for by a pinch-hitter or the pitcher incurs
an injury. In the event a pitcher switches pitching hands during an at-bat because
he has suffered an injury, the pitcher may not, for the remainder of the game, pitch
with the hand from which he has switched. The pitcher shall not be given the
opportunity to throw any preparatory pitches after switching pitching hands. Any
change of pitching hands must be indicated clearly to the umpire-in-chief.
8.02 The pitcher shall not—
(a) (1) While in the 18-foot circle surrounding the pitcher’s plate, touch the ball after
touching his mouth or lips, or touch his mouth or lips while he is in contact with
the pitcher’s plate. The pitcher must clearly wipe the fingers of his pitching hand
dry before touching the ball or the pitcher’s plate. EXCEPTION: Provided it is
agreed to by both managers, the umpire prior to the start of a game played in cold
weather, may permit the pitcher to blow on his hand.
PENALTY: For violation of this part of this rule the umpires shall immediately
remove the ball from play and issue a warning to the pitcher. Any subsequent violation
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 55 ‐
shall be called a ball. However, if the pitch is made and a batter reaches first base on a
hit, an error, a hit batsman or otherwise, and no other runner is put out before advancing
at least one base, the play shall proceed without reference to the violation. Repeat
offenders shall be subject to a fine by the League President.
(2) expectorate on the ball, either hand or his glove;
(3) rub the ball on his glove, person or clothing;
(4) apply a foreign substance of any kind to the ball;
(5) deface the ball in any manner; or
(6) deliver a ball altered in a manner prescribed by Rule 8.02(a)(2) through (5)
or what is called the “shine” ball, “spit” ball, “mud” ball or “emery” ball. The
pitcher is allowed to rub the ball between his bare hands.
PENALTY: For violation of any part of Rules 8.02 (a)(2) through (6):
(a) The pitcher shall be ejected immediately from the game and shall be
suspended automatically. In National Association Leagues, the automatic
suspension shall be for 10 games.
(b) If a play follows the violation called by the umpire, the manager of the
team at bat may advise the umpire-in-chief that he elects to accept the play.
Such election shall be made immediately at the end of the play. However, if
the batter reaches first base on a hit, an error, a base on balls, a hit batsman,
or otherwise, and no other runner is put out before advancing at least one
base, the play shall proceed without reference to the violation.
(c) Even though the team at bat elects to take the play, the violation shall
be recognized and the penalties in subsection (a) will still be in effect.
(d) If the manager of the team at bat does not elect to accept the play, the
umpire-in-chief shall call an automatic ball and, if there are any runners on
base, a balk.
(e) The umpire shall be sole judge on whether any portion of this rule has
been violated.
Rules 8.02(a)(2) through 8.02(a)(6) Comment: If a pitcher violates either Rule
8.02(a)(2) or Rule 8.02(a)(3) and, in the judgment of the umpire, the pitcher did not
intend, by his act, to alter the characteristics of a pitched ball, then the umpire may, in
his discretion, warn the pitcher in lieu of applying the penalty set forth for violations of
Rules 8.02(a)(2) through 8.02(a)(6). If the pitcher persists in violating either of those
Rules, however, the umpire should then apply the penalty.
Rule 8.02(a) Comment: If at any time the ball hits the rosin bag it is in play. In the case
of rain or wet field, the umpire may instruct the pitcher to carry the rosin bag in his hip
pocket. A pitcher may use the rosin bag for the purpose of applying rosin to his bare
hand or hands. Neither the pitcher nor any other player shall dust the ball with the rosin
bag; neither shall the pitcher nor any other player be permitted to apply rosin from the
bag to his glove or dust any part of his uniform with the rosin bag.
(b) Have on his person, or in his possession, any foreign substance. For such
infraction of this section (b) the penalty shall be immediate ejection from the game.
In addition, the pitcher shall be suspended automatically. In National Association
Leagues, the automatic suspension shall be for 10 games.
(c) Intentionally delay the game by throwing the ball to players other than the catcher,
when the batter is in position, except in an attempt to retire a runner.
PENALTY: If, after warning by the umpire, such delaying action is repeated, the pitcher
shall be removed from the game.
(d) Intentionally Pitch at the Batter.
If, in the umpire’s judgment, such a violation occurs, the umpire may elect either
to:
1. Expel the pitcher, or the manager and the pitcher, from the game, or
2. may warn the pitcher and the manager of both teams that another such pitch
will result in the immediate expulsion of that pitcher (or a replacement) and the
manager.
If, in the umpire’s judgment, circumstances warrant, both teams may be officially
“warned” prior to the game or at any time during the game.
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 56 ‐
(League Presidents may take additional action under authority provided in Rule
9.05)
Rule 8.02(d) Comment: Team personnel may not come onto the playing surface to argue
or dispute a warning issued under Rule 8.02(d). If a manager, coach or player leaves the
dugout or his position to dispute a warning, he should be warned to stop. If he continues,
he is subject to ejection.
To pitch at a batter’s head is unsportsmanlike and highly dangerous. It should be—and
is— condemned by everybody. Umpires should act without hesitation in enforcement of
this rule.
8.03 When a pitcher takes his position at the beginning of each inning, or when he
relieves another pitcher, he shall be permitted to pitch not to exceed eight
preparatory pitches to his catcher during which play shall be suspended. A league
by its own action may limit the number of preparatory pitches to less than eight
preparatory pitches. Such preparatory pitches shall not consume more than one
minute of time. If a sudden emergency causes a pitcher to be summoned into the
game without any opportunity to warm up, the umpire-in-chief shall allow him as
many pitches as the umpire deems necessary.
8.04 When the bases are unoccupied, the pitcher shall deliver the ball to the batter
within 12 seconds after he receives the ball. Each time the pitcher delays the game
by violating this rule, the umpire shall call “Ball.”
The 12-second timing starts when the pitcher is in possession of the ball and the
batter is in the box, alert to the pitcher. The timing stops when the pitcher releases
the ball.
The intent of this rule is to avoid unnecessary delays. The umpire shall insist that
the catcher return the ball promptly to the pitcher, and that the pitcher take his
position on the rubber promptly. Obvious delay by the pitcher should instantly be
penalized by the umpire.
8.05 If there is a runner, or runners, it is a balk when—
(a) The pitcher, while touching his plate, makes any motion naturally associated with
his pitch and fails to make such delivery;
Rule 8.05(a) Comment: If a lefthanded or righthanded pitcher swings his free foot past
the back edge of the pitcher’s rubber, he is required to pitch to the batter except to throw
to second base on a pick-off play.
(b) The pitcher, while touching his plate, feints a throw to first or third base and fails
to complete the throw;
(c) The pitcher, while touching his plate, fails to step directly toward a base before
throwing to that base;
Rule 8.05(c) Comment: Requires the pitcher, while touching his plate, to step directly
toward a base before throwing to that base. If a pitcher turns or spins off of his free foot
without actually stepping or if he turns his body and throws before stepping, it is a balk.
A pitcher is to step directly toward a base before throwing to that base and is required to
throw (except to second base) because he steps. It is a balk if, with runners on first and
third, the pitcher steps toward third and does not throw, merely to bluff the runner back
to third; then seeing the runner on first start for second, turn and step toward and throw
to first base. It is legal for a pitcher to feint a throw to second base.
(d) The pitcher, while touching his plate, throws, or feints a throw to an unoccupied
base, except for the purpose of making a play;
(e) The pitcher makes an illegal pitch;
Rule 8.05(e) Comment: A quick pitch is an illegal pitch. Umpires will judge a quick pitch
as one delivered before the batter is reasonably set in the batter’s box. With runners on
base the penalty is a balk; with no runners on base, it is a ball. The quick pitch is
dangerous and should not be permitted.
(f) The pitcher delivers the ball to the batter while he is not facing the batter;
(g) The pitcher makes any motion naturally associated with his pitch while he is not
touching the pitcher’s plate;
(h) The pitcher unnecessarily delays the game;
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 57 ‐
Rule 8.05(h) Comment: Rule 8.05(h) shall not apply when a warning is given pursuant to
Rule 8.02(c) (which prohibits intentional delay of a game by throwing to fielders not in
an attempt to put a runner out). If a pitcher is ejected pursuant to Rule 8.02(c) for
continuing to delay the game, the penalty in Rule 8.05(h) shall also apply. Rule 8.04
(which sets a time limit for a pitcher to deliver the ball when the bases are unoccupied)
applies only when there are no runners on base.
(i) The pitcher, without having the ball, stands on or astride the pitcher’s plate or
while off the plate, he feints a pitch;
(j) The pitcher, after coming to a legal pitching position, removes one hand from the
ball other than in an actual pitch, or in throwing to a base;
(k) The pitcher, while touching his plate, accidentally or intentionally has the ball slip
or fall out of his hand or glove;
(l) The pitcher, while giving an intentional base on balls, pitches when the catcher is
not in the catcher’s box;
(m) The pitcher delivers the pitch from Set Position without coming to a stop.
PENALTY: The ball is dead, and each runner shall advance one base without liability to
be put out, unless the batter reaches first on a hit, an error, a base on balls, a hit batter, or
otherwise, and all other runners advance at least one base, in which case the play
proceeds without reference to the balk.
APPROVED RULING: In cases where a pitcher balks and throws wild, either to a base
or to home plate, a runner or runners may advance beyond the base to which he is entitled
at his own risk.
APPROVED RULING: A runner who misses the first base to which he is advancing and
who is called out on appeal shall be considered as having advanced one base for the
purpose of this rule.
Rule 8.05 Comment: Umpires should bear in mind that the purpose of the balk rule is to
prevent the pitcher from deliberately deceiving the base runner. If there is doubt in the
umpire’s mind, the “intent” of the pitcher should govern. However, certain specifics
should be borne in mind:
(a) Straddling the pitcher’s rubber without the ball is to be interpreted as intent to
deceive and ruled a balk.
(b) With a runner on first base the pitcher may make a complete turn, without
hesitating toward first, and throw to second. This is not to be interpreted as throwing to
an unoccupied base.
8.06 A professional league shall adopt the following rule pertaining to the visit of the
manager or coach to the pitcher:
(a) This rule limits the number of trips a manager or coach may make to any one
pitcher in any one inning;
(b) A second trip to the same pitcher in the same inning will cause this pitcher’s
automatic removal from the game;
(c) The manager or coach is prohibited from making a second visit to the mound while
the same batter is at bat, but
(d) if a pinch-hitter is substituted for this batter, the manager or coach may make a
second visit to the mound, but must remove the pitcher from the game.
A manager or coach is considered to have concluded his visit to the mound when
he leaves the 18-foot circle surrounding the pitcher’s rubber.
Rule 8.06 Comment: If the manager or coach goes to the catcher or infielder and that
player then goes to the mound or the pitcher comes to him at his position before there is
an intervening play (a pitch or other play) that will be the same as the manager or coach
going to the mound.
Any attempt to evade or circumvent this rule by the manager or coach going to the
catcher or an infielder and then that player going to the mound to confer with the pitcher
shall constitute a trip to the mound.
If the coach goes to the mound and removes a pitcher and then the manager goes to the
mound to talk with the new pitcher, that will constitute one trip to that new pitcher that
inning.
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 58 ‐
In a case where a manager has made his first trip to the mound and then returns the
second time to the mound in the same inning with the same pitcher in the game and the
same batter at bat, after being warned by the umpire that he cannot return to the mound,
the manager shall be removed from the game and the pitcher required to pitch to the
batter until he is retired or gets on base. After the batter is retired, or becomes a base
runner, then this pitcher must be removed from the game. The manager should be notified
that his pitcher will be removed from the game after he pitches to one hitter, so he can
have a substitute pitcher warmed up.
The substitute pitcher will be allowed eight preparatory pitches or more if in the umpire’s
judgment circumstances justify.
9.00—The Umpire
9.01
(a) The league president shall appoint one or more umpires to officiate at each league
championship game. The umpires shall be responsible for the conduct of the game
in accordance with these official rules and for maintaining discipline and order on
the playing field during the game.
(b) Each umpire is the representative of the league and of professional baseball, and is
authorized and required to enforce all of these rules. Each umpire has authority to
order a player, coach, manager or club officer or employee to do or refrain from
doing anything which affects the administering of these rules, and to enforce the
prescribed penalties.
(c) Each umpire has authority to rule on any point not specifically covered in these
rules.
(d) Each umpire has authority to disqualify any player, coach, manager or substitute
for objecting to decisions or for unsportsmanlike conduct or language, and to eject
such disqualified person from the playing field. If an umpire disqualifies a player
while a play is in progress, the disqualification shall not take effect until no further
action is possible in that play.
(e) Each umpire has authority at his discretion to eject from the playing field
(1) any person whose duties permit his presence on the field, such as ground crew
members, ushers, photographers, newsmen, broadcasting crew members, etc., and
(2) any spectator or other person not authorized to be on the playing field.
9.02 (a) Any umpire’s decision which involves judgment, such as, but not limited to,
whether a batted
ball is fair or foul, whether a pitch is a strike or a ball, or whether a runner is safe
or out, is final. No player, manager, coach or substitute shall object to any such
judgment decisions.
Rule 9.02(a) Comment: Players leaving their position in the field or on base, or
managers or coaches leaving the bench or coaches box, to argue on BALLS AND
STRIKES will not be permitted. They should be warned if they start for the plate to
protest the call. If they continue, they will be ejected from the game.
(b) If there is reasonable doubt that any umpire’s decision may be in conflict with the
rules, the manager may appeal the decision and ask that a correct ruling be made.
Such appeal shall be made only to the umpire who made the protested decision.
(c) If a decision is appealed, the umpire making the decision may ask another umpire
for information before making a final decision. No umpire shall criticize, seek to
reverse or interfere with another umpire’s decision unless asked to do so by the
umpire making it. If the umpires consult after a play and change a call that had
been made, then they have the authority to take all steps that they may deem
necessary, in their discretion, to eliminate the results and consequences of the
earlier call that they are reversing, including placing runners where they think
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 59 ‐
those runners would have been after the play, had the ultimate call been made as
the initial call, disregarding interference or obstruction that may have occurred on
the play; failures of runners to tag up based upon the initial call on the field;
runners passing other runners or missing bases; etc., all in the discretion of the
umpires. No player, manager or coach shall be permitted to argue the exercise of
the umpires’ discretion in resolving the play and any person so arguing shall be
subject to ejection.
Rule 9.02(c) Comment: A manager is permitted to ask the umpires for an explanation of
the play and how the umpires have exercised their discretion to eliminate the results and
consequences of the earlier call that the umpires are reversing. Once the umpires
explain the result of the play, however, no one is permitted to argue that the umpires
should have exercised their discretion in a different manner.
The manager or the catcher may request the plate umpire to ask his partner for help on a
half swing when the plate umpire calls the pitch a ball, but not when the pitch is called a
strike. The manager may not complain that the umpire made an improper call, but only
that he did not ask his partner for help. Field umpires must be alerted to the request from
the plate umpire and quickly respond. Managers may not protest the call of a ball or
strike on the pretense they are asking for information about a half swing.
Appeals on a half swing may be made only on the call of ball and when asked to appeal,
the home plate umpire must refer to a base umpire for his judgment on the half swing.
Should the base umpire call the pitch a strike, the strike call shall prevail.
Baserunners must be alert to the possibility that the base umpire on appeal from the plate
umpire may reverse the call of a ball to the call of a strike, in which event the runner is in
jeopardy of being out by the catcher’s throw. Also, a catcher must be alert in a base
stealing situation if a ball call is reversed to a strike by the base umpire upon appeal
from the plate umpire.
The ball is in play on appeal on a half swing.
On a half swing, if the manager comes out to argue with first or third base umpire and if
after being warned he persists in arguing, he can be ejected as he is now arguing over a
called ball or strike.
(d) No umpire may be replaced during a game unless he is injured or becomes ill.
9.03 (a)If there is only one umpire, he shall have complete jurisdiction in administering
the rules. He may take any position on the playing field which will enable him to
discharge his duties (usually behind the catcher, but sometimes behind the pitcher
if there are runners). He shall be considered umpire-in-chief.
(b) If there are two or more umpires, one shall be designated umpire-in-chief and the
others field umpires.
9.04 (a) The umpire-in-chief shall stand behind the catcher. (He usually is called the plate
umpire.) His duties shall be to:
(1) Take full charge of, and be responsible for, the proper conduct of the game;
(2) Call and count balls and strike;
(3) Call and declare fair balls and fouls except those commonly called by field
umpires;
(4) Make all decisions on the batter;
(5) Make all decisions except those commonly reserved for the field umpires;
(6) Decide when a game shall be forfeited;
(7) If a time limit has been set, announce the fact and the time set before the
game starts;
(8) Inform the official scorer of the official batting order, and any changes in the
lineups and batting order, on request;
(9) Announce any special ground rules, at his discretion.
(b) A field umpire may take any position on the playing field he thinks best suited to
make impending decisions on the bases. His duties shall be to:
(1) Make all decisions on the bases except those specifically reserved to the
umpire-in-chief;
(2) Take concurrent jurisdiction with the umpire-in-chief in calling “Time,”
balks, illegal pitches, or defacement or discoloration of the ball by any player.
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 60 ‐
(3) Aid the umpire-in-chief in every manner in enforcing the rules, and
excepting the power to forfeit the game, shall have equal authority with the
umpire-in-chief in administering and enforcing the rules and maintaining
discipline.
(c) If different decisions should be made on one play by different umpires, the umpirein-
chief shall call all the umpires into consultation, with no manager or player
present. After consultation, the umpire-in-chief (unless another umpire may have
been designated by the league president) shall determine which decision shall
prevail, based on which umpire was in best position and which decision was most
likely correct. Play shall proceed as if only the final decision had been made.
9.05 (a)The umpire shall report to the league president within twelve hours after the end
of a game all violations of rules and other incidents worthy of comment, including
the disqualification of any trainer, manager, coach or player, and the reasons
therefor.
(b) When any trainer, manager, coach or player is disqualified for a flagrant offense
such as the use of obscene or indecent language, or an assault upon an umpire,
trainer, manager, coach or player, the umpire shall forward full particulars to the
league president within four hours after the end of the game.
(c) After receiving the umpire’s report that a trainer, manager, coach or player has
been disqualified, the league president shall impose such penalty as he deems
justified, and shall notify the person penalized and the manager of the club of
which the penalized person is a member. If the penalty includes a fine, the
penalized person shall pay the amount of the fine to the league within five days
after receiving notice of the fine. Failure to pay such fine within five days shall
result in the offender being debarred from participation in any game and from
sitting on the players’ bench during any game, until the fine is paid.
GENERAL INSTRUCTIONS TO UMPIRES
Umpires, on the field, should not indulge in conversation with players. Keep out of the
coaching box and do not talk to the coach on duty.
Keep your uniform in good condition. Be active and alert on the field.
Be courteous, always, to club officials; avoid visiting in club offices and thoughtless
familiarity with officers or employees of contesting clubs.
When you enter a ball park your sole duty is to umpire a ball game as the representative
of baseball.
Do not allow criticism to keep you from studying out bad situations that may lead to
protested games. Carry your rule book. It is better to consult the rules and hold up the
game ten minutes to decide a knotty problem than to have a game thrown out on protest
and replayed.
Keep the game moving. A ball game is often helped by energetic and earnest work of the
umpires.
You are the only official representative of baseball on the ball field. It is often a trying
position which requires the exercise of much patience and good judgment, but do not
forget that the first essential in working out of a bad situation is to keep your own temper
and self-control.
You no doubt are going to make mistakes, but never attempt to “even up” after having
made one. Make all decisions as you see them and forget which is the home or visiting
club.
Keep your eye everlastingly on the ball while it is in play. It is more vital to know just
where a fly ball fell, or a thrown ball finished up, than whether or not a runner missed a
base. Do not call the plays too quickly, or turn away too fast when a fielder is throwing
to complete a double play. Watch out for dropped balls after you have called a man out.
Do not come running with your arm up or down, denoting “out” or “safe.” Wait until the
play is completed before making any arm motion.
Each umpire team should work out a simple set of signals, so the proper umpire can
always right a manifestly wrong decision when convinced he has made an error. If sure
you got the play correctly, do not be stampeded by players’ appeals to “ask the other
man.” If not sure, ask one of your associates. Do not carry this to extremes, be alert and
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 61 ‐
get your own plays. But remember! The first requisite is to get decisions correctly. If in
doubt don’t hesitate to consult your associate. Umpire dignity is important but never as
important as “being right.”
Most important rule for umpires is always “BE IN POSITION TO SEE EVERY PLAY.”
Even though your decision may be 100% right, players still question it if they feel you
were not in a spot to see the play clearly and definitely.
Finally, be courteous, impartial and firm, and so compel respect from all.
The Rules of Scoring
Index
Appeal of scoring decision, 10.01(a) Official scorer, 10.01
Assists, 10.10 Ordinary effort, definition, 2.00
Base hits, 10.05, 10.06 Oversliding, definition, 2.00
Bases on balls, 10.14 Passed balls, 10.13
Batting out of turn, 10.01(b)(4), Percentages, how determined, 10.21
10.03(d) Protested game, 10.01(b)(3)
Box scores, 10.02, 10.03(b) Putouts, 10.09
Box scores, how to prove, 10.03(c) Report, 10.02, 10.03
Called game, 10.03(e) Runs allowed, 10.16
Caught stealing, 10.07(h) Runs batted in, 10.04
Cumulative performance records Sacrifices, 10.08
guidelines, 10.23 Saves for relief pitchers, 10.19
Defensive indifference, 10.07(g) Shutouts, 10.18
Determining value of base hits, 10.06 Statistics, 10.20
Double plays, 10.11 Stolen bases, 10.07
Earned runs, 10.16 Streaks, how determined, 10.22
Errors, 10.12 Strikeouts, 10.15
Fielder’s choice, 2.00, 10.12(f)(2) Substitutes, 10.03(b)
Forfeited game, 10.03(e) Suspended game, 10.01(b)(3), 10.23(d)
Game-ending hits, 10.06(f), 10.06(g) Triple plays, 10.11
Individual championships, how Wild pitches, 10.13
determined, 10.22 Winning and losing pitcher, 10.17
League President, definition, 2.00
10.00—The Official Scorer
10.01 OFFICIAL SCORER (GENERAL RULES)
(a) The Office of the Commissioner, with respect to Major League games, and the
Minor League President, with respect to Minor League games, shall appoint an
official scorer for each league championship, post-season or all-star game. The
official scorer shall observe the game from a position in the press box. The official
scorer shall have sole authority to make all decisions concerning application of
Rule 10 that involve judgment, such as whether a batter’s advance to first base is
the result of a hit or an error. The official scorer shall communicate such decisions
to the press box and broadcasting booths by hand signals or over the press box
loudspeaker system and shall advise the public address announcer of such
decisions, if requested. Club officials and players are prohibited from
communicating with the official scorer regarding any such decisions.
The official scorer shall make all decisions concerning judgment calls within 24
hours after a game concludes or is suspended. A Major League player or club may
request that the Executive Vice President for Baseball Operations review a
judgment call of an official scorer made in a game in which such player or club
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 62 ‐
participated, by notifying the Office of the Commissioner in writing or by
approved electronic means within 72 hours of the conclusion or suspension of such
game, or within 72 hours of the official scorer’s call, in the event the official scorer
changes a call within 24 hours after a game concludes or is suspended, as provided
in this Rule 10.01(a). The Executive Vice President for Baseball Operations shall
have access to all relevant and available video and, after considering any evidence
he wishes to consider, may order a change in a judgment call if he determines that
the judgment of the official scorer was clearly erroneous. No judgment decision
shall be changed thereafter. If the Executive Vice President for Baseball
Operations determines that a player or club has abused the appeals process by
repeatedly filing frivolous appeals, or acting in bad faith, he may, after providing a
warning, impose reasonable sanctions on the club or player. A minor League
player or club may request that the League President review a judgment call of an
official scorer in accordance with league rules.
After each game, including forfeited and called games, the official scorer shall
prepare a report, on a form prescribed by the Office of the Commissioner, with
respect to Major League Games, and the Minor League President, with respect to
Minor League games, listing the date of the game, where it was played, the names
of the competing clubs and the umpires, the full score of the game and all records
of individual players compiled according to the system specified in this Rule 10.
The official scorer shall forward this report to the Office of the Commissioner,
with respect to Major League Games, and the Minor League President, with
respect to Minor League games as soon as practicable after the game ends. The
official scorer shall forward the report of any suspended game as soon as
practicable after the game has been completed, or after it becomes a called game
because it cannot be completed, as provided by the Rule 4.12(b)(4).
Rule 10.01(a) Comment: The official scorer shall forward the official score report to the
league statistician instead of to the league office, if requested to do so by the league. In
the event of any discrepancy in records maintained by a league statistician and the
rulings by an official scorer, the report of such official scorer shall control. League
statisticians and official scorers should consult cooperativelyto resolve any
discrepancies.
(b) (1) In all cases, the official scorer shall not make a scoring decision that is in
conflict with Rule 10 or any other Official Baseball Rule. The official scorer shall
conform strictly to the rules of scoring set forth in this Rule 10. The official scorer
shall not make any decision that conflicts with an umpire’s decision. The official
scorer shall have authority to rule on any point not specifically covered in these
rules. The Office of the Commissioner, with respect to Major League scorers, and
the League President, with respect to Minor League scorers shall order changed
any decision of an official scorer that contradicts the rules of scoring set forth in
this Rule 10 and shall take whatever remedial actions as may be necessary to
correct any statistics that need correction as a result of such mistaken scoring
decision.
(2) If the teams change sides before three men are put out, the official scorer shall
immediately inform the umpire-in-chief of the mistake.
(3) If the game is protested or suspended, the official scorer shall make a note of
the exact situation at the time of the protest or suspension, including the score, the
number of outs, the position of any runners, the ball-and-strike count on the batter,
the lineups of both teams and the players who have been removed from the game
for each team.
Rule 10.01(b)(3) Comment: It is important that a suspended game resume with exactly
the same situation as existed at the time of suspension. If a protested game is ordered
replayed from the point of protest, the game must be resumed with exactly the situation
that existed just before the protested play.
(4)The official scorer shall not call the attention of any umpire or of any member
of either team to the fact that a player is batting out of turn.
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 63 ‐
(c) The official scorer is an official representative who is entitled to the respect and
dignity of his office and shall be accorded full protection by the Office of the
Commissioner, with respect to Major League scorers, and the League President,
with respect to Minor League scorers. The official scorer shall report to the
appropriate league official any indignity expressed by any manager, player, club
employee or club officer in the course of, or as the result of, the discharge of
official scorer duties.
10.02 OFFICIAL SCORE REPORT
The official score report prepared by the official scorer shall be in a form prescribed by
the league and shall include:
(a) The following records for each batter and runner:
(1) Number of times batted, except that no time at bat shall be charged when a
player
(i) hits a sacrifice bunt or sacrifice fly;
(ii) is awarded first base on four called balls;
(iii) is hit by a pitched ball; or
(iv) is awarded first base because of interference or obstruction;
(2) Number of runs scored;
(3) Number of safe hits;
(4) Number of runs batted in;
(5) Two-base hits;
(6) Three-base hits;
(7) Home runs;
(8) Total bases on safe hits;
(9) Stolen bases;
(10) Sacrifice bunts;
(11) Sacrifice flies;
(12) Total number of bases on balls;
(13) Separate listing of any intentional bases on balls;
(14) Number of times hit by a pitched ball;
(15) Number of times awarded first base for interference or obstruction;
(16) Strikeouts;
(17) Number of force double plays and reverse-force double plays grounded into;
and
Rule 10.02(a)(17) Comment: The official scorer should not charge a batter with
grounding into a double play if the batter-runner is called out due to interference by a
preceding runner.
(18) Number of times caught stealing.
(b) The following records for each fielder:
(1) Number of putouts;
(2) Number of assists;
(3) Number of errors;
(4) Number of double plays participated in; and
(5) Number of triple plays participated in.
(c) The following records for each pitcher:
(1) Number of innings pitched;
Rule 10.02(c)(1) Comment: In computing innings pitched, the official scorer shall count
each putout as ⅓ of an inning. For example, if a starting pitcher is replaced with one out
in the sixth inning, the official scorer shall credit that pitcher with 5⅓ innings. If a
starting pitcher is replaced with none out in the sixth inning, the official scorer shall
credit that pitcher with 5 innings and make the notation that that pitcher faced _____
batters in the sixth, noting the number of batters faced. If a relief pitcher retires two
batters and is replaced, the official scorer shall credit that pitcher with ⅔ of an inning
pitched. If a relief pitcher enters a game and his team initiates a successful appeal play
that results in one out, the officer scorer shall credit such relief pitcher with ⅓ of an
inning pitched.
(2) Total number of batters faced;
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 64 ‐
(3) Number of batters officially at bat against pitcher, computed according to Rule
10.02(a)(1);
(4) Number of hits allowed;
(5) Number of runs allowed;
(6) Number of earned runs allowed;
(7) Number of home runs allowed;
(8) Number of sacrifice hits allowed;
(9) Number of sacrifice flies allowed;
(10) Total number of bases on balls allowed;
(11) Separate listing of any intentional bases on balls allowed;
(12) Number of batters hit by pitched balls;
(13) Number of strikeouts;
(14) Number of wild pitches; and
(15) Number of balks.
(d) The following additional data:
(1) Name of the winning pitcher;
(2) Name of the losing pitcher;
(3) Names of the starting pitcher and the finishing pitcher for each team; and
(4) Name of pitcher credited with a save, if any.
(e) Number of passed balls allowed by each catcher.
(f) Name of players participating in double plays and triple plays.
Rule 10.02(f) Comment: For example, an official scorer would note: “Double Plays—
Jones, Roberts and Smith (2). Triple Play—Jones and Smith.”
(g) Number of runners left on base by each team. This total shall include all runners
who get on base by any means and who do not score and are not put out. The
official scorer shall include in this total a batter-runner whose batted ball results in
another runner being retired for the third out.
(h) Names of batters who hit home runs with the bases full.
(i) Number of outs when winning run scored, if the game was won in the last halfinning.
(j) The score by innings for each team.
(k) Names of umpires, listed in this order: plate umpire, first-base umpire, second-base
umpire, third-base umpire, left-field umpire (if any) and right-field umpire (if any).
(l) Time required to play the game, with delays deducted for weather, light failure or
technological failure not related to game action.
Rule 10.02(l) Comment: A delay to attend to the injury of a player, manager, coach or
umpire shall be counted in computing time of game.
(m) Official attendance, as provided by the home club.
10.03 OFFICIAL SCORE REPORT (ADDITIONAL RULES)
(a) In compiling the official score report, the official scorer shall list each player’s
name and fielding position, or positions, in the order in which the player batted, or
would have batted if the game ended before the player came to bat.
Rule 10.03(a) Comment: When a player does not exchange positions with another fielder
but is merely placed in a different spot for a particular batter (for example, if a second
baseman goes to the outfield to form a four-man outfield, or if a third baseman moves to
a position between the shortstop and second baseman), the official scorer should not list
this as a new position.
(b) The official scorer shall identify in the official score report any player who enters
the game as a substitute batter or substitute runner, whether or not such player
continues in the game thereafter, in the batting order by a special symbol that shall
refer to a separate record of substitute batters and runners. The record of substitute
batters shall describe what the substitute batter did. The record of substitute batters
and runners shall include the name of any such substitute whose name is
announced, but who is removed for another substitute before he actually gets into
Rule 10.03(b) Comment: Lower case letters are recommended as symbols for substitute
batters and numerals are recommended as symbols for substitute runners. For example,
an official score report may note as follows: “a-Singled for Abel in third inning; b-Flied
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 65 ‐
out for Baker in sixth inning; c-Hit into force for Charles in seventh inning; d-Grounded
out for Daniel in ninth inning; 1-Ran for Edward in ninth inning.” If a substitute’s name
is announced but the substitute is removed for another substitute before he actually gets
into the game, the official scorer report shall record the substitute, for example, as
follows: “e-Announced as substitute for Frank in seventh inning.”
(c) HOW TO PROVE A BOX SCORE. A box score shall balance (or is proven) when
the total of the team’s times at bat, bases on balls received, hit batters, sacrifice
bunts, sacrifice flies and batters awarded first base because of interference or
obstruction equals the total of that team’s runs, players left on base and the
opposing team’s putouts.
(d) WHEN PLAYER BATS OUT OF TURN. When a player bats out of turn and is
put out, and the proper batter is called out before the ball is pitched to the next
batter, the official scorer shall charge the proper batter with a time at bat and score
the putout and any assists the same as if the correct batting order had been
followed. If an improper batter becomes a runner and the proper batter is called out
for having missed his turn at bat, the official scorer shall charge the proper batter
with a time at bat, credit the putout to the catcher and ignore everything entering
into the improper batter’s safe arrival on base. If more than one batter bats out of
turn in succession, the official scorer shall score all plays just as they occur,
skipping the turn at bat of the player or players who first missed batting in the
proper order.
(e) CALLED AND FORFEITED GAMES.
(1) If a regulation game is called, the official scorer shall include the record of all
individual and team actions up to the moment the game ends, as defined in Rules
4.10 and 4.11. If the game is a tie game, the official scorer shall not enter a
winning or losing pitcher.
(2) If a regulation game is forfeited, the official scorer shall include the record of
all individual and team actions up to the time of forfeit. If the winning team by
forfeit is ahead at the time of forfeit, the official scorer shall enter as winning and
losing pitchers the players who would have qualified as the winning and losing
pitchers if the game had been called at the time of forfeit. If the winning team by
forfeit is behind or if the score is tied at the time of forfeit, the official scorer shall
not enter a winning or losing pitcher. If a game is forfeited before it becomes a
regulation game, the official scorer shall include no records and shall report only
the fact of the forfeit.
Rule 10.03(e) Comment: The official scorer shall not consider that, by rule, the score of a
forfeited game is 9 to 0 (see Rule 2.00 (Forfeited Game)), notwithstanding the results on
the field at the point the game is forfeited.
10.04 RUNS BATTED IN
A run batted in is a statistic credited to a batter whose action at bat causes one or more
runs to score, as set forth in this Rule 10.04.
(a) The official scorer shall credit the batter with a run batted in for every run that
scores
(1) unaided by an error and as part of a play begun by the batter’s safe hit
(including the batter’s home run), sacrifice bunt, sacrifice fly, infield out or
fielder’s choice, unless Rule 10.04(b) applies;
(2) by reason of the batter becoming a runner with the bases full (because of a base
on balls, an award of first base for being touched by a pitched ball or for
interference or obstruction); or
(3) when, before two are out, an error is made on a play on which a runner from
third base ordinarily would score.
(b) The official scorer shall not credit a run batted in
(1) when the batter grounds into a force double play or a reverse-force double play;
or
(2) when a fielder is charged with an error because the fielder muffs a throw at first
base that would have completed a force double play.
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 66 ‐
(c) The official scorer’s judgment must determine whether a run batted in shall be
credited for a run that scores when a fielder holds the ball or throws to a wrong
base. Ordinarily, if the runner keeps going, the official scorer should credit a run
batted in; if the runner stops and takes off again when the runner notices the
misplay, the official scorer should credit the run as scored on a fielder’s choice.
10.05 BASE HITS
A base hit is a statistic credited to a batter when such batter reaches base safely, as set
forth in this Rule 10.05.
(a) The official scorer shall credit a batter with a base hit when:
(1) the batter reaches first base (or any succeeding base) safely on a fair ball that
settles on the ground, that touches a fence before being touched by a fielder or that
clears a fence;
(2) the batter reaches first base safely on a fair ball hit with such force, or so
slowly, that any fielder attempting to make a play with the ball has no opportunity
to do so;
Rule 10.05(a)(2) Comment: The official scorer shall credit a hit if the fielder attempting
to handle the ball cannot make a play, even if such fielder deflects the ball from or cuts
off another fielder who could have put out a runner.
(3) the batter reaches first base safely on a fair ball that takes an unnatural bounce
so that a fielder cannot handle it with ordinary effort, or that touches the pitcher’s
plate or any base (including home plate) before being touched by a fielder and
bounces so that a fielder cannot handle the ball with ordinary effort;
(4) the batter reaches first base safely on a fair ball that has not been touched by a
fielder and that is in fair territory when the ball reaches the outfield, unless in the
scorer’s judgment the ball could have been handled with ordinary effort;
(5) a fair ball that has not been touched by a fielder touches a runner or an umpire,
unless a runner is called out for having been touched by an Infield Fly, in which
case the official scorer shall not score a hit; or
(6) a fielder unsuccessfully attempts to put out a preceding runner and, in the
official scorer’s judgment, the batter-runner would not have been put out at first
base by ordinary effort.
Rule 10.05(a) Comment: In applying Rule 10.05(a), the official scorer shall always give
the batter the benefit of the doubt. A safe course for the official scorer to follow is to
score a hit when exceptionally good fielding of a ball fails to result in a putout.
(b) The official scorer shall not credit a base hit when a:
(1) runner is forced out by a batted ball, or would have been forced out except for a
fielding error;
(2) batter apparently hits safely and a runner who is forced to advance by reason of
the batter becoming a runner fails to touch the first base to which such runner is
advancing and is called out on appeal. The official scorer shall charge the batter
with a time at bat but no hit;
(3) pitcher, the catcher or any infielder handles a batted ball and puts out a
preceding runner who is attempting to advance one base or to return to his original
base, or would have put out such runner with ordinary effort except for a fielding
error. The official scorer shall charge the batter with a time at bat but no hit;
(4) fielder fails in an attempt to put out a preceding runner and, in the scorer’s
judgment, the batter-runner could have been put out at first base; or
Rule 10.05(b) Comment: Rule 10.05(b) shall not apply if the fielder merely looks toward
or feints toward another base before attempting to make the putout at first base.
(5) runner is called out for interference with a fielder attempting to field a batted
ball, unless in the scorer’s judgment the batter-runner would have been safe had
the interference not occurred.
10.06 DETERMINING VALUE OF BASE HITS
The official scorer shall score a base hit as a one-base hit, two-base hit, three-base hit or
home run when no error or putout results, as follows:
(a) Subject to the provisions of Rules 10.06(b) and 10.06(c), it is a one-base hit if the
batter stops at first base; it is a two-base hit if the batter stops at second base; it a
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 67 ‐
three-base hit if the batter stops at third base; and it is a home run if the batter
touches all bases and scores.
(b) When, with one or more runners on base, the batter advances more than one base
on a safe hit and the defensive team makes an attempt to put out a preceding
runner, the scorer shall determine whether the batter made a legitimate two-base hit
or three-base hit, or whether the batter-runner advanced beyond first base on the
fielder’s choice.
Rule 10.06 Comment: The official scorer shall not credit the batter with a three-base hit
when a preceding runner is put out at home plate, or would have been out but for an
error. The official scorer shall not credit the batter with a two-base hit when a preceding
runner trying to advance from first base is put out at third base, or would have been out
but for an error. The official scorer shall not, however, with the exception of the above,
determine the value of base-hits by the number of bases advanced by a preceding runner.
A batter may deserve a two-base hit even though a preceding runner advances one or no
bases; a batter may deserve only a one-base hit even though he reaches second base and
a preceding runner advances two bases. For example:
(1) Runner on first. Batter hits to right fielder, who throws to third base in an
unsuccessful attempt to put out runner. Batter takes second base. The official scorer
shall credit batter with one-base hit.
(2) Runner on second. Batter hits fair fly ball. Runner holds up to determine if ball is
caught and then advances only to third base, while batter takes second base. The official
scorer shall credit batter with two-base hit.
(3) Runner on third. Batter hits high, fair fly. Runner takes a lead, then runs back to tag
up, thinking the ball will be caught. The ball falls safe, but runner cannot score,
although batter has reached second. The official scorer shall credit batter with a twobase
hit.
(c) When the batter attempts to make a two-base hit or a three-base hit by sliding, he
must hold the last base to which he advances. If a batter-runner overslides and is
tagged out before getting back to the base safely, he shall be credited with only as
many bases as he attained safely. If a batter-runner overslides second base and is
tagged out, the official scorer shall credited him with a one-base hit; if the batterrunner
overslides third base and is tagged out, the official scorer shall credit him
with a two-base hit.
Rule 10.06(c) Comment: If the batter-runner overruns second or third base and is
tagged out trying to return, the official scorer shall credit the batter-runner with the last
base he touched. If a batter-runner runs past second base after reaching that base on his
feet, attempts to return and is tagged out, the official scorer shall credit the batter with a
two-base hit. If a batter-runner runs past third base after reaching that base on his feet,
attempts to return and is tagged out, the official scorer shall credit the batter with a
three-base hit.
(d) When the batter, after making a safe hit, is called out for having failed to touch a
base, the last base the batter reached safely shall determine if the official scorer
shall credit him with a one-base hit, a two-base hit or a three-base hit. If a batterrunner
is called out after missing home plate, the official scorer shall credit him
with a three-base hit. If a batter-runner is called out for missing third base, the
official scorer shall credit him with a two-base hit. If a batter-runner is called out
for missing second base, the official scorer shall credit him with a one-base hit. If
a batter-runner is called out for missing first base, the official scorer shall charge
him with a time at bat, but no hit.
(e) When a batter-runner is awarded two bases, three bases or a home run under the
provisions of Rules 7.05 or 7.06(a), the official scorer shall credit the batter-runner
with a two-base hit, a three-base hit or a home run, as the case may be.
(f) Subject to the provisions of Rule 10.06(g), when a batter ends a game with a safe
hit that drives in as many runs as are necessary to put his team in the lead, the
official scorer shall credit such batter with only as many bases on his hit as are
advanced by the runner who scores the winning run, and then only if the batter
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 68 ‐
runs out his hit for as many bases as are advanced by the runner who scores the
winning run.
Rule 10.06(f) Comment: The official scorer shall apply this rule even when the batter is
theoretically entitled to more bases because of being awarded an “automatic” extra-base
hit under various provisions of Rules 6.09 and 7.05.
The official scorer shall credit the batter with a base touched in the natural course of
play, even if the winning run has scored moments before on the same play. For example,
the score is tied in the bottom of the ninth inning with a runner on second base and the
batter hits a ball to the outfield that falls for a base hit. The runner scores after the batter
has touched first base and continued on to second base but shortly before the batterrunner
reaches second base. If the batter-runner reaches second base, the official scorer
shall credit the batter with a two-base hit.
(g) When the batter ends a game with a home run hit out of the playing field, the batter
and any runners on base are entitled to score.
10.07 STOLEN BASES AND CAUGHT STEALING
The official scorer shall credit a stolen base to a runner whenever the runner advances
one base unaided by a hit, a putout, an error, a force-out, a fielder’s choice, a passed ball,
a wild pitch or a balk, subject to the following:
(a) When a runner starts for the next base before the pitcher delivers the ball and the
pitch results in what ordinarily is scored a wild pitch or passed ball, the official
scorer shall credit the runner with a stolen base and shall not charge the misplay,
unless, as a result of the misplay, the stealing runner advances an extra base, or
another runner also advances, in which case the official scorer shall score the wild
pitch or passed ball as well as the stolen base.
(b) When a runner is attempting to steal, and the catcher, after receiving the pitch,
makes a wild throw trying to prevent the stolen base, the official scorer shall credit
the runner with a stolen base. The official scorer shall not charge an error unless
the wild throw permits the stealing runner to advance one or more extra bases, or
permits another runner to advance, in which case the official scorer shall credit the
runner with the stolen base and charge one error to the catcher.
(c) When a runner, attempting to steal, or after being picked off base, evades being put
out in a run-down play and advances to the next base without the aid of an error,
the official scorer shall credit the runner with a stolen base. If another runner also
advances on the play, the official scorer shall credit both runners with stolen bases.
If a runner advances while another runner, attempting to steal, evades being put out
in a run-down play and returns safely, without the aid of an error, to the base he
originally occupied, the official scorer shall credit a stolen base to the runner who
advances.
(d) When a double- or triple-steal is attempted and one runner is thrown out before
reaching and holding the base such runner is attempting to steal, no other runner
shall be credited with a stolen base.
(e) When a runner is tagged out after oversliding a base, while attempting either to
return to that base or to advance to the next base, the official scorer shall not credit
such runner with a stolen base.
(f) When in the scorer’s judgment a runner attempting to steal is safe because of a
muffed throw, the official scorer shall not credit a stolen base. The official scorer
shall credit an assist to the fielder who made the throw, charge an error to the
fielder who muffed the throw and charge the runner with “caught stealing.”
(g) The official scorer shall not score a stolen base when a runner advances solely
because of the defensive team’s indifference to the runner’s advance. The official
scorer shall score such a play as a fielder’s choice.
Rule 10.07(g) Comment: The scorer shall consider, in judging whether the defensive
team has been indifferent to a runner’s advance, the totality of the circumstances,
including the inning and score of the game, whether the defensive team had held the
runner on base, whether the pitcher had made any pickoff attempts on that runner before
the runner’s advance, whether the fielder ordinarily expected to cover the base to which
the runner advanced made a move to cover such base, whether the defensive team had a
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 69 ‐
legitimate strategic motive to not contest the runner’s advance or whether the defensive
team might be trying impermissibly to deny the runner credit for a stolen base. For
example, with runners on first and third bases, the official scorer should ordinarily credit
a stolen base when the runner on first advances to second, if, in the scorer’s judgment,
the defensive team had a legitimate strategic motive— namely, preventing the runner on
third base from scoring on the throw to second base—not to contest the runner’s advance
to second base. The official scorer may conclude that the defensive team is
impermissibly trying to deny a runner credit for a stolen base if, for example, the
defensive team fails to defend the advance of a runner approaching a league or career
record or a league statistical title.
(h) The official scorer shall charge a runner as “caught stealing” if such runner is put
out, or would have been put out by errorless play, when such runner
(1) tries to steal;
(2) is picked off a base and tries to advance (any move toward the next base shall
be considered an attempt to advance); or
(3) overslides while stealing.
Rule 10.07(h) Comment: In those instances where a pitched ball eludes the catcher and
the runner is put out trying to advance, the official scorer shall not charge any “caught
stealing.” The official scorer shall not charge any caught stealing when a runner is
awarded a base due to obstruction or when a runner is called out due to interference by
the batter. The official scorer shall not charge a runner with a caught stealing if such
runner would not have been credited with a stolen base had such runner been safe (for
example, when a catcher throws the runner out after such runner tries to advance after a
ball that had eluded the catcher on a pitch).
10.08 SACRIFICES
The official scorer shall:
(a) Score a sacrifice bunt when, before two are out, the batter advances one or more
runners with a bunt and is put out at first base, or would have been put out except
for a fielding error, unless, in the judgment of the official scorer, the batter was
bunting exclusively for a base hit and not sacrificing his own chance of reaching
first base for the purpose of advancing a runner or runners, in which case the
official scorer shall charge the batter with a time at bat;
Rule 10.08(a) Comment: In determining whether the batter had been sacrificing his own
chance of reaching first base for the purpose of advancing a runner, the official scorer
shall give the batter the benefit of the doubt. The official scorer shall consider the
totality of the circumstances of the at-bat, including the inning, the number of outs and
the score.
(b) Score a sacrifice bunt when, before two are out, the fielders handle a bunted ball
without error in an unsuccessful attempt to put out a preceding runner advancing
one base, unless, an attempt to turn a bunt into a putout of a preceding runner fails,
and in the judgment of the official scorer ordinary effort would not have put out the
batter at first base, in which case the batter shall be credited with a one-base hit and
not a sacrifice;
(c) Not score a sacrifice bunt when any runner is put out attempting to advance one
base on a bunt, in which case the official scorer shall charge the batter with a time
at bat; and
(d) Score a sacrifice fly when, before two are out, the batter hits a ball in flight
handled by an outfielder or an infielder running in the outfield in fair or foul
territory that
(1) is caught, and a runner scores after the catch, or
(2) is dropped, and a runner scores, if in the scorer’s judgment the runner could
have scored after the catch had the fly been caught.
Rule 10.08(d) Comment: The official scorer shall score a sacrifice fly in accordance with
Rule 10.08(d)(2) even though another runner is forced out by reason of the batter
becoming a runner.
10.09 PUTOUTS
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 70 ‐
A putout is a statistic credited to a fielder whose action causes the out of a batter-runner
or runner, as set forth in this Rule 10.09.
(a) The official scorer shall credit a putout to each fielder who
(1) catches a ball that is in flight, whether fair or foul;
(2) catches a batted or thrown ball and tags a base to put out a batter or runner; or
Rule 10.09(a)(2) Comment: The official scorer shall credit a fielder with a putout if such
fielder catches a thrown ball and tags a base to record an out on an appeal play.
(3) tags a runner when the runner is off the base to which the runner is entitled.
(b) The official scorer shall credit an automatic putout to the catcher when a:
(1) batter is called out on strikes;
(2) batter is called out for an illegally batted ball;
(3) batter is called out for bunting foul for his third strike;
Rule 10.09(b)(3) Comment: Note the exception in Rule 10.15(a)(4).
(4) batter is called out for being touched by his own batted ball;
(5) batter is called out for interfering with the catcher;
(6) batter is called out for failing to bat in his proper turn;
Rule 10.09(b)(6) Comment: See Rule 10.03(d).
(7) batter is called out for refusing to touch first base after receiving a base on
balls, after being hit by a pitch or after a catcher’s interference ; or
(8) runner is called out for refusing to advance from third base to home plate.
(c) The official scorer shall credit automatic putouts as follows (and shall credit no
assists on these plays except as specified):
(1) When the batter is called out on an Infield Fly that is not caught, the official
scorer shall credit the putout to the fielder who the scorer believes could have
made the catch;
(2) When a runner is called out for being touched by a fair ball (including an
Infield Fly), the official scorer shall credit the putout to the fielder nearest the ball;
(3) When a runner is called out for running out of line to avoid being tagged, the
official scorer shall credit the putout to the fielder whom the runner avoided;
(4) When a runner is called out for passing another runner, the official scorer shall
credit the putout to the fielder nearest the point of passing;
(5) When a runner is called out for running the bases in reverse order, the official
scorer shall credit the putout to the fielder covering the base the runner left in
starting his reverse run;
(6) When a runner is called out for having interfered with a fielder, the official
scorer shall credit the putout to the fielder with whom the runner interfered, unless
the fielder was in the act of throwing the ball when the interference occurred, in
which case the official scorer shall credit the putout to the fielder for whom the
throw was intended and shall credit an assist to the fielder whose throw was
interfered with; or
(7) When the batter-runner is called out because of interference by a preceding
runner, as provided in Rule 6.05(m), the official scorer shall credit the putout to the
first baseman. If the fielder interfered with was in the act of throwing the ball, the
official scorer shall credit such fielder with an assist but shall credit only one assist
on any one play under the provisions of Rule 10.09(c)(6) and 10.09(c)(7).
10.10 ASSISTS
An assist is a statistic credited to a fielder whose action contributes to a batter-runner or
runner being put out, as set forth in this Rule 10.10.
(a) The official scorer shall credit an assist to each fielder who
(1) throws or deflects a batted or thrown ball in such a way that a putout results, or
would have resulted except for a subsequent error by any fielder. Only one assist
and no more shall be credited to each fielder who throws or deflects the ball in a
run-down play that results in a putout, or would have resulted in a putout, except
for a subsequent error; or
Rule 10.10(a)(1) Comment: Mere ineffective contact with the ball shall not be
considered an assist. “Deflect” shall mean to slow down or change the direction of the
ball and thereby effectively assist in putting out a batter or runner. If a putout results
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 71 ‐
from an appeal play within the natural course of play, the official scorer shall give assists
to each fielder, except the fielder making the putout, whose action led to the putout. If a
putout results from an appeal play initiated by the pitcher throwing to a fielder after the
previous play has ended, the official scorer shall credit the pitcher, and only the pitcher,
with an assist.
(2) throws or deflects the ball during a play that results in a runner being called out
for interference or for running out of line.
(b) The official scorer shall not credit an assist to
(1) the pitcher on a strikeout, unless the pitcher fields an uncaught third strike and
makes a throw that results in a putout;
(2) the pitcher when, as the result of a legal pitch received by the catcher, a runner
is put out, as when the catcher picks a runner off base, throws out a runner trying to
steal or tags a runner trying to score; or
(3) a fielder whose wild throw permits a runner to advance, even though the runner
subsequently is put out as a result of continuous play. A play that follows a
misplay (whether or not the misplay is an error) is a new play, and the fielder
making any misplay shall not be credited with an assist unless such fielder takes
part in the new play.
10.11 DOUBLE AND TRIPLE PLAYS
The official scorer shall credit participation in a double play or triple play to each fielder
who earns a putout or an assist when two or three players are put out between the time a
pitch is delivered and the time the ball next becomes dead or is next in possession of the
pitcher in a pitching position, unless an error or misplay intervenes between putouts.
Rule 10.11 Comment: The official scorer shall credit a double play or triple play also if
an appeal play after the ball is in possession of the pitcher results in an additional
putout.
10.12 ERRORS
An error is a statistic charged against a fielder whose action has assisted the team on
offense, as set forth in this Rule 10.12.
(a) The official scorer shall charge an error against any fielder:
(1) whose misplay (fumble, muff or wild throw) prolongs the time at bat of a
batter, prolongs the presence on the bases of a runner or permits a runner to
advance one or more bases, unless, in the judgment of the official scorer, such
fielder deliberately permits a foul fly to fall safe with a runner on third base before
two are out in order that the runner on third shall not score after the catch;
Rule 10.12(a)(1) Comment: Slow handling of the ball that does not involve mechanical
misplay shall not be construed as an error. For example, the official scorer shall not
charge a fielder with an error if such fielder fields a ground ball cleanly but does not
throw to first base in time to retire the batter. It is not necessary that the fielder touch the
ball to be charged with an error. If a ground ball goes through a fielder’s legs or a fly
ball falls untouched and, in the scorer’s judgment, the fielder could have handled the ball
with ordinary effort, the official scorer shall charge such fielder with an error. For
example, the official scorer shall charge an infielder with an error when a ground ball
passes to either side of such infielder if, in the official scorer’s judgment, a fielder at that
position making ordinary effort would have fielded such ground ball and retired a
runner. The official scorer shall charge an outfielder with an error if such outfielder
allows a fly ball to drop to the ground if, in the official scorer’s judgment, an outfielder
at that position making ordinary effort would have caught such fly ball. If a throw is low,
wide or high, or strikes the ground, and a runner reaches base who otherwise would have
been put out by such throw, the official scorer shall charge the player making the throw
with an error.
The official scorer shall not score mental mistakes or misjudgments as errors unless a
specific rule prescribes otherwise. A fielder’s mental mistake that leads to a physical
misplay—such as throwing the ball into the stands or rolling the ball to the pitcher’s
mound, mistakenly believing there to be three outs, and thereby allowing a runner or
runners to advance—shall not be considered a mental mistake for purposes of this rule
and the official scorer shall charge a fielder committing such a mistake with an error.
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 72 ‐
The official scorer shall not charge an error if the pitcher fails to cover first base on a
play, thereby allowing a batter-runner to reach first base safely. The official scorer shall
not charge an error to a fielder who incorrectly throws to the wrong base on a play.
The official scorer shall charge an error to a fielder who causes another fielder to
misplay a ball— for example, by knocking the ball out of the other fielder’s glove. On
such a play, when the official scorer charges an error to the interfering fielder, the
official scorer shall not charge an error to the fielder with whom the other fielder
interfered.
(2) when such fielder muffs a foul fly to prolong the time at bat of a batter, whether
the batter subsequently reaches first base or is put out;
(3) when such fielder catches a thrown ball or a ground ball in time to put out the
batter-runner and fails to tag first base or the batter-runner;
(4) when such fielder catches a thrown ball or a ground ball in time to put out any
runner on a force play and fails to tag the base or the runner;
(5) whose wild throw permits a runner to reach a base safely, when in the scorer’s
judgment a good throw would have put out the runner, unless such wild throw is
made attempting to prevent a stolen base;
(6) whose wild throw in attempting to prevent a runner’s advance permits that
runner or any other runner to advance one or more bases beyond the base such
runner would have reached had the throw not been wild;
(7) whose throw takes an unnatural bounce, touches a base or the pitcher’s plate,
or touches a runner, a fielder or an umpire, thereby permitting any runner to
advance; or
Rule 10.12(a)(7) Comment: The official scorer shall apply this rule even when it appears
to be an injustice to a fielder whose throw was accurate. For example, the official scorer
shall charge an error to an outfielder whose accurate throw to second base hits the base
and caroms back into the outfield, thereby permitting a runner or runners to advance,
because every base advanced by a runner must be accounted for.
(8) whose failure to stop, or try to stop, an accurately thrown ball permits a runner
to advance, so long as there was occasion for the throw. If such throw was made to
second base, the official scorer shall determine whether it was the duty of the
second baseman or the shortstop to stop the ball and shall charge an error to the
negligent fielder.
Rule 10.12(a)(8) Comment: If, in the official scorer’s judgment, there was no occasion
for the throw, the official scorer shall charge an error to the fielder who threw the ball.
(b) The official scorer shall charge only one error on any wild throw, regardless of the
number of bases advanced by one or more runners.
(c) When an umpire awards the batter or any runner or runners one or more bases
because of interference or obstruction, the official scorer shall charge the fielder
who committed the interference or obstruction with one error, no matter how many
bases the batter, or runner or runners, may advance.
Rule 10.12(c) Comment: The official scorer shall not charge an error if obstruction does
not change the play, in the opinion of the scorer.
(d) The official scorer shall not charge an error against:
(1) the catcher when the catcher, after receiving the pitch, makes a wild throw
attempting to prevent a stolen base, unless the wild throw permits the stealing
runner to advance one or more extra bases or permits any other runner to advance
one or more bases;
(2) any fielder who makes a wild throw if in the scorer’s judgment the runner
would not have been put out with ordinary effort by a good throw, unless such wild
throw permits any runner to advance beyond the base he would have reached had
the throw not been wild;
(3) any fielder who makes a wild throw in attempting to complete a double play or
triple play, unless such wild throw enables any runner to advance beyond the base
such runner would have reached had the throw not been wild;
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 73 ‐
Rule 10.12(d) Comment: When a fielder muffs a thrown ball that, if held, would have
completed a double play or triple play, the official scorer shall charge an error to the
fielder who drops the ball and credit an assist to the fielder who made the throw.
(4) any fielder when, after fumbling a ground ball or dropping a batted ball that is
in flight or a thrown ball, the fielder recovers the ball in time to force out a runner
at any base; or
(5) any fielder when a wild pitch or passed ball is scored.
(e) The official scorer shall not charge an error when the batter is awarded first base
on four called balls, when the batter is awarded first base when touched by a
pitched ball, or when the batter reaches first base as the result of a wild pitch or
passed ball.
Rule 10.12(e) Comment: See Rule 10.13 for additional scoring rules relating to wild
pitches and passed balls.
(f) The official scorer shall not charge an error when a runner or runners advance as
the result of a passed ball, a wild pitch or a balk.
(1) When the fourth called ball is a wild pitch or a passed ball and as a result
(i) the batter-runner advances to a base beyond first base;
(ii) any runner forced to advance by the base on balls advances more than
one base; or
(iii) any runner, not forced to advance, advances one or more bases, the
official scorer shall score the base on balls and also the wild pitch or passed
ball, as the case may be.
(2) When the catcher recovers the ball after a wild pitch or passed ball on the third
strike, and throws out the batter-runner at first base, or tags out the batter-runner,
but another runner or runners advance, the official scorer shall score the strikeout,
the putout and assists, if any, and credit the advance of the other runner or runners
on the play as a fielder’s choice.
Rule 10.12(f) Comment: See Rule 10.13 for additional scoring rules relating to wild
pitches and passed balls.
10.13 WILD PITCHES AND PASSED BALLS
A wild pitch is defined in Rule 2.00 (Wild Pitch). A passed ball is a statistic charged
against a catcher whose action has caused a runner or runners to advance, as set forth in
this Rule 10.13.
(a) The official scorer shall charge a pitcher with a wild pitch when a legally delivered
ball is so high, so wide or so low that the catcher does not stop and control the ball
by ordinary effort, thereby permitting a runner or runners to advance. The official
scorer shall charge a pitcher with a wild pitch when a legally delivered ball touches
the ground or home plate before reaching the catcher and is not handled by the
catcher, thereby permitting a runner or runners to advance. When the third strike is
a wild pitch, permitting the batter to reach first base, the official scorer shall score
a strikeout and a wild pitch.
(b) The official scorer shall charge a catcher with a passed ball when the catcher fails
to hold or to control a legally pitched ball that should have been held or controlled
with ordinary effort, thereby permitting a runner or runners to advance. When the
third strike is a passed ball, permitting the batter to reach first base, the official
scorer shall score a strikeout and a passed ball.
Rule 10.13 Comment: The official scorer shall not charge a wild pitch or passed ball if
the defensive team makes an out before any runners advance. For example, if a pitch
touches the ground and eludes the catcher with a runner on first base, but the catcher
recovers the ball and throws to second base in time to retire the runner, the official
scorer shall not charge the pitcher with a wild pitch. The official scorer shall credit the
advancement of any other runner on the play as a fielder’s choice. If a catcher drops a
pitch, for example, with a runner on first base, but the catcher recovers the ball and
throws to second base in time to retire the runner, the official scorer shall not charge the
catcher with a passed ball. The official scorer shall credit the advancement of any other
runner on the play as a fielder’s choice.
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 74 ‐
See Rules 10.07(a), 10.12(e) and 10.12(f) for additional scoring rules relating to wild
pitches and passed balls.
10.14 BASES ON BALLS
A base on balls is defined in Rule 2.00 (Base on Balls).
(a) The official scorer shall score a base on balls whenever a batter is awarded first
base because of four balls having been pitched outside the strike zone, but when
the fourth such ball touches the batter it shall be scored as a “hit batter.”
Rule 10.14(a) Comment: See Rule 10.16(h) for the procedure when more than one
pitcher is involved in giving a base on balls. See also Rule 10.15(b), which addresses
situations in which a substitute batter receives a base on balls.
(b) The official scorer shall score an intentional base on balls when the pitcher makes
no attempt to throw the last pitch to the batter into the strike zone, but purposely
throws the ball wide to the catcher outside the catcher’s box.
(c) If a batter awarded a base on balls is called out for refusing to advance to first base,
the official scorer shall not credit the base on balls and shall charge a time at bat.
10.15 STRIKEOUTS
A strikeout is a statistic credited to a pitcher and charged to a batter when the umpire
calls three strikes on a batter, as set forth in this Rule 10.15.
(a) The official scorer shall score a strikeout whenever a batter:
(1) is put out by a third strike caught by the catcher;
(2) is put out by a third strike not caught when there is a runner on first before two
are out;
(3) becomes a runner because a third strike is not caught; or
(4) bunts foul on third strike, unless such bunt on third strike results in a foul fly
caught by any fielder, in which case the official scorer shall not score a strikeout
and shall credit the fielder who catches such foul fly with a putout.
(b) When a batter leaves the game with two strikes against him, and the substitute
batter completes a strikeout, the official scorer shall charge the strikeout and the
time at bat to the first batter. If the substitute batter completes the turn at bat in any
other manner, including a base on balls, the official scorer shall score the action as
having been that of the substitute batter.
10.16 EARNED RUNS AND RUNS ALLOWED
An earned run is a run for which a pitcher is held accountable. In determining earned
runs, the official scorer shall reconstruct the inning without the errors (which exclude
catcher’s interference) and passed balls, giving the benefit of the doubt always to the
pitcher in determining which bases would have been reached by runners had there been
errorless play. For the purpose of determining earned runs, an intentional base on balls,
regardless of the circumstances, shall be construed in exactly the same manner as any
other base on balls.
(a) The official scorer shall charge an earned run against a pitcher every time a runner
reaches home base by the aid of safe hits, sacrifice bunts, a sacrifice fly, stolen
bases, putouts, fielder’s choices, bases on balls, hit batters, balks or wild pitches
(including a wild pitch on third strike that permits a batter to reach first base)
before fielding chances have been offered to put out the offensive team. For the
purpose of this rule, a defensive interference penalty shall be construed as a
fielding chance. A wild pitch is solely the pitcher’s fault and shall contribute to an
earned run just as a base on balls or a balk.
Rule 10.16(a) Comment: The following are examples of earned runs charged to a
pitcher:
(1) Peter pitches and retires Abel and Baker, the first two batters of an inning.
Charlie reaches first base on an error charged to a fielder. Daniel hits a home run.
Edward hits a home run. Peter retires Frank to end the inning. Three runs have
scored, but no earned runs are charged to Peter, because Charlie should have been
the third out of the inning, as reconstructed without the error.
(2) Peter pitches and retires Abel. Baker hits a triple. While pitching to Charlie,
Peter throws a wild pitch, allowing Baker to score. Peter retires Daniel and
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 75 ‐
Edward. One run has scored, charged as an earned run to Peter, because the wild
pitch contributes to an earned run.
In an inning in which a batter-runner reaches first base on a catcher’s interference,
such batter-runner shall not count as an earned run should he subsequently score.
The official scorer shall not assume, however, that such batter would have made an
out absent the catcher’s interference (unlike, for example, situations in which a
batter-runner reaches first base safely because of a fielder’s misplay of a ball for
an error). Because such batter never had a chance to complete his time at bat, it is
unknown how such batter would have fared absent the catcher’s interference.
Compare the following examples:
(3) With two out, Abel reaches first on an error by the shortstop in misplaying a
ground ball. Baker hits a home run. Charlie strikes out. Two runs have scored, but
none is earned, because Abel’s at-bat should have been the third out of the inning,
as reconstructed without the error.
(4) With two out, Abel reaches first on a catcher’s interference. Baker hits a home
run. Charlie strikes out. Two runs have scored, but one (Baker’s) is earned,
because the official scorer cannot assume that Abel would have made an out to end
the inning, absent the catcher’s interference.
(b) No run shall be earned when scored by a runner who reaches first base
(1) on a hit or otherwise after his time at bat is prolonged by a muffed foul fly;
(2) because of interference or obstruction; or
(3 )because of any fielding error.
(c) No run shall be earned when scored by a runner whose presence on the bases is
prolonged by an error, if such runner would have been put out by errorless play.
(d) No run shall be earned when the scoring runner’s advance has been aided by an
error, a passed ball or defensive interference or obstruction, if in the official
scorer’s judgment the run would not have scored without the aid of such misplay.
(e) An error by a pitcher is treated exactly the same as an error by any other fielder in
computing earned runs.
(f) Whenever a fielding error occurs, the pitcher shall be given the benefit of the doubt
in determining to which bases any runners would have advanced had the fielding
of the defensive team been errorless.
(g) When pitchers are changed during an inning, the official scorer shall not charge the
relief pitcher with any run (earned or unearned) scored by a runner who was on
base at the time such relief pitcher entered the game, nor for runs scored by any
runner who reaches base on a fielder’s choice that puts out a runner left on base by
any preceding pitcher.
Rule 10.16(g) Comment: It is the intent of Rule 10.16(g) to charge each pitcher with the
number of runners he put on base, rather than with the individual runners. When a
pitcher puts runners on base and is relieved, such pitcher shall be charged with all runs
subsequently scored up to and including the number of runners such pitcher left on base
when such pitcher left the game, unless such runners are put out without action by the
batter (i.e., caught stealing, picked off base or called out for interference when a batterrunner
does not reach first base on the play). For example:
(1) Peter is pitching. Abel reaches first base on a base on balls. Roger relieves Peter.
Baker grounds out, advancing Abel to second base. Charlie flies out. Daniel singles,
scoring Abel. Abel’s run is charged to Peter
(2) Peter is pitching. Abel reaches first base on a base on balls. Roger relieves Peter.
Baker forces Abel at second bases. Charlie grounds out, advancing Baker to second
base. Daniel singles, scoring Baker. Baker’s run is charged to Peter.
(3) Peter is pitching. Abel reaches first base on a base on balls. Roger relieves Peter.
Baker singles, advancing Abel to third base. Charlie grounds to short, with Abel out at
home plate and Baker advancing to second base. Daniel flies out. Edward singles,
scoring Baker. Baker’s run is charged to Peter.
(4) Peter is pitching. Abel reaches first base on a base on balls. Roger relieves Peter.
Baker reaches on a base on balls. Charlie flies out. Abel is picked off second base.
Daniel doubles, scoring Baker from first base. Baker’s run is charged to Roger.
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 76 ‐
(5) Peter is pitching. Abel reaches first base on a base on balls. Roger relieves Peter.
Baker reaches first base on a base on balls. Sierra relieves Roger. Charlie forces Abel
at third base. Daniel forces Baker at third base. Edward hits a home run, scoring three
runs. The official scorer shall charge one run to Peter, one run to Roger and one run to
Sierra.
(6) Peter is pitching. Abel reaches first base on a base on balls. Roger relieves Peter.
Baker reaches first base on a base on balls. Charlie singles, filling the bases. Daniel
forces Abel at home plate. Edward singles, scoring Baker and Charlie. The official scorer
shall charge one run to Peter and one run to Roger.
(7) Peter is pitching. Abel reaches first base on a base on balls. Roger relieves Peter.
Baker singles, but Abel is out trying to reach third base and Baker advances to second
base on the throw. Charlie singles, scoring Baker. Baker’s run is charged to Roger.
(h) A relief pitcher shall not be held accountable when the first batter to whom he
pitches reaches first base on four called balls if such batter has a decided advantage
in the ball and strike count when pitchers are changed.
(1) If, when pitchers are changed, the count is
2 balls, no strike,
2 balls, 1 strike,
3 balls, no strike,
3 balls, 1 strike,
3 balls, 2 strikes,
and the batter gets a base on balls, the official scorer shall charge that batter and
the base on balls to the preceding pitcher, not to the relief pitcher.
(2) Any other action by such batter, such as reaching base on a hit, an error, a
fielder’s choice, a force-out, or being touched by a pitched ball, shall cause such a
batter to be charged to the relief pitcher.
(3) If, when pitchers are changed, the count is
2 balls, 2 strikes,
1 ball, 2 strikes,
1 ball, 1 strike,
1 ball, no strike,
no ball, 2 strikes,
no ball, 1 strike,
the official scorer shall charge that batter and the actions of that batter to the relief
pitcher.
(i) When pitchers are changed during an inning, the relief pitcher shall not have the
benefit of previous chances for outs not accepted in determining earned runs.
Rule 10.16(i) Comment: It is the intent of Rule 10.16(i) to charge a relief pitcher with
earned runs for which such relief pitcher is solely responsible. In some instances, runs
charged as earned against the relief pitcher can be charged as unearned against the
team. For example:
(1) With two out and Peter pitching, Abel reaches first base on a base on balls. Baker
reaches first base on an error. Roger relieves Peter. Charlie hits a home run, scoring
three runs. The official scorer shall charge two unearned runs to Peter, one earned run
to Roger and three unearned runs to the team (because the inning should have ended
with the third out when Baker batted and an error was committed).
(2) With two out, and Peter pitching, Abel and Baker each reach first base on a base
on balls. Roger relieves Peter. Charlie reaches first base on an error. Daniel hits a home
run, scoring four runs. The official scorer shall charge two unearned runs to Peter and
two unearned runs to Roger (because the inning should have ended with the third out
when Charlie batted and an error was committed).
(3) With none out and Peter pitching, Abel reaches first base on a base on balls.
Baker reaches first base on an error. Roger relieves Peter. Charlie hits a home run,
scoring three runs. Daniel and Edward strike out. Frank reaches first base on an error.
George hits a home run, scoring two runs. The official scorer shall charge two runs, one
of them earned, to Peter, three runs, one of them earned, to Roger and five runs, two of
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 77 ‐
them earned, to the team (because only Abel and Charlie would have scored in an inning
reconstructed without the errors).
10.17 WINNING AND LOSING PITCHER
(a) The official scorer shall credit as the winning pitcher that pitcher whose team
assumes a lead while such pitcher is in the game, or during the inning on offense in
which such pitcher is removed from the game, and does not relinquish such lead,
unless
(1) such pitcher is a starting pitcher and Rule 10.17(b) applies; or
(2) Rule 10.17(c) applies.
Rule 10.17(a) Comment: Whenever the score is tied, the game becomes a new contest
insofar as the winning pitcher is concerned. Once the opposing team assumes the lead,
all pitchers who have pitched up to that point and have been replaced are excluded from
being credited with the victory. If the pitcher against whose pitching the opposing team
gained the lead continues to pitch until his team regains the lead, which it holds to the
finish of the game, that pitcher shall be the winning pitcher.
(b) If the pitcher whose team assumes a lead while such pitcher is in the game, or
during the inning on offense in which such pitcher is removed from the game, and
does not relinquish such lead, is a starting pitcher who has not completed
(1) five innings of a game that lasts six or more innings on defense, or
(2) four innings of a game that lasts five innings on defense,
then the official scorer shall credit as the winning pitcher the relief pitcher, if there
is only one relief pitcher, or the relief pitcher who, in the official scorer’s judgment
was the most effective, if there is more than one relief pitcher.
Rule 10.17(b) Comment: It is the intent of Rule 10.17(b) that a relief pitcher pitch at
least one complete inning or pitch when a crucial out is made, within the context of the
game (including the score),in order to be credited as the winning pitcher. If the first
relief pitcher pitches effectively, the official scorer should not presumptively credit that
pitcher with the win, because the rule requires that the win be credited to the pitcher who
was the most effective, and a subsequent relief pitcher may have been most effective. The
official scorer, in determining which relief pitcher was the most effective, should consider
the number of runs, earned runs and base runners given up by each relief pitcher and the
context of the game at the time of each relief pitcher’s appearance. If two or more relief
pitchers were similarly effective, the official scorer should give the presumption to the
earlier pitcher as the winning pitcher.
(c) The official scorer shall not credit as the winning pitcher a relief pitcher who is
ineffective in a brief appearance, when at least one succeeding relief pitcher
pitches effectively in helping his team maintain its lead. In such a case, the official
scorer shall credit as the winning pitcher the succeeding relief pitcher who was
most effective, in the judgment of the official scorer.
Rule 10.17(c) Comment: The official scorer generally should, but is not required to,
consider the appearance of a relief pitcher to be ineffective and brief if such relief pitcher
pitches less than one inning and allows two or more earned runs to score (even if such
runs are charged to a previous pitcher). Rule 10.17(b) Comment provides guidance on
choosing the winning pitcher from among several succeedingrelief pitchers.
(d) A losing pitcher is a pitcher who is responsible for the run that gives the winning
team a lead that the winning team does not relinquish.
Rule 10.17(d) Comment: Whenever the score is tied, the game becomes a new contest
insofar as the losing pitcher is concerned.
(e) A league may designate a non-championship game (for example, the Major League
All-Star Game) for which Rules 10.17(a)(1) and 10.17(b) do not apply. In such
games, the official scorer shall credit as the winning pitcher that pitcher whose
team assumes a lead while such pitcher is in the game, or during the inning on
offense in which such pitcher is removed from the game, and does not relinquish
such lead, unless such pitcher is knocked out after the winning team has attained a
commanding lead and the official scorer concludes that a subsequent pitcher is
entitled to credit as the winning pitcher.
10.18 SHUTOUTS
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 78 ‐
A shutout is a statistic credited to a pitcher who allows no runs in a game. No pitcher
shall be credited with pitching a shutout unless he pitches the complete game, or unless
he enters the game with none out before the opposing team has scored in the first inning,
puts out the side without a run scoring and pitches the rest of the game without allowing a
run. When two or more pitchers combine to pitch a shutout, the league statistician shall
make a notation to that effect in the league’s official pitching records.
10.19 SAVES FOR RELIEF PITCHERS
A save is a statistic credited to a relief pitcher, as set forth in this Rule 10.19.
The official scorer shall credit a pitcher with a save when such pitcher meets all four of
the following conditions:
(a) He is the finishing pitcher in a game won by his team;
(b) He is not the winning pitcher;
(c) He is credited with at least ⅓ of an inning pitched; and
(d) He satisfies one of the following conditions:
(1) He enters the game with a lead of no more than three runs and pitches for at
least one inning;
(2) He enters the game, regardless of the count, with the potential tying run either
on base, or at bat or on deck (that is, the potential tying run is either already on
base or is one of the first two batters he faces); or
(3) He pitches for at least three innings.
10.20 STATISTICS
The League President shall appoint an official statistician. The statistician shall maintain
an accumulative record of all the batting, fielding, running and pitching records specified
in Rule 10.02 for every player who appears in a league championship game or postseason
game.
The statistician shall prepare a tabulated report at the end of the season, including all
individual and team records for every championship game, and shall submit this report to
the League President. This report shall identify each player by his first name and
surname and shall indicate as to each batter whether he bats righthanded, lefthanded or
both ways, and as to each fielder and pitcher, whether he throws righthanded or
lefthanded.
When a player listed in the starting lineup is substituted for before he plays on defense,
he shall not receive credit in the defensive statistics (fielding) unless he actually plays
that position during the game. All such players, however, shall be credited with one
game played (in batting statistics) so long as they are announced into the game or listed
on the official lineup card.
Rule 10.20 Comment: The official scorer shall credit a player with having played on defense if such
player is on the field for at least one pitch or play. If a game is called (for example, because of
rain)after a substitute player enters the field but before a pitch is thrown or a play is made, the official
scorer shall credit such player with a game played in the batting statistics but shall not credit such
player in any defensive statistics. If a game is called (for example, because of rain) after a relief pitcher
enters the field but before a pitch is thrown or a play is made, the official scorer shall credit such
pitcher with a game played in the batting statistics but shall not credit such pitcher in any defensive
statistics or with a game pitched.
Any games played to break a divisional tie shall be included in the statistics for that championship
season.
10.21 DETERMINING PERCENTAGE RECORDS
To compute:
(a) Percentage of games won and lost, divide the number of games won by the sum of
games won and games lost;
(b) Batting average, divide the total number of safe hits (not the total bases on hits) by
the total times at bat, as defined in Rule 10.02(a);
(c) Slugging percentage, divide the total bases of all safe hits by the total times at bat,
as defined in Rule 10.02(a);
(d) Fielding average, divide the sum of putouts and assists by the sum of putouts,
assists and errors (which shall be called chances);
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 79 ‐
(e) Pitcher’s earned-run average, multiply the total earned runs charged against such
pitcher by 9, and divide the result by the total number of innings he pitched,
including fractions of an inning; and
Rule 10.21(e) Comment: For example, 9⅓ innings pitched and 3 earned runs is an
earned-run average of 2.89 (3 earned runs times 9 divided by 9⅓ equals 2.89).
(f) On-base percentage, divide the sum of hits, bases on balls and times hit by pitch by
the sum of at-bats, bases on balls, times hit by pitch and sacrifice flies.
Rule 10.21(f) Comment: For the purpose of computing on-base percentage, ignore
instances of a batter being awarded first base on interference or obstruction.
10.22 MINIMUM STANDARDS FOR INDIVIDUAL CHAMPIONSHIPS
To assure uniformity in establishing the batting, pitching and fielding championships of
professional leagues, such champions shall meet the following minimum performance
standards:
(a) The individual batting, slugging or on-base percentage champion shall be the
player with the highest batting average, slugging percentage or on-base percentage,
as the case may be, provided the player is credited with as many or more total
appearances at the plate in league championship games as the number of games
scheduled for each club in his club’s league that season, multiplied by 3.1 in the
case of a Major League player and by 2.7 in the case of a National Association
player. Total appearances at the plate shall include official times at bat, plus bases
on balls, times hit by pitcher, sacrifice hits, sacrifice flies and times awarded first
base because of interference or obstruction. Notwithstanding the foregoing
requirement of minimum appearances at the plate, any player with fewer than the
required number of plate appearances whose average would be the highest, if he
were charged with the required number of plate appearances shall be awarded the
batting, slugging or on-base percentage championship, as the case may be.
Rule 10.22(a) Comment: For example, if a Major League schedules 162 games for each
club, 502 plate appearances qualify (162 times 3.1 equals 502) a player for a batting,
slugging or on-base percentage championship. If a National Association league
schedules 140 games for each club, 378plate appearances qualify (140 times 2.7 equals
378) a player for a batting, slugging or on-base percentage championship. Fractions of
a plate appearance are to be rounded up or down to the closest whole number. For
example, 162 times 3.1 equals 502.2, which is rounded down to a requirement of 502.
If, for example, Abel has the highest batting average among those with 502 plate
appearance in a Major League with a .362 batting average (181 hits in 500 at-bats), and
Baker has 490 plate appearances, 440 at-bats and 165 hits for a .375 batting average,
Baker shall be the batting champion, because adding 12 more at-bats to Baker’s record
would still give Baker a higher batting average than Abel: .365 (165 hits in 452 at-bats)
to Abel’s .362.
(b) The individual pitching champion in a Major League shall be the pitcher with the
lowest earned-run average, provided that the pitcher has pitched at least as many
innings in league championship games as the number of games scheduled for each
club in his club’s league that season. The individual pitching champion in a
National Association league shall be the pitcher with the lowest earned-run average
provided that the pitcher has pitched at least as many innings in league
championship season games as 80% of the number of games scheduled for each
club in the pitcher’s league.
Rule 10.22(b) Comment: For example, if a Major League schedules 162 games for each
club, 162 innings qualify a pitcher for a pitching championship. A pitcher with 161⅔
innings would not qualify. If a National Association league schedules 140 games for each
club, 112 innings qualify a pitcher for a pitching championship. Fractions of an inning
for the required number of innings are to be rounded to the closest third of an inning.
For example, 80% of 144 games is 115.2, so 115⅓ innings would be the minimum
required for a pitching championship in a National Association league with 144 games
scheduled and 80% of 76 games is 60.8, so 60⅔ innings would be the minimum required
for a pitching championship in a National Association league with 76 games scheduled.
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL ‐ 80 ‐
(c) The individual fielding champions shall be the fielders with the highest fielding
average at each position, provided:
(1) A catcher must have participated as a catcher in at least one-half the number of
games scheduled for each club in his league that season;
(2) An infielder or outfielder must have participated at his position in at least twothirds
of the number of games scheduled for each club in his league that season;
and
(3) A pitcher must have pitched at least as many innings as the number of games
scheduled for each club in his league that season, unless another pitcher has a
fielding average as high or higher and has handled more total chances in fewer
innings, in which case such other pitcher shall be the fielding champion.
10.23 GUIDELINES FOR CUMULATIVE PERFORMANCE RECORDS
(a) CONSECUTIVE HITTING STREAKS. A consecutive hitting streak shall not be
terminated if a batter’s plate appearance results in a base on balls, hit batsman,
defensive interference or obstruction or a sacrifice bunt. A sacrifice fly shall
terminate the streak.
(b) CONSECUTIVE-GAME HITTING STREAKS. A consecutive-game hitting
streak shall not be terminated if all of a batter’s plate appearances (one or more) in
a game result in a base on balls, hit batsman, defensive interference or obstruction
or a sacrifice bunt. The streak shall terminate if the player has a sacrifice fly and no
hit.
A player’s individual consecutive-game hitting streak shall be determined by the
consecutive games in which such player appears and is not determined by his
club’s games.
(c) CONSECUTIVE-GAME PLAYING STREAK. A consecutive-game playing
streak shall be extended if a player plays one half-inning on defense or if the player
completes a time at bat by reaching base or being put out. A pinch-running
appearance only shall not extend the streak. If a player is ejected from a game by
an umpire before such player can comply with the requirements of this Rule
10.23(c), such player’s streak shall continue.
(d) SUSPENDED GAMES. For the purpose of this Rule 10.23, all performances in the
completion of a suspended game shall be considered as occurring on the original
date of the game.
akm
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL- CANADIAN CONTENT cc1
Official Rules of Baseball
Canadian Content
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL- CANADIAN CONTENT cc2
BASEBALL CANADA
CALENDAR OF EVENTS 2014
January 11 National Teams Awards Banquet Toronto, ON
& Fundraiser
February 16 - 23 Bantam Girls Development Camp Havana, Cuba
March 6 - 17 Junior National Team Alumni Week St.Petersburg,FL
April 10 - 20 Junior National Team Orlando, FL
Spring Training Camp
(ESPN Wide World of Sports)
May 21 – May 30 Junior National Team Dominican Republic
Dominican Tour
June 7 Challenger Baseball Jamboree Toronto, ON
(Rogers Centre)
June 25, 26 Baseball Canada AGM Toronto, ON
Aug 6 - 11 Baseball Canada Cup Saskatoon, SK
Aug 14 – 18 21U Championship Dartmouth, NS
Aug 14 – 18 18U Championship Sherbrooke, QC
Aug 14 – 18 13U National Western Altona, MB
Aug 18 - 24 Senior Women Invitational Whalley, BC
Aug 21 - 25 13U National London, ON
Aug 21 – 25 Senior Men Championship St. John’s, NL
Aug 21 – 25 15U Championship Vaughn, ON
Aug 21 - 25 16U Girls Championship Saguenay, QC
Sept 1 - 7 IBAF Women’s World Cup Miyazaki, Japan
Sept 4 – 7 13U National Atlantic Charlottetown, PE
October Junior National Team Orlando, FL
Fall Instructional League Camp
(ESPN Wide World of Sports)
TBD IBAF 21U World Cup TBD
Nov 6 - 8 Baseball Canada Fall Convention Charlottetown, PE
Please check Baseball Canada website
at www.baseball.ca for the latest information.
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL- CANADIAN CONTENT cc3
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL
CANADIAN CONTENT
1. Age Categories - Baseball Canada
11U (Mosquito) - 11 years old and younger who do not reach their 12th birthday
during the current calendar year.
13U (Pee Wee) Boys - 13 years old and younger who do not reach their 14th
birthday during the current calendar year.
13U (Pee Wee) Girls - 13 years old and younger who do not reach their 14th
birthday during the current calendar year.
15U (Bantam) Boys - 15 years old and younger who do not reach their 16th
birthday during the current calendar year. (For Nationals; Bottom 3 seeded teams in Pool
B have the opportunity to use 2 overage players. If Host Province is in the bottom 3 teams, Host team
also allowed 2 overaged players. An overage player is maximum 1 year older.)
16U (Bantam) Girls - 16 years old and younger who do not reach their 17th
birthday during the current calendar year. (For Nationals; NL, NS, NB, PEI, AB, SK,
MB, ON2, QC2, and BC2 may bring three players who do not reach their 18th birthday
during the current calendar year.)
18U (Midget) Boys - 18 years old and younger who do not reach their 19th
birthday during the current calendar year. (For Nationals; Bottom 3 seeded teams in Pool
B have the opportunity to use 2 overage players. If Host Province is in the bottom 3 teams, Host team
also allowed 2 overaged players. An overage player is maximum 1 year older.)
21U (Midget) Girls - 21 years old and younger who do not reach their 22nd
birthday during the current calendar year.
21U (Junior) - 21 years old and younger who do not reach their 22nd birthday
during the current calendar year.
Canada Cup and Canada Games - 17 years old and younger who do not reach
their 18th birthday during the current calendar year. (For Nationals; NF, NS, NB,
PEI, AB, SK, and MB may bring two players who do not reach their 19th birthday during the
current calendar year.)
Senior Men - Open classification.
Senior Women – Open classification.
Female players can play in Male events one calendar year older than the male
ages stated above.
2. Baseball Canada Rules Interpretation
1.10 For 13U (Peewee) and 16U (Bantam) Girls and Senior Women
championships, bats constructed of aluminum, fibreglass, or magnesium
with a maximum diameter barrel of 2-5/8 inches will be allowed.
For 13U (Peewee) championships, the bats may have a maximum lengthweight
differential of minus 10.
For 16U (Bantam) Girls and Senior Women Championships, the bats may
have a maximum length-weight differential of minus 5.
For Canada Cup and Canada Games, only wood or bamboo bats will be
allowed. No composite bats will be allowed. For 15U (Bantam) Boys, 18U
(Midget), 21U (Junior) and Senior Men championships, only wood bats,
bamboo bats and wood composite bats will be allowed. Wood composite
bats include wood bats with fibreglass sheathing and wood barrelled bats
with composite handles. Wood composite bats do not include any bat that
has any metallic component.”
The bat must clearly show the manufacturer's original markings
(including, if applicable, length-weight differential). If not, the bat will be
considered illegal.
Rule 6.06(d) will apply to any bat not complying with the above.
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL- CANADIAN CONTENT cc4
1.11 All uniforms must have numbers on the back of the uniform shirt.
Religious headgear that is consistent with Baseball Canada safety and
recognized uniform code requirement is permitted.
1.16 All players shall wear double earflap helmets while at bat, in the on-deck
circle and on the base-paths in all age categories. Chinstraps on batting helmets
are to be mandatory for Pee Wee category and lower.
1.17 The C.F.A.B. rules require catchers in all age categories to wear a
protective helmet and mask while catching. NOTE: This includes practice and
warm-up situations such as the bullpen or between innings. Coaches must wear
at least a mask in all practice and warm-up situations. Throat protectors are to
be mandatory for all catchers and umpires. Extension masks are acceptable
provided that the throat area is adequately covered in conjunction with the chest
protector.
1.18 It is recommended that all players wear a protector cup(or Jill straps for females).
3.02 The umpire shall demand the ball and remove the offender from the game.
In addition, the pitcher may be subject to further penalties following
investigation by the Baseball Canada Rep. For rules in regard to a pitcher
defacing the ball, see Rules 8.02 (a) (2) through (6).
4.06.1 THAT the use of all tobacco products, including smokeless tobacco, by
all on-field participants (players, coaches, managers, umpires etc.) be
prohibited at all competitions sanctioned by Baseball Canada, PENALTY:
Automatic ejection from the game.
6.05 Contact Rule: Runners are instructed to slide or attempt to avoid
making contact with a fielder. A player who maliciously runs into another
player is to be declared out (unless he/she has already scored prior to
committing the infraction) and is to be automatically ejected (whether or not
declared safe).
B. Contact shall be considered malicious if: the contact is the result of
intentional excessive force, and/or there is intent to injure.
C. Malicious contact is to be penalized whether committed by an offensive or
defensive player. The Umpire shall determine whether contact was avoidable
or unavoidable whether the runner was trying to reach the base or attempting to
dislodge the ball from the fielder. IF the runner a) could have avoided the
fielder and reached the base, or b) attempted to dislodge the ball, the runner is
out even if the fielder loses the possession of the ball. The ball is dead and all
other runners shall return to the last base legally occupied by them at the time
of intent to contact. If the fielder blocks the base path, the runner may slide
into or collide with the fielder as long as the runner is making a legitimate
attempt to reach the base. IF the collision is flagrant, the runner is called out
and ejected. The ball is declared dead. If the defensive player blocks the base
path clearly without possession of the ball, obstruction is called. The runner is
safe and a delayed dead ball is signaled. If the runner collides flagrantly,
he/she shall be declared safe due to obstruction but shall be ejected. The ball is
dead.
6.10 The designated hitter may be used in any exhibition play, league play,
play-offs, tournaments, and championships in the 18U (midget), 21U (junior),
senior and Baseball Canada Cup.
8.02 (a) 2 through 6: The pitcher shall be ejected immediately from the game
and may be subject to further penalties following investigation by the Baseball
Canada Rep.
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL- CANADIAN CONTENT cc5
8.06 (b) "A second trip to the same pitcher in the same inning will cause the
pitcher's automatic removal from the pitching position.
The pitcher once removed from the mound as a result of 8.06 (b) as stated
above, although retained in the game, may not be back as a pitcher in that same
game.
11.00 MINOR DIVISIONAL PLAY
RULES GOVERNING 11U (MOSQUITO) DIVISION
1.0 - Playing Field: Dimensions, Equipment
1.04 The playing field shall conform to the following measurements:
(a) The distance between all bases shall be sixty (60) feet.
(b) The distance between the point of home base and the front side of the
pitcher's plate shall be forty-four (44) feet
(c) The batter's box shall be rectangular in shape, the size being 6 ft. x 3 ft.
and shall extend to the front from the centre of home plate, 3 ft. and an
equal distance of 3 ft to the rear. The inside line shall be four (4) inches
from the plate.
(d) The pitcher's mound shall be raised to a gradual slope. At a height of 6
inches above the levels of the base paths. Optional for league play but it
is mandatory for all Inter-Provincial play.
(e) The coaches' box shall be 8 x 12 feet and not closer than ten (10) feet to
the base- path.
(f) The backstop (behind home plate) shall NOT be less than 25 feet
nor MORE than 40 feet from home plate.
(g) The following outfield fence distances are recommended: Left and right
field foul line (180 feet min., suggested 200 feet) ... (Centre field 200
feet min., suggested 225 feet).
1.10 THE BAT: The bat shall be round and made entirely of wood or approved
material ... it shall NOT be more than thirty-two (32) inches in length, nor
more than 2-1/4 inches in diameter at its thickest part. Bats may be taped to a
distance not exceeding sixteen (16) inches from the handle.
See Baseball Canada web site for up to date list of approved bats.
1.11 SHOES: Shoes with metal cleats or "spikes" are prohibited. Rubber molded
cleats on running shoes are permitted.
Religious headgear that is consistent with Baseball Canada safety and
recognized uniform code requirement is permitted.
3.03 All players are registered on the offensive line up and each one hits at his
turn:
(a) When a player arrives during the game, he is inserted in the last spot on
the batting order. When a player leaves during the game, he is removed
from the batting order. No automatic out is counted.
(b) If a player cannot complete his turn at bat, the following batter will
replace him with the same count. The replaced player can be reinserted in
the game.
(c) If a player cannot complete his presence on bases, he is replaced with the
last recorded out. The replaced player can be reinserted in the game.
An offensive inning ends when three outs are recorded or when the
offensive team scores five runs. If there is a homerun outside the playing
field limits (above the fence), the team will be awarded all runs even if
total runs go over the inning limit. However, there is no run limit during
the last inning.
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL- CANADIAN CONTENT cc6
Game re-entry
Game re-entry is allowed, meaning that any player can be replaced in his
defensive role and return at any time to any position, except for the pitcher’s
position, if the player has already pitched.
Playing equity
A player must be registered on the starting defensive lineup when he is
present, at least one game out of two. An equitable usage of the players is
recommended (i.e. If in 2 games a team plays 12 innings in defense, a player
should play a minimum of 6 innings over these two games).
4.00 - Starting and Ending a Game
4.10 All games are of six innings to be completed, if time and weather
permits. However, three and a half (3½) innings constitute a regulation game
if the home team has more runs than the visiting team.
6.00 - The Batter
6.09 (b) The batter cannot become a runner on a catcher's miss of a third strike.
The third Strike, either called or swinging does NOT have to be caught
by the catcher. The batter is AUTOMATICALLY RETIRED... however,
the ball is alive and in play.
6.10 The designated hitter rule is not permitted in this age category.
7.00 - (The Runner) Special Regulations Governing Lead-offs
in 11U (Mosquito) Division
For 11U (Mosquito) low tier division only:
7.00 (a) No runner can leave his base before the ball crosses home plate or is hit. If
there is a violation, the runner is returned to his base and the ball is dead.
When the pitcher receives the ball and takes position on the rubber and
the catcher is in his position, all runners must return to the base they were
occupying. For 11U (Mosquito) low tier division only, the stealing of
bases is not allowed.
(b) The runner at 3rd base can reach home plate only if the ball is hit or
because he is forced to advance. If there is a violation, the runner is
returned to his base.
(c) No bunts are allowed. If there is a violation, the ball is dead and a strike
is called on the batter. On a bunt attempt on a third strike, the ball is dead
and the batter is allowed to continue his at-bat.
(d) For mosquito low tier division only, a base on balls is not
allowed. After four (4) balls, an offensive team coach takes position on
the mound, on the 11U (Mosquito) pitching rubber and pitch from above
the shoulder for a maximum of three (3) additional pitches, independent
of the count on the batter after which, the batter is called out. The strike
count is carried on, the player is called out if he swings at a third strike.
The player cannot be called out on a foul ball.
 If the coach is hit by a batted ball, the ball is declared dead and the
batter is awarded first base. The runners advance if forced.
 If the batter is hit by a pitch thrown by the coach, the ball is dead, the
pitch is declared erratic and is not counted. The player must continue
his at-bat.
7.00 (a) When a pitcher is in contact with the pitcher's rubber with the ball in his
possession PREPARATORY TO THE PITCHING ACT and the catcher
is in the catcher's box ready to receive delivery of the pitching action,
base runners SHALL NOT leave their bases UNTIL THE PITCHED
BALL HAS REACHED THE BATTER.
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL- CANADIAN CONTENT cc7
(b) When a base runner DOES leave his base BEFORE the pitch has reached
the batter and the batter does not hit the ball, the runner is permitted to
continue. If a play is made on him and he is tagged out... the OUT will
stand. If, however, he reaches a base safely, "TIME" is called and he is
returned to the base he occupied before the pitch was made... and NO
OUT shall result.
(c) When a base-runner leaves his base before the pitched balls has reached
the batter and the batter hits the ball and the runner shall return to his
original base (if the batter is retired on a fly ball or any other play) OR...
he must return to an unoccupied base nearest the one he left depending
on the advance of the batter... who in this case shall NOT advance
beyond the first base on a single... second base on a double... or third on a
triple.
(d) When any base-runner leaves his base before the pitched ball has reached
the batter, and the batter hits or bunts the ball to an infielder, who in the
judgment of the umpire, could have with reasonable effort effected an out
on the runner had the violation not occurred... NO RUNNER shall be
allowed to score or advance (unless forced) and all runners shall remain.
If three (3) runners are on base and the batter reaches first base safely on
a similar action to an infielder, and ANY runner violates the leadoff
rule... SUCH RUNNER SHALL BE DECLARED OUT IN THIS
INSTANCE.
(e) In the event that more than one runner is simultaneously adjudged to
have violated the leadoff rule... The violating runner CLOSEST to
scoring shall be declared out. Exception: If at the conclusion of play
there is an open BASE... sub-paragraphs (b) and (c) will apply.
(f) THE VIOLATION OF ONE BASE RUNNER SHALL AFFECT ALL
OTHER BASE RUNNERS.
(g) When a team has a lead of five or more runs, the runner (s) of
this team can reach the following base only if the ball is hit or if he is
forced to advance. If the runner reaches the next base, he is returned to
his base and the ball is dead.
Case Example of Lead-Off Infractions:
(1) Runner on first leaves too soon... batter reaches first on a single...
RUNNER can go no further than second.
(2) Runners on second and third, either leaves too soon... batter singles...
RUNNERS MUST return to their bases.
(3) Runners on first and third, either leave too soon... batter hits a
double. Runner on third would score... runner from first cannot
proceed beyond third base.
(4) All runners on base (if either leaves too soon) will be permitted to
score if the batter hits a clean triple or home run.
(5) Bases full... runner on third leaves too soon, batter hits or bunts the
ball to an infielder which, in the judgment of the umpire, should have
resulted in an out if the violation had not occurred...
Runner violating is declared OUT... advance runners... placing
batter-runner on first... In the event, on this same situation an out is
made at either first, second or third... the runner scoring (not allowed)
will return to third... other runners returned.
NOTE: Field umpires must assume the responsibility of indicating a
leadoff infraction by dropping a signal-flag (or handkerchief) upon
detection of the offence.
RULES GOVERNING ARM SMART (PITCH COUNT) in
11U (MOSQUITO ) DIVISION
Refer to page cc10 & cc11.
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL- CANADIAN CONTENT cc8
RULES GOVERNING 13U (PEE WEE) DIVISION
1.0 - Playing Field: Dimensions, Equipment
1.04 The playing field shall conform to the following measurements:
(a) The distance between all bases shall be seventy (70) feet.
(b) The distance between the point of home base and the front side of
the pitcher's plate shall be forty-eight (48) feet.
(c) The pitcher's mound shall be raised to a gradual slope. To a height
of 6 inches above the levels of the base-paths. Optional for league
play but is mandatory for all Inter-Provincial play.
(d) The coaches' boxes shall be 8 x 12 feet and NOT closer than 10 feet
from the base paths.
(e) The backstop (behind) home plate shall NOT be less than 35 feet
and no more than 45 feet from home plate.
NOTE: It is recommended that the fence-line to the base-path
distance be twenty-five (25) feet.
(f) The following outfield fence distances are recommended: Left and
Right foul lines (200-ft. min., suggested 225 ft.). Centre field (225-
ft. min., suggested 260 ft.).
1.10 THE BAT: See Baseball Canada web site for up to date list of approved bats.
1.11 SHOES: Shoes with metal cleats or "spikes" are prohibited. Rubber molded cleats
on running shoes are permitted.
1.11 Religious headgear that is consistent with Baseball Canada safety and recognized
uniform code requirement is permitted.
3.03 Any starting player may be substituted for and returned to the game, one time only.
He/she must return to his/her original place in the batting order. Any pitcher, if
removed from the game may return, but may not pitch. Any further substitutions
do not jeopardize the right of re-entry for the original/starting player. Any starting
player returned to the game may pitch if he/she has not previously assumed that
position.
4.00 - Starting and Ending a Game
4.10 The number of innings prescribed for Pee Wee division is seven (7) innings.
NOTE: See general baseball rules re: ending a game.
6.00 - The Batter
6.10 The Designated hitter rule is not permitted in this age category.
7.00 - The Runner
ALL RUNNERS ARE PERMITTED TO LEAD - OFF. All base-runners are
governed by standards of regulation baseball on all base-running actions.
RULES GOVERNING ARM SMART (PITCH COUNT) in
13U (PEE WEE) DIVISION
Refer to page cc10 & cc11.
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL- CANADIAN CONTENT cc9
RULES GOVERNING 15U BOYS AND 16U GIRLS (BANTAM)
DIVISION
1.0 - Playing Field: Dimensions, Equipment
1.04 The playing field shall conform to the following measurements:
(a) The distance between all bases shall be eighty (80) feet.
(b) The distance between the point of home base and the front side of the
pitcher's plate shall be fifty-four (54) ft.
(c) The pitcher's mound shall be raised to a gradual slope. To a height of 8
inches above the levels of the base-paths. Optional for league play but is
mandatory for all Inter-Provincial play.
(d) The coaches' boxes shall be 8 x 16 ft. and NOT closer than 10 ft. from the
base-paths.
(e) The backstop (behind home plate) shall NOT BE LESS THAN 40 ft. and no
more than 50 ft. from home plate.
(f) The following outfield fence distances are recommended: Left and Right foul
lines (245 ft. min., suggested 270 ft.,)...Centre field (280 ft. min., suggested
300 ft.)
1.10 THE BAT: See Baseball Canada web site for up to date list of approved bats.
Bantam Boys only wood bats will be allowed.
1.11 Religious headgear that is consistent with Baseball Canada safety and recognized
uniform code requirement is permitted.
3.03 Any starting player may be substituted for and returned to the game, one time only.
He/she must return to his/her original place in the batting order. Any pitcher, if
removed from the game may return, but may not pitch. Any further substitutions
do not jeopardize the right of re-entry for the original/starting player. Any starting
player returned to the game may pitch if he/she has not previously assumed that
position.
4.00 - Starting and Ending a Game
4.10 The number on innings prescribed for Bantam Division is seven (7) innings.
NOTE: See general baseball rule re: ending a game.
6.00 - The Batter
6.10 The designated hitter rule is not permitted in this age category.
RULES GOVERNING ARM SMART (PITCH COUNT) in
15U BOYS AND 16U GIRLS (BANTAM) DIVISION
Refer to page cc10 & cc11.
RULES GOVERNING ARM SMART (PITCH COUNT) in
18U (MIDGET) DIVISION
Refer to page cc10 & cc11.
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL- CANADIAN CONTENT cc10
RULES GOVERNING ARM SMART (PITCH COUNT) in
11U (MOSQUITO), 13U (PEE WEE), 15U BOYS & 16U GIRLS (BANTAM),
18U (MIDGET), and CANADA CUP
Rules Governing the Pitcher
(Exhibition Play, League Play, Play-Off's, Tournaments, and Championships)
8.01 (1) Any player on the team is eligible to pitch, and there are no restrictions to the
number of pitchers a manager may use in a game.
(2) Pitchers shall be permitted to have 2 appearances in the same calendar day.
If a pitcher requires a rest following 1st appearance, they cannot return in the
same calendar day.
(3) Pitcher cannot pitch 3 consecutive days unless a pitcher’s first 2 days
combined does not exceed:
11U (Mosquito) : 25 13U (Pee Wee) : 30
15U Boys / 16U Girls (Bantam) : 35 18U (Midget) : 40
If pitcher’s day 1 + day 2 exceeds figure above for their division, they require
at least 1 days rest.
Pitcher cannot pitch 4 consecutive days. One (1) days rest is needed.
(4) Pitchers and managers shall follow the following guidelines:
(5) The official scorekeeper will calculate the total pitches thrown for that
calendar day and determine the required rest starting the next calendar day.
Athletes must not exceed the maximum pitch count total for that day.
(6) Once a player assumes the position of pitcher, they cannot catch for the
remainder of the day.
(7) Pitchers will be permitted to finish the batter if his or her maximum pitch
limit has been reached for that calendar day.
(8) Intentional Walks will be included in Pitch Count totals.
(9) Required Rest shall be defined in “Days” starting at 12:01am and ending at
11:59 pm of the next calendar day.
(10) If a game continues past 12:01am, those pitches are counted as if pitched
prior to midnight. If a game is suspended, when it resumes it is defined as a
different day.
(11) A pitcher who is removed from the mound during a game shall not be
permitted to return to pitch in the same game, even if the pitcher is retained in
the game at another position.
(12) Any violation of any part of the pitch count rule, the result is the Head Coach
is ejected from the current game and receives an additional game suspension.
(13) The total number of pitches thrown by an ambidextrous pitcher are counted
for the purpose of calculating pitch count, regardless of which arm or
combination there-of is throwing.
11U
(Mosquito)
13U
(Pee Wee)
15U Boys/16U
Girls (Bantam)
18U (Midget)/
Canada Cup/
Canada Games Rest
required
1‐25 1‐30 1‐35 1‐40 None
26‐40 31‐45 36‐50 41‐55 1 day
41‐55 46‐60 51‐65 56‐70 2 days
56‐65 61‐75 66‐80 71‐85 3 days
66‐75 76‐85 81‐95 86‐105 4 days
75 85 95 105 Maximum
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL- CANADIAN CONTENT cc11
(14) When a game is stopped by inclement weather or for any other reason
than a mercy rule, that specific game has to be resumed at the point of
stoppage. If Pitcher “A” is the starting pitcher of a game and has a pitch
count below the first threshold, Pitcher “A” can then be used as a
pitcher again for that particular game but considering he will be
carrying the number of pitches thrown when the game stopped. This
applies for a game that is resumed on the same day or on the next day.
For example, if Pitcher “A” threw 30 pitches at 15U (Bantam)
Nationals, he will then be allowed to throw a maximum of 65 pitches
when the game resumes. If Pitcher “A” had thrown 36 pitches when the
rain started, he would not be eligible to pitch if that game is rescheduled
for the next day as he needs his full day of rest. If the game is
resumed during the same day, he can then come back as pitcher while
carrying his pitches.
15) A player playing in a division other than their own age group shall
pitch based on the pitch count of the lower aged division.
For example; a 13U playing at 15U is subject to the 13U rules;
a 18U playing at 15U is subject to the 15U rules.
8.06 (c) The manager or coach may make a 2nd visit to the mound while the same
batter in at bat in order to remove the pitcher.
IMPORANT PITCHING INFORMATION
(ALL MINOR DIVISIONS)
When the use of a pitcher who is ineligible or about to become ineligible is
evident scorekeepers or other officials MUST notify the manager or coach of
the offending team so that an opportunity for assignment correction may be
immediately affected. In the event that a coach deliberately over pitches his
pitcher, the result is the Head Coach is ejected from the current game and
receives an additional game suspension.
INFORMATION ON COMPILING A PITCHER'S
"OUT" RECORD
An "OUT" is listed against a pitcher's record during HIS ACTIVE
ENGAGEMENT ONLY. Although all runners who may be on base upon a
pitcher's removal are chargeable to that pitcher in determining won or lost
records... ALL OUTS ON THE SAID RUNNERS SHALL BE LISTED
AND CHARGED TO THE PITCHING RECORD OF THE SUBSTITUTE
PITCHER OF ACTION WHEN THE OUTS OCCUR.
NO PITCHER SHALL BE SUBJECT TO PENALTY for exceeding the out
limitations through: (a) a scorer's error in compiling records: or (b) should
the limit be exceeded on a DOUBLE or TRIPLE play on the pitcher's last
out.
NOTE: The extras OUT (S) as circumstances may provide in multiple play
sequences ARE NOT CHARGEABLE TO ANY SUCCEEDING PITCHER.
Scorers MUST NOTE the fact on the pitching records that extra out(s) over
the maximum allowed were the results of a double or triple play action.
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL- CANADIAN CONTENT cc12
Baseball Canada Umpires Committee
Rule Interpretations / Case Studies
1) Obstruction before first base.
Situation: On a fly ball to right field line and a runner on third the batter runner is
obstructed on his way to first. The right fielder catches the ball and R3 tags up and
scores.
Rule 7.06 a): When a batter-runner is obstructed before he touches first base, the ball is
dead and runners shall advance, without liability to be put out, to the base they would
have reached, in the umpires judgment; if there had been no obstruction.
Interpretation: Since the batter was out on the fly ball, and would not have reached first
base safely, the batter shall be ruled out and the play stands with no reference to the
obstruction.
2) Runner stealing on ball four:
Situation: With a runner on first, with a 3-1 count on the batter, the runner attempts to
steal second on the pitch, and the umpire calls the runner out. Ball four was called on the
pitch. The runner, because of being called out, is now off the base is tagged again.
Interpretation: Because the runner was entitled to second base on ball four, and is called
out in error, the umpire shall call time, and place the runner back at second.
3) Multiple substitutions involving the DH
Situation: The pitcher is removed from the mound and is now playing short stop, and the
new pitcher enters the game from the bullpen.
Rule: 6.10 states that the game pitcher can only pinch hit (bat) for the DH. Which means
the new pitcher would have to bat in the batting position that was occupied by the DH.
Interpretation: This is a multiple substitution and the manager can choose where he wants
the players to bat. If the manager does not specify, the new pitcher will bat in the batting
position that was occupied by the DH.
4) Obstruction with continuous action
Situation: Bases loaded, the batter doubles and R3 and R2 score. R1 is obstructed
rounding third base and continues home and is thrown out at home. The batter, on the
throw to the plate, attempts to go to third base and is called out.
Rule 7.06 b) If no play is being made on the obstructed runner (at the time of the
obstruction) the play shall proceed until no further action is possible. The umpire shall
then call time and expose such penalties. In the above situation, R1 would be ruled safe
on the obstruction and the batter would be ruled out.
Interpretation: On an obstruction play, the ball becomes dead when the play is made on
the obstructed runner, therefore, when the tag is made at the plate, time is called and the
runner is called safe on the obstruction, and the batter returns to second.
5) Balk followed by a throw
Situation: R1 is stealing. The pitcher balks while throwing to first. The first baseman
catches and throws the ball to the shortstop, who tags R1 as he over slides second base.
Rule 8.05 penalty. The ball is dead and each runner shall advance one base without
liability to be put out unless all runners advance at least one base in which case the play
proceeds without reference to the balk.
Interpretation: A balk is indicated, and since the first baseman caught the ball, (not a wild
throw as indicated under “penalty approved ruling”), time is called and the runner is
awarded second base.
6) Catcher’s Interference with R3 stealing home
Situation: 1 out, with runners at second and third. R3 attempts to steal home, R2 remains
at second. The catcher interferes with the batter and the pitch is fouled off.
Rule 6.08 c). If a catcher interferes with the batter, the batter is awarded first base. If, on
such interference a runner trying to score on a steal or squeeze from third, the ball is dead
and the runner on third scores and the batter is awarded first base. Runners not
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL- CANADIAN CONTENT cc13
attempting to steal or not forced to advance remain at the base they occupied at the time
of the interference.
Rule 7.07. If with a runner on third base and trying to score by means of a squeeze play
or a steal, the catcher steps on or in front of home plate without possession of the ball, or
touches the batter or his bat, the pitcher shall be charged with a balk and the batter shall
be awarded first base on the interference and the ball is dead.
Interpretation: The balk is enforced. All runners advance one base, and the batter is
awarded first base on the catcher’s interference.
6) Plays / Attempted Plays
Interpretation: A play or an attempted play shall be considered as one of the five
following situations:
 Tag or attempted tag of a runner
 Tag or attempted tag of a base
 Throw from another fielder in an attempt to get an out
 Rundown
 Balk
7) Player Manager and visits to the mound
Interpretation: A player manager is the person who is designated by his team and is
recognized under the roster requirements.
1) A player (or player coach) may visit a pitcher as permitted by the umpire whether or not
time has been called. This would not be considered a trip to the mound.
2) A player manager who leaves his position to talk to his pitcher, whether or not time is
called, is subject to the same rules provisions as a non playing manager. Therefore, a trip
would be charged to the pitcher.
8) Ball Going into Player’s Uniform
Existing Rule 5.09(g), 7.05(f), 7.05(g), 7.05(h), 7.05(i)
If a batted or thrown ball inadvertently goes inside a player or coach’s uniform (or lodges
in the catcher’s face mask or paraphernalia), the umpire shall call ``Time.`` The umpire
will place all runners, including the batter-runner, in such a manner that in the umpire`s
judgment, will nullify the action of the ball going out of play. In no circumstance may
any outs be recorded on such a play.
This does not apply to situations where a batted or thrown ball lodges in a fielder`s
glove. In that case, the ball is alive and in play. A fielder may legally throw the glove
with the live ball lodged in the glove. Any fielder in possession of the glove containing
the lodged ball is considered in possession of the ball for the purpose of the Rules.
9) Backswing Hits the Catcher
Existing Rule 6.06(c)
If a batter strikes at a ball and misses and in the umpire`s judgment unintentionally hits
the catcher or the ball in the back of the batter on the follow-through or backswing while
in the batter is still in the batter`s box, it shall be called a strike only, not interference.
The ball will be dead, however, and no runner shall advance on the play. If this infraction
should occur in a situation where the catcher`s initial throw directly retires a runner
despite this infraction, the play stands the same as if no violation occurred. If this
infraction occurs in a situation where a batter would normally become a runner because
of a third strike not caught, the ball shall be dead and the batter declared out.
This interpretation does not apply to a situation where a batter is attempting to bunt and
decides to pull his / her bat backwards and not attempt to strike the ball. This situation is
not considered a follow-through or backswing as the batter is in full control of his / her
bat. Should the batter interfere with the catcher by pulling his / her bat backwards and
there is no play being made on a runner, “Time” shall be called but no interference. This
does not give the batter the license to pull his back intentionally interfering with the
catcher. If the catcher is making an attempt to retire a runner when the batter pulls his /
her bat backwards, interference should be called on the batter and no runners may
advance. If the catcher’s first throw retires the runner attempting to advance, then the
interference shall be disregarded
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL- CANADIAN CONTENT cc14
THE OFFENSE
10) Batter’s Position in the Batter’s Box
6.03 The batter’s legal position shall be with both feet within the batter’s box.
APPROVED RULING: The lines defining the box are within the batter’s box.
No part of either foot may extend beyond the lines defining the batter’s box when he
assumes his position. There is no penalty other than the umpire must direct the batter to
the correct starting position.
11) Batter-Runner retreating toward home plate
7.08 (i) After he has acquired legal possession of a base, he runs the bases in reverse
order for the purpose of confusing the defence or making a travesty of the game. The
umpire shall immediately call “Time” and declare the runner out;
When running towards 1st base, it is acceptable for the batter-runner to run backwards
towards home plate for the purpose of avoiding a fielder attempting to tag him. Once the
batter-runner crosses back over the edge of home plate, he shall be called out. The ball
remains alive and in play for the purpose of other runners.
THE DEFENCE
Appeal Plays
12) Batting Out of Order
6.07(b) When an improper batter becomes a runner or is put out, and the defensive team
appeals to the umpire before the first pitch to the next batter of either team, or before any
play or attempted play, the umpire shall (1) declare the proper batter out; and (2) nullify
any advance or score made because of a ball batted by the improper batter or because of
the improper batter’s advance to first base on a hit, an error, a base on balls, a hit batter
or otherwise.
Any Batting Out of Order appeal under rule 6.07 when an improper batter becomes a
runner or is put out, must be made before the next pitch to a batter of either team, or a
play or attempted play.
13) Live Ball
7.10 Any runner shall be called out, on appeal, when —
(a) After a fly ball is caught, he fails to retouch his original base before he or his original
base is tagged;
(b) With the ball in play, while advancing or returning to a base, he fails to touch each
base in order before he, or a missed base, is tagged.
(c) He overruns or overslides first base and fails to return to the base immediately, and he
or the base is tagged;
(d) He fails to touch home base and makes no attempt to return to that base, and home
base is tagged.
Any appeal under this rule must be made before the next pitch, or any play or attempted
play. If the violation occurs during a play which ends a half-inning, the appeal must be
made before the defensive team leaves the field.
APPROVED RULING: (1) No runner may return to touch a missed base after a
following runner has scored. (2) When the ball is dead, no runner may return to touch a
missed base or one he has left after he has advanced to and touched a base beyond the
missed base.
If the ball is thrown out of play while making an appeal, such act shall be considered an
attempted play for the purpose of making an appeal and no further appeal will be
allowed.
For the purposes of an appeal, the defensive team only includes the pitcher and the
infielders crossing the foul lines and the catcher leaving his position around home plate.
Balks
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL- CANADIAN CONTENT cc15
14) Throw to the First Base Fielder away from First Base
8.05(b) The pitcher, while touching his plate, feints a throw to first base and fails to
complete the throw.
It shall be a balk if the pitcher, while in contact with the rubber, throws to a first baseman
whom is either in front of or behind first base and obviously not making an attempt to
retire the runner at first. There would be no violation if the pitcher throws directly to first
base even though the first baseman is not there to field the ball. This only applies to first
base and not second or third base. The first baseman should be within a step and a reach
of the runner in making an attempt to retire him or her.
15) Throw to second base fielder or short stop fielder away from second
8.05(c) The pitcher, while touching his plate, fails to step directly toward a base before
throwing to that base;
8.05(c) Comment: Requires the pitcher, while touching his plate, to step directly toward
a base before throwing to that base. If a pitcher turns or spins off of his free foot without
actually stepping or if he turns his body and throws before stepping, it is a balk. A
pitcher is to step directly toward a base before throwing to that base but does not require
him to throw (except to first base only) because he steps.
It is not a balk if the pitcher attempts to pick-off a runner at second base and seeing that
neither the second baseman or the shortstop are covering the base, throws to either of
them at their position. Neither fielder in this case needs to be in the vicinity of the base or
making an attempt to retire the runner. This only requires the pitcher to step towards the
base prior to making the throw.
16) Ball Hits a Bird or other Animal
2.00 IN FLIGHT describes a batted, thrown, or pitched ball which has not yet touched
the ground or some object other than a fielder.
If a batted or thrown ball strikes a bird in flight or any other animal on the playing field,
the ball remains alive and in play, the same as though it had not touched that animal.
Therefore, it is possible to make a legal catch on a batted ball still in flight.
If a pitched ball hits a bird in flight, the pitch is nullified and play shall be resumed with
the previous count to the batter.
17) Infield Fly
7.08(f) Any runner is out when — he is touched by a fair ball in fair territory before the
ball has touched or passed an infielder. The ball is dead and no runner may score, nor
runners advance, except runners forced to advance.
If an infield fly touches a runner not on his or her base, both the runner and batter are
out. The ball is dead and runners may not advance.
18) Balls Deflected Out of Play
7.05 (h) One base, if a ball, pitched to the batter, or thrown by the pitcher from his
position on the pitcher’s plate to a base to catch a runner, goes into a stand or a bench, or
over or through a field fence or backstop. The ball is dead;
APPROVED RULING: When a wild pitch or passed ball goes through or by the catcher,
or deflects off the catcher, and goes directly into the dugout, stands, above the break, or
any area where the ball is dead, the awarding of bases shall be one base. One base shall
also be awarded if the pitcher while in contact with the rubber, throws to a base, and the
throw goes directly into the stands or into any area where the ball is dead.
If, however, the pitched or thrown ball goes through or by the catcher or through the
fielder, and remains on the playing field, and is subsequently kicked or deflected into the
dugout, stands or other area where the ball is dead, the awarding of bases shall be two
bases from position of runners at the time of the pitch or throw.
OFFICIAL RULES OF BASEBALL- CANADIAN CONTENT cc16
19) Intentionally Deflected Ball
If, in an umpire’s judgment, a fielder intentionally deflects or kicks a thrown or batted
ball out of play, the award is two bases from the position of the runners at the time the
ball was kicked or deflected
An unintentional deflection occurs when the momentum of the fielder causes the ball to
go out of play. For example, the ball has come to rest on the playing field and is then
deflected or kicked out of play.
If the umpire determines that the ball would have gone out of play on its own even
though it was deflected in an attempt to prevent it from going out of play, the award is
only one base from the time of the pitch or two bases from the time of throw.
20) Intentionally Deflected Ball by a Fielder other than the Catcher
If a thrown ball deflects off a fielder and goes directly out of play, the award is two bases
from the time of the pitch if it is the first play made by an infielder, otherwise it would be
two bases from the time of the throw.
If a fielder has secure possession of a batted or thrown ball, and subsequently deflects or
kicks the ball out of play, the award is two bases from the position of the runners at the
time the ball is deflected or kicked.
If a fielder has secure possession of a batted or thrown ball, and subsequently drops the
ball and it goes out of play, the award is two bases from the position of the runners at the
time the ball is dropped
Trip to the Mound
21) Beginning of a Trip
8.06 A manager or coach is considered to have concluded his visit to the mound when he
leaves the 18-foot circle surrounding the pitcher’s rubber.
A trip to the mound begins and ends with the 18-foot circle surrounding the pitcher’s
rubber.
22) Pitcher Ejected
8.03 When a pitcher takes his position at the beginning of each inning, or when he
relieves another pitcher, he shall be permitted to pitch not to exceed eight preparatory
pitches to his catcher during which play shall be suspended. A league by its own action
may limit the number of preparatory pitches to less than eight preparatory pitches. Such
preparatory pitches shall not consume more than one minute of time. If a sudden
emergency causes a pitcher to be summoned into the game without any opportunity to
warm up, the umpire-in-chief shall allow him as many pitches as the umpire deems
necessary.
If a pitcher is ejected during an inning in which he is pitching, the substitute pitcher shall
be given as much time as the umpire deems necessary similar to the time allotted for an
injured pitcher.
23) Pitcher playing another position and returning to pitch
8.03 When a pitcher takes his position at the beginning of each inning, or when he
relieves another pitcher, he shall be permitted to pitch not to exceed eight preparatory
pitches to his catcher during which play shall be suspended. A league by its own action
may limit the number of preparatory pitches to less than eight preparatory pitches. Such
preparatory pitches shall not consume more than one minute of time. If a sudden
emergency causes a pitcher to be summoned into the game without any opportunity to
warm up, the umpire-in-chief shall allow him as many pitches as the umpire deems
necessary.
6.10(b) The Designated Hitter may be used defensively, continuing to bat in the same
position in the batting order, but the pitcher must then bat in the place of the substituted
defensive player, unless more than one substitution is made, and the manager then must
designate their spots in the batting order.
A pitcher may change to another defensive position only once per inning. This would
eliminate the Designated Hitter role if being utilized. Upon returning to pitch in the same
inning, the pitcher will receive eight warm-up pitches.
akm
b1
RULES & REGULATIONS
FOR
BASEBALL CANADA
CHAMPIONSHIPS
b2
RULES & REGULATIONS
FOR
BASEBALL CANADA CHAMPIONSHIPS
Note: Reference to the male gender shall also mean female where appropriate and the singular
shall mean plural and plural shall mean singular where appropriate.
THE RULES & REGULATIONS THAT FOLLOW SUMMARIZE THE OPERATIONAL
PROCEDURES, WHICH MUST BE CONFORMED WITHIN THE
HOSTING OF ANY BASEBALL CANADA CHAMPIONSHIP.
Any Member can submit proposals to amend the game rules and/or a Baseball Canada Championship rule
prior to 45 days before the October/November Board of Directors meeting. Those proposals may be submitted
to the Director General of Baseball Canada.
The Director General shall, at the latest 15 days before the planned date of the October/November Board of
Directors meeting, publish and communicate all the proposed amendments to the Board of Directors.
Any new rules will be in force the year following the adoption of the proposed change. At any time, the Board
of Directors can waive the need for this notice with a unanimous vote.
Where there is a change to the official rules of baseball, the change will not take effect until it is approved by
the Board of Directors.
PART I - THE TEAMS
1.1 Performance Guarantees:
1.1.1 Financial Responsibility:
Each Provincial Baseball Association (PBA) shall be required to have on file at the Baseball
Canada office in Ottawa a letter of financial responsibility that will cover all its
teams competing in the Baseball Canada Championships. This letter shall continue in
force from year-to-year until rescinded in writing. The letter of financial responsibility
shall make the PBA financially responsible for any damages or other costs caused by the
PBA's team(s).
1.1.2 Attendance:
Each year, on or before November 30th, each PBA shall advise Baseball Canada in writing
of its intention to appear or not appear at the various Baseball Canada Championships
in the following year. Failure to do shall result in the following default decisions being
taken by Baseball Canada. Provinces now have the option to attend all events but are only
obligated to the ones listed below.
 In the case of British Columbia, Ontario and Quebec, that:
 they will attend all championships except Junior and Senior, as they are required
to do so, and
 In the case of New Brunswick, Newfoundland, Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island,
that:
 they will be attending the 13U (Pee Wee) Atlantic, 15U (Bantam) Boys and Baseball
Canada Cup championships; and
 Baseball Atlantic shall be advised that it must send one team to the 18U (Midget)
and 21U (Junior) championships.
 In the case of Alberta, Manitoba and Saskatchewan, that:
 they will be attending the 13U (Pee Wee) Western, 15U (Bantam) Boys and
Baseball Canada Cup championships; and
 The Western Canada Baseball Association shall be advised that it must send one
team to the 18U (Midget) and 21U (Junior) championships.
Any Province/Region that qualifies/confirms for but does not show up at a Baseball Canada
Championship will be fined $1,000.
The Baseball Canada Senior Men’s Championship will be held annually with provincial
participation on an optional basis.
1.1.3 Team Eligibility:
The roster, issued in electronic form by either the PBA office or the PBA President shall
be the only document required as proof of eligibility to represent the PBA at a Baseball
Canada Championship.
b3
1.2 Eligibility Rules:
1.2.1 Athletes:
(a) Only amateurs are permitted to play in sanctioned Baseball Canada Championships.
(i) An amateur baseball player is one whose involvement in baseball is not his primary
source of income.
(ii) A former professional reinstated* to amateur status may participate in a Baseball
Canada Championship.
*NOTE: It is the responsibility of the Manager, Baseball Operations of Baseball Canada
to reinstate a professional as an amateur. Any professional who wishes to be reinstated,
as an amateur must complete a reinstatement form supplied by Baseball Canada.
The forms must then be submitted by July 1 of the current year, through the Provincial
Association concerned, to the Manager, Baseball Operations of Baseball Canada
who shall rule on it. To be eligible for reinstatement, an individual must be released
by, or retired from, any professional team and not subject to a professional
contract for a period of at least thirty days. A copy of the release, or letter of resignation,
must be forwarded to Baseball Canada from the professional club. The decision
of the Manager Baseball Operations of Baseball Canada is final and may not be appealed.
(b) An athlete participating in a Baseball Canada Championship must be a Canadian
citizen or a full time resident of Canada by September 15th of the previous
year. A player cannot be registered in two provinces simultaneously. Any player
moving to another province after June 1st of the current year, must obtain a release
from their old province in order to play for the new province. Where a
student declares an intention they play under 1.2.1 c) 2) by June 1st, a request for
release shall not be refused.
(c) An athlete must be a registered player of the Provincial Baseball Association
that his team represents.
Exceptions to section 1.2.1 c) are
1) A Senior Division Player needs to be a member of the Provincial Association
they represent, and a resident of said Province as of July 1st. If a Province
does not send a team to Senior Nationals, those Provincial players from said
Province must have played in an Inter-Provincial League in the Province
that wishes to have them represent them at Senior Nationals.
2) Students studying in a province other than their own may represent either
their province of residence or the province in which they are going to school.
The individual involved must state in writing which province they intend to
play for by June 1 of the current year. This is subject to the approval of the
Provincial Association for which they want to play and Baseball Canada.
3) A female athlete may participate in a female event with a Province other
than their own, with permission to play from both Provinces involved and
Baseball Canada.
(d) Specific Criteria:
Senior Men: Open classification
Senior Women: Open classification
21U (Junior): 21 years old and younger who do not reach their 22nd birthday during
the current calendar year.
18U (Midget) Boys: 18 years old and younger who do not reach their 19th birthday
during the current calendar year. (For Nationals; Bottom 3 seeded teams in Pool B have the opportunity
to use 2 overage players. If Host Province is in the bottom 3 teams, Host team also allowed 2
overaged players. An overage player is maximum 1 year older.)
21U (Midget) Girls: 21 years old and younger who do not reach their 22nd birthday
during the current calendar year.
Baseball Canada Cup and Canada Games: 17 years old and younger who do not reach
their 18th birthday during the current calendar year. (For Nationals; NL, NS, NB, PEI, AB,
SK & MB may bring two players who do not reach their 19th birthday during the current calendar year)
15U (Bantam) Boys: 15 years old and younger who do not reach their 16th birthday
during the current calendar year. (For Nationals; Bottom 3 seeded teams in Pool B have the opportunity
to use 2 overage players. If Host Province is in the bottom 3 teams, Host team also allowed 2
overaged players. An overage player is maximum 1 year older.)
U16 (Bantam) Girls: 16 years old and younger who do not reach their 17th birthday
during the current calendar year. (For Nationals; NF, NS, NB, PEI, AB, SK, MB, ON2, QC2,
and BC2 may bring three players who do not reach their 18th birthday during the current calendar year)
b4
13U (Pee Wee) Boys and Girls: 13 years old and younger who do not reach their 14th
birthday during the current calendar year.
Female players can play in Male events one calendar year older than the male ages
stated above.
1.2.2 Coaches:
(a) Only coaches meeting the following requirements will also be eligible to coach.
* A Province can identify a coach as a ‘Development Coach’. These coaches can only be a ‘Development
Coach’ for one year. A ‘Development Coach’ must be a certified Provincial Coach. If the
Coach was to return for a 2nd year to the Canada Cup, they would need to meet the Comp-Dev
coaching requirements.
(b) Names of coaches, along with their respective NCCP passport numbers (cc #), must
be included in the email roster. All coaches must be able to prove certification during
the championship.
(c) A chef de mission is mandatory and should be assigned by the PBA. A chef should
be appointed by the PBA and should not be a coach or/and a manager. Any chef
should be assigned to any administrative task and will serve as liaison with the Baseball
Canada Representative. Chef should be reminded to tour all rooms upon check-in
and inform accommodation site/host of any damages. Upon check-out, chef should
room tour along with accommodation/host reps to confirm rooms’ status.
1.2.3 Rosters:
(a) The final team rosters shall be approved by the PBA and submitted to Baseball Canada
nine (9) days before the first scheduled game of the Championship.
(b) Failure to comply with paragraph (a), shall result in the PBA being subject to a $500
fine, payable to Baseball Canada.
(c) The rosters are to include each participating coach's Coaching Certification number
(cc #).
(d) Provincial offices shall provide a list of suspended players to Baseball Canada prior
to April 1st . An updated list shall be sent by August 1st.
(e) Team staff without proper certification will be removed from the roster. To add a
team staff individual following the deadline in 1.2.3 (a) will result in a $50 fine/
individual to a maximum of $100/team.
(f) Changes to the roster jersey numbers following the pre-tournament meeting
may, at the discretion of Baseball Canada rep, result in the PBA being subject
to a $50 fine, payable to Baseball Canada.
1.2.4 Last minute modifications to the roster
No modifications to the rosters submitted by the PBA as per 1.2.3 will be allowed at the
pre-championship meeting, except for the following situations:
a) A player is injured and cannot participate in the championship as attested by medical
proof.
Division
& Category Requirements
13U (Pee-Wee)
Regionals
1 Coach is Certified Regional
Other Coaches are Trained Regional
15U Boys & 16U
Girls (Bantam)
1 Coach is Certified Provincial
Other Coaches are Trained Provincial
18U (Midget) 1 Coach is Certified Provincial
Other Coaches are Trained Provincial
21U (Junior) 1 Coach is Certified Provincial
Other Coaches are Trained Provincial
Senior Men All Coaches are Trained Regional
or Level 1 Certified + 2 Technical in Old NCCP
Canada Cup
When 4 coaches are on staff:
1 Coach at least Certified Comp-Dev
2 Coaches at least Trained Comp-Dev
1 Coach at least Certified Provincial Coach (*Development Coach)
When 3 are on staff:
1 Coach at least Certified Comp-Dev
1 Coach at least Trained Comp-Dev
1 Coach at least Certified Provincial Coach (*Development Coach)
Canada Games All Coaches are Competition – Development Certified
b5
b) A player is changed following a fax submitted by PBA office or President to Baseball
Canada Rep prior to their first game.
c) After verification of certification by Baseball Canada, a coach is allowed to coach if
PBA includes written confirmation.
1.2.5 Ineligible player on roster
Ineligible player on roster found during the event results in a $500 fine, all games played
become forfeit/s, and ineligible player be removed from roster immediately.
1.3 Publicity:
Publicity Data:
Together with rosters, teams shall supply as much publicity data to the Host Committee
as possible ASAP (Pre championship promo, programs, etc). This may, for example, include
uniform numbers, pictures, and statistics.
1.4 Team Discipline:
1.4.1 Team Discipline:
Team discipline is the responsibility of the individual teams and their coaches and managers,
who shall be held responsible for the maintenance of discipline and proper team or
individual conduct. Any breach of discipline, whether on the playing field or off, shall be
dealt with by the Host Committee and the Baseball Canada Representative.
1.4.2 Team Dress:
Teams shall be dressed in matching uniforms of an acceptable standard. All uniforms,
including those of managers and coaches shall be matching and numbered. No duplicate
numbers shall be permitted unless extenuating circumstances prevent this (i.e. lost baggage,
torn uniforms, etc). Teams must declare their team uniform colors, home and visitors,
at the Pre-Championship meeting. If they have only one set of uniforms, this must
be stated at this time.
1.4.3 Personnel in the Playing Areas:
Only authorized personnel will be permitted to occupy the player's benches or dugout areas.
Eighteen (18) players or twenty (20) for Canada Cup or twenty-one (21) players in
the case of Senior, three (or four) coaches, one trainer and one batboy in uniform are authorized
personnel. A chef de mission will be considered a coach if standing in the dugout
and will have to fulfill the coaches requirements.
1.4.4 Ejections:
A player ejected from a game will be out of that current game only unless the ejection
happens at the conclusion of the game. A player will receive a 1 game suspension for his
second ejection during the championship and 3 games for the third ejection.
All coaches, players, and other team personnel shall be made aware that a second ejection
during the Championship for any reason may result in the expulsion from all games during
the balance of said Championship. Furthermore, appropriate sanctions as specified in
1.4.5, 1.4.7, will be applied and will have to be served. Suspensions will be served during
the remaining championship games involving their team. In case the suspension is not
fully served during the championship, it shall be completed during the next game (s) in
their province.
1.4.5 Touching an Umpire:
Bumping, shoving, or pushing an umpire shall result in automatic ejection from that
game. Further penalty may be imposed at the discretion of the Baseball Canada Representative
and such action must be announced before the next scheduled game of the team
involved.
1.4.6 Tobacco Rule:
The use of all tobacco products, including smokeless tobacco, by on-field participants
(players, coaches, managers, umpires, etc.) shall be prohibited at all competitions sanctioned
by Baseball Canada. Any offenders caught using tobacco products will be ejected
from the game.
1.4.7 Injuring or attempting to injure:
Any participant that is ejected for injuring or attempting to injure another participant is
automatically suspended for three (3) games.
1.4.8 Throwing at a batter:
Any player or coach that is ejected from the game for attempting to throw at a batter is
automatically suspended for one (1) game.
b6
1.4.9 Team infractions:
(Provincial Baseball Associations will be invoiced $100 for this)
include the following:
- Failure to submit starting line-up on time.
- Failure to attend the pre-championship meeting.
- Failure to attend the opening banquet.
- Failure to participate at opening/closing ceremonies.
- Failure to respect rules regarding dugout access and personnel.
- Failure to inform host committee or any change in travel itinerary.
(Provincial Baseball Associations will be invoiced $200 for this)
include the following:
- Any individual misconduct.
(Provincial Baseball Associations will be invoiced $500 for this)
include the following:
- Any team misconduct.
For these infractions, before any fine is imposed on the provinces or (host), the Baseball
Canada Representative may issue one warning in order to allow the team a chance to
solve the problem.
Delivery of notices
The Baseball Canada Representative will deliver the fines or ruling communication personally
to the interested parties. The recipient will be required to execute an acknowledgement
of receipt indicating the name of the recipient and the date and time of delivery.
A copy of the fine will also be sent to the PSO following the championship.
Appeals
Appeals may be presented no later than seven (7) days after the conclusion of the championship.
All appeals must be delivered to the Baseball Canada office.
It is the responsibility of the Appellant to provide all materials which it deems necessary
to the appeal.
Once the appeal has been presented, Baseball Canada will then have fourteen (14) days
after receiving the appeal and without postponement will pronounce its ruling.
NOTES:
The Provincial Baseball Association will be totally responsible for any damages caused
by any member of a delegation to the installation where they are housed, the baseball stadium
or transport units or to any other area.
1.5 Power of Decision:
(a) The Executive Committee of Baseball Canada shall have the power to make decisions
on any point not specifically covered in the Rules & Regulations.
(b) During the course of the Championship the Host Committee and the Baseball Canada
representative shall have the power to make decisions on any point not specifically
covered in the Rules & Regulations. The Baseball Canada Representative has the ultimate
say on any aspects of the championship.
1.6 Pre-Championship Meeting:
1.6.1 At a convenient time, prior to the opening game of the Championship, the Pre-
Championship meeting shall be held. The Chairman of the Host Committee, the Baseball
Canada Representative, and the Baseball Canada Supervisor of Umpires, must be in attendance
at this meeting.
1.6.2 The Baseball Canada Representative shall chair the meeting.
1.6.3 Each team shall send at least one representative who shall have the authority to speak on
behalf of the team and make decisions concerning his team, which shall be binding. At
the meeting, announcements and directions will be made affecting aspects of the Championship.
Non-attendance at the meeting shall not be an excuse for non-compliance.
1.6.4 The Host Committee may, for reasonable cause, limit the number of representatives from
each team provided that at least two (2) are permitted to attend.
1.6.5 Team rosters, fully completed, shall be distributed to each team prior to the start of the
Championship and as far in advance of the Pre-Championship meeting as possible. Any
challenge concerning eligibility of any player must be raised at that time. The final team
b7
rosters shall be approved by the Provincial body and submitted in accordance with rule
1.2.3.
1.6.6 No challenge on the questions of eligibility shall be considered after the conclusion of the
meeting. However, should subsequent information indicate that ineligible players have
been used, the Baseball Canada Executive will have the authority to investigate, and if
necessary, take appropriate action to penalize the Provincial Governing Body, of the team
concerned.
1.6.7 The “travesty of the game” rule will be enforced by the Baseball Canada representative
and the umpires at the event which will result in ejections – first to manager then to players.
Travesty of the game is defined as an attempt to intentionally lengthen or shorten a
game or manipulate the score of the game by any means that has players not “playing to
win”. This would include batters or runners obviously attempting to make outs, pitchers
obviously trying to miss the strike zone when pitching and fielders obviously trying to
make errors.
1.6.8 Pre-Championship Meeting Agenda:
(a) Review of Championship Rules & Regulations.
(b) All Championship rules and procedures, special local field conditions, etc.
(c) Eligibility of rosters, athletes, coaches (NCCP status), etc.
(d) Championship schedule, and home/visitor determination.
(e) Run limitations.
(f) Protest procedures.
(g) Team and player discipline.
(h) Travesty of the game
(i) Extra Inning Game Procedure
(j) Request all teams to report all offensive & defensive changes during the tournament.
(k) Special ceremonies and events.
(l) Closing ceremonies and awards.
(m)Question period.
1.7 Championship Schedule
1.7.1 Schedule Approval:
(a) Baseball Canada shall determine the schedule for each championship in consultation
with the Host Committee. Baseball Canada shall have final approval on all schedules.
(b) All Baseball Canada Championships will be from Thursday (Wednesday for Canada
Cup) to Sunday inclusive and Monday will be the rain day. The 13U (Pee Wee) National
Atlantic event will end on Sunday, no Monday rain day. It is required that all
teams remain available to play on the rain day. For teams busing to the event and
wishing to leave after completion of games, they must wait until receiving approval
from the Baseball Canada Rep.
1.7.2 Playoff game
Any playoff game among tied teams to determine which team will advance to medal play
will be played on Sunday (last day of the event). This does not apply to the Canada Cup,
15U (Bantam) Boys, 18U (Midget).
1.7.3 Start time
A game will not start after 10:00pm during any 15U Boys/16U Girls (Bantam) and 13U
(Pee-Wee) Baseball Canada Championship unless required to complete the event.
1.7.4 Less than Seven Teams:
(a) The teams shall compete in one (1) pool, playing a round-robin schedule that sees
each team play each other team once.
(b) Following round-robin play, the following medal round games shall be played:
(1) gold medal: second place vs first place
(2) bronze medal: third place vs fourth place
(c) A game for fifth place (fifth vs sixth) shall be played in the case of a six team
championship.
1.7.5 Seven Teams:
The teams shall compete in two (2) pools, with the pools determined by Baseball
Canada using the following criteria:
 Teams will be placed in the Pool A and Pool B divisions based on a point
system calculated from the last 3 years results. Three (3) teams in pool A
and four (4) teams in pool B.
b8
 If tournament is hosted in Province of Pool A team, then Pool A is comprised
of both teams from the Host Province and the top team. Pool B is
comprised of the remaining teams.
 If tournament is hosted in Province of Pool B team, then Pool A is comprised
of the top 3 teams. Pool B is comprised of both teams from the Host
Province and all remaining teams.
 If Host Province is ranked 3rd based on the last 3 years results, the Provincial
Team shall remain in Pool A while the Host Team shall go to Pool B.
(b) The teams shall play a round-robin schedule within their own pools, with each
team playing each other team in the pool once in pool B and twice in Pool A.
(c) Following round robin play, if every team in pool A has a win the following
playoff round games shall be played:
 Quarter-final: 3A vs 2B
 Semi-finals: 1B vs 1A and Winner of 3A/2B vs 2A
 Bronze medal game: Semi-final losers
 Gold medal game: Semi-final winners
 Following round-robin play, the following placement games shall be played:
 6th place: 3B vs 4B
(d) Following round robin play, if one team in pool A does not have a win the following
playoff round games shall be played:
 Semi-finals: 1A vs 2B and 2A vs 1B
 Bronze medal game: Semi-final losers
 Gold medal game: Semi-final winners
 Following round-robin play, the following placement games shall be played:
 7th place: 3B vs 4B
 5th place: winner of 3B/4B vs 3A
1.7.6 Eight or Nine Teams:
(a) The teams shall compete in two (2) pools, with the pools determined by Baseball Canada
using the following criteria:
 The "serpentine" structure shall be followed (1,4,5,8 in one pool and 2,3,6,7) in
the other pool) based on the previous year's results.
 The host team and the team from the host province shall not be in the same pool.
 If the pools are of uneven size, the host team shall be in the larger pool.
(b) The teams shall play a round-robin schedule within their own pools, with each team playing
each other team in the pool once.
(c) Following round-robin play, the following "quarter-final" games shall be played:
 QF-1: 3rd pool A vs 2nd Pool B
 QF-2: 3rd Pool B vs 2nd Pool A
with the winners moving on to the medal round and the losers to the consolation
round.
(d) The following medal round games shall be played:
 Championship semi-finals:
QF-1 winner vs 1st pool A
QF-2 winner vs 1st pool B
 Bronze medal game:
Semi-final losers
 Gold medal game:
Semi-final winners
(e) The following consolation-round games shall be played.
 Consolation semi-finals:
QF-1 loser vs 1st pool B
QF-2 loser vs 1st pool A
 Seven place game:
Semi-final losers
 Fifth-place game:
Semi-final winners
(f) There are no placement games played at the Senior Men’s Division.
(g) This section does not apply to the Baseball Canada Cup, 15U (Bantam) Boys, 18U (Midget).
b9
1.7.7 Ten Teams:
(a) This section does not apply to the Baseball Canada Cup, 15U (Bantam) Boys, 18U
(Midget).
(b) The teams shall compete in two (2) pools, with the pools determined by Baseball
Canada using the following criteria:
 The "serpentine" structure shall be followed (1,4,5,8,9 in one pool and 2,3,6,7,10)
in the other pool) based on the previous year's results.
 The host team and the team from the host province shall not be in the same pool.
(c) The teams shall play a round-robin schedule within their own pools, with each team
playing each other team in the pool once.
(d) The following medal round games shall be played:
 Championship semi-finals:
2nd Pool B vs 1st Pool A
2nd Pool A vs 1st pool B
 Bronze medal game:
Semi-final losers
 Gold medal game:
Semi-final winners
(e) The following placement games shall be played:
 Fifth place game: 3A vs 3B
 Seventh place game: 4A vs 4B
 Ninth place game: 5A vs 5B
(f) There are no placement games played at the Senior Men’s Division.
1.7.8 Eleven Teams:
(e) (a) This section does not apply to the Baseball Canada Cup, 15U (Bantam) Boys,
18U (Midget).
(b) The teams shall compete in two (2) pools, with the pools determined by Baseball
Canada using the following criteria:
 The "serpentine" structure shall be followed (1,4,5,8,9 and 11 in one pool and
2,3,6,7,10 and 11) in the other pool) based on the previous year's results.
 The host team and the team from the host province shall not be in the same pool.
 The host team shall be in the larger pool.
(c) The teams shall play a round-robin schedule within their own pools, with each team
playing each other team in the pool once.
(d) The following medal round games shall be played:
 Championships quarter-finals
3rd Pool B vs 2nd Pool A
3rd Pool A vs 2nd Pool B
 Championship semi-finals:
Winner 3B/2A vs 1st Pool B
Winner 3A/2B vs 1st pool A
 Bronze medal game:
Semi-final losers
 Gold medal game:
Semi-final winners
(e) The following placement games shall be played:
 Fifth place game: Loser 3B/2A vs Loser 3A/2B
 Seventh place game: 4A vs 4B
 Ninth place game: 5A vs 5B
(f) There are no placement games played at the Senior Men’s Division.
1.7.9 Baseball Canada Cup:
(a) This section applies only to the Baseball Canada Cup.
(b) The teams shall compete in two (2) pools, with the pools determined by Baseball
Canada using the following criteria:
 Last 3 years Baseball Canada Cup results shall be used to determine the pool
composition.
 First three (3) teams from pool A, and the first two (2) teams from pool B shall
qualify for final round.
 First two (2) teams from Pool A and 1st place team of Pool B shall automatically
advance to semi-finals.
b10
(c) The teams shall play a round-robin schedule within their own pools, with each team
playing each other team in the pool once in pool B and twice in Pool A.
(d) Following round robin play, the following medal-round games shall be played:
 Quarter-final: 3A vs 2B
 Semi-finals: 1B vs 1A and Winner of 3A/2B vs 2A
 Bronze medal game: Semi-final losers
 Gold medal game: Semi-final winners
(e) Following round-robin play, the following placement games shall be played:
 5th place: Loser 3A/2B vs 4A
 7th place: 3B vs 4B
 9th place: 6B vs 5B
To help with the understanding of the rules for the Baseball Canada Cup, below is an example of
how the two pools would be set up (based on 2007’s results):
Pool A: BC – Ontario – Quebec – Saskatchewan
Pool B: Alberta - New Brunswick - Nova Scotia – Newfoundland – PEI - Manitoba
If the teams finished in this order after the round robin, then the medal round would occur as follows:
 Quarter-Final A: New Brunswick vs Québec
 Semi-Final A: Winner of QF vs. Ontario
 Semi-Final B: Alberta vs. British Columbia
 Gold Game: Winner SFA vs Winner SFB
 Bronze Game: Loser SFA vs Loser SFB
 5th Place Game: Loser QF vs. Saskatchewan
 7th Place Game Newfoundland vs. Nova Scotia
 9th Place Game Manitoba vs. PEI
 In order to determine the placement of teams in Pools for the following year, the
final finish will be considered. Finishing 1st will give the province 10 points, finishing
2nd 9 points and so on. Average from the last 3 years will always be used to
rank teams for following year.
1.7.10 15U (Bantam) Boys and 18U (Midget) Divisions
(a) The teams shall compete in two (2) pools, with the pools determined by Baseball
Canada using the following criteria:
 Teams will be placed in the Pool A and Pool B divisions based on a point system
calculated from the last 3 years results.
 If tournament is hosted in Province of Pool A team, then Pool A is comprised of
both teams from the Host Province and the top 3 teams. Pool B is comprised of
the remaining teams.
 If tournament is hosted in Province of Pool B team, then Pool A is comprised of
the top 5 teams. Pool B is comprised of both teams from the Host Province and
all remaining teams.
 If Host Province is ranked 5th based on the last 3 years results, the Provincial
Team shall remain in Pool A while the Host Team shall go to Pool B.
(f) Bottom 3 seeded teams in Pool B have the opportunity to use 2 overage players. If
Host Province is in the bottom 3 teams, Host team also allowed 2 overaged players.
An overage player is maximum 1 year older.
(g) First three (3) teams from Pool A, and the first two (2) teams from Pool B shall qualify
for playoff round.
(h) First two (2) teams from Pool A and 1st place team of Pool B shall automatically advance
to semi-finals.
(i) The teams shall play a round-robin schedule within their own pools, with each team
playing each other team in the pool. Following round robin play, the following
playoff round games shall be played:
 Quarter-final: 3A vs 2B
 Semi-finals: 1B vs 1A and Winner of 3A/2B vs 2A
 Bronze medal game: Semi-final losers
 Gold medal game: Semi-final winners
Following round-robin play, the following placement games shall be played:
 5th place: Loser 3A/2B vs 4A
 7th place: 5A vs 3B
 9th place: 4B vs 5B
b11
1.8 Determination of Home and Visitor:
1.8.1 Round-Robin:
(a) In pools of four, home and visitor will be determined by Baseball Canada when the
schedule is drawn up. Each team will get 1 or 2 home games. Host team will only get 1
home game.
(b) In pools of five, each team shall be given two home and two away games when the
schedule is drawn up by Baseball Canada.
(c) In pools of six, home and visitor will be determined by Baseball Canada when the schedule
is drawn up. Each team will get 2 or 3 home games. Host team will only get 2 home
games.
(d) In the case of a seven-team championship, each team shall have three home and three
away games when the schedule is drawn up by Baseball Canada.
1.8.2 Medal Round Games:
(a) This section does not include the Baseball Canada Cup, 15U (Bantam) Boys, 18U (Midget).
(b) When a team plays a team with a lower finish in the round robin (either in the same pool
or the other pool), the team with the higher finish shall have the choice of home or away.
(c) When two teams meet that finished in the same numerical position in different pools, the
choice of home or away shall be given to the winner of a coin toss by the Baseball Canada
Representative made at a time to be determined by the Representative.
1.8.3 Baseball Canada Cup, 15U (Bantam) Boys, 18U (Midget).:
(a) This section applies only to the Baseball Canada Cup, 15U (Bantam) Boys, 18U
(Midget)..
(b) For all medal-round, qualification, and placement games, when a team plays a
team from the same pool with a lower finish in the round robin, the team with
the higher finish shall have the choice of home or away. When a team plays a
team from the other pool, the choice of home or away shall be given to the winner
of a coin toss by the Baseball Canada Representative made at a time to be
determined by the Representative.
(c) The coin tosses will be done by the Baseball Canada Representative at a time or times
to be determined by the Representative.
PART II - GAMES AND PROTEST PROCEDURES
2.1 Playing Rules:
2.1.1 Official Playing Rules:
All games of the Baseball Canada Championships shall be governed by the Baseball
Canada’s Official Rules of Baseball.
2.1.2 Protective Headgear:
(1) All players shall wear double ear-flap helmets while in the on deck circle, at bat and
on the base-paths in all age categories.
(2) The C.F.A.B. rules require catchers in all age categories to wear protective helmet
and mask while catching.
NOTE: This includes practice and warm-up situations such as the bullpen or between
innings. Players & Coaches must wear at least a mask in all practices and warm up
situations.
(3) All batboys/batgirls must wear protective double earflap helmets.
(4) Any player acting as a base coach must wear a proper double ear flap helmet; exclude
Senior and 21U (Junior) Divisions.
2.1.3 DH Rule:
The designated hitter may be used in Senior, 21U (Junior), 18U (Midget) and Baseball
Canada Cup.
2.1.4 Courtesy/Designated Runners:
No courtesy runner will be allowed for the catcher(s).
2.1.5 Length of Games:
All games in Baseball Canada Championships (13U (Pee Wee), 15U Boys/16U Girls
(Bantam), 18U (Midget), Baseball Canada Cup, 21U (Junior), and Senior) will be seven
(7) complete innings (6 ½ complete innings if the home team is ahead) or until a winner
is declared. If a game is delayed due to curfew, darkness, power failure or any other
weather related conditions at any point prior to completion, the game shall be resumed
from the point of the delay.
b12
2.1.6 Mercy Rule:
a) The ten run mercy rule shall apply after the fifth (5th) inning or four and a half inning
(4 1/2) if the home team is ahead. In a mercy rule ball game, the winning team will
get credit for 7 defensive innings while the losing team will only get credit for innings
played.
b) The fifteen run mercy rule shall apply after the forth (4th) inning or three and a half
inning (3 1/2) if the home team is ahead. In a mercy rule ball game, the winning team
will get credit for 7 defensive innings while the losing team will only get credit for
innings played.
2.1.7 Extra inning game procedure
If the game is tied at the completion of regulation (7 innings), the following procedures will
be implemented during extra innings:
Each team will begin the extra inning (and any subsequent necessary extra innings) with a
player on first and second, no outs. (see example below to confirm who is on first and second)
The batting order of the extra inning or any subsequent innings will be determined by how
the previous inning ended. (see example below to confirm who is at bat)
The traditional system of the visiting team hitting in the top of the inning and the home team
hitting in the bottom of the inning will remain in effect until a winner is determined.
Example:
If the last regulation inning ends with the #6 hitter having the last plate appearance (PA),
then the extra inning begins the #7 hitter at bat, and the #5 hitter at second base and the
#6 hitter at first base.
With the exception of beginning the inning with runners on first and second base with no
one out, all other “Official Baseball Rules” and “Canadian Rules” will remain in effect
during extra innings required to determine a winner.
Extra inning game procedure for each division as outlined below:
11U (Mosquito): extra inning procedure for only round robin games.
13U (Pee Wee): extra inning procedure for only round robin games.
15U (Bantam) Boys: extra inning procedure for only round robin games.
16U (Bantam) Girls: extra inning procedure for only round robin games.
18U (Midget): extra inning procedure for only round robin games.
Senior Women: extra inning procedure for only round robin games.
Canada Cup: extra inning procedure for only round robin games.
21U (Junior): extra inning procedure for only round robin games.
Senior Men: extra inning procedure based on regular baseball rules.
2.1.8 Re-entry Rule:
In 13U (PeeWee) and 15U Boys/16U Girls (Bantam) Championships, any starting player
may be substituted for and returned to the game, one time only. He/she must return to
his/her original place in the batting order. Any pitcher, if removed from the game may return,
but may not pitch. Any further substitutions do not jeopardize the right of re-entry
for the original/starting player. Any starting player returned to the game may pitch if
he/she has not previously assumed that position.
2.1.9 Unless there are extenuating circumstances which are accepted by the Baseball Canada Representative,
a team not showing up for any game during any Baseball Canada championship
will receive a $1,000 fine and will have the manager of the team suspended for the following
2 games. If the incident occurs within the last 2 games played by the team, the manager shall
serve his/her suspension in his/her province.
2.2 Game Procedures:
2.2.1 Dugout
The home team will use the third base side dugout while the visiting team will use the
first base side.
2.2.2 Time between two games
If a team is scheduled to play two games back to back, it will be entitled to a rest period
of one hour following the completion of the first game. However, upon agreement with
the head coach, the Baseball Canada Representative may reduce this rest period.
b13
2.2.3 Pre-Game Procedures:
(a) Teams shall arrive at the designated playing field at least forty-five minutes prior to
the designated starting time of the game.
(b) Starting twenty-five minutes before the designated time of the game, the home team
shall have the field for ten minutes for infield/outfield practice.
(c) The visiting team shall then have the field for ten minutes for infield/outfield practice.
(d) Following the visiting team's practice time, there shall be the meeting at home plate
among the Head Coaches and the umpires.
NOTE: Scheduled starting time means the time indicated on the Championship
schedule drawn up prior to the start of play. Designated starting time means the time
determined by the Baseball Canada Representative in the event of delays because of
inclement weather, lengthy preceding game(s), or other factors.
(e) The starting line-up including all available substitutes listed shall be given to the official
scorer at least thirty minutes prior to the start of the game. The list shall include
the surname of each player, coach and manager with his usual first name and his uniform
number. The uniform number is to be listed to the left of each name and the
playing position of the starting players listed to the right of each name.
(f) Forty-five minutes prior to turning over the line-up cards to the umpire, team managers
will indicate to each other if they plan "left" or "right" handed pitchers to start the
game.
2.2.4 Post-Game Procedures:
(a) At the conclusion of play, the teams shall line up in the home plate area for the traditional
handshakes.
(b) Following the handshakes, upon the request of the Host Committee (which shall be
given prior to the game) the teams shall line up on their respective baselines for the
presentation of awards.
(c) Following any post-game ceremonies, teams shall vacate the dugouts in a timely
manner so as to not delay any following games.
2.3 Protest Procedures:
(a) The host will submit the names of the entire Protest Committee to Baseball Canada,
at least two (2) weeks prior to the Championship.
(b) The Baseball Canada Representative will approve the Protest Committee for the
Championship.
(c) The Protest Committee shall be composed of sufficient members to ensure that three
members are present at each game of the Championship.
(d) The names of the members of the Protest Committee shall be made known to the
teams at the Pre-Championship meeting. The Baseball Canada Representative will sit
on the Protest Committee.
(e) To be heard, protest must be accompanied with a cash deposit of $100. In the event
that the protesting team wins the protest, the cash deposit will be reimbursed.
(f) When a protestable incident occurs, the protesting Head Coach must, before the next
pitch is made or an attempted play is made, inform the game Crew Chief that he is
lodging a protest.
(g) The Crew Chief shall suspend play and inform the manager of the opposing team and
the Protest Committee.
NOTE: No protest may be made on a judgment call.
(h) The Protest Committee, the Head Coach making protest and the game Crew Chief
shall retire to a private area away from the teams, spectators and other persons.
(i) The Protest Committee shall hear and question in the following order:
 the game Crew Chief,
 the protesting Head Coach, and
 the opposing Head Coach (if necessary).
The Protest Committee shall have the power to exclude any of those persons while
talking to any of the others.
(j) The Head Coach’s and game Crew Chief shall then leave while the Protest Committee
shall discuss the protest.
(k) Before ruling on the protest, the Protest Committee may confer with any person
whom they believe may be helpful in assisting them reach a decision.
(l) The Protest Committee shall rule on the protest and inform the game Crew Chief and
he in turn will advise the Team Head Coaches and resume play.
b14
(m)The game Crew Chief shall put the decision into effect and order resumption of play
from the point of suspension.
(n) No further argument or comment on the protest shall be entertained.
(o) The decision of the Protest Committee shall be final. There shall be no appeal to any
other body.
2.4 Medal Games not being played:
(a) If an event ends without completion of semi final games, no medals will be awarded.
(b) If gold medal game cannot be completed, both teams receive a set of gold medals.
(c) If bronze medal game cannot be completed, both teams receive a set of bronze medals
PART III - UMPIRES
3.1 Assignments:
The Supervisory Team, for the Baseball Canada Championship shall be assigned by
Baseball Canada. In all, nine umpires and one Supervisor of Umpires are to be assigned
during a 6 team Championship. For a 10 team Championship, 12 umpires plus one Supervisors
and two Assistant Supervisors are to be assigned. For an 11 team Championship,
15 umpires plus one Supervisor and two Assistant Supervisors are to be assigned.
The Provincial Umpire Supervisors shall nominate umpires for Baseball Canada Championships
to the Umpires' Committee of Baseball Canada, with approval from the Provincial
Presidents. The Baseball Canada's Umpires' Committee will then assign the nominated
Umpires to each Championship.
3.2 Umpires Meeting:
At a convenient time prior to the Pre-Championship meeting described earlier, the umpiring
staff, the Supervisor of Umpires, the Chairman of the Host Committee, and the Baseball
Canada Representative shall meet. The discussions will include ground rules, umpiring
crews, and any other items the umpiring crews may wish to discuss for the purpose of
clarifying rules or procedures.
3.3 Umpire infractions:
(Provincial Baseball Associations will be invoiced $100 for this) include the following:
- Failure to follow the proper dress code.
For this infraction, before any fine is imposed on the provinces, the Baseball Canada
Representative may issue one warning in order to allow the umpire a chance to solve the
problem.
b15
PART IV - BASEBALL CANADA
CHAMPIONSHIPS - TIE BREAKING
FORMAT, PRIORITIES, & FORMULA
4.1.1 Please note the following before going through the tie-breaking priorities:
4.1.2 In any 11 team tournament, the tie-break priorities will be used only to rank the team
within each pool. No tie-break games shall be played with any 11 team tournament.
4.1.3 When a multiple tie occurs and is only partially resolved, the remaining ties will be resolved
by continuing on with the remaining tie breaking priorities until all priorities have
been exhausted. Then, and only then, will the remaining tied teams return to priority
number 1 and proceed through the order again.
4.1.4 In a three-way tie, for first place only, one team will be awarded first place using the priorities.
The second and third teams involved in the tie will play a playoff game with the
winner to advance to the championship round with the first place team. (does not apply
for Canada Cup, 15U (Bantam) Boys, 18U (Midget)).
4.1.5 In any tie scenario for 2nd place after round-robin play, teams will be placed using the tie
breaking priorities and the 2nd and 3rd place team will then play a playoff game to determine
which team will advance to medal play (does not apply for Canada Cup, 15U (Bantam)
Boys, 18U (Midget)).
4.1.6 In a mercy rule ball game, the winning team will get credit for 7 defensive innings while
the losing team will only get credit for innings played.
4.2 Should ties occur between the provinces, division standings will be decided according to
the following priorities:
1. The team with the best win-loss record in the game(s) between or among the tied
teams will place higher in the standings.
2. If the tie still persists, the placement of teams will be dictated by the ratio of number
of runs against per defensive inning for games between or among the original tied
teams.
3. If the tie persists, the placement of teams will be dictated by the ratio of runs scored
per offensive inning for games between or among the original tied teams.
Note: When calculating the number of defensive and offensive innings that are to be
credited to each team under priorities (2) and (3), innings will be calculated on a fractional
basis.
4. If the tie still persists, the team having the best win-loss record in games played versus
the highest placed team not in the tie, followed by comparison against the next
highest placed team, etc. will place higher in the standings.
5. If the tie still persists, the team with the best defensive ratio of defensive runs per defensive
innings in all games will place higher in the standings.
6. If the tie still persists, the team with the best offensive ratio of offensive runs per offensive
innings in all games will place higher in the standings.
4.3 If rule 4.1.3 and 4.2 cannot resolve ranking between tied teams, use Rule 2.1.7 Extra
inning game procedure, for 1 inning between tied teams, until a winner is determined.
Example:
B.C., Ontario and Newfoundland all tied after the completion of the Round Robin portion of the tournament.
 Priority 1:
B.C. defeated Ontario 6 - 3
Newfoundland defeated B.C. 6 - 4
Ontario defeated Newfoundland 10 - 8
 No tie resolved, move to next priority
 Priority 2:
B.C. 9 runs against in 14 innings (9/14) = .643
b16
Ontario 14 runs against in 14 innings (14/14) = 1.000
Nfld 14 runs against in 14 innings (14/14) = 1.000
 B.C. emerges from the tie but Ontario and Newfoundland remain tied and must move to next priority
 Priority 3:
Ontario 13 runs for in 14 innings (13/14) = .929
Nfld 14 runs for in 14 innings (14/14) = 1.000
 Newfoundland emerges from the tie
Example of fractional inning scenarios:
Scenario # 1
If the home team wins the game in the bottom of the seventh inning by scoring a run with nobody out, the
inning count will be:
Visiting Team: 7 offensive innings and 6 defensive innings
Home Team: 6 offensive innings and 7 defensive innings
Scenario #2
If the home team wins the game in the bottom of the seventh inning by scoring a run with one out, the
inning count will be:
Visiting Team: 7 offensive innings and 6 1/3 defensive innings
Home Team: 6 1/3 offensive innings and 7 defensive innings
Scenario #3
The same application of the rule is used in a mercy rule situation. If
the home team is awarded the game by the mercy rule after two outs in the bottom of the fifth inning the
inning count will be:
Visiting Team: 5 offensive innings, 4 2/3 defensive innings
Home Team: 4 2/3 offensive innings 7 defensive innings.
Canada Cup Only
In the Pool A, if teams end up with same record, the tie-break formula will be used. If in the Pool
B three teams end up tied for 1st place with an 4-1 record, the tie-break formula will be used to
determine the team who will finish 1st and advancing to semi-finals. A playoff game will be
played between the two remaining teams to determine which team will move into the 1/4 finals
(winner of this game) and which will play in the 3B vs 4B game (team that lost in this game).
For any other tie scenarios in the “B” pool, the tie-break formula will be used.
15U (Bantam) Boys, 18U (Midget) Divisions Only
In the Pool A, if teams end up with same record, the tie-break formula will be used. If in the Pool
B three teams end up tied for 1st place with only 1 loss, the tie-break formula will be used to determine
the team who will finish 1st and advancing to semi-finals. A playoff game will be played
between the two remaining teams to determine which team will move into the 1/4 finals (winner
of this game) and which will play in the 5A vs 3B game (team that lost in this game). For any
other tie scenarios in the “B” pool, the tie-break formula will be used.