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Item 1 – Affects Regulation II – Boundaries – Challenger Division
(a) The Little League Challenger Division shall draw its participants from within the established boundaries of the local league or from any area, chartered or unchartered, within league’s district or a contiguous district where a Challenger Division is not offered. Only those participants whose primary residence or the physical location of the school where they attend classes is within the boundaries of the league, or within an area in the league’s district or contiguous district that does not offer a Challenger Division, shall be eligible to participate. Residence, for the purposes of this regulation, is defined in “Residence Eligibility Requirements” in the first section of this book (Pages 16-17).
NOTE: Any player who does not reside in or the school where they attend classes is not WITHIN the league’s boundaries or within an area in the league’s district or a contiguous district that does not offer a Challenger Division must have an approved waiver issued by the Charter Committee at Little League International. All waiver requests to the Charter Committee must be submitted and approved in writing by the league president before the start of the league’s regular season or June 4 whichever occurs first. Requests must be submitted to the regional office through the district administrator. Failure to properly document compliance with the “Residence and/or SCHOOL ATTENDANCE PLAYER Eligibility Requirement” or obtain a waiver through the Charter Committee may result in the disqualification of a player, team or entire league from regular season and special games play. These boundaries MUST be described in detail AND shown on a map when making application for the charter.
EXCEPTION: The Challenger Division may be a district-operated program, supervised by the District Administrator or the Challenger Division Assistant District Administrator. Such a district-wide program may draw participants from any area in the district; however, each local league wishing to do so may retain its own team/league structure.
Synopsis: This would allow leagues chartering the Challenger division to register players from any area within their district or adjacent districts not offering a Little League Challenger program.
Item 2 – Affects Regulation IV(a) – The Players – All Divisions of Baseball and Challenger
(a) Little League (Majors) Division: Any candidate who will attain the age of 9 years on or before December 31 and who will not attain the age of 13 on or before December 31 of the year in question shall be eligible to compete in Little League Baseball (subject to the local league board of directors alignment of this division). This means that a child who will be 12 years old on December 31 or earlier, is eligible to play that year; a child who will be 13 years old on December 31 or earlier will not be eligible for either local league play or tournament play at any time during the calendar year in question. NOTE: League age 12 year olds may participate in Minor Division under certain circumstances.
Minor League Division: Any candidate who will attain the age of 7 years on or before December 31 and who will not attain the age of 13 on or before December 31 of the year in question shall be eligible to compete in the Minor League Division Baseball (subject to the local league board of directors alignment of this division). This means that a child who will be 12 years old on December 31 or earlier, is eligible to play that year; a child who will be 13 years old on December 31 or earlier will not be eligible for either local league play or tournament play at any time during the calendar year in question.
EXCEPTION FOR 2015 ONLY: A child who is league age 13, and who was born May 2002 – December 2002 is eligible for the Major Division in 2015. Any player who would be eligible under this exception must be permitted to play in the Major Division and is eligible to participate within the 2015 Little League (Major) Baseball International Tournament.
Synopsis: This would change the age determination date for all divisions of Baseball and Challenger to be December 31/January 1 which would comply with the International Baseball Federation (IBAF). There would be a one-year transition plan established as outlined, for the 2015 season if this change was implemented.
Item 3 – Affect Regulation IV(a) – The Players – Challenger Division
(a) Little League Challenger Division: Any candidate who will attain the age of 4 years before May 1 and who will not attain the age of 19 before May 1 shall be eligible to participate.
Senior League Challenger Division: Any candidate who will attain the age of 15 years before May 1 shall be eligible to participate.
Note 1: A league offering only the Little League Challenger Division may retain a player until age 22 provided that player is still enrolled in a school program.
Note 2: A league must charter and offer a Little League Challenger Division to be eligible to charter and offer a Senior League Challenger Division.
Synopsis: This would allow players over the age of 18 to register and participate within the Challenger Division. Players league age 4-18 may participate in the Little League Challenger Division, while players
league age 15 and above may participate in the Senior League Challenger Division. Players league age 15-18 may participate in either division.
Item 4 – Affects Regulation VI(b) – Pitchers – All Divisions of Softball
(a) Minor/Little League (Majors) Division: A player may pitch in a maximum of twelve (12) innings in a day. If a player pitches in more than six (6) innings, one calendar day of rest is mandatory. Delivery of a single pitch constitutes having pitched in an inning.
Junior/Senior/Big League: No pitching restrictions apply unless implemented by the local league/district.
Synopsis: This would revise the softball pitching regulations for Regular Season and Tournament.
Item 5 – Affects Regulation VII(d) – Schedules – All Divisions of Softball
(d) Minor/Little League (Major) Division: A team may play two (2) doubleheaders in a calendar week. No team shall play three games in a day. (Exception under condition of Rule 4.12.)
Tee Ball: No team shall be scheduled to play two games in one day. (See Rule 4.12.)
Junior/Senior/Big League: A team may play three (3) games in a day.
Synopsis: This would allow Minor and Major softball divisions to schedule and play two doubleheaders per week (Sunday-Saturday) and Junior, Senior and Big League teams to schedule and play three games in a day.
Item 6 – Affects Regulation VIII(d) – Minor Leagues – Minor Baseball and Softball
(d) A local league may elect to utilize adult pitch (“Minor League Coach Pitch”) or machine pitch (“Minor League Machine Pitch”) in Minor League games involving players league ages 7-12. Pitching machines, if used, must be in good working order and must be operated by adult managers, coaches, umpires or any adult approved by the local league.
NOTE: Participants league age 5 and 6 are permitted to advance to Minor League Coach Pitch or Machine Pitch after participation in Tee Ball for one year.
Synopsis: This would allow league age 5-year-olds, assessed capable by the local league, to be permitted to participate in Minor League Coach Pitch or Machine Pitch divisions.
Item 7 – Affects Regulation IX(a) – Special Games – Junior, Senior and Big League Softball
(a) Special Games are defined as games that:
Exception: Junior League: Up to six (6) games played under Special Games against Little League teams may count towards players’ Regular Season schedule. Senior/Big League: Up to twelve (12) games played under Special Games against Little League teams may count towards players’ Regular Season schedule.
- are non-regular season games, and,
- are not Little League International Tournament games, and,
- involve only teams from chartered Little League programs, and,
- have been approved in writing by the regional office.
Synopsis: This would allow games under the Special Games against Little League teams to count towards players’ Regular Season schedule and Tournament eligibility for Junior, Senior and Big League Softball.
Item 8 – Affects Rule 1.17 – Minor and Major Baseball
1.17 - All male players must wear athletic supporters. Male catchers must wear the metal, fibre or plastic type cup, and approved long or short-model chest protector. Female catchers must wear long or short model chest protectors. All catchers must wear chest protectors with neck collar, throat guard, shin guards and catcher’s helmet, all of which must meet Little League specifications and standards. The catcher’s helmet must meet NOCSAE specifications and standards, and bear the NOCSAE stamp. All catchers must wear a mask, “dangling” type throat protector and catcher’s helmet during infield/outfield practice, pitcher warm-up and games. NOTE: Skull caps are not permitted.
Synopsis: This would allow participants playing the catcher position to wear short or long-model chest protector in the Minor and Major baseball divisions.
Item 9 – Affects Rule 6.02 and Tournament Rule 3 – All Divisions Baseball and Softball
(a) Local League Regular Season Option/Mandatory Tournament: After entering the batter’s box, the batter must remain in the box with at least one foot throughout the at bat.
Exceptions: The batter can leave the batter’s box:
Synopsis: This would allow a local league to determine if they implement this rule for the Regular Season; however, batters would be mandated to keep at least one foot within the batter’s box throughout their at-bat after entering the batter’s box during the Little League International Tournament under Tournament Rule 3.
- On a swing, slap or check swing.
- When forced out of the box by a pitch.
- When the batter attempts a “drag bunt” (“slap” for softball).
- When the catcher does not catch the pitched ball.
- When a play has been attempted.
- When time has been called.
- Baseball: When the pitcher leaves the dirt area of the pitching mound or takes a position more than five feet from the pitcher’s plate after receiving the ball or the catcher leaves the catcher’s box.
Softball: When the pitcher leaves the eight-foot circle or the catcher leaves the catcher’s box.
- On a three ball count pitch that is a strike that the batter thinks is a ball.
Penalty: If the batter leaves the batter’s box, delays play and none of the exceptions apply, the umpire shall warn the batter. After one warning on a batter, the umpire shall call a strike. Any number of strikes can be called on each batter. No pitch has to be thrown and the ball is dead. EXCEPTION: Intermediate (50-70)/Junior/Senior/Big League Baseball: No pitch has to be thrown and ball is live.
Item 10 – Affects Rule 6.06(e) – Minor and Major League Baseball
A batter is out for illegal action when –
(e) he/she fakes a bunt and then takes a full swing.
Synopsis: This would eliminate a Minor/Major Division player from fake bunting and “slap-hitting” the ball.
Item 11 – Affects Rule 8.01 and 8.05 Penalty – Junior, Senior and Big League Softball
PENALTY: The penalty imposed for violation of all subsections of rule 8.01, with the exception of subsection (i), is an illegal pitch. Violation of (i) is ruled as a No Pitch. The pitch shall be called a ball. Junior/Senior/Big League: The pitch shall be called a ball and all base runners advance one base without liability to be put out. If a play follows the illegal pitch, the manager of the offense may advise the plate umpire of a decision to decline the illegal pitch penalty and accept the play. Such election shall be made immediately at the end of the play. However, if the batter hits the ball and reaches first base safely, and if all base runners advance at least one base on the action resulting from the batted ball, the play proceeds without reference to the illegal pitch. NOTE: A batter hit by a pitch shall be awarded first base without reference to the illegal pitch.
Synopsis: This would change the penalty for an illegal pitch to include all base runners advancing one base in addition to a ball on the batter in the Junior, Senior and Big League softball divisions.
Item 12 – Affects Rule 8.07 (8.09 for softball) – All Divisions of Baseball and Softball
8.07 – A player must be removed from the pitcher position when:
(a) He/she has hit three batters during the course of the game.
NOTE 1: This rule applies to each pitcher who enters a game.
NOTE 2: A player once removed for this rule, may not return to the pitcher position that game.
Synopsis: This would remove a player from the pitching position if they hit three batters during a game.
Item 13 – Affects Player Eligibility – Big League Baseball and Softball
Big League - Any player League Age 14 (softball only), 15, 16, 17 or 18, with amateur status, who has participated as an eligible player in 40 percent of the regular season games (special games may be counted toward this requirement) by the start of Tournament Play in their respective District, with the exception of the high school or college season, on a:
Synopsis: This would mandate Big League players participate in a minimum of forty (40) percent of the Regular Season games to be eligible for Tournament.
- Big League Team, or;
- Senior League Team, or;
- Junior League Team (softball only).
Item 14 – Affects Schedules – All Divisions of Softball
Each District Administrator must finalize tournament schedules prior to the start of the tournament or June 15 (whichever is earliest). Schedules for each level (District, Section, Division, State, Regional) must utilize Little League International approved single elimination brackets, double elimination brackets, or pool play format with pool play tie breaker format, as noted beginning on Page T-26. All other tournament formats must be approved by the Tournament Committee.
9-10, 10-11 Year Old Division and Little League: A team may play in up to two doubleheaders in one week.
Junior/Senior/Big League: Teams may participate in a maximum of three (3) games in a day.
Synopsis: This would allow 9-10, 10-11 and Little League tournament schedules to include up to two doubleheaders per team per week without Regional permission. It would also allow Junior, Senior and Big League tournaments to schedule teams in up to three games in a day.
Item 15 – Affects Selection of Fields – All Divisions of Baseball
Fields must be enclosed with an outfield fence. Outfield fences for the Little League Division must be a maximum of 225 feet from home plate and a minimum of 195 feet; for 9-10 and 10-11 divisions, a maximum of 225 feet and a minimum of 180 feet; for Intermediate (50-70) Division, a maximum of 275 feet and a minimum of 225 feet; for Junior League, a maximum of 350 feet and a minimum of 250 feet; for Senior League and Big League, a maximum of 420 feet and a minimum of 280 feet. Tournament Directors should not permit portable outfield fences to exceed 200 feet (250 feet for Intermediate (50-70) Division; and 300 feet for Junior/Senior/Big League Baseball). Conventional dirt mounds are approved for tournament play. A Little League approved artificial mound is permitted at the District level. A request to use an artificial mound for the Section tournament level and above may be submitted to the Tournament Committee in Williamsport (through the District Administrator/Tournament Director and Regional Office). The Tournament Director or assistant shall judge fitness of the playing field before the game starts. An artificial mound must not be used at the Section level and above unless approved in writing by the Tournament Committee for a specific tournament site/level, and only for the current year. The Tournament Director or assistant shall judge fitness of the playing field before the game starts.
Synopsis: This would allow the use of artificial (portable) pitching mounds for all baseball divisions at the District level.
LITTLE LEAGUE BYLAWS AND CONSTITUTION
Item 16 – Affects DA and Field Representative Terms
Term of Office for a District Administrator – The District Administrator is elected for a term of four years according to a timetable established. (Little League Operating Manual page 86.)
Field Representative Directors
Synopsis – This item would alter the term of office for District Administrators and the Field Representatives Directors to the Little League International Board of Directors. This item is limited in scope. Delegates will debate and discuss the merits of changing the term of office for positions. The Little League International Board of Directors has authority to approve the changes as presented after deliberations from the delegates at the Little League International Congress.
- The number of Field Representative Directors shall be (9), unless otherwise determined by the Directors. A Field Representative Director from each region is limited to serving four (4) one (1) year terms as a Field Representative Director. (Little League Baseball, Incorporated, Constitution and By-Laws, Article I, Section 3 (B) 1)