Play is governed by the official PONY BASEBALL RULE BOOK, with the exception of the following:
Safety and Well Being of the Children
- Concern for the safety of the players, spectators, coaches and umpires will be required during all team activities including games, practices and associated events.
- No practice swings by any player in or around the dugout during the games. A coach must be stationed at the dugout entrance of the team that is at bat at all times.
- NO smoking or alcohol is permitted by the coaches or spectators at the park where practices and games are whatsoever.
- Any player who throws a bat that can or does cause injury while at bat is out at the discretion of the umpire.
- Only adults will be base coaches
Field: As per West Region Pony Pinto Division Baseball Rules
- Bases: bases will be 60 feet apart
- Pitching Rubber: distance will be 38 feet (rubber to back of home plate)
- Dugouts: 3rd Base Dugout = HOME team and 1st Base Dugout = AWAY Team
- Ball: will be a RIF rated baseball (RIF = Reduced Injury factor: softer than regular baseball) for 1st half of season at least
- Bats: no bat larger than 2 5/8 inch barrel and must have a 1.15 BPF rating.
- Shoes: regular soled shoes or plastic/rubber bottom cleats (no metal cleats or spikes)
- Batting Helmet: MUST include a facemask (for base runners also!)
- Pitching Machine: Single wheel jugs machine will be used
- Catchers Equipment: Catchers are required to use a chest protector, shin guards and catchers helmet.
- No player shall sit two innings, until each player has sat at least one inning.
- Safety: recognize 1st base and pitcher as safety positions and only place players there that best safely play those receiving positions. Barring agreed-upon safety considerations to the contrary, each player shall play at least once in the outfield and once in the infield in the first five innings of the game.
- The infield positions are C, P, 1B, 2B, 3B, and SS. The outfield positions are LF, LCF, RCF, and RF.
- Regular season games will be played with 4 outfielders if more than 9 players are present.
- On the Mustang Field, outfielders must be behind the outfield markers (25 feet off the infield grass) prior to the ball being hit. On the Bronco Field outfielders must be behind the outfield markers (10 feet off infield grass) prior to the ball being hit.
- Each team should have a minimum of eight players to start the game. If a team does not have eight players, the game will be considered a forfeit but should still be played for practice and enjoyment of the players.
- To start play, the defensive fielding pitcher must have one foot within the dirt area of the pitchers mound. He must maintain this position until the ball is hit. The pitcher must set up behind an imaginary line that is perpendicular to the path of a pitched ball and runs through the wheel of the machine.
- Infielders may not start play closer to the batter than 5 feet inside the 1st/2nd and 2nd/3rd base baselines. The intent of this rule is to ensure fairness to the weaker batters.
- The batting order will include all players at the game
- A player arriving late will be placed at the end of the batting order.
- A runner may leave the base only when the ball is put into play. If the runner leaves early, the umpire will give the runner a warning. A second violation by the same runner will result in the runner being called out.
- Runner may advance only one base on an overthrow per batted ball. (if there are subsequent overthrows on the same batted ball, runners may NOT advance again)
- The play is deemed over when the pitcher has the ball in his/her possession with at least one foot in the dirt of the pitcher’s mound. If a base runner is advancing to a base as the pitcher gets both feet in the dirt of the pitcher’s mound, he/she may continue to the base at his/her own risk.
- If 2 Runners are on the same base, the play is automatically over & the trailing runner is out.
- SLIDE RULE: Base runners must slide for safety on any close plays (other than 1st) or can be called out. (This call is at the Umpires Discretion)
- Catchers/Fielders must stay out of the base path and stay off the base/plate unless they are making a play on the ball. (Refer to official Pony obstruction rule).
- If a fielder making a play in the base path is knocked down or ran into by a base runner and is prevented from making the play. The runner will be called out.
- A batter will bat until he hits either a fair ball or has received a total of six pitches. A 6th pitch that is foul is not counted. The batter may continue to foul off pitches until he misses the ball or hits a fair ball.
- No bunting, fake bunting or slashing (show bunt, then swing) is allowed.
- If the player is injured and not able to continue batting, the next player will come up (no out will be recorded, no base awarded)
- There is NO Infield Fly Rule – on a pop up to the infield, base-runners advance at their own risk.
- The Pinto Division will use a pitching machine that will be set at 32 MPH for the first 4 games, it will then switch to 34 MPH for games 5 through 8 and finish at 36 MPH for games 9 through 12. The pitching machine will be placed at a distance of 38 feet (to the center of the pitching machine wheel) from home plate.
- If a batted ball hits the pitching machine, the ball is live and in play unless the ball goes into foul territory, at which time the play is dead and runners go to the bases they were clearly advancing to. For example, if after the machine is hit and the ball goes foul and the batter has not yet reached first base he is awarded first base, and if a runner is running toward third base he is awarded third base.
- The pitching machine is considered part of the ground; therefore, if the ball hits the pitching machine, it cannot be caught as a “fly-out” or “pop-out.”.
- The feeder is part of the playing field and the ball is live after it unintentionally hits the feeder.
- A feeder may offer hitting instruction to a batter during the game (such as where to stand in the box etc.) and instruction to runners while the ball is dead.
Innings/Game Time Limit:
- Each 1⁄2 inning is over after 3 outs have been recorded or 5 runs have been scored. Whichever comes first.
- Maximum innings is 6. In the event of a tie score after 6 innings, the game is recorded as a tie.
- No new inning shall start after 75 minutes of play and we have a drop dead time of 90 minutes. (These are strict time allotments, please begin and end your games on time)
- Four innings (or 3 1⁄2 innings if the home team is ahead) constitutes a complete game.
- If the home team is ahead by 10 runs or more after the 4th inning the game is considered over due to the mercy rule.
Further Rules, Governance of Play:
- THE PITCHING MACHINE FEEDER WILL ACT AS UMPIRE (Regular Season Games) He/she may ask for help from the base coaches if need be.
- Catcher: Must be protected with full catcher’s gear, catcher’s glove and HARD skull cap
- Late players: Shall be added to the bottom of the batting order
- Score Keeping: Official Score Keeper is Home team
- Coaching: Each team will need a minimum of 4 adults to manage the team during the game.
- One adult will coach first base
- One adult will coach third base
- One adult will manage the dugout and the on deck batter – this adult will be positioned at the entrance of the dugout while the team is at bat.
- One coach, from the team batting, will run the pitching machine and act as umpire. It is permissible to coach fielders from foul territory beyond first and third bases. Coaches are not allowed on the field during play except for the pitching machine feeders.
BALL OUT OF PLAY RULE: Due to the unique nature of our fields as well as field conditions the Umpire will designate at the beginning of the game where the out of play areas are. Coaches need to ensure no equipment or spectators are in the designated field of play. MLB Rules are applied to an out of play ball.
Umpiring rule reminders
- A “tie” should go to the runner, we are encouraging success on offense
- Require “tags” to be made when necessary to record an out – please hold to this standard as it teaches proper baseball.
- Base-runners making 1st in the field contact with a hit ball are out, the ball is dead.
- Base-runners leaving the base line (effectively 2-3 feet on either side) to avoid being recorded as a “possible” out, are out.
Field Preparation and Game Duties
- Coaches from both teams will be responsible for field prep. First game of the day, coaches should show up 30 minutes prior for initial field setup. Coaches from the last game will be responsible for tearing it down.
- First and third base should be set at 60 ft from the back of home to the back of first and third base. Second base should be set at 85 ft 6 inches to the center of the base from the back tip of home plate. The pitching machine should be set at 38 ft. to the center of the wheel from the back tip of home plate.