AAA Rules and Guidelines

Updated Monday May 1, 2017 by Barrington Little League.

League Objectives:

  • The AAA division is intended to prepare players both mentally and physically to play in Majors.
  • Game scores should be maintained to provide a competitive feeling and all official little league rules should be honored. 
  • Players will start to become specialized in their fielding positions, and will become more aware how their level of commitment and ability, relative to their peers, affects where and how much they play.

Game Scoring & Playoffs:

  • Mercy Rule: If a team is losing by 10 runs or more after completing their fourth half-inning at-bat, that team has the exclusive option of exercising the mercy rule and ending the game (not the other team or the umpire). 
  • Run Limits: There is a 5-run limit per half inning, except for the 6th inning.
  • Time Limit: No inning can start after an hour and 50 minutes have elapsed from the game's start.
  • The game ends when no inning can be started because of the Time Limit or when one team is ahead after 6 innings (5 1/2 if the home team is ahead).
  • Playoff seeding: Playoff seeding will be randomly determined.  The purpose of this is to not penalize coaches who want to use the regular season to take risks and develop players.
  • All-Star team: Team managers and the Division Director meet at the end of the season to select an All-Star team.

Pitching & Catching:

  • Pitch counts: Both teams must maintain an official pitch count for all pitchers and compare them between innings, averaging any differences.  Pitchers must strictly adhere to mandatory rest days requirements:
    66-75 pitches in a game 9-10 yr olds
    (11 yr olds can pitch to 85)
    4 calendar days rest before pitching again
    51-65 " 3 "
    36-50 " (8 yr olds are limited to 50) 2 "
    21-35 " 1 "
    1-20 " No rest days required
  • Coaches may keep pitchers in up to their pitch count limits, however, using 3+ pitchers a game should be a goal.
  • Players should be held out from pitching or catching until they can throw with control and catch/block the ball.  However, coaches should attempt to cultivate these skills with all interested players to the point that they are prepared for game play.
  • Note 1: A pitcher who delivers 41 or more pitches in a game cannot play the position of catcher for the remainder of that day.
    Note 2: Any player who has played the position of catcher 4 or more innings in a game is not eligible to pitch on that calendar day. CLARIFICATION: This rule prohibits a player who has played the position of catcher in any part of four innings in a game from being used as pitcher in that same game.

Batting:

  • Little League has strict and specific regulations about the types of bats that can be used.  Please see their bat rules page and pay particular notice to the list of approved Little League bats.
  • Each player on the team will be included in the batting order regardless of playing a field position (continuous batting order).
  • All batters must wear a helmet with a facemask.
  • Reasonably fixed batting orders can be used, but coaches should take every opportunity to move players up in the order as they do well in games or work hard in practices.
  • To reduce the perception of favoritism, managers should allow assistant coaches the opportunity to set the batting lineup at least occasionally.
  • Bunting is strongly encouraged.  NOTE: when a player squares to bunt, they can pull their bat back, but they cannot then attempt to hit the ball (a slash bunt).

Fielding: 

  • Nearly all players should play at least 2 innings in the infield every game. However, a player who cannot reach first base from the left side of the infield should not play 3rd or shortstop. Similarly, a player who cannot safely catch a throw from the hardest throwing infielder should not play first base. Thus some players may not be skilled enough to play 2 innings in the infield.
  • When games are shortened by rain, darkness, or the mercy rule, coaches should make up for lost playing time in subsequent games.
  • No player should sit out more than twice as many innings as any other player over the course of the season.
  • No players should sit out two innings in a row.
  • Three outfielders are used.
  • Coaches should be particularly diligent about teaching their fielders not to inadvertently obstruct baserunners.

Baserunning:

  • The ball is live until controlled by the pitcher on the rubber and the catcher is set behind the plate.Once the pitcher is in control of, or has possession of the ball, with both feet on the dirt area of the mound no runners can advance and the play is dead.
  • Sliding is always okay, although runners can simply avoid the tag as well. If contact is made and the runner does not slide, the runner is automatically out. 
  • Head-first slides are not allowed, except when returning to a base. 
  • After a walk, the ball is live and runners can advance.
  • Runners who turn to their left after over-running first are not automatically eligible to be tagged. They must also make an attempt, in the umpire's judgement, to advance to second. 

Stealing:

  • Unlimited steals are permitted per inning, including steals of home.
  • Runners cannot leave the base until the pitch reaches home plate. 
  • The ball is live on overthrows by the catcher.
  • Delayed steals are allowed. 

Umpiring, balls & strikes:.

  • Only team managers are allowed to speak to the umpire. Coaches must relay their concerns through the manager.
  • Managers should not contest judgment calls by the umpire. Umpires will make mistakes, but that's part of the game. It is critical for coaches to model the best possible sportsmanship for their players. 
  • A manager may approach an umpire if a rule has been overlooked. However, any interpretation of such rule must be left to the umpire. 
  • All coaches and managers must stay in the dugout, off the field, unless coaching a base.
  • Umpires will arrive 30 minutes prior to the games.  If an umpire is not at the field please contact Rick Cunningham at 401 447-4981.  Umpires have been made aware of all house rules and will follow them accordingly.

 




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