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Raymond Baseball and Softball Association


Raymond Baseball & Softball Association (RBSA)

18U League Baseball Rules

(Rev. Feb. 2018)



Age Qualifications

The 18U League is open to boys or girls who are between the ages of 14-18 as of January 1st, of the current registration year.


Field Dimensions

Pitching rubber: 60 feet from the back of home plate. Base path: 90 feet

Distance from home to 2nd base: 128 feet


Player Participation

·        Each player in attendance of any game must play two continuous innings of defense and bat at least once.

·        The entire roster will be the batting order. All batters must follow the batting order as established by the coach. If there are only eight players the ninth position will not be an out.

·        If a player is placed on disciplinary restriction by the coach, notice must be given to the umpire staff and the opposing coach prior to the start of the game.

·        The two-inning participation rule can and should be waived in event of injury.

·        Players who are not under restriction but not allowed to play innings due to a shortened game will start the next game.


Insufficient Number of Players

·        A team may start and play with a minimum of 8 players in the 18U League, without penalty. No outs will be given for absent batters.

·        If a team has an insufficient number of players at game start time or after the game starts, no more than 15 minutes will be given to find eligible pickup

·        player(s). At the end of 15 minutes, the team short of players will automatically

·        forfeit.

·        If a base runner is injured on the field and cannot continue and player number drops below 9 for 18U , the player who made the last offensive out will pinch run for the injured runner.

·        Teams are allowed to finish a game with 7 players in the event of an injury and there are no eligible pickup players to be found. No outs will be issued if the injured player is due to bat.

·        Pickup-players are permitted to be used throughout the regular season and tournaments as long as the following stipulations are met:

o       The opposing coach and the umpire are notified prior to the start of the game.

o       The Pick-up player may play any position on the field and bat in any order in the line-up.

o       Pick-up players must be from the league lower (i.e.: 18U league must pick up players from the 13U American League)

o       Pick-up players must be current members of the RBSA or a participating association, in good standing.

o       Teams may only pick up enough players as to complete their rosters for that game (9 players for 18U). Pick-up players can only be used to supplement teams and may not be used in place of original players if the players are present and is able to play.

o       Coaches do not have to play late arriving player(s), if the player(s) arrive after the 3rd inning has been completed.

o       Late arriving team player(s) that have been substituted by a pickup player(s), must replace the pickup player(s) upon arrival, unless the late arriving player(s) have already been suspended due to disciplinary action. All disciplinary actions must follow the guidelines as stated in the RBSA Constitution.



·        All batters must wear NOCSAE (National Operating Committee on Standards for Athletic Equipment) approved batting helmets with NOCSAE approved face guard. Batters must wear a batting helmet with approved face shield at all times when on the field of play (on-deck circle, batter’s box, base paths, or any location where batting is taking place) during all RBSA sanctioned practices or games. This protective equipment shall cover both ears and temples. It is illegal to wear any other headgear when batting or running while participating in RBSA. Chins straps are mandatory and must be fastened at all times when wearing this protective equipment. A team warning will be issued to both teams for any RBSA player not intentionally wearing specified protective headgear on the first offense. Offending player must take corrective action immediately or player will be declared out after the play is over. Player will be declared out immediately on the second offense once the player enters the batter’s box.

·        Rubber or Steel baseball cleats are permitted.

·        The home team will responsible for providing (2) new game balls, made of leather, at the start of each game. RBSA will provide game balls which shall be issued the beginning of the season

·        Each player must wear a baseball glove. A first baseman may use a glove designed specifically for that position. The catcher’s position glove will be used at the catcher position only.

·        Bats may be made of wood, aluminum, and other materials manufactured specifically for baseball play.

·        Bats used for league will not have a bat barrel diameter greater than 2 5/8” and must have a length/weight differential no greater than a -3 (a -5 and -7 are not a legal bats).

·        Safety items. Both coaches and the umpire staff must be notified of all medical protective items prior to the start of the game. Prior release from the attending physician must be available for review.






·        Ohio High School Athletic Association rules are in effect except for the RBSA league specific rules listed below. A licensed umpire must be behind the plate.

·        Bunting is permitted.

·        Slug bunting (squaring to bunt, pulling back to a full swing position, and hitting) is prohibited. The batter will be declared out and a dead ball will result with all runners returning to the base (s) they started from.

·        Run Rule: A maximum of 7 runs can be scored per inning during a game.


·        There will be 9 defensive players allowed on the field. They are to be positioned as follows:

§  3 must be positioned in the outfield

§  4 must be positioned in the infield

§  1 must be positioned at the pitcher’s mound

§  1 must be positioned at the catcher’s position

·        There will be open substitutions.

·        The infield fly rule will be enforced in 18U league. The infield fly rule applies when there are fewer than two outs, and there is a force play at third (runners on first and second base, or bases loaded). If a fair fly ball is hit to the infield or outfield and is catchable by an infielder with ordinary effort (based upon the umpire's judgment), the batter is out regardless of whether the ball is actually caught or not.



·        The elevated pitcher’s mound is optional in the 18U League.

·        There will be one balk warning per pitcher before a balk is called and a penalty is awarded.

·        Each pitcher will be limited to a maximum of 5 innings per game. The pitching week begins on Monday and ends on Sunday. This will not be adjusted in the event of “makeup” games. Note: 1 pitch thrown in an inning counts as a complete inning. The post season tournament will be treated as a week unto itself. The inning count for pitchers does NOT reset to zero for tournaments that continue into the following week.

·        The batter must make a reasonable effort to avoid being hit by errant pitches. Failure to do so in an attempt to “take one for the team” will result in a dead-ball.


·        Catchers are required to wear the following:

§  NOCSAE protective head gear and face protection with throat protector

§  Chest protector

§  Shin guards

§  A gender appropriate athletic supporter and protection

§  A mitt designed especially for the catching position


Base Running, Stealing & Sliding

·        Runners are allowed to lead off and steal. If a catcher makes an attempt to throw out a runner attempting to steal, the ball will remain live and the runner may advance at his/her own risk.

·        If a pitcher throws to any base, in an attempt to hold a runner, and the ball hits the fielder, the ball is live.

·        Base runners must avoid interference with a fielder in the process of fielding a ball or making a play at a base. OFFENSIVE INTERFERENCE is an act by the team at bat which interferes with, obstructs, impedes, hinders, or confuses any fielder attempting to make a play.

·        Base runners approaching 2nd, 3rd, or home plate, when a play is imminent, will be declared out if there is a collision between the runner and the fielder attempting to catch the ball or making a tag or force out if no attempt to slide is made.

·        Fielders may not obstruct a base runner in the process of running the bases. If the fielder is not in the process of fielding the ball or making an out attempt directly at a base. OBSTRUCTION is the act of a fielder who, while not in possession of the ball and not in the act of fielding the ball, impedes the progress of any runner. The runner will be awarded the base they were advancing to in the event of obstruction.


Safety Concerns & Equipment Abuse

·        Any player identified as throwing or abusing any equipment, be it accidental or intentional, will be issued a team violation as follows:

§  FIRST OFFENSE - Team Warning. Both head coaches will be notified.

§  SECOND OFFENSE – Offending player will be called out.

§  THIRD OFFENSE – Offending player will be ejected from the game.

·        Penalties will be assessed to each team independent of any violations by the opposing team. Exception to the above

·        is a player who intentionally throws a bat. This player may be ejected from the game at the discretion of the umpire.

·        A player can be called out and or ejected from the game if the player’s action(s) is to intentionally harm another player, coach, or fan.



Other General Baseball Rules

·        Coaches must remain in the dugout during play unless they are designated base coaches (1st or 3rd base

·        coach).

·        Only the Head Coach may approach the umpire to clarify a call ask a question.

·        Players should remain in the dugout except when they are playing. Players should not be standing in the dugout opening where they could be hit by a foul ball or errant throw.

·        Time limits:

§  There are no time limits for 18U League.

§  Situations where dictated by back to back scheduling of games, in which case the umpire will inform both coaches prior to game start time that a time limit is in effect. In this situation, no new inning will start within 15 minutes of the scheduled start time of the subsequent game.

·        At the umpire’s discretion, it may be necessary to call a game for safety reasons due to impending weather or darkness. If a game has not gone long enough to be called official (4 innings for 18U League), the game will be rescheduled to resume play to completion at the next convenient opportunity. If a game was official in length at the time play was suspended AND the bottom half of the inning has been reached AND the home team is in the lead, the current score is the official ending score and the game will not be rescheduled for completion. For this

·        purpose 3.5 innings are sufficient for an official game. Otherwise, games suspended prior to the completion of a full inning, will revert to the score at the end of the last complete inning unless the last inning resulted in a tie, in which case the game will be rescheduled to resume play to completion at the next convenient opportunity.

·        Games tied at the end of regulation will play a maximum of 3 extra innings as necessary to determine a winner. Games tied after 3 extra innings will be recorded as a tie.

·        Within three minutes of the recording of a 3rd out of any at bat, all players from both teams must be in position and ready to resume play. If, in the umpire’s opinion, resumption of game play is excessively delayed, a team warning will be issued at first offense. At each subsequent offense, the first batter will be awarded first base if it is the defensive team responsible for the delay. Alternatively, the first batter will be declared out if it is the offensive team responsible for the delay. Each team is allowed one warning before penalties will be invoked. When the catcher is on base when the 3rd out occurs, the umpire may grant some leniency. However, if the catcher is on base when the 2nd out occurs, a courtesy runner is encouraged to help avoid potential delays in the game.