HOPEWELL YOUTH ASSOCIATION Recreational League Park Rules Hopewell Youth Association (HYA)
plays in accordance with the Dizzy Dean Official Rule Book. In addition, HYA has established several
Park Rules as enumerated below. In the event of any conflict, the Park Rules take priority over the
conflicting Dizzy Dean rule(s).
1.1. HYA has a Zero Tolerance Policy that is in effect for all games.
1.2. All players and coaches will be expected to behave in a sportsmanlike manner at all times.
1.3. Any player, coach, or parent/fan, whose conduct is unbecoming or abusive will, at a minimum, be
warned and may be removed from the playing field and/or stands at the discretion of the tournament /
league officials and / or umpires.
1.4. Foul or abusive language will not be tolerated under any circumstances.
1.5. If a parent, player, or assistant coach has been ejected from the field for unsportsmanlike conduct
toward another player, coach, or umpire, the Head Coach of that team will ALSO be ejected, and will be
subject to disciplinary action by the HYA Board of Directors. All those ejected must exit the field, dugout,
bleachers and immediate surrounding areas.
2. RULE BOOKS
2.1. Where the HYA rules are silent, the Dizzy Dean rules apply. Where the Dizzy Dean rules are silent,
then the current MLB Official rules apply. High School rules are not applicable at HYA with the exception
of Travel Baseball.
3. COMMON RULES
3.1. Teams should have at least eight players on the field and ready to play when the umpire starts the
game. In Tournament Play, failure to field at least eight players within 15 minutes of game time results
in forfeiture of the game.
3.1.1. A team may recruit any other HYA player(s) registered for the current season in the
team’s same age group or below to play a regular season game, in order to field at least 8
players. Any recruited player(s) must bat last in the batting order and must play in the outfield.
If a regular team member(s) arrives late to make a roster of 8 players (or more), any recruited
players shall be removed from the game. Adding a substitute to reach 9 players is allowed during the regular season.
3.1.2. See In-Park tournament rules for Recruited Players during the in-park tournament
3.2. When a ball is in play, the play is stopped by the call of the umpire.
3.3. If a fielder rolls the ball underhanded, the base runner will automatically be called safe.
3.4. For ALL Age Groups, NO PLAYER shall be omitted from the Defensive Lineup for more than TWO (2)
INNINGS per game, and those two innings are NOT to be consecutive.
3.5. Any player touched, grabbed, or otherwise diverted by a coach while on the bases during a live
play, except to remove the player out of the way of serious injury, will be declared out.
3.6. Game Results – The HOME team is required to score the game using iScore or a paper scorebook.
3.7. FAKING A BUNT and then HITTING is NOT ALLOWED in ANY League. The batter will be declared
OUT with an immediate Dead Ball. Runners may not advance.
3.8. SLIDING - Whenever a tag play is evident, a runner must slide feet first or seek to avoid contact
with the fielder and / or catcher. Attempting to jump, leap, or dive over the fielder and / or catcher is
not interpreted as seeking to avoid contact. Malicious contact shall supersede all obstruction penalties.
3.8.1. Penalty: The runner shall be called out and may be ejected from the game at the
umpire’s discretion. A player should only be ejected from a game if the contact was clearly
MALICIOUS and the intent deemed to harm another player.
188.8.131.52. Comment: When enforcing this rule, the umpire should judge the runner’s
intent. If the umpire feels that the contact was unintentional, then the runner should
only be declared out. If the umpire feels that the contact was clearly MALICIOUS and
the intent was to harm another player, then the runner should be declared out and
184.108.40.206. Comment: No head first slides, a player may “dive” back to a bag when in a
3.9. The decision to not continue a game by the umpire due to time or weather is a judgment call and
cannot be challenged by a coach. Incorrect interpretation of the HYA rules can be pointed out by a
Coach to the Umpire for review. Once reviewed the Umpire’s decision is final.
3.10. All players will bat in an order established prior to the start of the game. When a batter is out, the
batter leaves the base as per standard baseball rules. If a player is late to a game, needs to leave early,
or is unable to continue because of injury, that spot in the batting order may be skipped WITHOUT
PENALTY (NO OUT RECORDED).
3.11. Home Team keeps the official scorebook and pitch counts in this age group. Pitch counts for all
players must be reported using the 10U Game Report located under coaches forms on the website
(www.hopewellbaseball.org) within 24 hours of game completion.
Visiting Team will complete the following task:
- Works the scoreboard using the SingleScore App.
- Places one set of catcher’s gear in each dugout.
- Get two game balls from the field locker. The two game balls should be provided to the umpire from the field locker at the beginning of the game. Those two balls should be used for the game with one game-ball being provided to each coach at the conclusion of the game for game ball awards to players.
3.14. HYA Recreation League Bat Rule
3.14.1 9u and older age groups: Beginning with the Fall 2012 season HYA will adhere to the
current USSSA Bat Performance Standard which allows any 2 1/4” bat printed with a Bat
Performance Factor (BPF) of 1.15; and bats with a barrel up to 2 3/4” that have the USSSA 1.15
STAMP. 2-5/8” and 2-3/4” bats MUST have the USSSA stamp clearly visible on the taper.
3.14.2. Any player found using an illegal bat will be declared out, runners will return to their
previous base and the Umpires will remove the bat from the game.
3.14.3. Coaches are required to help enforce this rule. Any team found to be using an illegal bat
will result in a Coach Review and possible suspension.
3.15. No player shall throw the bat (intentionally or unintentionally) upon hitting the ball. A bat should
be considered thrown if it hits another player, coach or umpire, or travels more than 10 feet in the air or
20 feet along the ground. The first offense in a game is a team warning, upon the second and
subsequent offenses in the game by any batter on the warned team, the batter/runner is out and no
3.16. The runner cannot be tagged out after overrunning first base as long as the runner immediately
returns to the base and does not attempt to run to second base. An attempt for the purposes of this rule
is the runner turning toward second base in a manner that carries the runner into the field of play.
3.17. The coach may substitute a courtesy runner for the Catcher when there are two outs. The
courtesy runner shall be the player with the last completed at bat.
4. SPECIFIC RULES FOR AGE GROUP
4.1.1. Game Duration
220.127.116.11. Games will be 6 innings or 1 hour and 30 minutes, whichever comes first.
18.104.22.168. No new inning will begin if there are 5 minutes or less remaining on the
umpire’s official game clock.
22.214.171.124. No manager or coach shall employ tactics designed to delay, shorten or extend
the game. The umpires shall be instructed and empowered to continue any game one
(1) additional inning if, in his judgment, any coach or manager as much as appears to be
in violation of this rule.
126.96.36.199. In the event of a tie game, 1 extra inning can be played if time permits.
4.1.2. Runs per inning
The maximum numbers of runs per inning is 5 runs. 7 runs will be allowed in the 6th and any
required extra innings.
4.1.3. Mercy Rule
The Mercy Rule will be 13 runs after 4 innings, 8 runs after 5 innings. Managers can meet and
decide to continue play in the event the Mercy Rule has been reached. The Umpire will instruct
the scorekeeper to turn off the scoreboard once a game has reached the Mercy Rule if the game
will continue with no further score being kept until the time or inning limit has been reached.
A game will also not be called if a team is mathematically eliminated. The game will continue
until the time or inning limit has been reached.
NOTE: The purpose of this rule is to allow the players to continue playing regardless of score in
10 and under age groups.
4.1.4. Defensive Coaches
1 defensive coach is allowed within the perimeter of the dugout.
NOTE: The perimeter of the dugout is within 1 foot of the dugout.
4.1.5. Defensive Players
Nine defensive players are allowed on the field.
4.1.6. Base Running/Stealing
Runners can steal but must not leave the base until the ball crosses the plate. If the runner
leaves early, the umpire will issue a warning to the player and coach and send the runner back
to the original base. If any subsequent runners on that team leave base early, they will be called
A runner who steals second cannot advance to third on the overthrow from the catcher.
Runner must be batted or walked home from third. No stealing of home will be allowed even on
a passed ball. If a player steals third, they cannot go home on subsequent throw. This rule is
specifically referring to stealing home on a pitch that is not put into play, not to a ball that was
hit into play and subsequently overthrown, regardless of if the hit was to the infield or outfield
and where the runner started the play. Once a ball is hit into play a runner can score from any
base on any attempted throw or overthrow. The ball was hit into play and the play is live until
the advance of runners has been stopped and the defense is no longer attempting to make a
play on any runner.
Dropped third strike is an out.
188.8.131.52. Pitch Counts and Rest
A maximum of 75 pitchers are allowed per day in this age group.
For purposes of this rule a day of rest shall be considered 24 hours from the conclusion of the previous game. 24 hours=1 day; 48 hours=2 days, etc.
Coaches who fail to enter their pitch counts prior to the next game taking place will lose a pitcher selected by the opposing coach. If two games are unentered, they will lose 2 pitchers selected by the opposing coach, and so on. The message here is get your pitch counts entered ASAP. This isn't optional and isn't respectful or fair to other players, coaches and the league when you don't keep your pitch counts updated.
PITCHERS ARE ONLY ALLOWED TO THROW 500 PITCHES IN A SEASON. ONCE THAT LIMIT HAS BEEN REACHED A PITCHER IS NO LONGER ELIGIBILE TO PITCH IN THE REGULAR SEASON OR TOURNAMENT.
184.108.40.206. Mound Visits
1 free visit per pitcher per inning. On the second visit to the same pitcher in the same
inning the Coach must remove the pitcher from the game.
4.1.8. General Rules
• Baselines are 65’.
• Infield fly rule does apply.
• Bunting is allowed.
• Intentional walks are NOT allowed.
• No BALKS
5. Pitching Rules
5.1. In addition to any current Dizzy Dean rules on pitching limits, the following shall apply:
5.2. Pitchers, once removed, may not return to the mound.
5.3. The scorer for both teams will perform pitch counts for the pitchers of both teams. While the
visiting team may also conduct pitch counts for both teams’ pitchers, in the event of a disagreement, the
home team’s count will be the official pitch count.
5.4. A Pitcher may start and finish a new batter so long as he/she has at least one pitch left in his/her
5.5. When a player’s pitch count is within 5 pitches of the next players limit, the scorers will notify
each team’s coach in charge of the game
5.6. Regardless of the game situation, a player must be removed from the mound and cannot pitch
again in the game once his pitch limit has been reached
5.7. Failure to remove a pitcher once the player has reached his limit will result in forfeiture of the
game. Failure on the part of the scorers to notify the coaches of either the “5 pitches to go before the
limit” or “limit reached” will not be grounds to nullify forfeiture of the game.
5.8. Each team will be provided one umpire’s warning per game, not per pitcher, for throwing pitch
types not allowed for player’s age group. A second infraction will result in forfeiture of the game.
5.9. A pitcher cannot exit the mound and assume the catcher’s position in the same inning.
5.10 Only fastballs are allowed in 9/10u. No change-up’s, knuckle balls or any kind of breaking balls are allowed.
6. In-Park Tournament Rules
6.1. HYA Recreational League Park Rules will be the Official Tournament Rules, unless otherwise
superseded within these rules.
6.2. Rule Changes
6.2.1. For ALL Age Groups, NO PLAYER shall be omitted from the Defensive Lineup for more
than TWO (2) INNINGS per game, and those two innings are NOT to be consecutive. Coach pitch
age groups (8U and below) are NOT required to adhere to any IF/OF rotation for tournament
6.3. All elimination games still Tied after regulation play will use the International Tie-Breaker (below)
6.3.1. Pool Play games tied after regulation play will be recorded as a tie.
6.4. Tournament Games will be 6 innings unless Mercy Rule or Tie ... No Time Limit for Championship
Games (or "IF NECESSARY" games).
6.5. Mercy Run Rules ARE in effect for ALL games, Including Championship Games.
6.5.1. A game shall be called whenever a team has been mathematically eliminated from the
possibility of at least tying the game in the last regulation inning. Play is NOT continued past
mathematical elimination in Pool Play.
6.6. Umpires may suspend a game until the following day due to weather or time factors. Suspended
games will continue as soon as scheduling permits, and at the exact point of suspension.
6.6.1. Complete Game – If a game is suspended due to weather or other criteria a game will be
considered a complete game after 3 innings, 2 1/2 if Home wining in the 3rd inning while Home
is at bat. If a regulation game is called with the score tied and one (1) or more innings has been
completed beyond three (3) innings, the score shall revert back to last completed inning, or last
completed half (1/2) inning if the home team leads but back no further than the third (3rd)
6.7. Adding a substitute player:
6.7.1. During the in-park tournament, teams may add a substitute player to reach the minimum
of 8 players. Teams may not add a substitute player for a ninth player.
6.7.2. Teams may play with an 8-player line up without penalty (i.e. no out recorded for the 9th
batting position). Any players arriving after the game has begun shall be added to the bottom of
6.7.3. All in-park tournament substitute players must be approved the HYA President
firstname.lastname@example.org prior to the game, approval will be based on:
220.127.116.11. Coaches making every effort to find a substitute of with ability equal to that of
the missing player.
18.104.22.168. Substitute players will be required to bat last and play right field only
6.8. All leagues ... BOTH TEAMS are responsible for updating your game results online using the Game
Report for their age group under Coaches Forms section the Hopewell website as soon as possible after
each game. Brackets will be posted on-line as soon as the completed results are updated.
6.9. Pitchers' Pitch Counts (kid-pitch games) MUST be included in the online Game Report, by both
coaches AFTER EACH GAME. POTENTIAL PENALTY FOR FAILURE TO SUBMIT - FORFEIT!!!
6.10. SEEDING AND TIE-BREAKER CRITERIA:
2. Head to Head Competition
3. Run differential (The difference between runs allowed and runs scored)
4. Runs allowed
5. Runs scored
6. Coin flip
- Max run differential in any game is 7
- Once you advance to the next criteria, you do not return to the previous criteria
- Runs are considered amongst all teams in the pool, not just tied teams
- Head-to-head tie-breaker is for TWO TEAM ties only. If 3 or more teams are tied, then the first tie-breaking criteria jumps to run differential, ..., and never reverts back to head-to-head.
6.12. International Tie Breaker
If the game is tied and time has expired after the required number of innings (allowing for the home
team to bat under normal rules), the game will then continue at the top of the next inning using the
International Tie-breaker rule… - Each half-inning begins with ONE (1) OUT - Each team places their last
out (last batted out) of the prior inning on Second (2nd) base - The batting order will continue on as
normal - The game then proceeds a full inning (or more) until a winner is determined in this manner.
This is NOT a "Sudden-victory" format...the home team always has the opportunity to bat if the visiting
team scores a run.