Information for Umpires (AMSPL)

PrintInformation for Umpires

Information for Umpires


  • Pitch Arc – 6′ to 12′

    Pitch Height Restrictions

    We are currently using a 6′ to 12′ pitch height limit which we strongly encourage all league members to enforce. The rule is in place for many reasons, most importantly safety. Captains and players must call illegal pitches when fulfilling their umpiring duties. This is not an optional, discretionary policy.

  • Pitcher Distance from plate – 50′ to 65′
  • Pitching box – 2′ wide by 15′ long


  • Bases are 65′ apart
  • Commitment line is 21 feet from home plate
  • A safety bag is used at first base. A batter must use the orange bag when running to first from home plate. Once safely on first base, the batter must use the white bag. The defensive player always uses the white bag.


  • Check “Links” section for approved bats.
  • All bats should have ASA approved stamp on the barrel.
  • Trapper gloves may only be worn by pitcher, catcher and first baseman.
  • Metal cleats are not permitted.


  • An illegally batted ball occurs when the batter steps on the mat or has his foot on the ground completely in front or behind the mat when the bat contacts the ball.
  • A batter may advance to first base after a hit, a walk, or if interfered with by the catcher.
  • A batter will be out if he bunts the ball, or intentionally chops down on the ball.
  • A batter is out if he fouls a ball which is caught by the catcher before it contacts the screen or the ground. There is no minimum height requirement for the caught foul ball.
  • A Fair Ball – A batted ball that is touched while on or above fair ground, stops on fair territory within the infield, contacts a base, bounces over first or third base, or first lands on fair ground beyond the infield.
  • Home Plate – Home plate is considered in fair territory. A batted ball that hits home plate is live, and may still be a Fair Ball (see definition of fair ball above).
  • Foul Lines – The foul lines are still considered in play. The ball must completely cross the line to be ruled a foul ball.
  • Infield Fly: A fair fly ball that can be caught by an infielder with a normal effort. A batter is out if he hits an infield fly with less than two out and runners on first and second or first, second and third. Base runners may advance as set out below.

Base Running

A base runner may advance to the next base after:

  1. a fair ball is hit,
  2. a caught fly/infield fly ball is first touched,
  3. after an infield fly is called, but the ball is not caught, runners may advance without tagging up,
  4. a ball is overthrown but remains in play.

Runners are advanced:

  1. when a fair batted ball goes out of play (2 bases awarded from the time of the pitch)
  2. when a thrown (2 bases) or batted ball (3 bases) is contacted by a thrown glove (awarded from the time of the pitch)
  3. when a live ball is carried or dropped out of play (1 base awarded from the time the ball became dead.)
  4. when the ball is overthrown and goes out of play (two bases awarded from the time of the throw).
  5. when a defensive player obstructs the runner as he progresses around the base path. The umpire will award the placement he felt the runner would have made has there been no obstruction.

All awarded bases are from the last base legally touched and must be touched in the proper order.

A base runner must return to his original base if the batter or another runner interferes with the defensive team.

A base runner is out, and the ball is dead if:

  1. on a pitched ball, he leaves the base before the batter has contacted the ball with the bat.
  2. while off the base, he is hit by a fair batted ball before it has passed an infielder and no other fielder is in a position to make a play.
  3. he interferes with an attempt to field a ball or with a thrown ball.

A base runner is out, and the ball is alive if:

  1. he runs more than 1m. outside the established basepath to avoid a tag
  2. he overtakes a preceding runner
  3. a coach physically assists him.

A runner is not out and the ball is alive if:

  1. he runs outside the baseline to avoid interfering with a fielder fielding a ball.
  2. he is unintentionally hit by a batted ball while on a base.
  3. he is unintentionally hit by a batted ball while off a base, if no fielder has a chance to field the ball.

A base runner advancing to home plate from third base:

    1. When a runner crosses the commitment line by touching the ground beyond the line but does not reach home plate, he shall be called out when the ball is legally held by a defensive player in contact with home plate. Runners, who have not crossed the line or who cross the line but must tag up on a caught fly ball, may return to third base.
    2. Must touch the ground on or beyond the safe line (not in the air).

NOTE: The safe line is a line drawn in foul territory starting at the top left-hand corner of home plate perpendicular to the third base line.

  1. Sliding into home plate is not allowed.
  2. The runner is out if he touches home plate whether or not a play is being made.
  3. A runner is not out if the plate is touched in an attempt to avoid a collision.
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Printed from on Sunday, January 26, 2020 at 7:55 AM