EAST METRO BASEBALL LEAGUE (EMBL)
2017 RULES AND REGULATIONS
The East Metro Baseball League (EMBL) LLC was founded in 2003 to provide persons 18+ in the MABL (the younger division) and 35+ in the MSBL (the older division) the opportunity to once again play baseball. While the EMBL encourages good clean play and the spirit of competition, a "win at all costs" attitude shall not benefit the league, its teams or players. Sportsmanship and respect for the game shall at all times be the cornerstone of the EMBL.
To be eligible to play, one must attain the age of at least 18 by December year of the year the player enters the league. Any violation may result in forteiture of games, suspension, or expulsion or other sanction deemed appropriate by the EMBL Commissioner.
In the 35+ league, a team may have 5 players between the age of 25-29 and 5 players between the age of 29-34. However, anyone under 35 can only pitch 2 innings in any one game. For example, 2 under-35 pitchers can pitch a total of 2 innings between them, or one pitcher can pitch 2 innings.
Playoffs: In order to be eligible for the playoffs, a player must have participated in at least one third of it's games.
Exceptions: Teams that add players late in the season to fill up their roster and prevent forfeits may be eligible for the playoffs pending the approval of the Commissioner. Or a player who was injured earlier in the season and was unable to play the required games will be eligible as well. What is critical here is that a manager is not attempting to "stack" his team for the playoffs.
Divisions; Rosters, Contracts, Fees:
The EMBL shall consist of 2 divisions, an 18+ and 35+ division
Each team shall have a minimum of 15 active players per team
No player shall be allowed to play in EMBL games until he has signed an EMBL player waiver form and paid league fees in full
Each manager shall 1) submit a team roster 2) collect league fees from his players 3) have his player sign a waiver ( see responsibilities of the manager).
Addition of players: Players may be added at any time during the season. Players will be charged a pro-rated rate after the half way point in the season, as determined by the Commissioner. A player waiver must be signed before playing.
Withdrawal from the league: A player who pays his league fee and withdraws from the league before the start of the season will receive a full refund of his fee. Once the season starts, no player for any reason shall be entitled to a reimbursement of his fee.
A manager may not profit from any team or player-related activity.
Formation of new teams; player movement:
During the regular season, a player may not leave one team to play on another without the consent of both team managers and Commissioner approval. If the proposed player movement is not approved the player must either remain on the team he began the season with or withdraw from the league.
At the conclusion of the season, a player shall become a free agent and can play for any EMBL team. However, he must first inform his manager and the commissioner of the move and receive approval.
New teams can be formed and existing teams can be supplemented in the following ways:
1) Any individual can start a new team with the permission of the Commissioner. He should not recruit his players from existing EMBL teams. They should be “new players”, who have not played in the EMBL.
2) The EMBL has winter practice games where many new players come out to practice and get placed on new teams.. These new players can be recruited at that time by managers of new teams. Also, any team which finished in the bottom third of their standings in the previous year may recruit these players. If a player is approached by more than one team, the player can decide which team he wants to join.
3) DRAFT: A draft will be held in April for players who have not been selected during the winter practices. Teams that are short of the the 15 required players will be required to take draft players to fill up their teams. Players will be selected in reverse order to their standings- that is, the lowest seeded teams will get the first pick etc.
All players must have matching professional quality and style uniforms with player numbers. A grace period may be extended for new players or new teams. Player names are optional. T-shirts, visors, shorts, and other non-baseball pants are specifically forbidden. If for any reason a player cannot be uniformed for a game, he must receive permission from the opposing manager.
Bats: Wood or wood composite bats only can be used in the 35+ division; BBCOR and wood bats only can be used in the 18+ division.. The maximum bat differential for any metal or aluminum bat is -3. If a player exceeds the differential bat or uses an illegal bat in a game, he will be declared out.
Baseballs: MSBL-approved baseballs are required. The EMBL will provide baseballs for all games, including the HR Contests and All Star Games.
Metal cleats are permitted.
All batters and runners must wear ear flap helmets. Single ear helmets are permitted, but must be worn with the ear flap facing the pitcher. Half helmets are required by catchers, at a minimum. All base coaches must wear helmets.
Each team must have a first aid kit available at all games.
Rules on the playing field:
Length of games: Games are scheduled for 9 innings of length, but no inning can start after 2:45 from the official start of the game. Any inning in progress after that must be played to conclusion.
Games that are tied: If after 2:45 of play the game is tied, the game will be ruled a tie, except in the playoffs, when all games must produce a winner.
Five (5) innings shall constitute a complete game. (4.5 innings if the home team is in the lead). Games that are rained out/suspended will be picked up from the point where they ended at the next meeting of the two teams. They will thus play a double header, completing the suspended game and playing a 7 inning second game. The 2 teams will need to mark in their scorebooks where they were when play was stopped. The same players do not have to be batting/fielding as they were in the incomplete game, but the game must be picked up in the same situation.
If there is no future game scheduled between teams that are rained out/suspended, the make up game will be played from the beginning- a full game.
All make up game dates must be agreed upon by both managers.
Lineups must have each player's first and last name and jersey number, and be exchanged at the pregame plate meeting. A/B batting slots and courtesy runners must be identified before the start of the game. One copy of the lineup shall be given to the opposing manager and one to the announcer (if the game is being announced).
In the 35+ league, under 35 players will be designated in the official line up ( 5 maximum allowable).
Number of batters: A team may bat as many players as it wishes in the starting lineup, with a minimum of 8 batting. If only 8 batters are available, the team is "legitimate", but must take an out every time the 9th slot comes up.
Starting with the 10th slot in the batting order, batters may be A/B'd. That is two batters may occupy the same slot, and alternate hitting in that position. For example 9. 10 A/B, 11, 12 A/B.
A manager may add batters to the bottom of the linup at any time but if a batter is pinch hit for or run for, the player cannot re-enter the game as a hitter but may remain in the game as a fielder or pitcher.
Replacement players: A team must have a minimum of 8 players to start a game, 6 of whom are regular team players. A manager may "borrow" up to 3 replacement players to supplement his team. Thus a team may have, for example, 6 of their own players and 3 replacement players and incur no penalty. If he has 6 of his own players and 2 replacement players, his team can play, but an out will be called every time in the 9th slot.
Managers will receive a list at the start of the the season of authorized replacement players and their email addresses. If they need a player or players to make a game possible, they must select them from this list. Anyone not on the list must be approved by the Commissioner or opposing manager in advance of the game.
Replacement players cannot be pitchers under any circumstance and cannot be catchers without prior approval from the opposing manager.
Replacement players should be recruited to avoid forfeits, not to bolster a team's chances in a game. "Superstars" should not be replacement players.
If a player is ejected from a game and there is no reserve available, that batting position will be an out every time that position comes up.
If a player has to leave early and there is no replacement, the first time his that batting slot comes up will be an out and thereafter, no penalty.
For any player forced out of the lineup due to injury, there shall be no penalty when his slot comes up; all batters will move up accordingly.
The offense and defense operate separately. A defensive player may play for a period of time, be removed, and then return at any point in the game with no penalties. Exception: a pitcher can re-enter the game only one time, but not in the same inning. On offense, teams must adhere to their lineups.
A former major league pitcher cannot pitch unless he has been out of the majors for at least 3 years.
Courtesy runners: Courtesy runners must be designated at the plate meeting prior to each game. Teams may have 2 courtesy runners per game plus the catcher and the pitcher can have a courtesy runner.. In addition, a team may have a courtesy runner for an injured player.
Until the first out, the courtesy runner is the last person in the batting order;. Thereafter the last batted out shall be the courtesy runner. If a player who is designated to have a courtesy runner does not elect to use that runner, he will forfeit his right to use one for the rest of the game.
IN ALL CASES IT IS THE RUNNER'S OBLIGATION TO AVOID CONTACT EVEN WHEN THE FIELDER IS ILLEGALLY BLOCKING THE BASE PATH.
This is an amateur league, not a professional one. It is important for both runners and fielders to do everything they can to avoid contact and injuries.
A fielder, including a catcher, may not block or obstruct a runner's path to a base unless he is in the immediate process of making a play on a batted or thrown ball in that area, nor may a fielder apply an excessively foreful tag to a runner. Catchers, while setting up to receive a thrown ball, must initially position themselves in such a manner so as not to block the plate or third base line.
A runner has a right to the base path, unless the fielder is in the process of making a play on a batted or thrown ball; such runner shall not be penalized if he inadvertently obstructs a fielder's view while trying to avoid a batted or thrown ball. A runner whose path to the base is illegally blocked shall be awarded the bag.
A runner must, in all cases reasonably attempt to avoid contact, even if the fielder is illegally blocking the base path. A runner who fails to make a reasonable attempt to avoid contact with a defensive player shall be called out, may be ejected, and other runners advancing on the play shall be required to return to the last base occupied.
If in the judgment of an umpire the violation of this rule is flagrant or intentional, the offending fielder or runner, or both, may be ejected from the game.
A pitcher may go to his mouth while on the mound (but not on the rubber) as long as he wipes his hand before contacting the ball. Failure to do so results in an automatic "ball." A second offense can lead to ejection.
Intentional walks are allowed. All 4 pitches must be thrown.
No player without the ball shall feign a tag. As a penalty for the first offense all base runners shall advance one base beyond the base held when all play stops. Any additional violations shall result in ejcction.
Hidden ball tricks are allowed.
Mercy rule: Applies to regular season games and playoffs and tournaments: 15 runs after 5 innings and 10 runs after 7.
Hit batsmen: If a pitcher hits 4 batters in any one game, the pitcher must be removed on hitting the 4th batter.
Any rule not specified herein shall be governed by the National MSBL Rules, or, in the absence of such, by the Official Playing Rules of Major League Baseball.
Code of Conduct:
In the event if an ejection, the player will be ejected both from the game he got ejected from and also from the following game as well. The umpire will file a report to the EMBL Commissioner within 24 hours.
Managers and players will conduct themselves in a sportsmanlike manner at all times. No manager or player shall commit the following:
* Intentionally touch, shove, strike or threaten an umpire, manager, player or spectator.
* Refuse to abide by an umpire's decision.
* Exhibit flagrant demonstrations of dissent at an umpire's decision.
* Except through the manager, discuss an umpire's decision with that umpire.
* Physically or verbally attack any player, manager, umpire, or spectator before, during or after a game.
* Through word or action, openly criticize embarrass, disparage or in any way demean the performance or efforts of any player during the course of the game.
Any manager or player found in violation of the Code of Conduct rules shall be subject to ejection from the game by the umpire and any further sanctions deemed appropriate by the EMBL Commissioner;
Any suspension over 2 games shall be reviewed by the Rules Committee, consisting of 2 managers in the age division not involved in the incident and the commissioner. If commissioner's own team is involved in the incident leading to the suspension, 3 uninvolved manager shall constitute the Rules Committee.
Responsibilities of the Team Manager:
* Be a positive role model for the rest of the team of good sportsmanship
* Recruit 15 players and complete a team roster
* Collect league fees and get signed waiver (contract) from each player
* Insure that players understand and abide by EMBL rules
* Assure that the team is properly equipped and in matching uniforms
* Participate in all EMBL meetings
* Report the score of each game won to the EMBL commissioner and (optional) send highlights for Facebook
* Each team shall be responsible for selecting it's All Stars for the All Star Games and team MVP at the end of the season
* Each member of the championship in each age division shall receive an individual award
The regular season schedule, including the number of games, dates, times, location, home team, shall be set by the EMBL Commissioner before the start of the season
Playoffs shall be held in accordance with the format approved by the EMBL Commissioner
All rainouts or suspended games will be rescheduled, of possible, by the EMBL Commissioner, subject to field and date availability.
Protesting games is, in general, discouraged because of the difficulty of rescheduling games. It is recommended that managers and umpires work out a solution on the field. A short season does not permit the replaying of protested games.
All protested games must be submitted in writing to the EMBL Commissioner within 24 hours of the game in question.
No protest will be considered on any judgment calls made by the umpires. Protesting because the "umpire made a bad call etc." is not a reason for protesting a game.
If reasonable grievances are unresolved during a game, a manager can protest the games within 24 hours. The Rules Committee, comprised of 2 managers in the age division not involved and the EMBL commissioner will make a decision within one week. If the commissioner's team is in any way involved in the incident or would benefit the outcome, 3 uninvolved managers will comprise the rules committee.
As adopted 2009