Umpire Guidelines

  1. We are using the A.S. A. rule book as amended by the league.
  2. All judgement calls may not be questioned, balls, outs, etc.
  3. Only the coach on each team may question a rule call. Any other players may be asked to leave the game.
  4. Games will be played with 9 innings, 3 balls and two strikes. If the second strike is a foul ball, the batter will get one courtesy strike. Double-headers will be two 7-inning games with a 55-minute inning cutoff for the first game.
  5. While batting, if one foot is completely outside the batters box, the batter is out.
  6. The batter is out if his foot touches home plate while batting.
  7. If a batted ball hits a base runner, the ball is dead, the base runner is out, and the batter takes first base. All other runners must return to their original base.
  8. If a batted ball touches the batter while in the batters box, it is a foul ball.
  9. If a batted ball touches the batter out of the batters box, the batter is out and any base runners must return to their original base.
  10. If a batter hits a single and makes an attempt towards second base, he may be tagged out.
  11. Same play as #10, but the ball is thrown into the out of play area, the runner gets base to be gained plus one.
  12. The batter singles and stays on first base and the ball is thrown out of play, the runner gets the one base to be gained.
  13. On all out-of-play throws, the runner gets the next base to be gained (if they are between bases) plus one. The determination is made at the time of the throw, not at the time the ball goes out of play. The next base to be gained is not necessarily the one the runner is moving toward (if they are running BACK to a base they've already gained), but the next base they must legally touch. If they have to go back to tag 2nd base, for example, after the overthrow out of play they would need to tag 2nd and then be awarded 3rd. If they did not have to tag the 2nd, they would be awarded 3rd and Home.
  14. If a ball is caught on the fly and carried out-of-play, any base runners get one base. If the ball carried out of play intentionally, any base runners get two bases.
  15. Runners may not leave the base until the ball is batted.
  16. A missed base or leaving a base on a fly ball that is caught has to be appealed to the umpire by the pitcher after time has been called and when play is resumed.
  17. If a base runner leaves base early, the umpire calls time out and rules the base runner out.
  18. A pitched ball must have a minimum of 6 feet and a maximum of a 12 feet arc above the ground. If the pitch is flat or above 12 feet, the umpire calls "illegal" before it crosses home plate. If the batter chooses to swing at the pitch, it is a live ball.
  19. The pitcher must have one foot on the rubber when he starts his delivery.
  20. The runner must make an attempt to get out of the way on an attempted double play. If not, it is an automatic double play. This means the runner must either slide (but not in an attempt to try to take out the fielder) or move out of the fielder's throwing lane.
  21. The catcher or any other player may not block home plate unless they have the ball in their glove.
  22. If any player has the ball in their glove at home plate, the base runner may not try to run through the player. If he does, the umpire will rule him out whether he was safe or not and remove him from the game if flagrant.
  23. Mercy Rule: In 9-inning games, a 15 run rule will apply after 7 innings. In 7-inning games, a 10 run rule will apply after 5 innings. The Mercy Rule may take effect any time after the designated inning (for example, in a 9-inning game, if one team is leading by 14 runs after 7 innings and then goes on to lead by 15 runs after the 8th inning, the mercy rule can be called at this point). The coaches have the option to continue the game using the Fellowship Rule (below) if both coaches agree.
  24. Fellowship Rule: In 9-inning games, a 25 run rule will apply after 4.5 innings. In 7-inning games, a 20 run rule will apply after 3.5 innings. The Fellowship Rule may take effect any time after that as well. When the Fellowship Rule takes effect, the score is finalized, but the coaches should determine how to play the remainder of the game, rather than stop play altogether. Here are some suggestions for how to modify the rest of the game so that it can still be enjoyable for both teams:
    1. Team that is leading is limited to batting once through the order in each subsequent inning
    2. Team that is leading only gets one out in each subsequent inning
    3. Team that is trailing bats through the order in each subsequent inning (regardless of the number of outs)
    4. Team that is trailing keeps batting new innings until they close the distance
    5. Mix up the teams - exchange a few players
    6. No walks for team that is leading and/or no strikeouts for trailing team
    7. Another idea agreed upon by both coaches
  25. By game time, a team must consist of at least 8 players. If a team does not have at least 8 players, that team will have to forfeit the game.
  26. There will be a limit of 5 home runs per game per team, after which a "+1" rule takes effect. The "+1" rule means if both teams reach 5 home runs, both teams may hit one more, and if both hit a sixth, then the limit goes up by one again, and so forth. In other words, neither team can surpass the other's home runs by more than 1, once the limit of 5 is reached. Any home runs hit after that will be an automatic out. Inside-the-park home runs will not count toward the limit and will always be allowed, even if the limit has been reached.
  27. The flip-flop rule will be used in all games. Flip-flop rule:
    1. Is triggered at the beginning of an inning where a mercy rule would take effect
    2. Only applies when the home team is trailing (by whatever number of runs would trigger the mercy rule)
    3. If those conditions are met, the home team would bat first in the next inning and any subsequent innings (assuming the mercy rule has not taken effect).