Listed below are additions to the Rules and Regulations for PONY Baseball. These ground rules are intended to govern play in the Mustang Division. The Rules and Regulations of Pony Baseball can be viewed in their entirety at www.pony.org.
Practices shall be limited to three (3) per week before the season starts and one (1) per week during the season. Teams are restricted to three (3) activities (games and practices) per week. Practices shall be limited to two (2) hours maximum per session. Any meeting of the team with the manager or coach will be considered a practice. Violation of this rule could result in manager probation or dismissal. Batting practice on game day is not considered a practice.
Dimensions: Infield 60-foot square, pitching distances 35 feet, eight-foot (8) radius circle
- All games will consist of six (6) innings, when time permits, with no new inning starting after 1 hour and 30 minutes. If the score is tied after six completed innings it will end in a tie. If the inning starts before 1 hour and 30 minutes you must finish the inning.
- If time permits, each team will be allowed five (5) minutes of infield practice before the start of the game. Visitors shall take the infield first.
- No more than three (3) runs may be scored by a team during each half inning. However, in the last inning teams are allowed unlimited runs.
- All players present at the game and eligible to play shall be placed on a team line-up in the batting order at the beginning of the game. All players SHALL bat regardless of whether they are playing in the field. Late arriving players will be added to the batting line-up at the end of the list. The coach must report substitutions and changes to the scorekeeper.
- Each player present at the game and eligible to play WILL play at least two (2) innings in the field of a normal six (6) innings game.
- Five (5) warm up pitches are allowed at the beginning of each inning. When changing pitchers, the new pitcher gets five (5) warm up pitches, before the game continues.
- Each defensive team will consist of a maximum of nine (9) players or a minimum of eight (8) players. Even if one team has only eight (8) players to field, the other team may still field nine (9) players.
- Teams must have at least eight (8) eligible players present no later than ten (10) minutes after the scheduled game time. If a team fails to do so, it is an automatic forfeit, although the game may still be played.
- Coach/timeouts: The offense (batting) is allowed one (1) conference (timeout) per inning. The defense (fielding) is allowed three (3) conferences per game. If defense calls a fourth (4th) conference, that team must change pitchers.
- Outfield Position 7, 8 & 9 must be behind the boundary line until the ball is hit. Boundary line is defined as 5 feet from the grass edge.
- Shoes must be worn. The use of molded rubber, multi-purpose tennis shoes or cleats is recommended. Metal cleats are not allowed.
- All protective equipment issued must be worn. All catchers must wear a throat protector, helmet or head protector with mask, shin guards and a chest protector. All catchers must use catchers’ gloves. Each batter, runner and on-deck batter must wear a helmet. The helmet shall be a type that has safety features equal to or greater than those provided (with full plastic cap, extended ear flaps that cover both ears and temples). If a batter enters the batter’s booth without a helmet, she will be declared out by the umpire. When an umpire witnesses a runner deliberately removing her helmet during action, the violator shall be declared out immediately. This action, in no way, eliminates a force play situation.
- NOTE: A mask must be worn by any player while warming up a pitcher at any time, including practices during and before the game.
- All players must wear softball gloves. There shall be no restrictions on types of gloves used, but the pitcher’s glove may not have a white or neon green insert on the outside or in the pocket of the glove.
- All coaches and assistants must remain in the dugout except when occupying coaching boxes (only two coaches/assistants may be on the field at any one time on offense and all coaches/assistants must remain in the dugout during defense). If the coach refuses to follow the rule, that coach may be ejected from the game and if the coach refuses to leave, the game will be forfeited.
- The infield fly rule will be in effect.
- The batter may run to first on the third strike only if the catcher drops the ball and first base is unoccupied.
- A runner on base shall be called out when failing to keep contact with the base before a legally pitched ball has been released from the pitcher.
- Pinch Runner: For Pitcher & Catcher (ONLY). Runner must be the last out.
- Runners may not advance on illegal pitches. This shall apply to all illegal pitching situations. An illegal pitch declared by the umpire, will be considered a ball to the batter.
- Home Plate is “live”. A runner may steal home on a pass ball to the catcher, but may not steal when the pitcher has the ball and is in the pitching circle.
- MERCY RULE: If one team is up by 10 or more runs after the completion of 4 innings the official could call the game.
- Slide/Avoid Contact Rule: Umpires will have the final decision on making the call. Rule will be enforced in order to avoid contact between the player and the catcher.
- The coach will represent the team during official business. He/she will be the only representative that may consult the umpires once the game begins. This means only one coach, not both the head and assistant coach. If more than one coach confers with the umpire, one coach will be asked to leave the field. Failure to do so may result in the eviction of the coach or forfeiture of the game. This rule includes any parents in the dugout and in the spectators’ area. Violators can be asked to leave. The official is there to umpire the game, not to explain each call or justify each call to the coach. Officials will not address parents outside of the playing areas. Please inform spectators not to insist on talking to the officials, they will be warned once and then may be asked to leave the area of play.
Players must attend 50% of Practices per week to be eligible to play 50% of the time of Scheduled games. Failure to do so may result in less time played. If a player doesn’t attend practices and plays more than 50% of the game they will be penalized a full game.
Team players, coaches and parents shall pick up litter on and around the field and seating area after the game. Failure to do so will result in in the manager’s name being turned into the Board of Directors by the Director-on-duty. A manager’s name being turned in a second time will result in a one (1) game suspension.