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Pinto National Rules

Pinto National Rules (Kid Pitch)

2024 Spring Ball
Bats MUST BE USA stamped.

The following Rules are in addition to the basic baseball rules as contained in the Pony League Rulebook AND the PONY Pinto Division Rulebook. In the event of a conflict, THESE Rules shall control:

    • The Manager or a Coach MUST have the team roster and the medical release forms for all players at each game.
    • No practice on infield prior to start of game.
    • The home team is responsible for setting up the field and supplying two (2) useable balls for each game.
    • Teams will be limited to (12) players.
    • After a game, the winning team will remove the outfield fence and the visiting team will drag and water the field.
    • No team shall make substantial changes to the league issued uniforms. If so, the manager and team will face disciplinary action.
    • A player may buy and wear his own fitted cap as long as it has the same logo as the league issued cap.
    • All players will use the proper equipment, including: cups, cleats (NO METAL OR SPIKED CLEATS - No tennis shoes), uniforms, gloves and full catchers gear.
    • Batters and base runners will wear their helmets at all times on the field during play.
    • No players will be allowed on the field without the appropriate equipment.
    • All bats must have "USA" stamped, not "USSSA" and cannot exceed a maximum 2 5/8 inch barrel.
  • FIELD DIMENSIONS: Base lengths are to be 60 feet. Pitching mound shall be 40 feet from home plate.
    • All coaches shall be adults and includes the Manager.
    • Offensive team shall have at least three coaches: 1 coach at 1st base; 1 coach at 3rd base; and 1 coach in the dugout.
    • The batting order shall contain the entire roster of players.
    • Teams will bat through their entire line-up regardless of any defensive player's turn to sit out during an inning.
  • SIDE RETIRED: Three outs or 5 runs, whichever occurs first. Unlimited runs are allowed in the last inning.

    • Each game will be six (6) innings. No new inning may be started after one hour and forty-five minutes (1:45) from the official start time of the game.
    • There is a mercy rule in effect. Mercy rule applies if the home team is leading by 15 runs at the end of 3 innings or by 10 runs at the end of 4 or more complete innings.
  • FIELDERS: Each team will play a maximum of nine (9) players in the field, as follows: Pitcher, Catcher, 1st Base, 2nd Base, Shortstop, 3rd Base and three (3) outfielders.

    • No player shall sit on the bench for consecutive innings.
    • No player shall sit two (2) innings in a game until all players have sat out at least one (1) inning.
    • Any player not starting the game will start in the next scheduled game (injury, illness or discipline are exceptions).
    • ALL players will play at least 1 inning in the infield.
  • HITTING: The batter is permitted to bunt.

    • Strike outs are permitted.
    • The strike zone will be enlarged during the beginning of the season from one ball outside of homeplate to one ball inside of homeplate, and from the shoulders to the knees.
    • The strike zone will condense into a traditional strike zone as the season progresses.
    • Players shall be allowed to walk.
    • Walked runs in are allowed and count as a run.
    • When a runner is walked, the ball is dead. If the catcher fails to catch the ball, the player that was walked can not advance to second on that play.
    • When on defense, a coach may be positioned at the backstop behind the catcher. Their responsibility will be to get passed balls back to the pitcher which will help speed up the game. Coaches, please use your discretion when the offense has runners on base as to not disrupt any stealing.
    • If the batter is hit by a pitched ball, the batter shall be awarded first base.
    • If a single pitcher hits three (3) batters within an inning the pitcher must be pulled.
  • HIT BY A BATTED BALL: If baserunner is hit by a batted ball, the baserunner will be called OUT, All other advancing baserunners will continue to the nearest base and the play called dead.

  • INFIELD FLY RULE: The infield fly rule does NOT apply.

  • THROWING THE BAT: Any player who, after one warning, throws the bat while batting shall be called out. Any player who has been called out twice in one game for this offense shall lose their remaining turns at bat in that game.

    • There shall be NO leadoffs prior to the pitch crossing home plate. Base runners MUST stay in contact with the base until the pitched ball crosses homeplate.
    • Players must touch all bases in order when running and not pass another base runner while doing so. Failure to do so will result in an out.
    • You may pinch run for a pitcher/catcher with runner that made last out at any time during the game.

    1.Stealing is permitted. Runners may steal second and third base, but shall not leave the base they are occupying at the time of the pitch, until the pitch has been hit or has crossed homeplate. Once the pitcher has stepped on the rubber with possession of the ball, runners who leave the occupied base before the pitch has been hit or has crossed homeplate shall be called out and the pitch shall be considered a dead ball.

    2.If the Catcher overthrows to second or third base in an attempt to catch a base runner stealing, the runner must stay at that base. This includes a Back-pick attempt to any base.

    3.Should a baserunner leave the base clearly before the ball crosses home plate, the baserunner shall be returned to the previous base and warned of the rule. Should the infraction continue, the baserunner shall be declared OUT. It is not the intent of the NHBA that this be a punitive rule; rather, only in cases where the infraction is obvious should the penalty be imposed.
     4.Home is locked. There will be no stealing home under any circumstances.

  • OUT OF PLAY: Only 1 base will be allowed on an overthrow that leaves the playing area. Out of play is 10-15 feet beyond the first and third baselines.

  • FAKE TAGS: There will be no fake tags. A player who makes a fake tag shall be given a warning followed by ejection for a subsequent occurrence.

  • PLAYER EJECTION: Players shall be ejected from the game and receive an additional game suspension for the following conduct:
    • Forearming or tripping runners;
    • Intentionally running into fielders; or
    • Bad sportsmanship, such as taunting or ridiculing other players.
    • If a parent, family member/friend or coach are ejected from a game, that person will not be permitted to attend the following scheduled game and the associated player will also be ineligible to attend. 
    • Any player that is ejected from a game will be subjected to a review of the play by the Division Director, which could include an additional suspension. If a player is ejected from a game for a second time during the same season, that player shall be suspended from the team's next one (1) to three (3) games (including practices) upon review and ruling of the NHBA President and Division Director. If a player is ejected for a third time in the same season, that player is subject to probable suspension for the remainder of the season upon review and ruling of the NHBA Board.   
  • PROTESTS AND FORFEITS: There will be no protests. A team can play with 8 players, when the ninth spot in the batting order comes to the plate it is an automatic out. If you have 7 players the game is a forfeit.

    • NHBA will provide Junior Umpires to call the games (as the budget permits).
    • The appointed umpire shall be positioned behind the pitcher and will call balls and strikes as well as defensive plays.
    • There will be no arguing or disputing any calls made by the umpire (especially the Junior Umpires).
    • In the event Junior Umpires are unavailable, the home team shall be responsible for designating an umpire.

    1.Kid pitch only. No coach will be allowed to pitch.

    2.No balks will be called.

    3.Dropped third strike is a dead ball and the batter is out.

    4.If a pitcher hits three (3) batters within an inning the pitcher must be pulled

    5.Pitchers reaching their maximum number of pitches in a day while pitching to a batter, may finish pitching to that batter before being removed.

    6.Should a pitcher reach a tier pitch limit, while in the middle of pitching to a batter, they may finish that hitter without penalty of moving into the next required rest tier.
    • There shall be no more than three (3) mandatory events per week. Events are games or practices at which a coach and more than three team members are present.
    • During the playoffs, it is possible that more than three (3) events in a week may occur, based on playoff and game scheduling.
    • There will be NO mandatory events on Sunday, unless weather delays or other unforeseen events make it necessary.
  • MANAGERS CODE OF CONDUCT: The Code of Conduct for Managers are a part of these rules. ALL Player ejections, please use Pony division and Bronco division rules as a guideline.


Each game shall be six (6) innings in duration, subject to the following conditions:

  • Both the official start time of the game and the sunset time must be agreed-upon by both teams’ head coaches and the umpire, before the game commences. 

  • No new inning may be started after one hour and forty-five minutes (1:45) from the official start time of the game, even if this means that less than six (6) innings will be played.

  • In the event that less than six (6) innings are played as a result of the 1:45 “no new inning” time constraint, the leader after completion of the final full inning will be declared the winner.

  • If the game remains tied after the final full inning, play shall resume until a winner is established, even if this means that more than six (6) innings must be completed, and the game is over the one hour and fifty-five minute (1:45) time rule. In this situation, no new inning may be started after ten (10) minutes prior to the previously agreed sunset time.

  • The umpire has sole discretion to stop play in the event of darkness.  In the event that the umpire determines that the game cannot safely continue due to darkness, the game shall be suspended.  There is NO outcome where the score will revert. 

  • The suspended game shall resume the following day, at least thirty (30) minutes prior to the next scheduled playoff game, regardless of whether either team was previously scheduled to play that day.
  • The final pitcher for each team at the time the game was suspended may return to pitch in continuation of the suspended game.  Pitches thrown in continuation of the game will be applied to the pitcher’s daily pitch count for the day that the game originally began.  All other daily and weekly pitch rules will remain in effect.
  • The suspended game shall continue according to the foregoing rules, until a winner is established.
  • There is a mercy rule in effect. Mercy rule applies if the home team is leading by 15 runs at the end of 3 innings or by 10 runs at the end of 4 or more complete innings.

  • The lowest seeded team (#1 SEED OR FIRST PLACE TEAM IS LOWEST SEED - #6 SEED OR LAST PLACE TEAM IS HIGHEST SEED) will be the home team throughout the playoffs. If in the Championship match up the loser’s bracket team wins the first game, the second game home team will be determined by a coin flip.
  • Pitching - if a pitcher has the available pitches, a pitcher could pitch in two (2) games in a day. Pitcher must throw 20 pitches and less than 2 innings in the first game to be eligible to pitch his remaining daily maximum pitches and innings in the second game.


Newport Harbor Baseball Association (NHBA)
PMB 320 1048 Irvine Avenue 
Newport Beach, California 92660

Email: [email protected]

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