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Author TOPIC: Field Decorum

June 4, 2008
12:14:29 PM

Entry #: 2777961
Little League Regulation XIV, located on page 39 of the rule book, deals with field decorum and states as follows:

“XIV – Field Decorum

(a) The actions of players, managers, coaches, umpires and league officials must be above reproach. Any player, manager, coach, umpire or league representative who is involved in a verbal or physical altercation, or an incident of unsportsmanlike conduct, at the game site or any other Little League activity, is subject to disciplinary action by the Local League Board of Directors (or by the district, if the Big League is administered as a district operation).

(b) Uniformed players, news photographers, managers, coaches, and umpires only shall be permitted within the confines of the playing field just prior to and during games. Batboys and/or batgirls are not permitted at any level of play. Except for the batter, base runners, and base coaches at first and third bases, all players shall be on their benches in their dugouts or in the bullpen when the team is at bat. When the team is on defense, all reserve players shall be on their benches or in the bullpen.

(c) Two adult base coaches are permitted.

(d) A manager or coach shall not leave the bench or dugout except to confer with a player or an umpire and only after receiving permission from an umpire. (EXCEPTION: In Minor League and Tee Ball, managers and coaches may be on the field for instructional purposes, but shall not assist runners or touch a live ball. At least one adult manager or coach must be in the dugout at all times.)

(e) The use of tobacco and alcoholic beverages in any form is prohibited on the playing field, benches, or dugouts.

(f) Managers and coaches shall not warm up pitchers.”


Section (a) of this regulation gives the Board of Directors authority to discipline anyone associated with the league who is involved in an altercation. This can be of a verbal or physical nature and includes acts of unsportsmanlike conduct.

Section (b) points out that the dugout is for players, the manager, and rostered coaches only. Additional players and adults, like scorekeepers, are not allowed. It further states that players, when not in the field, on base, at bat, or acting as a base coach, shall remain on the bench. Exceptions to this would include trips to the restroom. Trips to the concession stand or to visit with friends or parents are not acceptable exceptions.

Section (c) allows for both base coaches to be adults at all levels of Little League. However, this is subject to the restriction found in Rule 4.05(2), which states that there must be at least one adult coach or manager in the dugout at all times. Please note that this must be a rostered coach or manager. A team CANNOT place a parent or other adult in the dugout who is not a rostered coach or manager. This is due to the restriction placed on all volunteers that they first be subject to a background search.

Section (d) restricts all coaches and managers to the dugout unless they are acting as a base coach or, after first getting the permission of the umpire to leave the dugout after time being called, to confer with a player or umpire. This provision includes between innings and during any other break in the action. Like players, they are also permitted to leave for a restroom break or other such necessary exception, but trips to the concession stand or to leave the field to smoke, are not allowed.

Section (e) disallows any use of any tobacco product on the field of play by anyone. As stated above, leaving the field of play to use tobacco is further restricted. To often coaches or managers feel the need to use smokeless tobacco or smoke on or near the field of play. This simply cannot be tolerated. We are all examples before these impressionable kids and we must be good examples. This regulation requires enforcement of this need.

Section (f) states that managers and coaches shall not warm up pitchers. This includes between innings, in the bullpen, prior to the game, or at any other time. This regulation is repeated in Rule 3.09 and discussed in more detail in my post titled “Coaches as Catchers.”

If you have any question about Regulation XIV, or any other rule or regulation, please send your questions to me at:

Jeffrey Knoebel
Indiana D5 UIC

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