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West Middleton’s Baseball & Softball

Machine Pitch Rules & Guidelines

 

 

Program Objective:

  1. To improve and learn skills
  1. Throwing and catching
  2. Fielding
  3. Hitting
  4. Base running
  1. To have fun!
  2. Teach sportsmanship and enjoyment of baseball

 

1. DUGOUTS/ GAME BALLS/PRE-GAME CONFERENCE

  • Home team is determined on the game schedule (listed first)
  • Home team will be in the 1st base dugout.
  • Before the start of each game, a pre-game conference with the opposing coach shall be held at home plate to discuss any questions or concerns.
  • Please use outfield of respective bench base line for warm-ups prior to the game.  Infield practice will not be allowed prior to game.

 

2. TIMING

  • Games are 6 innings or a time limit shall be 75-minutes (strictly enforced).
  • No new inning can begin after the 65- minute mark of a game.
  • Game time will start promptly at the designated time. Make sure your team is warmed up and ready to play.
  • The game will end at the conclusion of the time limit regardless of who is up to bat.
  • The field supervisor or coaches will keep official playing time.

 

3. FIELD MARKINGS

  • Base distance = 60 feet.
  • Pitcher’s mound = 46 feet.

 

4. ROSTERS

  • All players must be properly registered and appear on your Official Team Roster - this is given to you by the Recreation Coordinator.

 

5. UNIFORMS/EQUIPMENT

  • All participants receive a t-shirt and hat which they should wear during game play.
  • All batters and base runners must wear a batting helmet
  • All players are encourage to wear a cup and supporter.
  • Suitable shoes must be worn (no crocs or sandals). Shoes with metal cleats are NOT allowed.
  • No player will be allowed to wear exposed jewelry of any kind.
  • Catchers must be in full gear (i.e., face mask, shin guards, and chest protector) when on playing field.

 

 

GOVERNING RULES

 

  • All rules established by WIAA apply with the following Modifications.
  • Score is not kept.
  • All players must be on the bench during the game unless on the field defensively, or as a base runner, batter, on deck batter, or base coach

 

6. BATTING/INNING REGULATION

  • All players present at the start of the game for a team will be in the batting order regardless of the number.  Players arriving after the game has begun will be added to the bottom of the batting order.
  • First 3 games of the season an offensive inning will consist of one complete rotation thru the batting order.
  • After Game 3, an offensive inning will consist of 3 outs or one complete rotation thru the batting order, whichever one comes first.
    • If three outs are recorded in an inning, the next inning the batting order should pick up where it was left off the previous inning
  • The offensive team should notify the defense when the last batter comes to bat. 
    • Once the last batter puts the ball into play, the batter and base runners must try to score on that play. On this play, if the fielding team manages to record an out on the base paths or at any base, the inning is over.
  • No walks or bunting
  • No infield fly rule.
  • A runner cannot steal under any circumstances.  No leading off until the ball is hit.
  • Any batter excessively throwing the bat will be called out. Runners return to original bases.

 

7. LIVE BALL/DEAD BALL

  • The ball becomes live once the batter hits the ball in play
  • The runners will advance when the ball is hit.
  • Outs will be enforced, and players can advance multiple bases on hits.
  • Play is stopped (time called) and the runner may not advance once:
    • The runner stops at a base
    • The ball is in control as any base
    • The pitcher has the ball at the pitcher’s mound.
  • If a runner is less than half way to the next base at the time the ball is ruled dead, they will be returned to their previous base.
  • If a runner is more than half way to the next base at the time the ball is ruled dead, they will be allowed to advance to the next base.
  • An overthrow to first, second, or third base will result in a dead ball and players may only advance to the next base.

 

8. PITCHING

  • The pitching machine speed should be set to 35 mph.  Do not decrease the speed.
  • The player pitcher (defensive team) must remain on either side or behind of the coach pitcher and may not move until the ball is hit.
  • Maximum number of pitches per batter is 5. If they do not get a hit, the coach can then do a coach pitch for 2 pitches. If the Ball is not put into play after those 7 pitches, the batter is out. 
    • Balls, foul balls, a ball striking a player, a player missing a pitch, or a player not swinging at a pitch are all counted towards a batters total numbers of allowable pitches.

 

9. DEFENSE

  • A game can start with six players and have a maximum of 10 players in the field.
    • Defensive lineups shall include pitching fielder, catcher, first, second, third basemen, shortstop, and up to four outfielders, for a total of ten defensive players.  Coaches should encourage kids to “play their positions”. No outfielders playing the infield. 
  • The field will have an imaginary line drawn from 3rd base through the pitcher’s mound to 1st Base. All infielders must remain behind this line until ball is hit.
  • Defensive coaches can be in the field of play to position players and serve as umpire
    • Coach can stop play to tell team what should have been done on the play. 
    • If parent can help behind the catcher, this speeds up the game…
  • Players must not sit more than one consecutive inning
    • Extra players should be sat on the bench and be rotated in.
    • Players should only play a position once in a game
    • Players can be substituted in any dead ball situation.
  • Every attempt must be made to keep the baseline clear.
    • Penalty: The obstructed runner will be advanced one additional base.
    • Runners may not intentionally collide with a defensive player, unless the runner is sliding.
  • Plays at every base are considered force outs. There will be an additional base provided at home plate for base runners to run to/through.
    • To determine if the base runner is making an attempt to reach the next base, the base runner must advance more than halfway on the baseline.

 

10. WEATHER HOTLINE/CANCELATIONS/MAKEUP’S

  • Every attempt will be made to play games; however, the safety of players is the #1 priority of Middleton Recreation Division. Please be patient with weather delays.
  • In case of rain or wet grounds, after a game has begun, the field supervisor will decide if the fields are playable.
  • The weather hotline will be updated by 4:00pm on weekdays. It is every team’s responsibility to check the weather hotline before game time for game cancellation information.
    • WEATHER HOTLINE NUMBER IS – 608-821-8357 or 608-826-2880
  • Cancelations will be updated on the following Social Media Platforms:
    • City of Middleton Public Lands Recreation and Forestry Facebook Account
    • West Middleton Baseball Softball Twitter Account
      • https://twitter.com/WMBS18
  • If inclement weather becomes a factor, you will still be limited to the time frame of 60 minutes so you may not get an entire game in.