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Keystone Little League

Keystone Little League

Keystone Little League


Rookie League (RL) Baseball Rules


Spring Season




The Rookie League Minor division of baseball is an important part of the Keystone Little League program. Its goal is to create and emphasize a positive experience for the 6-8 year old players allowed at this level while emphasizing the fundamentals of baseball. Coaches should use positive reinforcement to develop basic baseball fundamentals and above all to ensure that the kid’s introduction into organized baseball is FUN! Although there is a tendency to keep score, there are NO recorded Wins or Losses at this level. Accordingly, coaches are prohibited from keeping score.


Game Length


The game length shall be no more than 1 hour 45 minutes or six (6) complete innings whichever comes first. There will be no forfeits in Rookie League baseball. Players may be borrowed from the opposing team as necessary.


Player Roster


Each attending player shall be placed in the batting order (continuous batting order). Each attending player shall play a defensive position every inning. Only one player shall occupy a given position in the infield during play. Additional players will be positioned in the outfield. The pitching position must be rotated among different players whenever safely possible. The position of pitcher and first base shall be rotated as much as safely possible. The catcher takes his normal position. An adult shall be beside the catcher to assist him. The catcher must wear protective gear which includes a helmet, face mask, throat guard, leg guards, and chest protector. Each player shall play an infield position at least two innings per game. There can be only one player at each infield position.




The coach or manager of the team at bat shall deliver up to 7 pitches per batter. There are strikeouts but no walks. If after 7 pitches the batter has not put the ball in play, he shall be out. The ball shall be live after it is hit into fair territory, and shall remain live until it is possessed by a defensive player in the infield area – fair or foul territory. Once the ball is judged dead, play will stop. Any runners still advancing to a base may continue to that base if they have advanced at least half way to that base.  If the runner is not half way to the

next base, then he must return to the previous base. Runners may not advance on an overthrow from an infield throw to first base, but may advance 1 base on an overthrow from the outfield or the infield to any base other than first. Runners advancing on an overthrow do so at their own peril of being put out on a defensive play. Runners are only allowed to advance on the first overthrow of an offensive player’s at bat.  Each half-inning concludes when either (3) defensive outs are recorded or (4) runs have been scored by the offense.


Base Stealing and Sliding


Leading off base, stealing bases and intentionally bunting are not permitted. Head first sliding is also not permitted. Any runner is out when the runner does not slide or attempt to get around a fielder who has the ball and is waiting to make the tag. If the umpire

determines that the runner deliberately attempted to injure the fielder, the umpire could eject the runner for unsportsmanlike conduct. Similarly infielders including the pitcher and catcher cannot block a base or home plate if they do not have the ball and/or are not in the process of making a tag.


On-field Coaches


The offensive team shall station three coaches on the field during play, one occupying the first base coach’s box, one occupying the third base coach’s box, and one to pitch. All other offensive coaches must be in the dugout during play. At least one coach (or team mom) must be in the dugout at all times. The defensive team may station two coaches (official coaches and/or approved volunteers) in the outfield during play plus (1) coach / volunteer beside the catcher. All other defensive team coaches must remain in the dugout at all times unless time is out. All managers, coaches, and approved volunteers must wear their lanyards for the duration of the game.


Game Preparation


The home team is responsible for the lining of the field before the game. Both teams shall fill in holes in the batters box and on the pitchers mound, water the field as necessary, and drag the field at the completion of the game.


Post-Game Duties


Teams must ensure that their dugout and bleacher area are cleaned up after the game. Home team should rake out high traffic areas.


If you are holding a player meeting after the game, please clear your dugout and move outside the field of play for your meeting - if there is another game scheduled after your game.

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