NW Nations is all about real baseball including leading off and stealing. At the same time we recognize that players are learning and developing skills that are new to them and in an effort to help them progress and improve the game we implemented new stealing rules last season for the 9u division and they worked well. We plan to continue to use them this season.
The purpose of the modified stealing rules is to:
-Help the young pitcher gain confidence in attempting to learn how to hold runners on base.
-Help the catcher gain confidence in being able to throw the runner out.
-Help the base runner learn how to lead-off.
-Keeps the game from becoming a track meet while teaching young players the basics of stealing and pitching.
9u Division Modified Stealing Rules
-There is a 10-ft chalk mark placed off first, second and third base.
-The runner can take a lead, but cannot cross the 10 foot mark until the ball crosses the plate.
-The runner is allowed to steal when the ball crosses the plate.
-If the pitcher attempts a pick-off, the runner can advance to the next base on the play.
If the runner gets a running start in an attempt to steal before the ball crosses the plate or crosses the 10 foot mark prior to the ball crossing the plate the following shall apply:
-If the runner advances safely, the Umpire shall call “Time” and the runner shall return to the base last legally occupied at the time of the pitch.
-If the runner is called out, the call shall stand and the runner is declared out.
-If the ball is hit, the defensive team shall have the option of choosing the result of the play or a no pitch.
-Runners shall not advance from third (3rd) base to home unless the runner is batted home or forced by a base on balls, hit batsman, or award from the Umpire.
-Runners shall not advance from third (3rd) base to home on passed balls, wild pitches or dropped / missed third (3rd) strikes by the catcher.
-In age divisions 10u and below, there will be one balk warning given to each pitcher, subsequent violations will be enforced.