Oak Park Mustang Baseball Rule Sheet In Oak Park, Mustang Baseball is considered an instructional league that is set up to help the players continue to develop their baseball skills, build team work and sportsmanship, and foster a desire to continue to play baseball. The foundational principles of this league are skill development, recreation, sportsmanship, safety, and “competitive cooperation.” Mustang baseball falls under the jurisdiction of the National Little League Association’s official rules. Given its special status as an instructional and recreational league, however, several exceptions to the rules apply to Mustang games. Listed and described below are the most significant exceptions, as delineated by the Pony Association, and some of the most important “local rules” (i.e., rules created by the Oak Park Youth Baseball and Softball Organization) designed to maximize the fulfillment of Mustang principles. Coaches: * Coaches are allowed to help players in the batters box, give instruction as needed. * Coaches are not allowed to coach from the field of play. (ie no coaches in the outfield) * Coaches are not allowed to pitch – this is not a coach pitch league Umpires: * Be aware that our umpires are high school kids looking to make some money. They have undergone basic orientation and training, but they’re still learning the game. They will make bad calls, and we (coaches, parents, and players) will get frustrated with the calls. But please maintain your cool. We should act as coaches for the umpires as well. Coaches may not dispute an umpire’s determination of balls and strikes or plays at any base. The umpire’s ruling stands. If you believe that an ump has made an incorrect call, based on a misinterpretation or misunderstanding of the rules, then politely ask him//her to step aside for a calm discussion with you. Help them understand why their call was incorrect. Instruct don’t berate. * Any coach who yells at an umpire will receive a warning. If the coach yells at the umpire again, the coach will be ejected from the game. Any coach who uses profanity in addressing the umpire, a player, another coach, a fan, a parent, or anyone else on the grounds, will be ejected. The umpire and both coaches must submit to the league president their respective written accounts of any coach ejection that occurs. The president will review and summarize, in a separate report, his or her interpretation of events. This summary will be submitted to the OPYBS Board of Directors. If the Board (in consultation with the league president) finds the coach culpable, the Board will suspend the coach for three games following the determination of culpability. In addition, the culpable coach must participate in a “positive coaching” educational program as defined by the Board. The coach’s participation in the program must occur during the suspension period; that is, the coach my not return to coaching until s/he has completed the program. A second violation and finding of culpability will result in the coach’s termination and prohibition from ever coaching in the OPYBS system again. * Instruct your parents not to yell at the umps. If parent berating of the umpire gets “out of hand” according to the ump, the ump has the authority to forfeit your team. * Above all instruct your players to never question an umpire call. * Rules: Batting * Strike zone. The Mustang League maintains a broad definition of the strike zone in order to stimulate hitting and defensive play, to minimize instances of “base on balls,” and generally to achieve a high level of player engagement in the game (which in turn reduces the likelihood of injury). The Mustang strike zone ranges from the top of the letters on the front of the jersey to bottom of kneecaps; one ball width on either side of the white portion of the plate. The pitch is called a ball or strike depending upon where the ball crosses the plate. Moreover, if any part of the ball touches any part of the strike zone, the pitch shall be called a strike. In cases where a batter stoops, squats, or otherwise reduces the height of the batting posture he exhibited at the time of pitch delivery, the umpire will estimate the zone based on the previously assumed posture, not the ending “squat” position. Base Running * No Lead offs * No balks * No scoring from 3rd on a wild pitch or passed ball at 3rd base * No advance on an overthrow on a stolen base * No stealing home under any circumstances * If a pitcher has two HBP in one inning, an automatic pitching change is required. A ball that hits the ground prior to hitting the batter is a dead ball. The pitch is a ball assuming the batter doesn’t swing, the runner does not get first base and the pitcher is not charged a HBP. * See below for additional pitcher rules. A pitcher must complete his innings consecutively. Once a pitcher is removed or replaced, he may not return to the game as a pitcher in the same inning or in a later inning. * A player may steal after the ball crosses the plate * All players must slide on plays (a throw at the base) at 2nd, 3rd, Home * After memorial day break - strikes will be called if player steps out of the box * All players must wear a cup * Six run limit per inning * Games are 6 innings in length. No extra innings * Can’t start a new inning after the two hour time limit. * Players are not to throw bats - players to receive 1 warning , second warning equals automatic out * All players bat full game ; 3 inning minimum on field * Home team supplies two game balls and calls in game results to league president Oak Park Youth Baseball / Softball Boys Pitching Rules – House League and Travel In addition to the innings limitations that currently exist in the various leagues of OPYB, the following rules shall apply: Pitch Count Limitations * 8 and Under (Pinto): Maximum 40 pitches per game. Maximum 90 pitches per week. This applies to travel / tournament play only since this age group plays T-ball in the house league. * 9 – 10 Year Olds (Junior Bronco and Mustang): Maximum 55 pitches per game. Maximum 125 pitches per week. * 11 – 12 Year Olds (Bronco and Shetland): Maximum 70 pitches per game. Maximum 160 pitches per week. For purposes of measuring pitch counts, the week shall be Monday through Sunday. Each Monday, the pitch count for each player resets. If a pitcher reaches the limitation in the middle of an at bat, he shall be allowed to complete that at bat and then must be removed from the game as pitcher. In the case of the national PONY tournament, if the coaches believe that there is justification for exceeding these limitations, the situation should be discussed with the President of the respective league and a member of the OPYB board IN ADVANCE of the tournament. ENFORCEMENT: Each team shall maintain a pitch count log for its pitchers, and may (it is recommended) elect to maintain a pitch count for the other team. At the end of each game, pitch counts shall be reported to the league President. The league President will communicate pitch counts on a daily basis to league managers/coaches. This may be done by phone, email, posting on the OPYB website, and/or providing a hard copy at the field at which the league plays games. VIOLATIONS: The league President will monitor compliance. First violations of the game or weekly pitch count will result in a warning to the manager. Each additional violation will result in a two game suspension. Types of Pitches All pitches other than fastballs and straight change-ups are banned from OPYB house and travel baseball. ENFORCEMENT: It is expected that the managers and coaches will respect and follow this rule. The umpire shall be responsible for monitoring compliance with this rule. VIOLATIONS: * 1st violation: Immediately following the pitch, the umpire will privately communicate to the manager that a breaking ball was thrown and issue the first warning. Unless the batter hits the ball and reaches base safely, the ball is called dead and the pitch is a ball. * 2nd violation: The umpire will publicly warn the coach and the pitcher. Unless the batter hits the ball and reaches base safely, the ball is called dead and the pitch is a ball. * 3rd violation: The manager is ejected from the game and the pitcher must be removed as pitcher. Unless the batter hits the ball and reaches base safely, the ball is called dead and the pitch is a ball. The manager would be subject to the normal league rules for being ejected from a game. Please leave benches clear of trash and equipment after game Please stick to practice schedule Please assist in maintaining fields Do not practice on muddy or water saturated fields Umpires are required to stay for the whole game regardless of the score.
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