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 > Little League Online > Media > Little League News Archive > 2012 > September-December > Bulletin: Significant Rule and Regulation Changes for 2013

Bulletin: Significant Rule and Regulation Changes for 2013

Bulletin: Significant Rule and Regulation Changes for 2013

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Little League International has announced the full list of significant changes to the rules and regulations of the program. These changes will go into effect on Jan. 1, 2013.

Among the new baseball regulations is description of the Little League Intermediate (50/70 Baseball Division – Note: Regulation IV (a).

A list of all the significant changes, along with a summary and explanation of the changes, is below:

REGULATION CHANGES

Regulation I(c)(9) has been amended to read, in part:

Applies to: All Divisions

NOTE 1: Each year, Little League International provides each league 125 free criminal background checks that exceed the minimum standard required in this regulation. Information on how to utilize this benefit, as well as how to conduct background checks, can be found on the following Little League website: Child Protection Program

NOTE 2: The United States Department of Justice National Sex Offender Public Registry is free and available at www.nsopr.gov.

IMPORTANT: If no sex offender registries exist in a province or country outside the United States the local league must conduct the more extensive of a country, province or city-wide criminal background check through the appropriate governmental agency unless prohibited by law. Failure to comply with this regulation may result in the suspension or revocation of tournament privileges and/or the local league's charter by action of the Charter or Tournament Committee in Williamsport. If a local league becomes aware of information, by any means whatsoever, that an individual, including, but not limited to, volunteers, players and hired workers, has been convicted of or pled guilty to any crime involving or against a minor, the local league must contact the applicable government agency to confirm the accuracy of the information. Upon confirmation of a conviction for, or guilty plea to, a crime against or involving a minor, the local league shall not permit the individual to participate in any manner.

NOTE: Information regarding background checks is available on the Little League website: Background Check Information

Summary and Implementation: For the 2013 season, this modifies Note 1 and 2 to highlight the reverse in laws of four states with regards to sex offender registries, and the free criminal background checks Little League strongly recommends.

Regulation II(a) has been amended to read:

Applies to: Challenger Rule Book

A Little League Challenger Division team should not have more than 15 players per team on its roster.

Summary and Implementation:  For the 2013 season, this mandates a maximum roster size of 15 players.

Regulation III(d) Note 3 has been amended to read, in part:

Applies to: All Divisions

NOTE 3: If a medical professional, Umpire in Chief, the player's coach, the player's manager or the player's parent has determined a player sustains a possible concussion, the player must be, at a minimum, removed from the game and/or practice for the remainder of that day. The league must also be aware of its respective state/ provincial/municipal laws with regards to concussions and impose any additional requirements as necessary. His/her return to full participation is subject to:

  1. The league's adherence to its respective state/provincial/municipal laws,
  2. An evaluation and a written clearance from a physician or other accredited medical provider and
  3. Written acknowledgement of the parents

Little League International strongly encourages all leagues and teams to not only comply with any applicable state/provincial/municipal laws, but also, to review the information and training materials on concussions that are available free of charge on the Centers For Disease Control website, accessible from the link below. This link provides concussion information from all 50 states: State Concussion Info

Summary and Implementation: For the 2013 season, language was added regarding the recommended procedure a league should follow when a player sustains a possible concussion.

Regulation IV(a) has been amended to read, in part:

Applies to: Baseball Rule Book

Intermediate (50-70) Division: Any participant who will attain the age of 11 years before May 1 and who will not attain the age of 14 years before May 1 of the year in question shall be eligible to compete in the Intermediate (50-70) Division. This means a participant who will be 14 years old on May 1 or after is eligible to play that year; a participant who will be 14 years old on April 30 or earlier will not be eligible for either local league or tournament play in the Intermediate (50-70) Division at any time during the calendar year in question.

  • A 12 year old player who is otherwise eligible under all conditions would be eligible for selection to the Major League, Intermediate (50-70) Division or Junior League tournament team.
  • A player may be selected to participate in one or more regular season games on 1. a Major League team and/or an Intermediate (50-70) Division team, OR; 2. an Intermediate (50-70) Division team and/or a Junior League team. If a player participates in sixty (60) percent of the Regular Season games in each division (Majors and Intermediate (50-70) Division) as of June 15, he/she will be eligible to participate in the Major or Intermediate (50-70) Division for tournament play. If a player participates in sixty (60) percent of the Regular Season games in each division (Intermediate (50-70) Division and Junior League) as of June 15, he/she will be eligible to participate in the Intermediate (50-70) Division or Junior League for tournament play.
  • If a player only participates in sixty (60) percent of the Regular Season games in one division (Major, Intermediate (50-70) Division or Junior League) as of June 15, he/she is only eligible to participate with that particular division in tournament play.
  • A player may only be selected to and participate on one (1) tournament team.
  • Any player who is league age 12 must be permitted to play in the Major Division. The local league cannot force any player who is league age 12 to play in the Intermediate (50-70) Division if the league offers the Major Division.

Summary and Implementation: For the 2013 season, a transitional division of play for baseball players 11 to 13 years of age using 50 foot pitching distance and 70 foot base paths was added.

Regulation IV(g) has been amended to read, in part:

Applies to: All Divisions

Player, manager and coach data must be supplied to Little League International annually. Leagues may submit information from registration by April 1, 2013 or team rosters by June 5, 2013. Players claimed under Regulation II (d) and/or IV (h) must be declared on appropriate forms available from Little League Headquarters annually. It is highly recommended that data be supplied electronically in approved formats to Headquarters via the Little League Data Center. Look for related information online at www.LittleLeague.org/DataCenter. 

Summary and Implementation: For the 2013 season, wording was revised requiring leagues to submit player, manager and coach data to Little League International annually by April 1.

Regulation VI (d) has been amended to read, in part:

Applies to: Baseball & Challenger Rule Books

EXCEPTION: If a pitcher reaches a day(s) of rest threshold while facing a batter, the pitcher may continue to pitch until any one of the following conditions occurs: 1. That batter reaches base; 2. That batter is retired; 3. The third out is made to complete the half-inning. The pitcher will only be required to observe the calendar day(s) of rest for the threshold he/she reached during that at-bat, provided that pitcher is removed before delivering a pitch to another batter.

Summary and Implementation: For the 2013 season, wording was revised allowing a pitcher who reaches his/her imposed days of rest threshold while facing a batter to continue to pitch until the current batter has been retired or reaches base.


RULE CHANGES

Rule 1.07 has been amended to read:

Applies to: Softball Rule Book

The pitcher's plate shall be a rectangular slab of whitened rubber 24 inches by 6 inches. It shall be set in the ground as shown in Diagrams 1 and 2, so that the distance between the front side of the pitcher's plate and home base (the rear point of home plate) shall be:

  1. Minor League: 35 feet
  2. Little League (Majors): 40 feet
  3. Junior/Senior/Big League: 43 feet

Summary and Implementation: For the 2013 season, revised the Junior pitching distance to 43 feet.

Rule 1.10 has been amended to read:

Applies to: Softball Rule Book

The bat must be a softball bat which meets Little League specifications and standards as noted in this rule. It shall be a smooth, rounded stick and made of wood or a material tested and proved acceptable to Little League standards. The bat shall be no more than 33 inches (34 inches for Junior/Senior/Big League) in length, not more than two and one-quarter (2-1/4) inches in diameter, and if wood, not less than fifteen/sixteenth (15/16) inches in diameter (7/8 inch for bats less than 30 inches) at its smallest part. Non-wood bats shall be printed with a BPF (bat performance factor) of 1.20. Bats may be taped or fitted with a sleeve for a distance not exceeding 16 inches from the small end. Colored bats are acceptable. A non-wood bat must have a grip of cork, tape or composition material, and must extend a minimum of 10 inches from the small end. Slippery tape or similar material is prohibited. An illegal or altered bat must be removed.

Summary and Implementation: For the 2013 season, language was added requiring softball bats in all divisions of play to have a 1.20 BPF.

Rule 2.00 has been amended to read, in part:

Applies to: Softball Rule Book

An ILLEGAL BAT is a bat that has been altered or a bat that is not approved for play because it does not meet specifications with regard to length, weight, barrel diameter, labeling or performance standard for the division which it is being used.

Summary and Implementation: For the 2013 season, added the definition of an “Illegal Bat.”

Rule 6.06(d) has been amended to read:

Applies to: Softball Rule Book

(d) the batter enters the batter's box with one or both feet entirely on the ground with an illegal bat (see bat specifications rule 1.10) or is discovered having used an illegal bat prior to the next player entering the batter's box.

NOTE: If the infraction is discovered before the next player enters the batter's box following the turn at bat of the player who used an illegal bat:

  1. The manager of the defense may advise the plate umpire of a decision to decline the penalty and accept the play. Such election shall be made immediately at the end of the play.
  2. For the first violation, the offensive team will lose one eligible adult base coach for the duration of the game.
  3. For the second violation, the manager of the team will be ejected from the game. Any subsequent violation will result in the newly designated manager being ejected.

Summary and Implementation: For the 2013 season, language was added to impose a penalty for use of an illegal bat.

Rule 8.01(f) has been amended to read:

Applies to: Baseball Rule Book

A pitcher must indicate visually to the umpire-in-chief, the batter and any runners the hand with which he/she intends to pitch, which may be done by wearing his/her glove on the other hand while touching the pitcher's plate. The pitcher is not permitted to pitch with the other hand until the batter is retired, the batter becomes a runner, the inning ends, the batter is substituted for by a pinch-hitter or the pitcher incurs an injury. In the event a pitcher switches pitching hands during an at-bat because he/she has suffered an injury, the pitcher may not, for the remainder of the game, pitch with the hand from which he/she has switched. The pitcher shall not be given the opportunity to throw any preparatory pitches after switching pitching hands. Any change of pitching hands must be indicated clearly to the umpire-in-chief.

Summary and Implementation: For the 2013 season, language was added mandating a pitcher must indicate which hand the player intends to pitch with to a batter.


TOURNAMENT RULE CHANGES

Tournament Eligibility Affidavit Rule has been amended to read, in part:

Applies to: Baseball & Softball Rule Books

Once the District Administrator certifies the Eligibility Affidavit, the tournament team will be required to have in its possession:

  1. The Eligibility Affidavit;
  2. A map showing the actual boundaries of the league, with locations noted for the residences of the parent or legal guardian (court appointed) of every participant named on the affidavit;
  3. Tournament verification form for each player;
  4. Copies (originals not required) of the records used to verify date of birth for all players on the affidavit;
  5. Three or more documents to determine residency of the parent(s) or guardian for each player named on the tournament affidavit;
  6. Waivers (i.e. II (d), IV (h), Charter Committee, etc...)



    IMPORTANT: Alternates are not authorized. They shall not accompany the team and shall not be listed on the Eligibility Affidavit.



    Eligibility Affidavit must be certified by the District Administrator or his or her designated appointee and presented by the team manager to the Tournament Director before every game. Each Tournament Team must have twelve (12) eligible players for the District Administrator to certify.



    EXCEPTION: A District Administrator may certify the Eligibility Affidavit for those teams that provide a justifiable reason for not having twelve (12) players.

Summary and Implementation: For the 2013 International Tournament, wording was revised regarding the documentation a league needs to provide within their Eligibility Affidavit for each tournament team and the minimum players selected to a roster without a justifiable reason.

Release of Names Rule has been amended to read:

Applies to: Baseball & Softball Rule Books

The release of names of players selected for the tournament team shall not be made before June 15, or two weeks prior to the start of the tournament within their respective division (whichever is earlier), and not until the availability and eligibility of all prospective team members have been established. (Little League accident insurance for tournament teams will not go into effect until June 15, or the date of the release of the names of Tournament Team members, whichever is earlier).

IMPORTANT: Violation of this rule may be cause for revocation of tournament privilege by the Tournament Committee.

Summary and Implementation: For the 2013 International Tournament, wording was revised allowing leagues to release the names of players selected for the Tournament team June 15 or two weeks prior to the start of tournament within their respective division (whichever is earlier).

Player Eligibility Rule has been amended to read, in part:

Applies to: Baseball & Softball Rule Books

EXCEPTION: The local league board of directors may permit a player to be eligible for selection, who does not meet the 60 percent (60%) requirement, if they provide a physician's note documenting an injury or illness prior to or during the current season prohibiting his/her participation and such note releases the player for the balance of the Regular Season and/or Tournament Play.

Summary and Implementation: For the 2013 International Tournament, added an exception to league eligibility that local league board of directors may permit a player who do not meet the 60 percent (60%) requirement to be eligible for selection if they provide a physician's note documenting an injury or illness prior to or during the season prohibiting participation.

League Eligibility Rule has been amended to read, in part:

Applies to: Baseball & Softball Rule Books

4) All regular season team rosters, player registrations and coach assignments must be submitted to Little League International in accordance with the requirements outlined in Regulation IV (g), not later than April 1, 2013.

Summary and Implementation: For the 2013 International Tournament, added wording making it mandatory to submit player and coach information to Little League International by April 1, 2013, as a condition of eligibility.

Tournament Team Practice Rule has been amended to read:

Applies to: Baseball & Softball Rule Books

Try-outs or practices by tournament teams shall not be held before June 15 or two weeks prior to the start of the tournament within their respective division. Tournament team practice may only take place against other teams within the same or contiguous districts in the same division, providing such practice is done out of uniform. (Little League accident insurance for tournament teams will not go into effect until June 15, or the date of the release of the names of tournament Team members, whichever is earlier).

IMPORTANT: Violation of this rule may be cause for revocation of tournament privileges by the Tournament Committee.

Summary and Implementation: For the 2013 International Tournament, wording was revised allowing Tournament team try-outs or practices on June 15 or two weeks prior to the start of tournament within their respective divisions (whichever is earlier).

Curfew Rule has been amended to read:

Applies to: Softball Rule Book

No inning shall start after midnight prevailing time (12:30 a.m. prevailing time for Junior League Softball; 1:00 a.m. prevailing time for Senior/Big League Softball).

NOTE: An inning starts the moment the third out is made completing the previous inning.

NOTE: Neither Tournament Directors and officials nor tournament teams are permitted to circumvent the curfews established above by continuing, suspending and restarting or starting a game after curfew has been reached and play is required to be terminated If the curfew noted above occurs during a game suspended in accordance with Tournament Rule 11, that game must not be continued after the curfew. It must either be resumed on a subsequent day, or declared ended, as determined by rule.

Summary and Implementation: For the 2013 International Tournament, added language that if curfew occurs during a suspended game, the game must be resumed on a subsequent day or declared ended.

Tournament Rule 3(a) has been amended to read, in part:

Applies to: Baseball & Softball Rule Books

In all Tournament levels and divisions, the penalty for use of an illegal bat [see Rule 6.06 (d)], if discovered before the next player enters the batter's box following the turn at bat of the player who used an illegal bat, is:

  1. The batter is out (NOTE: The manager of the defense may advise the plate umpire of a decision to decline this portion of the penalty and accept the play. Such election shall be made immediately at the end of the play), and;
  2. The manager of the team will be ejected from the game, the batter who violated the rule will be ejected from the game, and the offensive team will lose one eligible adult base coach for the duration of the game.

Summary and Implementation: For the 2013 International Tournament, added language imposing additional penalties to the player and manager for the use of an illegal bat.

Tournament Rule 4(e) has been amended to read, in part:

Applies to: Baseball Rule Book

EXCEPTION: If a pitcher reaches the limit imposed above for his/her league age while facing a batter, the pitcher may continue to pitch until any one of the following conditions occurs: 1. That batter reaches base; 2. That batter is retired; 3. The third out is made to complete the half-inning. The pitcher will only be required to observe the calendar day(s) of rest for the threshold he/she reached during that at-bat, provided that pitcher is removed before delivering a pitch to another batter.

Summary and Implementation: For the 2013 International Tournament, revised wording allowing a pitcher who reaches his/ her imposed days of rest threshold while facing a batter to continue to pitch until the current batter has been retired or reaches base.

Tournament Rule 9 has been amended to read, in part:

Applies to: Baseball & Softball Rule Books

MANDATORY PLAY: 9-10 Year Old Division, 10-11 Year Old Division, Little League, Intermediate (50-70) Division, Junior League: If a tournament team has thirteen (13) or more eligible players in uniform at a game, then every player on a team roster shall participate in each game for a minimum of one (1) at bat. If a tournament has twelve (12) or fewer eligible players in uniform at a game, then every player on a team roster shall participate in each game for a minimum of six (6) consecutive defensive outs and bat at least one (1) time.

Summary and Implementation: For the 2013 International Tournament, revised mandatory play minimum for tournament teams with thirteen (13) or more eligible players in uniform at a game.