UNIVERSAL RULES - RULES FOR ALL DIVISIONS
WHO QUALIFIES TO PLAY?
A team is considered in good standing with the GHVBL when they are current with league dues & register.
Rosters must be submitted prior to the season. ROSTER LINK
We encourage expanded rosters to avoid any forfeit - 20 Player Limit. We may allow exceptions or age appropriate “guest” players in order to avoid a forfeit. Rosters may be altered in the event of injury, contact league for roster alterations.
Teams accepted on basis of driving parity for each division. Coaches are encouraged to place teams in appropriate division based on results in prior seasons and updated team make-up. Teams encouraged to stretch teams into the highest division possible. Maximum of 5 players on team playing on two age appropriate rosters - PLAYERS may not play for more than ONE TEAM in a DIVISION.
Coaching staffs may consist of a Head Coach, Assistant Coach, Scorekeeper, & One Bench Coach for a total of no more than 4 coaches. There should never be more than 4 coaches in the bench area.
SCHEDULES & GAMEPLAY
Approved Game Balls
Teams may use league issued Diamond DOL-A, DOL-LSA Cushioned Cork Baseballs - or other league cleared Cushioned Cork Baseballs. Each Team shall provide at least 2 game balls for each game. Then alternate starting with visiting team. No rubber pill, solid cork, or cork & rubber core baseballs…
GHVBL BAT RULES
8U - 10U & Fall 11U(60) - (All 46' x 60' fields) - Wood or USABat (non-wood bats must have USABat stamp or label)
11U - 12U & Fall 13U(70) (All 50' x 70' fields) - Wood, USABat, or BBCOR (non-wood bats must have USABat or BBCOR stamp or label)
13U - 14U (60' x 90' fields) - Wood, USABat, or BBCOR (non-wood bats must have USABat or BBCOR stamp or label)
15U & Older (60' x 90' fields) - Wood or BBCOR (non-wood bats must have BBCOR stamp or label)
Coaches Schedule at Team Convenience
Games are single or doubleheaders on any day of the week - coaches construct schedules at Spring/Summer/Fall scheduling meetings. Games are 6 innings (8U-12U) or 7 innings (13U+) - Doubleheaders are two 6 inning games (8U-12U) or two 7 inning games (13U+) - teams may play 9 inning games if cleared by league 48 hours prior to first pitch. A full game (depending on age group) COUNTS AS ONE GAME only. 9 INNING GAMES NEVER COUNT AS TWO GAMES. Teams MAY schedule as many games as they like – BUT FIRST 12 COMPLETED GAMES (SPRING & FALL) (FIRST 16 IN SUMMER) count in the Playoff Seeding Standings. Additional games do not earn seed points.
We DISCOURAGE playing games out of age division. Please make every effort to play among your peer division foes. OK to play A vs. B... Elite vs. A, etc.
Regular Season Tiebreakers
2 team tiebreaker - 1st (Head to Head) 2nd (Runs Against Average for Season)
3 or more team tiebreaker - Runs Against Average for SEASON.
Must Field Minimum of 8 to Play
Teams are given a 15 minute grace period to field 8 players before resulting in a forfeit. In addition visiting teams shall receive at least 15 minutes of field time prior to the game, from first arrival. Inability to field at least 8 players for a game shall result in forfeit. If a team plays with 8, the 9th batting position in the lineup is an automatic out each time that 9th position comes up in the batting order.
Time Limits ONLY in 8U & 9U
8U & 9U - No Inning Starts after 1:45 - make good judgement - tie game at 1:45 is ump discretion.
10U and above - No time limit on games (unless home team has defined slot for game & both teams are communicated to before game)
Coach may BAT as many players as he/she wants (9 minimum). The only information needed regarding a "Starting Lineup" is the number of batters - TEAMS ARE REQUIRED TO PROVIDE LAST NAME & NUMBER OF EACH PLAYER TO OPPOSING TEAM FOR PLAYOFF ELIGIBILITY TRACKING. Defensive substitution is up to coach - open substitution - but players must stay in same position in batting lineup. We use the "Sports @ The Beach" rule of flexible substitution.
Team may bat 9 players, the entire roster or in-between. Once the number of batters is determined, it must remain for the entire game. However, there is no automatic outs unless an ejected player's turn comes up and there are no subs available (or if a team only has 8 players - 9th slot is automatic out each time around). Those are the only scenarios that will result in an automatic out. Once a substitution bats or runs for a player, the sub and the original starter are locked into that batting position. Either one may bat or run in that position ONLY and are interchangeable for the game - no limit on re-entry. Simply said, two players may “share” in one batting position/baserunning position in a game. If a player is removed due to injury and skipped in the lineup (there is no penalty or automatic out, but that player MAY NOT RETURN TO THE GAME)
Any player on the roster may play in any defensive position at any time, regardless of being in the batting order.
Example - A team may have 18 players: Bat 9 of them and play the other 9 in the field. No one player in a game can assume more than one offensive position.
8U - 12U EXTRA INNING RULES
All games resulting in tie after 6 innings shall play the 7th "straight up", then go to the “California Rule” (Last Batted out goes to second base & inning starts with ZERO OUTS) in inning 8 & 9. Game is TIE after 9 innings (8U - 12U) Regulation games called due to darkness or weather related MAY end in a tie. PLAYOFF EXCEPTION - Game continues until decision.
13U and above EXTRA INNING RULES
All games resulting in tie after 7 innings shall play the 8th "straight up", then go to the “California Rule” (Last Batted out goes to second base & inning starts with ZERO OUTS) in inning 9 & 10. Game is TIE after 10 innings (13U & UP) Regulation games called due to darkness or weather related MAY end in a tie. PLAYOFF EXCEPTION - Game continues until decision.
8U, 9U, 10U, 11U, 12U - A team trailing the leading team by 10 Runs after 4 FULL innings, (3 ½ with the home team ahead) shall concede defeat immediately. After 4th Inning - 10 runs after FULL inning - i.e. home team gets last licks.
13U and above - A team trailing the leading team by 10 Runs after 5 FULL innings (4 ½ with the home team ahead) shall concede defeat immediately. After 5th Inning - 10 runs after FULL inning - i.e. home team gets last licks.
“Courtesy Runners” are permitted at ANYTIME - for Catcher and/or Pitcher OR INCOMING Catcher and/or Pitcher (not required). Courtesy Runner must be last batted out.
Dropped Third Strike
Dropped third strike is live ball with no runner on first base or with two outs (11U and above). Not applicable in 8U, 9U, 10U. The batter may then attempt to reach first base and must be tagged or thrown out. With two outs and the bases loaded, the catcher who fails to catch the third strike may, upon picking up the ball, step on home plate for a force-out or make a throw to any other fielder. If at the time of the strike three pitch, first base is occupied with fewer than two outs, the batter is automatically out and cannot become a runner.
COACH TRIPS TO MOUND
8U, 9U, 10U, 11U, 12U - Coach may make two trips per inning. At any time of the game a pitcher receiving their 3rd visit must result in the pitcher's removal.
13U and above - HS Federation Rules - Coaches receive 3 free pitcher conferences for the game - removing a pitcher DOES NOT COUNT AS A PITCHER CONFERENCE. In an extra inning game, each team shall be permitted one charged conference each inning while on defense without penalty. The number of charged conferences permitted is not cumulative. A request for time for this purpose shall be made by a coach, player, substitute or an attendant. Time granted for an obviously injured player shall not constitute a charged conference. Prior to accumulating three charged conferences in seven innings or less, a conference is not charged if the pitcher is removed as pitcher.
BALKS & THIRD/FIRST MOVE
Illegal pitch, balk, etc. Regular Season 8U-13U – one warning per pitcher unless coaches agree to no warnings in pregame conference. 14U and older no warnings. No warnings in Play-offs. Fake to third – throw to first pickoff is allowed.
INFIELD FLY RULE
No infield fly rule in 8U only. Infield fly rule in effect in all divisions 9U and above.
8U & 9U - Teams Split Cost of 1 Umpire @ $60 - 6 inning games
10U - Teams Split Cost of 1 Umpire @ $65 - 6 inning games
11U & 12U - Teams Split Cost of 2 Umpires for each game @ $65 per umpire/game - 6 inning games - Each team pays one ump.
13U, 14U, 15U, 16U - Teams Split Cost of 2 Umpires for each game @ $75 per umpire/game - 7 inning games - Each team pays one ump.
VARSITY - Teams Split Cost of 2 Umpires for each game @ $80 per umpire/game - 7 inning games - Each team pays one ump.
COLLEGE - Teams Split Cost of 2 Umpires for each game @ $85 per umpire/game - 7 inning games - Each team pays one ump.
9 Inning Games - Teams Split Cost of 2 Umpires for each game @ $110 per umpire/game - Each team pays one ump.
FYI - One Umpire Working a 50/70 or 60/90 game receives 1 and 1/2 Game Pay
Games postponed last minute (after umpires are en route) are entitled to 1/2 Game Pay (Travel Fee)
Warm up Batter - ONLY permitted with enclosed fencing (8U - 12U) - Open air on-deck batters allowed on 60/90 fields. Please use sound judgement in all cases.
Warm up Pitcher - coaches allowed to warm up pitchers without mask, players MUST have approved facemask to warm up pitchers.
FOOTWEAR - all games on 46/60 & 50/70 fields must wear molded, plastic cleats. All games on 60/90 fields may wear metal spikes. Please note and communicate if a team must wear turf shoes for games on artificial surfaces. Please over-communicate in these situations.
PITCHING RULES - GHVBL has adopted the Pitch Smart Compliance Program. Please adhere to the very specific documented pitching limits here. This is a ENFORCED RULE. Pitch limits and "Daily Max" are HARD STOPS - meaning there is no exception for the pitcher to finish the batter. Teams should communicate between innings - to properly document pitch counts. In areas of disagreement - HOME TEAM owns OFFICIAL PITCH COUNT. Pitch Smart is a safety rule, so ALL PITCHING, regardless of league is relevant. Meaning a pitcher's daily limit would include pitching in a local rec game, in addition to the GHVBL game the same day.