Rookie Ball Rules

Diamond Layout

a) Base lengths are 60 feet.
b) The pitching machine is placed at a distance of 40 ft.
c) The pitching machine is to be set at 40 mph for the entire season.
d) A 9” hardball is used.
e) A 16 foot diameter safety circle shall be marked off directly in front of home plate to surround the pitching machine and its centre shall be 40 ft. from home plate.
f) A batter’s box shall be drawn on both sides of home plate.


League Rules

1. Early Games:

The starting time for each game is 6:00pm.  No new inning shall start after 8:00pm and everyone must be off the field by 8:15pm so the next team can set up.  During the regular season, for a diamond on which there is no second game scheduled, the game can be beyond 8:15 pm to complete the last inning.


Late Games (Bernie Amlin & Tom Wilson Field):

The starting time for late games is 8:30 pm.  No new inning shall start after 10:15pm and everyone must be off the field by 10:30 pm.


New Inning Start:  An inning shall be deemed to have started immediately after the last out in the bottom of the previous inning has occurred.


All Games:

  1. If not enough players are available at the scheduled starting time, the game must begin no later than 15 minutes after the scheduled start time of the game with the players who are present.


  1. 2. a) If after a coach has contacted all his players prior to a game, and is still unable to field 10 players, a player may be called up from the division below; HOWEVER, the player must play in the outfield only. An exception can be made when that player has previously played in the division above for 2 or more games and it is considered to be safe by the parents and coach for that player to take their turn in the infield. The player must also bat in the regular batting order.
    b) The call-up must not play more innings than a regular player in that division. The oldest players from the division below, who are capable of playing up (as determined by the coordinators and coaches), should be called first and if they aren’t available, then the players who are 1 year younger may then be called if the coordinators and coaches feel it is safe for them to play in the division above.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    


  1.  During the regular season, if a team is short a player, then that team may borrow a player from the other team to play defensively only, in the outfield. The borrowed player is taken as the last batter from the previous inning or half-inning. (The borrowed player will most likely change from inning to inning.)


  1. It is the responsibility of the home team coaches to set up the field, including chalking, and supply two game balls (one new and one used). Home team is listed on the right. E.g. 2 vs. 1, Team #1 is home team and shall occupy 3rd base line bench. Please arrive at least 15 minutes early to set up field.


  1.  Cell phones or electronic devices are not permitted on the playing field.
  2.  Full Uniform – The house league supplied shirt, caps or visors must be worn. The uniform shirt must be tucked into the appropriate white baseball pants. No shorts or jewelry are allowed. No metal spikes are allowed.  Pelvic protection and mouth guards are strongly recommended.  For each player not in complete uniform, one out will be charged to the team.  The catcher must properly wear all supplied equipment.  The batter, pitcher, and base runners must wear a helmet with the chinstrap properly fastened.


  1. All players must bat in a continuous batting order. The batting order must be rotated continuously throughout the regular season so that all players have an equal # of times at bat and an equal opportunity to bat 1st, last, etc. whenever possible. The batter that was to bat next after the last out should become the 1st batter the next game with the last out being the last batter, then all late players will be placed after that.
  2. All players must play an equal number of innings where possible.
  3. No player should play more than 2 consecutive innings in the infield or the outfield, whenever possible during the regular season.
  4. Unless a parent requests otherwise, players must be rotated so they play equal number of innings infield and outfield whenever possible and every player should have an equal opportunity to play every position, with the exception of pitcher, continuously throughout the regular season. A head coach, upon consultation with his/her assistants and the parent(s) of the player, may choose not to play a player in the infield for reasons of safety for that player. When the safety reason has been resolved, the player is again included in the regular rotation of field positions.


  1. Aluminum barrel bats are acceptable, however Composite bats are prohibited. If a player brings a composite bat into the game, the player is given an out, the owner of the bat is given a warning and the bat is removed from the game. If the bat reappears again, the owner of the bat shall receive a game suspension.
  2. The first time a bat is thrown in a game, the umpire will give both teams a warning. The next player to throw a bat for either team will be called out. No runner advances.
  3. Sliding headfirst is NOT allowed and will result in the runner being called out.
  4. A runner hit by a batted ball is out when he/she is touched by a fair ball in fair territory before the ball has touched or passed an infielder. When a fair ball goes through or by an infielder and touches a runner immediately behind him, or touches a runner after being deflected by an infielder and the ball is in play, the runner is not out.
  5. To avoid a collision, coaches must encourage players to not stand on a base when a play is not being made.
  6. If a ball is thrown out of play, each runner including the batter-runner may advance two bases. 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.


  1. With 2 outs or the maximum run limit is in scoring position (on 2nd or 3rd base) with less than 2 outs and the catcher gets on base, or is on base, he/she may be substituted with a courtesy runner (the player who made the last out) to allow the catcher to dress for the next inning.
  2. The plate umpire shall stand behind the catcher and must wear a face-mask and chest protector. The 2nd umpire is the traditional base umpire.
  3. Good sportsmanship must be shown at all times; therefore, coaches should not run up the score.
  4. Coaches at any time may communicate only positive instructions to the players on the field. During the regular season only, two defensive coaches may take up positions on the infield for instructional purposes.
  5. Coaches must notify the coordinator if a player quits.


Playing Rules

  1. 6 innings is a full game. If a game is called due to weather, 4 entire innings (3½ if the home team is ahead) must be completed to constitute a full game. If 4 or more innings have not been played, the entire game may be rescheduled by the coordinator.
  2. An inning shall be 3 outs or a maximum of 4 runs per team, whichever comes first. The last inning will have no maximum numbers of runs and will end with 3 outs only. If the time runs out, the score will revert back to the last completed inning.

  3. The orange safety bag must be used by the runner going to 1st base if a play is being made at 1st base or the batter/runner will be called out. The fielder must use the white bag before the runner touches 1st base or the runner is safe.
  4. A team may use up to 10 players in the field (max. 4 infielders plus the pitcher and the catcher). The 10th player must play an outfield position at least 10 feet behind the baseline. Lines shall be drawn from the release point to 4 feet beyond the safety circle.  The pitcher must stand anywhere behind the white line until the ball is released by the machine.
  5. The catcher shall not be classified as an infield position. The catcher must play 1 inning in the outfield by the end of the 3rd inning and 2 by the end of the 6th.
  6. The pitching machine’s speed cannot be altered except at the beginning of an inning. (Failure to comply will result in an out for the team). If the machine is malfunctioning, it may be adjusted upon the agreement of the coaches.  Speed is 40 mph when using the generator, but may need to be lowered when using hydro.
  7. The pitcher must wear a helmet with a face mask/cage on it.
  8. Only the pitcher may return the ball to the operating coach with runners on base. When an infielder has control of the ball and raises his/her hand with the ball to indicate no further plays are being made, the play stops and all base runners will stop at the base they are at. If they are running between bases, and are less than halfway, they must return to the preceding base.  If the base runner(s) is halfway or more between bases, then the base runner must proceed to the next base. The position of the base runner(s) is determined at the umpire’s discretion.  Aggressive base running will NOT be tolerated.
  9. On an overthrow to first base, the batter-runner will not be awarded an extra base (to encourage the players to make the throw to 1st base without penalty). With the overthrow, play stops and the movement of other base runners is determined as in Rule #8 above.

Any overthrow to any other base including home plate, the runners, (at their own risk), may advance an extra base beyond the base they are already advancing to. No further advance by the base runners will be allowed after that and the play is dead.

  1. Each batter will receive a maximum of 5 pitches. A player can let any pitch go by without swinging. A player is called out on 3 missed swinging strikes, however a player is not called out on a foul tip on any pitch. Should a player’s 5th pitch also result in a foul tip, the player will continue to receive additional pitches until the player either: hits the ball fair, swings and misses or lets the ball pass. If a batter is hit by the machine pitched ball, he/she will be awarded 1 base and all base runners that are forced to move, will go to the next base.
  2.  If a batted ball hits the pitching machine, coach, or stays in the safety circle, (“dead ball zone”), the ball is declared dead and the batter is awarded first base and base runners advance only if forced to do so. If the ball passes freely through the safety circle, it is playable. When the last batter (# 10) is up – before the 5th pitch and the ball hits the “dead ball zone”, the ball counts as a foul ball and the batter is allowed to re-hit.  On the 5th pitch, if the ball hits the dead ball zone with bases loaded, the runner on 3rd base scores and the inning is over.  If the bases are not loaded, the batter is out and no runs score.
  3. To avoid a collision, coaches must encourage players to not stand on a base when a play is not being made.
  4.  A player can play 1st base for only 1 inning per game during the regular season. A player can pitch for only 1 inning per game during the regular reason. During playoffs, a player can play each of these positions for a maximum of 2 innings per game.  (Remember players must still play an equal number of innings in the infield and in the outfield whenever possible).
  5.  Batters cannot walk, bunt, lead off, or steal. Penalty is an automatic out.
  6. Where a play is being made, it is the responsibility of the runner to slide to avoid contact. Failure to slide by the runner where contact is made will result in the runner being called out.
  7. The infield fly rule will NOT be used.
  8. Coaches must stay until all players have left the field.


Play-off Rules

All of the above playing rules apply with the following exceptions:


  1. Early Games:

No new inning shall start after 8:00pm and everyone must be off the field by 8:30pm.


Late Games:

No new inning shall start after 10:30pm and everyone must be off the field by 11:00pm.


If the start of the game is delayed, no new inning after 2 hours from the start of the game and everyone must be off the field 2 ½ hours from the start of the game.  If the inning is not completed when it is time to leave the field; the score after the last completed inning is the official score.

  1. All teams must field 8 players by 6:15pm for early games and 8:45pm for late games or they forfeit the game.
  2. A coin toss will determine the home team for round robin games.
  3. 6 innings is a full game. If a game is called due to weather, 4 entire innings (3 ½ if the home team is ahead) must be completed to constitute a full game. If 4 or more innings have been played, the team winning at the end of the last completed inning will be declared the winner. If 4 complete innings have not been played, the entire game must be rescheduled. The home team must call the Field Coordinator to reschedule the game.
  4. Points: 2 points will be awarded for a win, 1 for a tie. Games can end in a tie.
  5. Players must be rotated so that all players play an equal number of innings infield and outfield during each game whenever possible. A player can play 1st base for a maximum 2 innings per game. A player can pitch for a maximum 2 innings per game.


  1. Championship Game: After the round robin, the top 2 teams will play a 1 game championship game. If there is a tie in the standings at the end of the round robin, the winner will be determined by head to head. If there is a three-way tie, the team with the lowest runs against will be given a bye to the championship game. You CANNOT be eliminated by this method.  There will be a tiebreaker game played for the remaining two teams. 
    Championship games will be played in full, weather permitting.  If the championship game is called off early due to weather, follow Play-Off Rule #5. 
    For the championship game, the team with the best record (the team with the most points after the round robin) will be home team.  If there is a tie, the home team will be determined by head by head.  If that game ended in a tie, home team will be determined by a coin toss.
    If the game scheduled for the Day of Champions is canceled due to rain, it will be rescheduled for later that day or the next day.  If the championship game goes into extra innings, the number of innings a pitcher can pitch and play 1st base starts over.


The Board of Directors may amend these rules at any time.