BAYB 2013 Rules
The BAYB Rules meeting was held in October. Updated rules will be posted below by 1 Jan.
2014 BAYB, ISCB, and Warren Spahn Memorial League Rules
What Constitutes a Balk?
The balk: an illegal act by the pitcher with a runner or
runners on base, entitling all runners to advance one base;
is probably the least understood infraction in all of
The rule centers on the actions of the pitcher and it's
important that developing pitchers learn about the do's and
don'ts of pitching, to avoid getting called for the balk.
In short, the intent of the balk rule is to prevent the
pitcher from deliberately deceiving a base runner, and
thereby gaining an unfair advantage over the runner. Umpires
are instructed to rule based on the "intent" of the pitcher,
if there is any doubt.
It's important to note for developing pitchers that once
they step on the rubber, they have changed their status from
"infielder" to "pitcher" and the rules governing pitchers
are in effect. To change their status back to "infielder"
all they have to do is step off the rubber with their pivot
foot. Note that it's illegal to act like a pitcher when
you're not on the rubber (i.e. go through pitching motions).
In the official MLB rule book, there are 13 different ways to
balk. I've paraphrased them below for you...
1) The pitcher makes their natural pitching motion but fails
to throw the ball to home plate.
2) The pitcher feints a throw to first base, while touching
the rubber, but fails to make the throw. Note that this rule
applies to throws to first base only. The pitcher can fake a
throw to second or third base, provided there are runners on
those bases. Also note that if the pitcher steps off the
rubber they don't have to throw.
3) The pitcher fails to step directly toward a base before
throwing to that base. Note that you can't throw and then
step. Also note that you have to step directly towards the
base. There is no 45-degree rule, or mostly toward the base.
Obviously it's the umpires judgement that governs.
4) The pitcher throws or feints a throw to an unoccupied
base, except for the purpose of making a play. Note that
it's okay to throw to second base if the runner on first
base has already taken off, attempting a steal.
5) The pitcher makes an illegal pitch. Note that a
"quick pitch" or pitching before the batter is reasonably
set in the batter's box is an illegal pitch (it's also
dangerous). Make sure you wait for the batter to get ready,
and remember that just being in the batter's box doesn't mean
the batter is reasonably set.
6) The pitcher delivers the ball to the batter while they
are not facing the batter. I've never personally seen this
happen, but I bet somebody actually tried this sometime.
7) The pitcher makes any motion naturally associated with
their pitch when they are not touching the rubber.
8) The pitcher unnecessarily delays the game.
9) The pitcher fakes a pitch without the ball. Note that it
doesn't matter whether you're on the rubber or not.
10) The pitcher, after coming to a legal pitching
position, removes one hand from the ball (other than
releasing the ball on the throw).
11) The pitcher accidentally or intentionally drops the
ball. Note that you have to be touching the rubber before
this is a balk.
12) The pitcher, while giving an intentional base on balls,
pitches when the catcher isn't in the catcher's box. Note
that the catcher has to start in the catcher's box and then
quickly move outside to catch the ball.
13) The pitcher delivers from the set position without
coming to a stop.
Baseball has many unwritten rules that are often overlooked.
- Never mention a no-hitter while it is in progress
- Never steal or Hit & Run when you are up big
- Never have a hitter look back at the Catcher's signals while in the box
- Never watch the ball go out of the yard when you hit it (especially little guys)
- Never do anything that shows up the other team's or pitcher
- Never put the tying or go ahead run on base
- Never Hit & Run on an 0-2 count
- Never play the infield in, early in the game
- Never make the first or Third out at Third base
- Never bunt for a base hit when you need a sacrifice
- Never give up a home Run on an 0-2 count
- Never squeeze bunt to mercy rule an opponent
- Never let the score influence the way you manage.
- Never give an intentional walk if first base is occupied.
- Always take a strike when your team is behind
- Play for the tie at home, play for the win on the road
- In run down situations, run the runner back to the base he already occupied.
- If you play for one run, that is all you will get
- Hit behind the runner on first base
- With a right-hander on the mound, don't walk a right-handed hitter to pitch to a left-handed hitter.
- Hit behind the runner on first base
- Hit the ball where it's pitched.
- Don't use your stopper in a tie game - only when you're ahead.
Six Ways to Be a Model Coach
1. Everything you say or do makes an impression on kids. What they don’t see, they often sense.
2. The measure of character is how you act when you think no one’s looking. You’d be surprised at what kids know, hear about, and discover by accident. Behavior speaks louder and more persuasively than anything you can say.
3. Only a fraction of young people will play sports beyond high school, but most will become parents, employees, and citizens. By building their character, you’ll give them and the rest of society a permanent gift.
4. Setting rules is important because young people are especially vigilant for unfairness and hypocrisy. Too many adults (and pro athletes) are selfish and undisciplined because rules weren’t enforced or didn’t apply to them when they were young.
5. When the game’s on the line, so is integrity.
6. If you’re not sure how to handle a situation, ask yourself:
• What would I tell my child to do?
• What would I do if my child was looking over my shoulder?
• Do I want my character judged on this decision?
• How would I feel if my decision was reported on the 6 o’clock news?
• If everybody did it, would it be a good thing?
• What would my role model do?
What Kind of Coach Are You?
Have you ever evaluated yourself and your coaching style? This test from the National Institute for Child Centred Coaching will determine if you’re a traditional coach, a child-centered facilitator, or somewhere in-between.
Don’t think about each question too long. Your first response will give the best indication.
- The major reason children should play sports is to have fun, not to win.
a. Winning is important to children.
b. Winning is important but not necessary.
c. Enjoyment is the key; winning is secondary.
- Children should learn how to compete at an early age.
a. They stand a better chance of being successful later in life.
b. Competition is important, but it shouldn’t be the basis for playing sports for young children.
c. The earlier young children learn to be competitive, the less enjoyment they might have playing.
- A strong self-image can be developed in young children with a strict, no-nonsense approach to coaching.
a. They need to know who’s the boss and follow the rules.
b. Children need to be managed with a firm, yet reasonable approach.
c. Children need to be encouraged to try their best.
- Praising a child’s ability is okay, but don’t overdo it.
a. If praised too often, they’ll develop a false sense of their abilities.
b. Children need to be told accurately and honestly about their weaknesses.
c. If it’s honest praise, there’s no such thing as overdoing it.
- Children who develop too much self-esteem will become spoiled.
a. Look at any superstar in today’s sports and you`ll see what a spoiled child is like.
b. Children must be taught humility; those with high self-esteem often act conceited.
c. Children with high self-esteem often make the best players.
- Most parents want their young children to win, not necessarily to have fun.
a. Agree. Winning equals improvement.
b. Some do, but not all.
c. Disagree. Parents need to be educated.
- Disciplining a child in front of the team can set an example for others.
a. Everyone learns to do the right thing really fast.
b. Peer pressure is the most effective form of team discipline.
c. Discipline should be a private issue between coach and child.
- The coach should set the rules and give them to the players.
a. Showing who’s in charge will teach children to respect authority.
b. Coaches need to demonstrate leadership, and children need to comply.
c. Coaches should provide guidance only, which will empower children.
- The coach should sometimes act like a teacher; sometimes like a parent.
a. Playing both roles can confuse children. A coach is a coach.
b. A coach might sometimes take on the role of a teacher or a parent but should remain first a coach.
c. A coach should be a parent and a teacher.
- A parent’s role in children’s sports should be:
a. Mildly involved.
b. Moderately involved.
c. Maximally involved.
Give each "a" response 1 point
Give each "b" response 2 points
Give each "c" response 3 points
10-16 points. You’re a traditional coach. You believe winning is the primary reason for playing sports, take a hard line in discipline, use an autocratic approach, and find little value for parental involvement. Seek instruction in child-centered coaching philosophies and techniques.
17-23 points. You’re a partly traditional, partly child-centered coach. You’re a leader but not autocratic, a problem-solver but not a ruler, and a motivator but not commanding. Improve your child-centered coaching philosophies and techniques.
24-30 points. You’re a child-centered coach. You believe in making the game fun; being both a parent figure and a teacher; offering guidance, encouragement, and support; and maximizing parental involvement. Maintain your child-centered philosophies and techniques.