Los Altos-Mountain View PONY Baseball

Pinto Division Local Rules

These local rules are designed to make the sport of baseball fun for our Pinto players. Please follow them faithfully. The Board of Directors is asking the parents who serve as volunteer umpires in these games to take the leading role in enforcing these rules. Please also review the League Wide Rules. These are designed to help maintain the condition of our playing fields, to help ensure everyone's safety, and to supplement the League's "Good Neighbor" Policy. Enforcing these general rules, at games and practices, is everybody’s responsibility.

PINTO-1 is designed as an introductory level while PINTO-2 is designed for kids with 1 year or equivalent of PINTO-1 experience. Team standings are not kept. The emphasis is on having fun while learning the fundamentals of baseball.

***New for 2011

The PINTO-2 season will involve 3 2 phases:

1)  Coach Pitch,
2)  Batting Team Player Pitch, and
3)2)  Fielding Team Player Pitch.

For the first phase, rules 1-13 will apply. See Rules 14-15 for changes during phases 2 & 3.

  1. PLAYERS: Each team must field a minimum of 8 players or forfeit the game. Only team roster-listed players may play. Each team may have 10 defensive players on the field. (The 10th player is an outfielder and must play at the same depth as the other outfielders). Everyone must bat. No player may sit out more than 2 innings per game. Sitting out 1 pitch counts as sitting out the entire inning. The innings a player misses arriving late to the game, or leaving early, do not count as sitting out. If an injury keeps a player out for more than 2 innings, the player must be removed from the game. Injured players who cannot bat in their proper position are removed from the game. Players who show up to the game after their listed turn in the batting order are placed at the bottom of the batting order.

  2. LENGTH OF GAMES: The goal is to keep PINTO-1 games and PINTO-2 games under 2 hours. Consequently, all PINTO-1 games are 5 innings (4-1/2 innings) and all PINTO-2 games are 6 innings (5-1/2 innings). However, no inning shall start after 1 hour 45 minutes for Pinto-2 or 1 hour 30 minutes for PINTO-1. Time is judged at the end of the previous inning. Games must start within 10 minutes of the scheduled start time. If a prior game is running late, the next game must start within 20 minutes from the end of the previous game. Games may end in a tie (there shall be no extra-innings in case of tied games).

  3. PITCHING: A coach of the batting team pitches overhand from a distance of approximately 38 ft. As a reference, the pitching rubbers at Bubb and Cooper are at 45 feet while the rubber at Springer is 42 ft. If the pitcher (adult coach, player in the second phase of Pinto-2) is hit by a batted ball, the ball is ruled dead and the batter is awarded 1st base.

  4. BATTING: Each batter will receive a maximum of 5 pitches (exception: third phase of Pinto-2 as described in 15). No bunts are allowed. A batted ball must travel at least 6 feet from home plate. A foul ball counts as a pitch. There are no walks. First thrown bat results in a warning; second time, the batter is out.

  5. BASE RUNNING: Please remember that the motivation for the rules in this section are to facilitate learning baseball and to mitigate a “run fest” where players are racing around the bases without some “legitimate baseball” taking place. Stealing bases is not permitted. Leadoffs are not permitted. Runners may not leave a base until the batter hits the ball. There is no infield fly rule.

    Play is stopped when the ball is either in the possession of (or should have been caught by) the adult pitcher in the vicinity of the pitcher’s mound or in the possession of any defensive player within the infield baselines. “Possession” is indicated by holding the ball in the air. When play is stopped, any runner who is more than halfway to the next base may advance to that base. One extra base is awarded on overthrows at 1st base; however, if the ball remains in play (inside the fence that borders the infield), the runner may advance at his/her own risk. No extra base is awarded in the case of overthrows at 2nd base or 3rd base on balls thrown into the outfield or out of play (outside the fence that borders the infield).

  6. 5-RUNS PER INNING: Each team is allowed to score a maximum of 5 runs per inning. If all players have not batted 3 times by the last inning then each team can have all of its players bat one time.

  7. 10-RUN RULE: The 10-run forfeit rule may be imposed at the sole discretion of the losing manager any time after a half-inning once at least 3-1/2 innings have been played.

  8. SLIDING: Because of the concern for player safety, sliding feet first is mandatory at second, third, and home (unless there is no possibility of a play at a base). Sliding with the apparent intention of injuring or threatening the fielding player is not permitted. Head first sliding is not permitted. Shoes with metal cleats are prohibited.

  9. CONDUCT: We are teaching baseball and sportsmanship. Un-sportsman like conduct (such as but not limited to: throwing bats, helmet, balls, gloves or abusive language) by a coach, parent or player is not condoned. Violators will get one formal verbal warning from the umpire prior to their being removed from the game and could ultimately be subjected to suspension by the Los Altos Pony Baseball Board of Directors.

  10. COACHES: The home-team will occupy the third-base dugout. All coaches are to stay in the dugout or in the doorway during the game. A coach may coach from the outfield when his team is in the field. Base coaches must stay within their coaching boxes. Coaches must keep their players who are not assigned to a field position in the dugout. Players who are warming up may do so in warm-up areas. Except for a parent providing “dugout order”, non-players and non-coaches are not allowed in the dugouts.

  11. UMPIRES: Each team supplies an umpire for each game. It is expected that the designated umpires will be aware of the Pinto Division’s Local Rules as well as the official rules of Baseball. What the umpire rules must stand for that game. Protests that involve an umpire’s judgment are not permitted.

  12. FIELD PREPARATION: The home team is responsible for preparing and maintaining the field before and after a game. The home team is also responsible for putting equipment back in storage after the last game of the day.

  13. ADULT OR TEEN BACKUP TO THE PLAYER CATCHER: To help speed the game, the defensive team is required to provide an adult or teenager to retrieve and return the ball to the adult pitcher when it eludes the player catcher. This backup should be mindful of not excluding the player catcher completely. Note: This is NOT a “coaching” position. Therefore, this person should not be talking to his/her team.

  14. PINTO-2: PHASE 2 PITCHING & BATTING: When a player-pitcher is pitching to his own team (from a distance of 38 feet), pitching and batting rules will be the same as Rule 3 & 4 for coach pitch.

  15. PINTO-2: PHASE 3 2 PITCHING & BATTING: When a player pitcher is pitching to the opposing team, (from a distance of 38 feet), an umpire will call balls & strikes and play will be governed by the official rules of Major League Baseball with one exception: no walks will be allowed. If the count reaches four balls, the batting team coach will pitch to the batter (the strike count achieved by the player pitcher will be the starting point with the coach pitcher until the batter has struck out, put the ball in play, or received five pitches). The umpire will continue to call balls and strikes for the coach’s pitches.

    A player pitcher can have the count reach four balls a maximum of three times per inning. After the third time, the batting team coach will pitch to the batter until the batter has struck out, put the ball in play, or received five pitches. No bunts are allowed. A batted ball must travel at least 6 feet from home plate. A foul ball counts as a pitch. A third strike is an out even if the catcher drops the ball. First thrown bat results in a warning; second time, the batter is out. The strike zone shall be artificially large: bottom of the knees to top of shoulders vertically and one ball width to either side of the plate horizontally.

    A player may pitch for a maximum of 4 innings or 60 pitches (whichever comes first) in a week, and a maximum of 2 innings or 40 pitches (whichever comes first) per day. A pitcher who pitches 2 innings or 20 pitches in a day may not pitch again until 40 hours have elapsed from the start of the game in which the player last pitched.

    If a pitcher reaches his maximum per-day or per-week pitch count during an at-bat, the pitcher will be allowed to continue to complete the current at-bat, but must be replaced immediately afterwards.

    Scorekeepers shall track both innings pitched and pitch count for each pitcher, and will notify the appropriate head coach when a pitcher has reached his/her inning and/or pitch count limit. In the event that the home and visitor scorebooks cannot be reconciled during in the course of a game, the home scorebook will take precedence.

    A single pitch is considered to be an inning. The week runs from 12:00 am Monday to 11:59 PM Sunday. A pitcher who is removed from the mound cannot be brought back in to pitch in a subsequent inning in the same game. (Note: Reaching the maximum three walks in the first inning of pitching does not constitute removal of the pitcher; therefore the pitcher can resume pitching at the start of the next inning.)

    These pitching limits will apply to all regular season, make-up, Club, and post-season games without exception.

All other playing rules are governed by the PONY Baseball 2004 Rules & Regulations and the Official Rules of Major League Baseball.

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