LEAGUE RULES FOR 2016 SEASON
Slo-Pitch Ontario rules apply. (open link, then select About Us from the top menu, and SPO Handbook)
Plus the following amendments (Bold sections are new for 2016):
all players must be 40 years of age as of December 31, 2016 to be eligible to play in our league (players between the ages of 35-39 are eligible if they were on a team roster in a season prior to 2013). Any new players under the age of 40 must have approval from the league in order to play.
all players must be registered with the league and league fees must be paid in full to be eligible to play. Team rosters may be made up of full time and pool only players, with a minimum of 14 full time players and a maximum at the discretion of each team and the league.
the maximum number of players from other teams or the general pool will be 4 per game. No substitute will be used to bring the lineup to more than 12 players. Pool players who are part time players one the team in question are not considered substitutes.
if a team has less than nine players, they will have a 10 minute grace period, and then will have to forfeit the game. All players present will be divided into two teams and play a game for fun only. If the fielding team only has 9 players, the batting team WILL supply a catcher, and the catcher WILL attempt to make all required defensive plays.
all players at the game will bat.
a lead off will be called if a runner leaves a base before contact is made with the ball and that runner will be called out. Clarification: No anticipation step is allowed.
any foul tip caught by the catcher is an out.
a batted ball striking the plate and rolling fair is considered in play.
sliding or diving will be permitted at second and third base. Sliding is not permitted at first base or home. A runner who slides into first or home will be called out. Diving is allowed back to the bag at 1st, 2nd or 3rd base. If any player uses a slide for aggressive purposes, he will be called out and referred to the disciplinary committee.
a bunt is an automatic out.
a legal pitch has to be a minimum height of 6 feet and a maximum of 12 feet (usual height of backstop).
courtesy runners are allowed at any base for injured players. The courtesy runner is the last out available. No player may act as a courtesy runner more than once per inning.
courtesy runners from home plate must be fully behind the courtesy runner line (one bat length behind the extension of the 3rd base line at the backstop). If any part of the runner's body touches the ground beyond the line without contact from the batter, the runner is out for a leadoff. There is NO requirement for the runner to hold the fence with their hand.
there will be no maximum number of home runs, with the following exception: a team may have no more than 2 home runs more than the opposing team at any time. Any additional home runs after +2 will be considered a walk. (same rule as previous years after league wide vote)
to avoid lopsided scores, a maximum of 5 runs may be scored by any team in each of the first seven innings at which time the half inning is over regardless of the number of outs.
the mercy rule: the game will be called any time after 7 complete innings of play are complete and one team leads the other team by 20 or more runs. If the home team is behind by 20 or more runs, they will get their last at bat.
Flip flop rule: if the visiting team is ahead by 10 or more runs after the 8th inning, the flip-flop rule will automatically be invoked, and the home team will bat again. If the home team ties the score or goes ahead, the visitors will have their last at bat.
no abusive language or alcoholic beverages are allowed.
pool players will bat at the bottom of the batting order in all games.
there will be no infield warm up balls allowed after the first inning.
New for 2016: bases will be placed at 65 feet, conforming to SPO rules.
the extended line from the backstop screen determines the out of bounds.
no inning is to start after 8pm if there is an 8:15pm game.
a game will be nine innings, unless the captains agree on less innings before or during the game.
the team at bat must supply an umpire whose decision is final.
Bridgeport #2 (formerly #3): the mesh above the left field fence is in play. Any ball striking the mesh and staying in play is live and should be played just like a ball striking the fence.
1. in the case of a 2-way tie , the head to head games in that round of the playoffs will be used to decide the winner. If there is still a tie, then the team with the overall season head to head game advantage would advance, and if there is still a tie then the overall season standings will be used to break the tie.
2. In the case of a 3 or more-way tie, the overall season standings will be used to break the tie.
Home team for East and West finals will be the higher placing team in the playoff round robin. Home team for the consolation final shall be decided by the flip of a coin.
Clarification of SPO rules for KW Masters Slo-pitch League:
home plate line: SPO states that any part of the foot must touch or go over the line extended from home plate towards the fence before the ball is caught by the catcher touching home plate (mat). Since 2014, this is our rule as well.
overthrow rule (as per SPO) the runner is awarded two bases beyond the last one touched from the time of the throw, from the outfield or the infield (not from when the ball goes out of play).
infield fly: While this rule remains the same (SPO rule – runners on 1st and 2nd or bases loaded with less than 2 out and the batter hits a fly ball that is reasonably catchable by an infielder), team captains can invoke the infield fly rule after the fact, if in agreement that it should have been called. In this case, the batter will be out, and the runners will return to their original bases. Infield fly should only be called in this method if it is an obvious oversight and both teams are in agreement. If the umpire did invoke the infield fly rule, that is not reviewable and cannot be overturned.
intentional walks: are allowed, and to keep unnecessary delays out of our game, no pitches are required to a batter – just an indication that the batter should advance to 1st base, as per the SPO rule. Remember, this is a sensitive issue for some, and keep sportsmanship in mind when you decide to issue an intentional walk.
home run "trot": SPO rules allow for just the touching of 1st base if a ball is hit over the outfield fence for a home run. In our league, the choice should be the batter’s: if someone hits a home run and it is not a regular occurrence, they should be able to run the bases (and enjoy it!). Conversely, if you don’t want to, SPO rules say you only need to go to 1st.
batters box: the SPO batters box is defined as 3 feet wide by 7 feet deep. As long as the player stays within this box, they may move around as desired before/during the swing. All players are encouraged to keep player safety in mind if they intend to "step into" a pitch by moving forward to the front of the box during a swing. Before each game, captains will draw the front of the batters boxes, with spray paint if available.
Physical altercations both on the field or in the park area will not be tolerated. The team captains are to notify the league Commissioner as soon as possible of any incident and the player or players involved will be suspended indefinitely until the Disciplinary Committee can meet and review the matter.
Abusive behavior towards an umpire, official or opponent will not be tolerated.
Please remember this league was started so all players could get some exercise and have some fun and enjoyment.
All composite bats must have either a KWMSPL sticker from 2015 or the USSSA thumbprint from the manufacturer to be legal. Alloy bats must be in good condition (no dents, etc) to be legal. There are no plans for league wide bat testing for 2016.
An illegal bat shall be defined as a bat NOT having a valid 2015 KW Masters bat sticker AND no USSSA thumbprint . If a player is found using a bat that is illegal, the following will occur:
A. At the point of discovery, the owner of the bat is ejected for the balance of the game in progress and the bat is removed from play.
B. If there is no ownership taken by a player for the illegal bat then the captain will be held accountable.
C. An automatic 2 game suspension will be served by said player or the accountable captain over and above the game in which the bat was discovered.
D. The current game will continue until conclusion.
E. A further review of the incident will be conducted by the disciplinary committee and league executive and additional discipline may be pending.
F. Any subsequent incidents will result in a further review by the disciplinary committee and league executive to determine additional discipline.
Use of illegal bats can void our insurance. Please play responsibly!
· The league rain-out policy is slightly different this year. As before, Rained out games will not be rescheduled. We will continue to use the percentage format for the final standings.
· The league, in conjunction with the City of Kitchener has instituted the following rain-out policy - for games played on City of Kitchener diamonds only (this does not apply to Bloomingdale):
If your game can not be played due to rain or poor field conditions, please contact the city of Kitchener as soon as possible at the email address below. As long as we notify the City within 24 hours, we will not be charged for the field rental.
Email address for cancellations due to field condition: email@example.com. Indicate the day/time and location of the field (primarily Bridgeport #2), and the reason the game was cancelled.
Don't forget, we have only 24 hours to notify the City of Kitchener
so make sure you E-mail promptly.
For games at Bloomingdale, if there has been all day rain, games can be cancelled in advance by agreement of the 2 team captains. But remember, weather at Bloomingdale can be very different than in parts of Kitchener-Waterloo (or elsewhere). If in doubt, all players should show up at the Bloomingdale diamonds, and a decision will be made there on whether to play the game. If your game was cancelled, make sure it is reported that way, and we will have stats for reporting weather related cancelled games to the Bloomingdale Recreation Committee.