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PITCHING RULES

NO STEEL SPIKES ALLOWED ON PORTABLE MOUNDS AT ANY USSSA EVENT

  • It is a balk if the pitcher, while touching his plate, feints a throw to first or third base and fails to complete the throw: Pitchers may still feint a throw to second.

  • 7.05.A - A player removed from the pitching position (starting pitcher or subsequent relief pitcher) may not return to the pitching position for the remainder of the game. The defensive team may correct this rules infraction at any time by substituting a legal pitcher without penalty. If an illegal pitcher is permitted to pitch, any pitch or play that results is legal. The rule violation should be caught by the Umpire or the offensive team and immediately corrected. If the violating pitcher has legal innings remaining, the violation is deemed an improper substitution and is corrected without penalty. If the violating pitcher has no legal innings remaining, it’s deemed a pitching limitations violation pursuant to USSSA Rule 7.05. B.7.

  • 7.05.B - (Chart 7.05.B-1) The end of the day for the purpose of this rule shall be the time of day or night when the ballpark is shut down and the teams go home for the night break. Games that for any reason extend past midnight (12:00 AM) or start late at night, past midnight (12:00 AM) and are completed before the teams take the night break, shall count as being played on the scheduled day. A game not completed before the night break pursuant to USSSA Rules 7.03.D shall be a suspended game. Suspended games, when resumed (the next day or another day), shall count as being played on two different days. The outs recorded during the portion of the game played prior to suspension shall count as being played on the regularly scheduled day and the outs recorded during the portion of the game played once resumed, shall count as being played on the resumed day

    • 7.05.B.1 - ONE DAY MAXIMUM TO PITCH THE NEXT DAY: The maximum number of innings a player can legally pitch in one (1) day and still pitch the next day.

      • Rule 7.05.B.1 Example: In the 7U – 14U age divisions, a player may legally pitch a maximum of three (3) innings in one (1) day and still legally pitch the next day. If the player pitches three and one-third (3 1/3) or more innings in one (1) day, the player cannot legally pitch the next day.​

    • 7.05.B.2 - ONE DAY MAXIMUM: The maximum number of innings a player can legally pitch in one (1) day.

      • Rule 7.05.B.2 Example: In the 7U – 12U age divisions, a player may legally pitch a maximum of six (6) innings in one (1) day. The player would be ineligible to pitch the next day. Similarly, in the 13U – 14U age divisions, a player may legally pitch a maximum of seven (7) innings in one (1) day. The player would be ineligible to legally pitch the next day.

    • 7.05.B.3 - THREE DAY MAXIMUM: The maximum number of innings a player can legally pitch in three (3) consecutive days.

      • Rule 7.05.B.3 Example: In the 7U – 14U age divisions, a player may legally pitch a maximum of eight (8) innings in three (3) consecutive days. This is to be interpreted as a player may legally pitch any combination of innings to equal eight (8) innings in two (2) days as long as the player doesn’t pitch more than three (3) innings the first (1st) day. Similarly, as a player may legally pitch any combination of innings to equal eight (8) innings in three (3) days as long as the player doesn’t pitch more than three (3) innings the first (1st) or second (2nd) days.

    • 7.05.B.4 - MANDATORY DAYS OF REST:

      • 7.05.B.4(a) A player that pitches more than three (3) innings in one day MUST rest the next day.

      • 7.05.B.4(b) A player that pitches eight (8) innings in two (2) consecutive days MUST rest the next day.

      • 7.05.B.4(c) A player that pitches three (3) consecutive days (regardless of total quantity of innings pitched) MUST rest the next day.

    • 7.05.B.5 - For all cumulative totals in this rule, one (1) out equals one-third (1/3) of an inning, two (2) outs equals two-thirds (2/3) of an inning and three (3) outs equals one (1) full inning. A pitcher that pitches in a game and records no outs is not charged with any innings pitched.

    • 7.05.B.6 - Outs recorded during a game that ends in forfeit shall count towards a pitchers’ innings limits.

    • 7.05.B.7 - For purposes of pitching limitations rules, a pitcher is in violation of the rule if he records any out above the legal pitching limits pursuant to these rules.

      • Rule 7.05.C.7 Exception: Exceeding the maximum innings allowed in the case of a double or triple play shall not be counted against the pitcher for the purpose of this rule but shall be counted towards the pitcher’s limits with regards to the eligibility to pitch the next day, etc.

    • 7.05.B.8 - It shall be the responsibility of each team to challenge pitching violations by notifying the Umpire and then filing a Protest with the League / Tournament Director. A protest may be filed at any point after the pitcher in violation records any out beyond his legal limit AND while the pitcher in violation is in the game as the pitcher of record. If such violation is the last recorded out of the game, the protest MUST be filed prior to the Umpires and the protesting team leaving the field of play.

    • Rule 7.05.B.1 – 7.05.B.7 Penalty: Any violation shall result in immediate forfeiture of the game. If such violation occurs during Pool Play, the team in violation of the rule may not advance to the Championship bracket regardless of record.

    • 7.05.B.9 - Pitch Counts may be used in Major Events with the approval of the Association’s Executive Vice President of Baseball Operations.

  • 7.05.C - Pitching mound visits will remain 2 coaches visits per inning, with the second coaches visit to the same pitcher in the same inning resulting in a pitching change.

GENERAL RULES

The International World Series will be governed by the USSSA National Baseball Bylaws and Rules unless noted differently below.

USSSA Rosters will be the official roster at the International World Series.

USSSA Baseball reserves the right to alter, change, or abbreviate the tournament format when necessary to complete the tournament due to weather.

  1. All playing rules will be governed by the USSSA handbook and the rules for Major League Baseball.

  2. Pitching rules will be by the USSSA National Rule Book and are different from the USSSA Southern California pitching rules.  (6U plays Coach or Machine Pitch with standard So Cal USSSA rules as shown on this website)

  3. USSSA uses a May 1 cutoff for age qualification. 2018 ages will be used in this tournament.

  4. All bases distances and pitching distances will be according to the USSSA Rule Book.

  5. All players must be fully uniformed, which includes the following:  pants, socks, cap, and team shirt with numbers that are non-duplicating and at least 3 inches in height. Protests on uniforms will not be allowed. There is no changing of numbers in a tournament other than for the “infectious disease“ rule. This change must be reported to the tournament director. If a player changes numbers for any other reason, he and the manager will be ejected from the game.

  6. Managers and coaches must be properly dressed but are not required to wear uniforms.

  7. While in the field as a defensive player, hats must be worn.

  8. Metal spikes are prohibited in all divisions 12 and under. Spikes are never allowed to be worn on the mound. 

  9. A full-use batting helmet which covers the top and back of the head must be worn by every player while in the on-deck circle, when at bat and while on the bases.

  10. The catcher must wear all appropriate protective gear.

  11. Games will be 6 innings for 6u-12u and 7 innings for 13u & 14u.

  12. 06U will be limited to 5 runs for the 1st four (4) innings

  13. 07U will be limited to 5 runs for the 1st three (3) innings

  14. Players may play with only one team in the tournament.

  15. Time limits will be 1:20 for 6u, 1:30 for 7u & 8u, 1:45 for 9u-12u and 2:00 for 13u & 14u.  There will be no time limit in the Gold Division Championship Games.

  16. These time limits will be applied to all pool play and non-gold division championships games. We will make every attempt to put no time limit on Gold division championship games.

  17. Once an inning begins, it must be completed. However, if the home team is ahead and batting when time expires, the game is over and the inning is not completed.

  18. 7.03.A.6: Pool play games can end in a tie if the time limit is up or a complete game has been played.

  19. In the event a team cannot make it’s scheduled time the tournament director will first attempt to condense the schedule. If the schedule cannot be condensed a forfeit win will be awarded.  A win awarded by forfeit will be scored as 1 run for each scheduled inning. (example, a 12u game scheduled for 6 innings will be scored 6-0 for the winning team).

  20. Game Time starts after home plate meeting.

  21. USSSA Bat Rules are in effect.
    PLEASE NOTE:  In Southern California Tournaments, 14U teams and older must use BBCOR or Wooden Bats and 13U Major are limited to drop 5 bats.

  22. MERCY RULES: 7u-12u: 15 runs after 3 innings and 8 runs after 4 innings
    13u-14u: 15 runs after 3 innings, 12 runs after 4 innings and 8 runs after 5 innings

  23.  All elimination games excluding the championship game, extra innings or the next inning after time expires will begin with a runner on second base and no outs. The runner at second base will be the player in the batting order position previous to the leadoff batter of the inning (or a substitute for that player). By way of example, if the number five hitter in the batting order is due to lead off the next inning, the number four player in the batting order shall begin the inning on second base. In the event the runner is the pitcher or catcher of record a courtesy runner will be allowed.

ELIGIBILITY:

  • 3.02 A player that is found to be illegal due to an age or grade violation during or after a league or tournament game, shall result in the offending team losing the game(s) team and player being ejected from the tournament, team being placed last in the standings and forfeiting all awards, points, sponsors travel money, and berths that would have been or have been awarded. The illegal player shall be removed from the offending team’s Official Online Roster and additional penalties may be applied to the illegal player and / or team manager / coaches.

  • 3.03 A player shall be eligible to compete in the USSSA Baseball program as long as he abides by the USSSA Constitution and the Official Baseball National By-laws & Rules when his first name, last name (no middle names, nick names, shortened names, slang names, 3 initials, prefixes or suffixes are allowed) and date of birth (in proper format – mm/dd/yyyy) are listed EXACTLY as they appear on his original birth certificate, as a member on an eligible team’s Official Online Roster. Failure to comply with this rule shall result in your team being prohibited from participating in USSSA.

  • 3.04 A player who is in violation of the USSSA Constitution or the Official Baseball National By-laws & Rules shall be an illegal player.

RULES OF CONDUCT:

It is the purpose of the United States Specialty Sports Association to administer the best possible tournaments. To achieve this objective, USSSA must have the cooperation of each player, manager, coach and sponsor. We are guests in the City of Perris, Chino Hills, West Covina, Mira Loma and Riverside and nothing should occur that would reflect adversely on your team, players, our host city, or the United States Specialty Sports Association.  Therefore, it is required that all teams in the tournament comply with the following rules:

  • For the purpose of this event your team's classification is based on the level you are participating. (ex. AA team playing AAA is classified as a AAA team)

  • Players who compete in the week 1 (Open Event) must play up in age at the AAA classification level week 2.

  • Teams participating in the week 1 (Open Event) will be allowed five (5) roster write-ins.

  • AAA teams participating in week 2 will be allowed to have up to three (3) Major Division players on their current online roster.

  • AAA teams will also be allowed to have three (3) roster write-ins. These write-ins must be players at the teams current classification level or below (AAA/AA/A/All-Star).

  • AA teams participating in week 2 are not allowed to have any Major Division players on their current online roster.

  • AA teams participating in week 2 are allowed to have 3 AAA players on their current online roster.

  • AA teams will also be allowed to have three (3) roster write-ins. These write-ins must be players at the teams current classification level or below (AA/A/All-Star).

  • USSSA will determine the classification of a player based on roster, tournament and game history.

  • Team managers must have full control of their players at all times.  This means “on” and “off” the field.

  • In case of disputed play or decision, team managers or captains may consult the game officials.  The other players and coaches or sponsors are to be kept out of the discussion.

  • Managers, coaches, and players are not to fraternize with spectators while participating in an event.  At no time will any participant be allowed to smoke while participating in any USSSA event.

  • At no time will participants be allowed to drink alcoholic beverages nor have in their possession any alcoholic beverage while participating in any USSSA event.

  • Managers are to report any unsportsmanlike or derogatory acts by players or spectators to the Tournament Director.  The purpose here is to prevent any serious situation developing that would be harmful to the tournament.

  • Managers, coaches, players, sponsors, and teams may be suspended by the Tournament Director for violation of any of these rules. This could mean suspension for one or more tournament games, the duration of the tournament, or in the most extreme cases, a longer duration.

  • A player, coach, manager or sponsor may be suspended for fighting, abusive tactics, or unbecoming acts that are detrimental and not in the best interest of the United States Specialty Sports Association and tournament play.

  • The hotels hosting tournament teams will report any occurrence of destruction of property or abuse of hotel property attributed to a team staying in the hotel. All reports from the hotels will be dealt with very sternly.  Team managers please note that this is your only notice. Also, failure to pay hotel bills can result in team and its manager being disbarred from future USSSA play.

  • Any teams submitting bad checks to USSSA will be subject to disbarment.

6 & UNDER SPECIFIC RULES                                  

PLAYING FIELDS

  • Pitching Distance: 30 feet (Coach Pitch) or 38 feet Machine Pitch. You must play the game the way you started.

  • Distance between bases: 55 Feet

  • The recommended home run fence distances: Lines: 140 ft. Centerfield: 160 ft.

  • A 2-foot vertical line will be drawn halfway between each base to assist the umpire in determining where to place the runner when a batted ball is dead. Player must have both feet completely over this line to be entitled to the next base.

  • Ten foot horizontal lines will be drawn 15 feet from the base lines and second base to determine where the outfield begins and the infield ends.

  • A 20-foot Foul Line Arch will be marked from home plate, a batted ball must travel past the 20-foot arch to be a fair ball.

  • A 10-foot pitchers circle will be made with the front of the circle starting at 42 feet.

EQUIPMENT

  • Diamond Level 10 Balls will be the official ball.

  • Catchers are required and must wear full gear (Mask w/Throat Guard, Chest Protector and Shin Guards). No Exceptions!

  • The ball shall not weigh less than 5 ounces or more than 5 1/4 ounces & measure not less than 9 inches or more than 9-1/4 inches in circumference.

TOURNAMENT PITCHING (Machine Pitch OR Coach Pitch)

  • The player fielding the pitcher’s position shall take a position five (5) feet to the rear of the pitching machine and 3 feet to the left or right. A 2 foot line will be drawn at this position. The player must keep at least one foot on this line until the start of the pitch. If the other foot is free it will be on the side of the line extending away from the pitching machine.

  • If a batted ball strikes the coach pitcher, the ball is dead, the pitch counts as a strike and no runners shall advance.(PENALTY) The coach pitcher shall be warned once and if a second infraction occurs the coach pitcher must be removed for the remainder of the game and a new coach pitcher put in his/her place.

  • If a batted ball strikes the pitching machine and remains in fair territory, the ball is in play.

  • If a batted ball strikes the pitching machine and goes into foul territory, the ball is dead, the batter is awarded first base and all runners advance one base.

  • The coach who is feeding the pitching machine shall not give coaching instructions to batters after they hit the ball or to base runners. They may not in any way interfere with the defensive players. 

PLAYING RULES

  • Game length shall be six (6) innings or 1 hour and 20 minutes.

  • If time expires in a tie game during pool play, the game is called a tie.

  • Extra innings will only be played in elimination and championship games. No tie-breaker!

  • All players listed on the Affidavit (roster) will bat. Once the batting order is submitted to the scorekeeper it will not be changed, except for injury, illness or ejection.

  • A batted ball becomes dead when an infielder has control of the ball in the infield or at a base, has possession of the ball and holds the ball over their head

  • Defensive and Offensive Substitutions: Minimum of nine players shall be used defensively with a maximum of ten.

  • There will be free defensive substitutions.

  • There shall be a maximum of four outfielders, stationed not less than 15 feet behind the baseline when the coach pitches the ball.

  • Offensive coaches will be stationed in the coach’s boxes and as a coach feeding the pitching machine or coach pitching.

  • One defensive coach will be allowed right outside the teams own dugout, all other coaches must be inside dugout.

  • A maximum of 4 Coaches will be allowed in the dugout.

BATTERS

  • Are not permitted to bunt. (PENALTY) The batter shall be called back to the plate, the swing is a foul-strike, the ball is dead and no runners may advance.

  • The batter is out if failing to hit a fair ball after a maximum of five (5) pitches or after 3 strikes from the coach pitcher feeding the machine.

  • A batter is not out on a foul ball, foul strike, and/or foul tip unless it is the fifth pitch.

RUNNERS

  • Runners are not permitted to steal or lead-off, and shall remain in contact with the base until the ball crosses the plate.(PENALTY) Runner is out.

  • On a batted ball runners may advance until an infielder has control of the ball in the infield or at a base and holds the ball up.

  • Once the ball becomes dead and in the judgment of the umpire the runner has not gone entirely beyond the halfway point between the bases, the runner will be required to return to the base in which they are coming from.

  • No infield fly rule.

MERCY RULES

  • 15 runs after 3 innings or 10 runs after 4 innings.

  • Maximum five (5) runs per half inning.

  • No maximum runs apply in the 5th and all subsequent innings.