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Morgantown Pony Baseball League

Morgantown's Premier Baseball Organization

Mustang

MUSTANG DIVISION PLAYING RULES

1. Players shall be evaluated and drafted onto their teams in accordance with the procedure set in place by the Morgantown Pony Baseball League.

2. Mustang playing fields will be set up in accordance with PONY recommendations where possible. The distance from the pitching rubber to the back of the plate shall be 46 feet.

3. Bats may be no larger than 2 5/8 inches in diameter at its thickest point. Effective January 1, 2018, all bats MUST be certified with the USABat licensing stamp on the bat.

4. The batter, players in the on-deck batting area, and baserunners shall be required to wear batting helmets at all times.

5. Catchers are required to wear proper protective equipment including a mask with throat guard, chest protector, shin guards, and approved headgear. Coaches should encourage all male players to wear athletic supporters.

6. The entire roster of players present for the game shall bat in rotation. If a player fails to bat in their batting position for any reason except for injury, an out will be recorded. If a player misses an at-bat due to injury and returns to the game, they must do so in their original batting position. Any player who shows up after the start of the game will be inserted into the last batting spot unless they arrive so late that the team has already batted one time through the lineup.

7. No player participation rule applies. Free substitution on defense, excluding the pitching position. Once a player is removed from pitching in a game, he may remain in the game at another position, or be substituted back into the game at any position, except pitcher AND catcher. No player who has pitched in the game, may be returned to play in the game at the catcher position.

8. No player may sit for more than two (2) defensive innings until all players have sat for two
(2) defensive innings, unless injured. It is strongly encouraged that all players experience
playing in the outfield and in the infield.

9. Nine (9) defensive players shall take the field.

10. The catcher must assume the catcher’s position behind the plate. (There is no dropped third
strike rule).

11. The infield fly rule is in effect.

12. Bunting is permitted. A batter attempting to bunt, must either bunt at the pitch or pull the
bat back if he or she elects to take the pitch. A batter MAY NOT pull the bat back and
swing away. If the batter does so, the batter is automatically out.

13. A batter who throws the bat while swinging will receive a warning for the first occurrence.
A second occurrence will cause the batter to be out and play will be stopped. The ball will
be ruled dead.

14. Runners must slide in an effort to avoid contact with defensive players at any base. If a
runner fails to slide and a collision occurs between the runner and any defensive player
with the ball or receiving the ball, the runner shall be out. A defensive player shall not
block any base when no play is being made at said base. If a collision occurs when no
play is being made at a base, the runner shall not be out. On a play at home, the catcher,
or any other defensive player, must receive the ball out in front of the plate and not
blocking the plate.

15. No defensive player shall stand on a base when no play is being made at that base or in any
other manner obstruct a runner from advancing to the next base. If in doing so, the
defensive player obstructs an offensive player from advancing to the next base, obstruction
shall be called and the runner may advance to the bases they would have reached, in the
umpire’s judgment, if there had been no obstruction.

16. Any runner is out when he runs more than 3 feet away from his baseline to avoid being
tagged unless his action is to avoid interference with a fielder fielding a batted ball. A
runner’s baseline is established when the tag attempt occurs and is a straight line from the
runner to the base he is attempting to reach safely.

17. Mustang will follow the Pitch Smart chart as follows:

18. No pitcher shall appear in a game as a pitcher for three consecutive days, regardless of
pitch count.

19. Pitchers reaching their maximum number of pitches in a day while pitching to a batter, may
finish pitching to that batter before being removed.

20. Once the umpire signals “play ball” to the pitcher, that pitcher shall become the pitcher of
record and their pitch count begins at that point.

21. A pitcher is charged with the number of pitches in the specific calendar day in which they
are pitched, regardless of whether they are league games, the resumption of postponed or
suspended games, tie games, or exhibition games. Rest is calculated as per calendar day.

22. Pitchers in violation of the pitching rules shall be considered ineligible players. Penalty
for use of an ineligible player, upon appeal by the opposing manager when the official
scorebook or other league records verify the ineligibility of the player in question, shall be
immediate removal of the player from the lineup and ejection of the team manager from
the game. Both the player and manager will be ineligible to participate in the next
scheduled game played by the team.
MLB PitchSmart™ Guidelines
a. For the purposes of interpreting this rule, a player shall not be considered in
violation of the rule until the umpire signals “play” to the pitcher.
b. In the event a manager of an ineligible player refuses to remove the player from the
lineup and the manager does not leave the field when the appeal is made, and
verified, the game is subject to forfeit.
c. If an opposing coach does not appeal the use of an ineligible player during the
course of a game, the game will stand as played.

23. A coach has one courtesy trip to the mound each half inning to a pitcher. On his second
trip, the pitcher must be removed.

24. A cold pitcher will be given ten (10) warm up pitches upon entering the game.

25. When intentionally walking a batter, the pitcher must pitch out to the batter.

26. If a pitcher hits three (3) batters in a single inning, he must be removed from the game.

27. There are no lead offs and all baserunner must remain in contact with the base until the ball
crosses the plate. Base runners are allowed to steal once the pitched ball crosses the plate.
If the runner leaves the base prior to the ball crossing the plate, the runner is placed back
on the base (if that runner leaves early again before the ball is put into play, the runner is
out). If that runner is put out on the play, the runner is out. If the ball is put into play, the
runner is only allowed to advance a base if forced up by the batter/runner. Base runners
may not steal home on passed balls or dropped 3rd strikes.

28. No base stealing with a lead of ten (10) or more runs.

29. A runner stealing second or third base may not attempt to advance another bag on
overthrows. If an overthrow occurs, all other runners on base may advance one base at
their own risk.

30. Baserunners may not attempt to steal home, they cannot score on a wild pitch or passed
ball. They may, however, attempt to score on an overthrow back to the pitcher or to another
base.

31. Once an at-bat begins, batters must maintain one foot inside the batter’s box.

32. Courtesy runners for catcher only may be used regardless of # of outs. If there are no
players available on the bench, then you may use the last recorded out as a courtesy runner.

33. A team must start a minimum of nine (9) players or the game will be forfeited. The player
must be present and able to play to be “starting.” Coaches may agree to start a game with
eight (8) players present, but the 9th player must arrive within fifteen (15) minutes of
scheduled start time or the game will be forfeited. If you do not complete the game with
the same number of players started, the absent batting position will be an automatic out
every time it comes up (i.e. if the player leaves the game after it is started). The only
exception would be for a player injured in the game and unable to complete their at-bat
because of this injury.

34. Once play has begun, the game shall be played to regulation length (six (6) innings) or five
(5) and a fraction if the home team is leading unless called because of 10-run rule.
Maximum six (6) runs per inning except in the sixth or extra innings which are open.

35. All games shall have a time limit. The umpire shall declare the official start time of the
game. Start of a new inning will begin when the last out is recorded of the previous inning.
No new inning shall start after 1 hour and 50 minutes has passed from the official start
time. If a new inning has started prior to the time limit, then that inning will finish.
Umpires will announce the start time right after the pregame discussion.

36. If a game goes into extra innings, it shall not exceed nine (9) innings in length.

37. If a game is called for any reason, it shall be a complete game if four (4) innings have been
completed, or if the home team has scored more runs in three (3) and a fraction innings
than the visiting team has scored in four (4) completed innings. i.e. home team is still
winning after the visiting team has batted in the fourth inning. Exception: all tournament
games must be fully completed.

38. If game is called for any reason before it is a complete game as described in Rules 33 and
36 above, or when the score is tied, it shall be considered a suspended game and shall be
resumed from the point of curtailment at the time scheduled by the league director.

39. If a game is called for any reason in an uncompleted inning, after having reached completegame
length as described in Rules 33 and 36 above, and the visiting teams ties the score or
takes the lead in the uncompleted inning, and the home team does not tie the score or takes
the lead in its portion of the uncompleted inning, the game shall be considered a suspended
game and shall be continued from the point of curtailment at the time scheduled by the
league director.

40. 10 run rule:
a. If the visiting team is leading by at least ten (10) runs at the end of four (4) or more
complete innings, the game shall be declared complete and the visiting team shall
be declared the winner. If the home team is leading by at least 10 runs after the
visiting team has completed batting in the 4th inning or later, the game shall be
declared complete and the home team shall be declared the winner.

41. Once a game is stopped for lightning, it cannot be resumed until 30 minutes after last cloudto-
ground lightning strike. Teams must vacate the entire field to wait the 30 minutes.
Teams CANNOT wait in the dugouts.

42. Both teams shall keep an official scorebook of each game. Both coaches are required to
report the scores and pitch count of the pitchers in the game to the league director by
midnight following completion of the game.

43. When a team is batting, a coach may be permitted on the playing field as a 1st base coach,
3rd base coach. Only one other coach/scorekeeper will be permitted in the dugout to keep
players organized. At no-time are there to be more than three (3) coaches on the field and
in the dugout (this includes scorekeepers). No coaches will be permitted behind the
backstop during play.

44. When a team is in the field, no coaches from the defensive team are permitted on the field.

45. Players, managers, and coaches shall remain in the dugouts, on the benches, or in the
prescribed areas throughout the game.

46. The use of cell phones in the dugout or on the field by coaches shall be prohibited.
Exception, if you have a job that requires you to be “on call”, notify the umpire prior to the
beginning of the game.

47. No coach, manager, or player shall argue with an umpire. A spectator, player, or coach
who uses profanity will be removed from the game at the umpire’s discretion. See Code
of Conduct.

48. Coaches should explain to their players that any verbal communication or “chattering”
during games should not be overly aggressive or negative toward the other team’s players,
and they should take reasonable steps to eliminate any such overly aggressive or negative
verbal communication. If the offended team feels that the other team’s behavior has
crossed that threshold, the head coach should civilly and quietly discuss their concerns with
the opposing head coach without any unnecessary involvement with the parents or children.
If the offended team feels that the behavior is too offensive to continue, they should contact
any present board member for discussion. If none are present, they can complete their
game under protest, or make a decision to terminate the game. In that event, the board will
need to make a decision as to the final result of the game after investigation. (i.e. game
considered cancelled or a loss/win by the respective teams).

49. A bat or helmet thrown in anger will result in ejection from the ballgame as determined by
the umpire. The umpire shall notify the league director.

50. Penalties for Coaches: Violations of these rules shall be reported to either the league
director or the safety committee by the umpires. Violations may result in the coaches being
suspended and/or forfeiting the game.

51. Any coach or player removed from a game by an umpire for conduct prohibited above, will
be suspended for the team’s next game, tournament games included.

52. All uniforms must be MPBL issued only.


Contact Us

Morgantown Pony Baseball League (MPBL)

PO Box 1382 
Morgantown, West Virginia 26507

Email: [email protected]

Morgantown Pony Baseball League (MPBL)

PO Box 1382 
Morgantown, West Virginia 26507

Email: [email protected]
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