NYSBL RULES AND REGULATIONS (2021)

Sec. I SPORTSMANSHIP / “Do No Harm” 1 Sec. II ROSTERS / UNIFORMS 2 Sec. III PRE-GAME PROCEDURES 3 Sec. IV LINEUPS / LINEUP CARDS 3 Sec. V GAMES 4 Sec. VI GAME PLAY 5 Sec. VII PITCHING 7 Sec. VIII FIELD INTERFERENCE 8 Sec. IX RAINOUTS / WEATHER 8 Sec. X STANDINGS 8 Sec. XI PLAYOFF ELIGIBILITY 9 Sec. XII PLAYOFFS 9 Sec. XIII LIABILITY / EMERGENCIES 9 Sec. XIV COVID-19 SAFETY PLAN 10

I. SPORTSMANSHIP
The highest standards of sportsmanship and fair play are the focus of the NYSBL.

The NYSBL does not tolerate any unsportsmanlike, abusive or belligerent misconduct, whether it is physical, mental, emotional or sexual. This includes but is not limited to abusive language, intimidating behavior or gestures, verbal threats, excessive arguing or physical contact of ANY kind with an umpire or another player. Such misconduct will be dealt with severely. Offenders will be subject to ejection, suspension and/or permanent expulsion and their team may be subject to forfeit.

Any player ejected from a game may be suspended for at least his team’s next scheduled game. Two ejections may result in suspension for the remainder of the season. All ejections will be reviewed by the commissioners and ruled upon in a timely fashion and will be final.

A player or manager who participates in a game in any way, including coaching bases, while under suspension will result in his team forfeiting that game.

Managers are responsible for the behavior of their players. Failure to control abusive or unsportsmanlike players may result in the ejection of the manager along with the offending parties.

NO playing loud music during games. Headphones MUST be used with all listening devices.

Punishment decisions for multiple unsportsmanlike behavior ejections may be more severe, at the discretion of the Commissioners, and may include suspension for one entire season, or longer.

Commissioners will have the authority and their decisions on any and all punitive measures will be final.

Ia. “DO NO HARM”

This is a “no contact league”.

We do not allow “taking out” an infielder at a base or crashing into the catcher at home plate.

On a force play at any base, a runner must slide or go out of the baseline, and not go into the base standing.

A player that causes a collision will be called OUT, the ball is dead, and the umpire may issue an ejection.

On a play at the plate, the same rule applies for the runner, and the catcher may not block the plate. If a catcher attempts to block the plate the runner is safe.

The physical well being of each player is more important than any run scored or prevented.

II. ROSTERS

A maximum of 25 players may be placed on a team roster. Anyone who plays on a team must be listed on that team’s roster.

Rosters will consist of the player’s first and last name. NO “nicknames” will be accepted. An incomplete entry will be considered a no entry.

Rosters must be submitted to the league commissioners by the end of the first game.

All additions to the team roster must be emailed to the Commissioners.

A player may be on only one roster.

All roster changes / additions / deletions must happen by 10am on game day.  (So all rosters are “frozen” on Tuesdays from 10am until the final game is completed that day.  

Rosters will be frozen after Game 7 and no more additions allowed. Requests for exceptions must be submitted to the Commissioners for approval.

If a player’s eligibility is questioned, the manager must protest immediately. The player in question must give the umpire his full name, which will be forwarded to the league Commissioners.

Use of an ineligible player will result in forfeit of all games in which he or she participated. The Commissioners’ decision on eligibility matters will be final.

Players who wish to transfer from one team roster to another must do so before Game 7. No transfers will be considered after that. All transfer requests must be made in writing and MUST go through and be approved by the Commissioners.

Any disputes will be ruled upon by the Commissioners whose ruling will be final.

IIa. UNIFORMS

All players must wear a team uniform shirt by the 5th game. Starting with game 5 of the season, any player without a team uniform shirt will start his at bat with one strike.

III. PRE-GAME PROCEDURES

Pregame practice, fielding and hitting will be shared by both teams.

Each team will bring a brand new “Clincher” softball to the game and present it to the umpire prior to the start of play.

Managers and umpires will go over the ground rules for that particular ball field.

Any ball striking any part of a tree will be declared a DEAD BALL. If deemed by the umpire a fair ball, it will be a “no pitch”. If deemed a foul ball, a strike will be enforced against the batter.

BEFORE the game begins, properly filled out lineup cards will be exchanged, with DH, EH and Courtesy Runners clearly indicated.
(See Section IVa.)

The Courtesy Runner shall be the last batted out. Each team is allowed 2 Courtesy Runners. Any requests for additional courtesy runners must be made and approved by the opposing manager before game play has started.

If an injury occurs during play an additional courtesy runner may be approved by the umpire.

Any additional non roster “subs” MUST be approved by the opposing manager AND reported to the umpire before the game starts. Not doing so will cause an automatic forfeit.

IV. LINEUPS

Teams may use a 10-person lineup with or without a DH (Designated Hitter), or an 11-person lineup with an EH (extra hitter who does not play the field) OR a 12-person lineup using TWO extra hitters (EH).

The DH: Bats in place of any fielder who then does not bat in the game. DH may be inserted into the field for the player he has been batting for (not necessarily in the same fielding position). At that point the DH position no longer exists and the replaced player is out of the game, permanently.

THE EH: An 11th and or 12th batter who has no current fielding position. May be rotated into the field but continues to bat in the same spot in the batting order. The player he replaces in the field remains in his original spot in the batting order and assumes the role of EH.

Once the leadoff hitter bats for a second time, a DH or EH may not be added to the lineup.

IVa. LINEUP CARDS

A NYSBL 3-part LINEUP CARD card must be presented to the umpire BEFORE the game. It must be filled out with the first and last names, and positions of all players in the lineup. Please include the pitchers name if the is a DH for them.  Umpires will be instructed to NOT start a game until both teams fill out and turn in a lineup card. Any changes or substitutions must immediately be brought to the attention of the umpire and entered onto his lineup sheet.

The umpire’s lineup sheet will be the official record of who played in the game. Umpires will present lineup sheets to the Commissioners at the close of play.

Each team should keep their pink lineup sheets for the entire season for proof of participation/eligibility.

All discrepancies for the week must be resolved BEFORE the next game.  

V. GAMES

The Regular Season will consist of 14 games (subject to weather and scheduling considerations). Regular season games are 9 innings. When and IF a double header is needed both games will be 6 innings. Games are scheduled for 1 PM, and must begin no later than 1:15 PM.

Teams may start the game with a minimum of 8 players.
Teams not prepared to start by 1:15 are subject to forfeit. If neither team is prepared to start, a

double-forfeit will be declared.

No outs will be declared for the 9th and 10th open slots in the batting order. Additional players may be added at the end of the batting order as soon as they arrive during games.

A new ball will be put in play at the top of the 1st inning and the bottom of the 5th inning. After that, the best ball will be used thereafter, as judged by the umpire.

No inning may start after 2:50 PM unless the field is available. Games may continue until completion if the field remains unoccupied by another permitted game.

Games are official after the trailing team has batted in the 5th inning. If a regular season game is halted for any reason before it becomes official, the game may resume on the next available date at the point where play was discontinued at the discretion of the commissioners.

All playoff games will be played to a 9 inning completion.

If play is halted during a playoff game, the game will resume on the next available date at the point where play was halted.

If a game is tied after the nine complete innings, the tie-breaker rule will come in effect. Starting with the top of the tenth inning, and each half inning thereafter, the batting team shall begin it’s turn at bat with the player who is scheduled to bat last in that respective half inning being placed on second base.

The league employs a “12 run rule” during the regular season. This is a Sudden Death rule. If a team trails by 12 runs and has completed 7 at bats, the game is immediately and officially over.

All playoff games will be played to completion no matter the score.

VI. GAME PLAY

No bunting, chopping or stealing. An umpire will call a batter / runner out for such actions.

No phantom tags. An umpire will issue a warning to a defensive player unless deemed unsafe by the umpire in which case an immediate ejection may be enforced. A second offense in the same game WILL result in the ejection of the offending player.

Baserunners may lead after the ball leaves the pitcher’s hand. Any pickoff attempt from the catcher at a base is a force play. Once the catcher throws the ball back to the pitcher on the mound the play is dead.

On a pickoff play, all baserunners must TAG UP before advancing, even if the pickoff throw is wild (No stealing).

The league employs a “RE-ENTRY” substitution rule. A starting player who has been substituted for may re-enter the game once for the same player who replaced him. He resumes his original spot in the batting order. The player who subbed for him is out of the game, permanently.

Bases will be set at 65’ and the pitching rubber at 46’.

The league will provide 4 bases and 2 bats for use in games. The 2 supplied bats are the ONLY bats allowable for use in the game.

Use of non-approved equipment, if detected and properly appealed, will result in an out and ejection of the offending player.

Use of any illegal equipment is further punishable by forfeit and further punitive action by the Commissioners.

All catchers MUST wear a league approved catchers mask which will be supplied by the team.

Bases are moveable. The league employs an orange “safety base” at first base in order for runners to avoid collisions. During the normal course of play, the batter/runner must touch the orange base (if not attempting to advance to 2nd base) and the fielder must touch the white base.

Either base may be used by the fielder or runner in order to avoid a collision.

If a runner overruns a base and is tagged, he is out. However, if he slides into a base and the movable base is dislodged, the runner must stay where the base originally was. If the play continues, subsequent runners only have to tag the spot where the base was originally.

Umpires have complete control of the game and their decisions are final. There is no arguing balls / strikes, out / safe, fair / foul etc.

Any protest on a rule interpretation must be made on the spot, before the next pitch is made and ONLY by the team manager.

The game situation (score, inning, outs, runners, etc.) will be recorded on paper and signed by both the protesting manager and the umpire.

This must be handed or emailed to a league official by the protesting manager before midnight the following day.

The Commissioners will review the protest and their determination will be binding and final.

***DUE TO THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC, IT IS HIGHLY RECOMMENDED THAT ALL

CATCHERS SUPPLY THEIR OWN MASKS AND DO NOT SHARE MASKS WITH OTHER

PLAYERS.***

VII. PITCHING

The pitching category is modified.
Pitchers may go back to the 12 o’clock position in the backswing of their delivery. Pitching arm must remain straight throughout the entirety of the backswing (no bent arms).

The ball must remain inside the pitcher’s wrist during all parts of the delivery.

BOTH feet must be in contact with the rubber throughout the windup. (No stepping back)

One foot must be in contact with the rubber throughout the delivery.

Shoulders and hips must be square to home plate when the ball is delivered.

No windmill, slingshot, shotgun, whip, submarine or slap pitching is allowed.

During games, questions about the legality of a pitch or pitcher will be determined by the umpire, according to ASA and NYSBL rules.

If an illegal pitch is called, it is an automatic ball, and all runners will be awarded one base.

If an illegal pitch is called and then hit for an out it will NOT be in play, and the umpire will award an automatic ball and all runners advance one base each.

If an illegal pitch is hit safely, with all runners advancing at least one base, the result will count.

If a pitcher is called for more than three illegal pitches in a single game, the pitcher will not be allowed to pitch for the remainder of that game. If a pitcher is removed for illegal pitching violations a second time, he or she will be suspended from pitching for the next two games in which he or she plays. If a pitcher is removed three times for illegal pitching violations, he or she will be banned from pitching for the remainder of the season. Pitchers serving removal, suspension, or ban may play other positions.

Managers or coaches may make ONE trip to the mound per inning. A second trip to the mound by either a manager or coach signals the replacement of that pitcher.

No “tournament level” pitching will be allowed in the NYSBL.

NOTE: A pitcher may be deemed legal by ASA standards but declared a “tournament pitcher” because of superior skill that places him or her above the general skill level of most of the players in our league. A list of banned pitchers exists and will be added to, as necessary. The determination on such matters will be made by the Commissioners.

VIII. FIELD INTERFERENCE

If a player is camped out under a fly ball and is run into by a player from another field, the umpire may call an OUT if, in his judgment, the ball would have been caught.

If a player running for a ball makes contact with a player from another field or a spectator, and does not catch the ball, the ball is in play. This applies to both fair and foul territory.

On a ball in play that is interfered with by a spectator or a player from another field, the umpire may award all runners the number of bases that, in his judgment, would have been earned.

A fly ball, line drive or hit that strikes a player from another diamond will be in play.

Overthrows that enter dead ball territory will result in a two-base award (the base they are running to plus one additional base) for all runners from the moment the ball was RELEASED.

IX. RAINOUTS/WEATHER

The Central park Conservancy decides if the fields are playable for our games. That decision is announced on the league “Rain Number”. RAIN NUMBER: 212-628-1036 X332 (Heckscher)

Once a game begins, any decision to officially stop play due to weather rests with the Umpires, Commissioners, or the Parks Department. NOT the managers. Only an Umpire, Commissioner, or the Parks Department can postpone or suspend a game once it has begun.

X. STANDINGS

If teams are tied in the standings at the end of the regular season, the following tiebreakers will be in effect:

  1. Head-to-head record.

  2. Run differential in head-to-head games.

  3. Fewest Runs Allowed during regular season.

  4. Runs Scored during regular season.

If 3 or more teams are tied, their head-to-head competition will decide the seedings. If necessary, the above tiebreakers will then be employed. If still tied after all tiebreakers are employed, a one-game playoff may be scheduled.

XI. PLAYOFF ELIGIBILITY

All players must appear in at least 6 games.
These appearances must be on the team with which he wishes to enter the playoffs with. If a player transfers teams by the allotted time period in a season all previous games do not count towards playoff eligibility.

XII. PLAYOFFS

Playoff format is single elimination until the championship round.
All playoff games will be 9 innings.
Matchups to be determined according to the number of teams in each division. The higher seeded team will be the HOME team.

The Championship Game will be a best of three 9-inning games with each team alternating home field for the first two games. IF a third game is necessary, a coin flip will determine the HOME team.

XIII. LIABILITY/EMERGENCIES

THE NYSBL, its Commissioners and umpires are not responsible for any injuries or loss of property incurred before, during or after league games, no matter how caused. By choosing to play in an NYSBL game, each player should understand that he plays at his own risk.

In the event of a serious injury, send for one of the league Commissioners. If an ambulance is necessary, and the injured player agrees, call 911. Give your location as Heckscher Ball Fields, and your diamond number.

XIV COVID-19 SAFETY PLAN

COVID-19 Athletics Safety Plan and Checklist Affirmation

All managers AND players are required to review and follow this COVID-19 Safety Plan and Checklist Affirmation.

Please note: If the parks observe violations three times they will revoke our permits for the ENTIRE league. As a result, if any team violates these guidelines more than once, that team will be removed from the league for the remainder of the season. .

PHYSICAL DISTANCING AND FACE COVERINGS

To ensure attendees comply with physical distancing and face covering requirements, you/your team agree to do the following:

Ensure consistent six feet of distance between individuals, unless safety or core activity (e.g. practicing, playing) requires a shorter distance. If a shorter distance is required, individuals MUST wear face coverings.

Coaches, players, and/or other individuals who are not directly engaged in activity are required to wear face coverings.

Prohibit congregation once games conclude. All participants, coaches, volunteers and spectators must leave the field of play immediately and remain distanced from incoming teams. Ensure the proper disposal of face coverings and PPE. All trash and recyclables must be removed from Parks property.

HYGIENE

To ensure attendees can practice proper hygiene, you/your team agree to adhere to hygiene and sanitation requirements from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Department of Health (DOH), and do the following:

Provide alcohol-based hand sanitizer for coaches, and players where hand washing is not feasible. Limit the sharing of objects and discourage touching of shared surfaces; or, when in contact with shared objects or frequently touched areas, wear gloves, sanitize and/or wash hands before and after contact.

TEST AND TRACE

To aid in test and trace efforts, you/your team agree to do the following:

Maintain a log of participants and contact information for your records to aid in test and trace efforts as necessary. If an attendee tests positive for COVID-19 after your game you must cooperate with all contact tracing efforts, including notification of the NYC Health Department and Test and Trace in order to notify potential contacts who had close contact with the individual, while maintaining confidentiality required by state and federal law and regulations.

Have a plan for contact tracing in the event of a positive case.

HEALTH SCREENING

To ensure the teams comply with requirements set by the NY State Department of Health, you/your team agree to do the following:

Implement the mandatory health screening assessment below for teammates prior to the event. Prior to the game, you/your team must be notified (and then notify the league) if a player or coach has or had:
(1) COVID- 19 symptoms in past 14 days, which may include a fever of 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit or greater, a new cough, new loss of taste/smell, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, muscle/body aches, fatigue, sore throat, congestion or runny nose, nausea or vomiting, or diarrhea),

(2) A positive COVID-19 test in the past 14 days, measured from the test date, not the date that the test result was received (3) close contact (within six feet or less for at least 10 minutes) with confirmed or suspected COVID-19 case in past 14 days, and/or

Please prohibit any coach/team member from coming to the fields who have indicated “yes” to any of the aforementioned questions in the mandatory health screening assessment above.

It is essential that all managers read and understand these rules. They will be strictly enforced. Each manager has the responsibility to discuss these rules with his or her players.
The decisions of the Commissioners on all matters covered by these rules will be final.