Cleveland MSBL In-Game Rules
CLEVELAND MSBL GAME RULES
Played under modified American League rules
Defensive: There are unlimited defensive substitutions for players.
Offensive: All players who are capable and willing to bat must bat at least once every game.
The starting offensive line-up must have at least 9 batters (all can be DH’s if it’s the manager’s choice). The
maximum number of batters is limited only by a team’s roster.
a) The batting order may be expanded at any time.
b) The batting order may NOT be decreased.
c) If a game begins with 8 players, all must hit; players who arrive late must be added to the bottom of the order until the line-up has at least 9 hitters.
Managers are required to submit the official line-up, including last name, first initial, and jersey number of all
players present at the time of ground rules, to the home plate umpire and the opposing manager and the official. All possible substitutes MUST BE listed on the lineup card or they can be deemed ineligible by the opposing manager.
Players arriving after the start of the game then may be added during the course of the game –
the opposing team’s manager and scorekeeper MUST BE notified of the addition for the player to be able to participate.
9-innings scheduled: No new inning may start after 3:00 of playing time, subject to local curfew.
7-innings scheduled: No new inning may start after 2:30 of playing time, subject to local curfew.
The game will be complete when the inning is finished after the time limit. EXCEPTION: When time limit is called before the last inning has begun, if the score differential is 3 runs or fewer at the end of the inning where time limit is reached, one more inning will be played before the time limit is enforced.
If game remains tied after time limit is reached, the game will continue with “normal” baseball conditions until twelve innings are played. If still tied, a traditional “Shoot-out” will take place.
a) Play one inning at a time, with the last batted out from the previous inning starting the new inning as a runner at second base.
b) Each hitter starts with a 2-2 count.
c) Each team gets 3 outs. If the score remains tied after each team has batted, repeat the process with full innings until one team has scored more runs to win.
Mercy rule: 10 runs after 7 innings in a 9-inning game; 10 runs after 5 innings in a 7-inning game.
Defense: Free substitution at all times. (Exception: See Pitchers, next item.)
Pitchers: Pitchers may re-enter as pitchers as long as they remain in the game defensively.
A re-entered pitcher is limited to 4 warm-up pitches.
Offense: Those players not in the initial offensive line-up can be inserted in the batting order by adding them to the end of the line-up or by having them pinch-hit or pinch-run for another player. Anytime a player is added or inserted to share a battling slot, the manager must notify the umpires and the opposing manager and scorekeeper. In any situation where a player is announced as a pinch-hitter or a pinch runner, baseball batting-order rules apply (any player who is pinch-hit or pinch-run for cannot bat or run again – but may remain in the game defensively).
Offensive line-sharing: Two (or more) players may share a position (batting or running) in the offensive lineup; the sharing may be initiated by the manager at any time and is not limited to one batting position.
a) Neither player may appear anywhere else in the offensive lineup.
b) If one of the players is incapacitated (cannot play) for any reason, the remaining players in the shared position continue as before.
c) If all players in the shared position are incapacitated (cannot play) for any reason, and no substitute, who has not appeared in the offensive line-up is available, the batting position is an automatic out.
If a player in the offensive line-up has to leave the game due to injury, other commitment or ejection, he must be replaced in the line-up by another player.
a) If there is no reserve player available, the position is declared vacant and it will be an automatic out whenever the position comes to bat for the remainder of the game (including a resumed suspended game if there still is no replacement – the original player may not re-enter if he had been ejected). If an ejected player is at bat when ejected, his replacement will assume the ball-strike count. If there is no replacement, it is an automatic out.
b) Exemption: If a team bats everyone available and the offensive order is at least 14 batters long, the batting position of players forced to leave for injury or other commitment will be bypassed (the batting order may not decrease below 13, and players leaving the batting order due to injury may not continue to play defense); an automatic out will only be enforced in case of an ejection.
No courtesy runners are permitted. Exception: A courtesy runner may be used for the catcher with 2 outs as a speed-up consideration. The courtesy runner must be the last offensive player to be put out (either as a runner or as a hitter).
Pitchers may re-enter as long as they remain in the game defensively.
There is no maximum on how many innings a pitcher may pitch in a game or a week.
While pitching, a pitcher may not wear white or gray undershirt sleeves or wear batting gloves or wristbands on his pitching arm.
If a pitcher hits 4 batters in a game, he must be removed.
Intentional walks are allowed. However, catchers must call for the four pitchouts.
Teams will forfeit under the following conditions:
Fewer than 8 players are available at the start of game after 10-minute grace period.
Fewer than 8 players are available after the start of (or during) the game because players being lost due to
ejection’s or injuries. This is the case regardless of the inning the game is in.
Use of an ineligible player.
Failure of an ejected player to leave the park.
It is a single elimination playoff system (with the exception of the championship series, which is a "best of three" series of games).
Each game is 9 innings in duration.
Playoff games will have no time limit however the run rule is still in effect, except for the championship series. We play regular baseball until there is a winner (no shootout).
The seedings are determined by regular season record (won-loss percentage.
Tiebreakers - If more than one team has the same won-loss percentage, we go to a list of tiebreakers. If a team forfeits during the regular season, they automatically lose all tiebreakers and they will have the lowest seed of the team (or teams) they are tied with.
The first decider is head to head record. If they split the season series, then it goes to runs allowed against each other. If that is a tie, then it is runs allowed against all teams for the regular season.
If there are more than two teams tied, the tiebreakers are still head to head (with all the other teams with the same record), then runs allowed against those teams.
Ejections: Any ejection will carry a 2-game suspension (game of suspension plus following game).
An extra suspended game can be added for over-the-top behavior directed towards officials or the throwing of equipment following ejection. Any player ejected three times in one season is suspended for the rest of that season and all of the following season.
a) Field conduct: Ejected players are required to gather their belongings and vacate the dugout within a reasonable amount of time. Players may stay on the field site, but may have no further contact whatsoever with umpires and game participants.
b) Appeals: All suspensions may be appealed in writing to the Governing Board. Verbal appeals must be presented within 24 hours of the ejection; written appeals must be in the league office within 48 hours.
(If a player is ejected in the first game of a double-header, player or manager may contact the league commissioner by phone to appeal suspension and be eligible to play second game. Make sure umpire is available to get approval from the league.)
c) Carry over: Sanctions will carry over from season to season.