Event Rules

Play9/USSSA Baseball Tournaments Rules will be adhered with the following Exceptions. These rules can be found here: 

https://usssa-prod.dotcms.cloud/static/pages/baseball/assets/baseball-rules.pdf

*ALL SCHEDULE REQUESTS ARE DUE TWO WEEKS PRIOR TO THE START OF THE EVENT

Play9/USSSA Youth Events are STAY-TO-PLAY events. If you are from out of town, a representative from our hotel team will reach out to you following your registration. 

Play9/USSSA Youth Events are a 3 game guarantee with 2 pool play games and subsequent bracket play unless otherwise posted. 

ALL EVENTS DO NOT PERMIT THE FOLLOWING – AT TURF VENUES:

  • Sunflower seeds/Gum (on field and in stands)

  • Metal spikes (unless permitted which will be communicated)

  • Absolutely NO outside food and drink, including coolers, with venues that have concessions available (Including Eureka). 

  • No Tobacco at all venues. 

  • Fan interaction with umpires

****Play9 Sports reserves the right to remove any player, coach, or fan from the venue if these rules are violated. If the individual(s) fails to comply with removal of the venue, a forfeit will be issued to the coordinating team. No refunds will be issued.  This is a strict rule from the venues and all participants of the event must comply including Play9 staff.

****A Team Fine of $250.00 will be invoiced to the team in violation on behalf of the venue. Payment of said fine is required to complete the remaining tournament schedule. 

REFUND POLICY:  If a team were to withdraw prior to the schedule posted, Play9 Sports will issue a credit for the amount paid for any Play9 Sports future event. If a team were to withdraw after the schedule has been posted, the team will not receive a credit or refund. 

****If the tournament is not completed:

  • After one game played, you will receive a 50% credit for a future Play9 Sports event
  • After two games played, there is no credit or refund issued

*No team will be scheduled without payment received 2 weeks prior to the event.

Play9 Sports LLC (In cooperation with Play9/USSSA Youth Events) reserves the right to amend these rules at any time. 

*** Each game will start with four baseballs. Once those four baseballs run out, teams will alternate providing baseballs for the remainder of the game.

IMPORTANT RULES and EXCEPTIONS:

Of note, various age groups have age-specific rules. These age specific rules are directly in the chart below, with all other exceptions found throughout the remainder of this document.

 

MP

9u

10u

11u

12u

13u

14u

Base Distance

60

65

65

70

70

80

90

Pitching Distance

MP

46

46

50

50

54

60.6

Innings Played (Max)

6

6

6

7

7

7

7

Time Limit

1:10

1:30

1:30

1:45

1:45

1:45

1:45

Max Runs / Inning

5

7

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

n/a

Balks?

MP

1 Warning

1 Warning

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Infield Fly?

No

No

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Drop 3rd Strike?

MP

No

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Stealing?

No

Yes**

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

** In 9u Baseball, runners may only steal second and third. In order to advance to home, a play must be made on you after previously reaching third base. Additionally, you may be batted in from any base. 

** For all Midwest Premier Events, all games will be governed under our high school rule book. Please view that here – www.play9sports.com/about/hs-baseball-rules/

** For the Sandlot Series, ALL 9u-18u games will have a 1:30 time limit. Additionally, 10u-12u will have max of 7 runs per inning.

Bat Restrictions:

All bats must be stamped USSSA 1.15 BPF or USA or BBCOR or WOOD

7u-9u Bat Restrictions: No Restrictions

10u-12u Bat Restrictions: -10 or heavier

13u Bat Restrictions: -8 or heavier

14u Bat Restrictions: -5 or heavier

Mercy Rule:

These rules apply in all rounds of the tournament including the Playoffs/Championship round:

12 after 3, 10 after 4, 8 after 5

Time Limits:

-7u-8u Machine Pitch: 1:10 Time Limit

-9u-10u Kid Pitch: 1:30 Time Limit

-11u-14u: 1:45 Time Limit

– ALL SANDLOT SERIES GAMES WILL BE A 1:30 TIME LIMIT

No inning will start after the time limit has elapsed. The umpires will be the official timers for every game. A new inning starts when the last out of the previous inning is made. Each team’s pool play schedule will be predetermined. Home and away teams will be determined via coin flip during the umpire/coaches meeting prior to the game. Teams must adhere to this predetermined designation. All pool games tied after 7 innings or the expiration of the time limit (whichever occurs first) will be recorded as a tie. Tie games will not go into extra innings regardless of remaining time.

Championship Round/Playoffs: 

In all championship round games leading up to the Championship game, if tied after 7 innings or the expiration of the time limit, the game will go to the tiebreaker procedures outlined below. In the Championship game, there is no tiebreaker. This rule is subject to change at the tournament directors discretion. The home team in bracket play will be determined by the highest seed. 

Tiebreaker Procedures: 

The last three hitters from the previous inning will load the bases, and the base runners will be placed as follows: 

o   Last hitter from previous inning (A) @ 1st Base 

o   Hitter (B) before (A) in the lineup @ 2nd Base 

o   Hitter (C) before (B) in the lineup @ 3rd Base 

o   Normal substitution rules apply to these runners. 

o   The hitting team will start the inning with one out. 

o   Play continues until one team is ahead at the end of an inning

CHAMPIONSHIP GAME WILL HAVE NO TIE-BREAKER AND WILL BE PLAYED OUT UNTIL ONE TEAM IS AHEAD AT THE END OF THE INNING

Forfeits:

Any team not on the field and prepared to start the game, at game time, will give cause for immediate forfeit. The tournament director will rule on all forfeits. No team should benefit from the result of a forfeit in an unfair manner. This rule could result in a dispute and the tournament director reserves the right to look at and rule in the fairest manner. The director’s decision will be final. In the event of forfeiture, the score is recorded as 7-0. If the teams decide to play a scrimmage following the forfeit decision, the forfeit result will stand regardless of the scrimmage outcome. 

Pre-Game: 

Pre-Game defense will be permitted up until the predetermined start time. BP will be allowed in the batting cages when available. Teams may have to share cages. Coaches from both teams must work together to ensure all players are allowed to hit.

Trips to the Mound: 

The pitcher must be replaced on the (2nd) trip by a coach to the mound in any inning. 

Hitting Lineup: 

Lineups can consist of 9, 10, or 11 hitters. The coach may also elect to bat his entire roster. The lineup must stay with the same number of batters for the entire game. The 10th and 11th hitter, if used, will be designated as an EH and XH on the lineup card. XH is a 2nd EH. The EH and XH are the same as any position on the field. All games must be started with at least eight (8) players. A game can be finished with no less than eight (8) players. The player leaving the original lineup cannot return and his spot in the hitting lineup will be recorded as an out. A courtesy runner for the pitcher/catcher may be used at anytime. In the event that a team has no subs, the last batter out can serve as this courtesy runner.

Weather Issues: 

Time constraints will determine the status of all rain out games. It is solely the team’s responsibility to ensure they are aware of any scheduling changes. All information will be posted on the Play9/USSSA schedule, Group Text and social media platforms as soon as it becomes official. 

  • Rescheduled games due to rain must be played as scheduled by Play9/USSSA. Refusal to play the rescheduled game will result in a 7-0 forfeit. 

Note: No special requests will be honored if rescheduling becomes necessary. If games are canceled, pool winners and championship qualification will be determined by the tie breaking procedures (listed below). 

If a game is stopped, the game must resume within 1 hour of the stop in play. The game will resume but the original game clock will be the remaining balance game time. The Tournament Director will have discretion to amend plans to complete the game should the above steps not lead to a completed game. All efforts will be made to keep the remaining schedule intact and on time.

If a game is not resumed, it will become suspended or called official. If four (4) innings have been completed, or 3 1/2 innings and the home team is ahead; the game will be official if not resumed within 1 hour. 

After 4 complete innings, a tie score will be recorded as a tie in pool play. A suspended game will resume where the game was stopped. If a tournament is stopped before or during championship determination, the tournament champion will be decided by Play9 Sports based on the seeding and tiebreaker processes within the rules (listed below). *As a note, the results of any postponed game, now considered official, will revert back to the last completed inning. 

Protests: 

Protests will be heard and ruled on by the tournament committee. The team protesting must make a cash payment of $100 at the time of the protest. If the protest is ruled in the protesting team’s favor the $100 will be refunded. The ruling made by the committee will be final. If during the game, protests must be filed and ruled on before the next pitch. If the protested call ends the game, the protest must be made before the umpires leave the field. 

 

Scoring: 

We recommend that all teams keep a scorebook. The official score of each game will be kept by the umpires. In case of an emergency where the umpire cannot keep the official score, the field scout will be the official scorer. If the scout is not available to keep score, the home team will be the official scorer. To eliminate scoring disputes, scorekeepers should check with the official scorer throughout and after the game. 

Bracket Seeding/Tie-Breakers: 

Seeding and Tie Breaker Rules. 

  1. Winning Percentage – Descending
  2. Number Wins – Descending
  3. Number Losses – Ascending
  4. Tied Teams (vs. each other) Winning Pct – Descending (Not valid if all tied teams have not played each other)
  5. Avg Points Allowed – Ascending
  6. Avg Points Differential with a maximum of (8) – Descending
  7. Ranking Points – Descending
  8. Date Team Entered USSSA Database

*In the event that a pool winner chooses not to participate in bracket play, the next best team within the pool will be declared the pool winner, and advance as such. This process will be continued down through the entire pool. If no teams from a particular pool are available for bracket play, an additional wild card team will be chosen to replace them, and will advance to bracket play as a wild card team. 

The following rules are machine pitch rules adopted by Play9 Sports to ensure competitive play amongst all teams. The tournament director reserves the right to amend these rules at any time to ensure competitive and safe play. Any rules not stated in this document will follow USSSA rules, as indicated at the top of this rules document. 

– All Machine Pitch games will have a 1:10 time limit, finish the inning

– Batters will receive 7 pitches OR 3 swings, whichever comes first. The third swing shall be treated like a 2 strike count, any foul balls will be treated as such

– The ball is dead when in CONTROL by an infielder. The umpires discretion will be final, and the umpire will call time when control is deemed to be established.

– If the ball hits the machine, this will be treated like a walk. Meaning, the batter will get first base and other runners will only advance if forced to do so.

– A catcher is required. If no catcher, the game will be played but ruled as a forfeit in the favor of the other team.

– Coaches may adjust the height/angle of the machine to best suit their athletes. If this results in a bad pitch, this will still count towards the 7 allowed. Coaches CANNOT adjust the machine speed, only the umpire can do so. Unless this is dire need, any speed adjustments will come following a completed inning.

8u Specific Rules:

– 39mph, +-2 to ensure strikes

– 3 outfielders

– No defensive coaches allowed on the field

7u Specific Rules:

– 36mph, +-2 to ensure strikes

– 4 outfielders

– One defensive coach allowed in the field

**Play9 Sports reserves the right to, and should be expected to, combine the 7u and 8u machine pitch divisions. In the event these are combined, the 8u rules will be followed