Updated 2017 Season
Click the following link to download a copy of the Yawkey League Rulebook
1.00 Name, Purpose and Mission
2.00 Membership / Franchises
3.00 Franchise Responsibilities
4.00 Franchise Removal
5.00 New Team Applications Process
6.00 Game Day Duties
7.00 Officers / Executive Board of Directors
8.00 Meetings and Voting Procedures
10.00 League Events
11.00 Regular Season Schedule
12.00 Roster Guidelines & Player Movement
13.00 Postseason Format/Player Eligibility Rules
14.00 Inclement Weather
15.00 League Standings/Score Reporting
16.00 Baseball Playing Rules
17.00 Protest Procedure
19.00 Bylaws and Amendments
20.00 Code of Ethics/Player Conduct
21.00 League Discipline
22.00 YBL Calendar
Letter from the Commissioner:
It is an honor to serve as Commissioner of the Yawkey Baseball League. I want to continue on the 25 years of success that our league has realized since its humble beginnings. I want to continue on the path set forth by Dave McKay, Joe O’Hara and David Treska. We would not be here without their hard work and dedication for over two decades.
I am extremely fortunate that these three gentlemen are still here in important capacities; respectively, President Emeritus, Vice President and League Secretary. Together with the help of other Board Members Matt Grimes and John Griffith we seek to continue on past successes and push for an even brighter future.
We are thankful and excited that you have chosen to play in what we feel is the most organized and competitive league in the Greater Boston area. We are committed to your success and will work with you every step of the way. Our organization is built on the principle that each individual and franchise will strive to do what is best for the League and what is best for the game of baseball.
The purpose of this manual is to provide you with an overview of the Yawkey Baseball League and its rules, regulations, policies and procedures. We hope you will find the information helpful and informative.
All players, coaches and franchise holders are obligated to familiarize themselves with this document as best as they can. It will be voted on by the members each year as we always seek to amend and improve it.
I wish you the very best of luck this season and please do not hesitate to reach out if you need anything at all..
Yawkey Baseball League
1.00 NAME, PURPOSE & MISSION
The Yawkey Baseball League, Inc. (YBL) is an officially designated 501 (c) (3) non-profit amateur baseball organization organized and incorporated in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. We have taken significant steps with our organizational rules, regulations, policies and procedures to exhibit the highest quality image of our League and the communities in which we play.
Our Mission Statement is as follows:
The Yawkey Baseball League will provide a healthy environment for the players of our communities. Our focus is to encourage participation, develop character and discipline, promote teamwork and advocate citizenship and community pride. The purpose of the league is to protect, promote and stimulate competition among amateur baseball teams and leagues in the Greater Boston area. We will strive to provide quality fields, strong leadership, sportsmanship, competitiveness and fair play. The Yawkey Baseball League is committed to enriching the lives of our players, coaches and staffs while fostering a love of the game.
The membership of the YBL shall consist of duly elected and accepted baseball teams, each of which shall hold a franchise in the league. Teams are defined as “Franchises”. They are owned and operated by a registered and identified principal person known as the “Franchise Holder”.
2.02 Franchise Holder
The franchise holder has all right, title and interest in the team.
The franchise holder is responsible for compliance with all rules, regulations, guidelines, conduct, ethics, financial requirements and operating procedures of the Yawkey Baseball League.
2.04 Franchise Application and Renewal
All new franchises must apply and be approved for participation in the YBL annually following a format established by the Board of Directors.
All franchises and team members (staff, coaches and players) agree to abide by the official “Code of Ethics / Player Conduct” (from this point on referred to as the YBL’s “Code of Ethics”).
3.00 FRANCHISE RESPONSIBILITIES
3.01 Dues & Fees
- Teams must commit to participation each season and are responsible for paying all league dues and fees in accordance with the schedule of payments annually established by the YBL Board of Directors.
- At the December Elections meeting each team must…
- Declare their interest in returning to the Yawkey League for upcoming season.
- Pay a non-refundable deposit of $300.00 for the upcoming season as part of their dues.
- Failure to meet the duties under rule 3.01A or 3.01B the YBL Board of Directors may result in the termination of a franchise’s membership in the YBL.
3.02 League Meetings
Franchises are required to send their franchise holder or a team representative to all scheduled league meetings. Teams that fail to do so are subject to penalties of fines, suspensions and up to removal of franchise. Simply communicate.
3.03 Leagues Events
Each year the league will have a number of events that each team is required to participate in. Details are provided during meetings, email and social media. This list may include and is not limited to the following…
- All Star Game(s)
- Military Exhibition Game(s)
- YBL Golf Tournament
- EMass Baseball Classic
- YBL Awards Dinner
3.04 Uniforms (MLB 1.11)
YBL teams must have complete matching baseball uniforms consisting of caps, jerseys, pants, belts, socks and spikes. Jerseys must have a player name or number or both for identification purposes. Coaches are also required to be in a complete uniform (note: coaches and substitutes may wear a team jacket, fleece pullover or cage jacket). Any uniformed member of a team must stay in uniform for the duration of the game Coaches must wear spikes, turfs or sneakers.
All batters, baserunners, catchers and base coaches must wear un-cracked protective helmets.
- Batters must have at least one earflap on the side facing the pitcher. Baserunners may not switch the batting helmet to a catcher’s helmet.
- Catchers must wear either a skull cap/mask combination or “goalie” mask style. No soft caps are to be worn.
- Coaches must wear a protective helmet while coaching bases. A skull cap (no ear flaps) may be used in the coaching boxes during games.
3.06 Catcher Equipment (reference MLB 1.12)
Teams must provide at least one full set (helmet, mask, chest protector and shin guards) that are free of defects and are in good working order for all YBL games.
3.07 Bats (reference MLB 1.10)
Wood bats that meet the specifications of MLB bats will be used. The use of aluminum and composite bats are prohibited. Any illegal and/or doctored bats will be removed and the player will be ejected. The league will review each case and may impose additional fines/suspensions.
***SPECIAL NOTE: Rules 3.05, 3.06 and 3.07 are safety rules. Failure to comply with these will result in a breach of Yawkey League’s Insurance Policy leaving an offender NOT covered in the event of an accident/incident.***
3.08 Home Fields
- Each team is required to obtain the use of a home field for its regular season and postseason games (and pay for lights if applicable per guidelines established each year by the YBL).
- Weeknight games must have lights as start times cannot be earlier then 7pm. Weekend games can start as early as 12pm.
- Permits (via email, if necessary) must be provided to the YBL to verify that the use of the field has been approved. City of Boston teams can be part of the master permit that we are provided each year, but those teams should have relationship with the community in which they request a field.
It is recommended that each team have a head coach and, when possible, assistant coaches to manage games to assure that YBL rules are followed as well as to support and manage your team on the field and in the dugout.
3.10 Liability Waiver
At the end of the handbook is the waiver that all uniformed personnel need to sign and return to the YBL in order to participate in any official YBL game. Any player without one on file WILL NOT be eligible to play in any official YBL game.
3.11 Forfeit Fees
Any team that forfeits a game shall pay the YBL a $200 fine in addition to any costs incurred by both teams including but not limited to: umpire fees, field permit fees, light costs etc.
(Note: Forfeiture is further explained in YBL rule 11.09)
Teams are encouraged to promote and market their team to prospective players and sponsors. We ask that all teams use these mediums to promote their franchises:
- Team Website (re: free sites on Eteamz, Leaguelineup, SportNgin etc.)
- Social Media (re: Twitter and Facebook etc.)
- Local newspapers
3.13 Team Events
Teams are encouraged to run events to strengthen their brand and promote their teams. Teams are encouraged to host their own fundraisers throughout the calendar year to keep their own costs down separate from the league budget.
3.14 Schedule Availability
It is the duty of teams to be available to play on each day from the start of the season to Labor Day.
If you have a day off request you need to provide it to the YBL prior to the start of the season or immediately once it is learned – well in advance of requested date. If you have a day open on the schedule at any time, don’t assume you are not going to possibly play on these dates (re: makeups)
3.15 Pre-Season Games
The YBL does not procure fields, nor assign umpires for games prior to the announced scheduled start date of the season. If you wish to scrimmage another YBL team you must obtain your own permits and be responsible for all associated costs. We do however ask that you use certified umpires by contacting the YBL Umpire Assigner who will work with you on an assignment and the cost.
(Note: The YBL has nothing to do with pre-season games in regard to cost, oversight, liability)
4.00 FRANCHISE REMOVAL
Franchises exhibiting any of the following may be subject to removal by the league:
- Underperforming or deficient in competitive or management skills (YBL 3.00)
- Poor participation in league events or functions (ex: golf tournament, all-star games, awards dinner – see rule 4.03)
- Disrespect of the league’s objectives or public image
- Found to be in violation of the YBL’s Code of Ethics / Player Conduct
4.02 Financial Obligations
- Teams that fail to pay league dues and fees or fail to meet other financial responsibilities of the league will be subject to removal from the league.
- In order for YBL teams to be in good standing they must have no active applications with any other leagues.
4.03 Multiple Forfeits
A franchise will be at risk of termination from the league if it has forfeited games on two separate occasions during a season. A team removed for forfeits will have its remaining schedule declared forfeit losses and its membership in the league revoked. Forfeits may occur as a result of, but are not limited to:
- Not showing up to a game
- The ejection/injury or lack of a 9th player and can’t complete game
- Not returning with enough players after a rain delay
- Not completing a game per YBL or baseball rules
- A ruled forfeit after completion of the game.
(Note: teams that are terminated may reapply for entry but will be considered a new team and if accepted they will be under probation for three seasons. (Note: Forfeiture is further explained in YBL rule 11.09).
4.05 Revocation of Membership
Members whose franchise is in jeopardy will be notified by e-mail by the Commissioner, President Emeritus or Vice President. They’ll be afforded an opportunity to address the Board of Directors regarding deficient areas in question.
The membership of a franchise shall be revoked upon the vote of 67% or greater of the Board of Directors to terminate membership.
4.06 Appeal of Revocation of Membership
Revoked franchises (YBL 3.00) may appeal the decision to the membership of franchise holders. Franchise holders can overturn the vote of the Board of Directors with a membership vote of 67% or greater.
4.07 Revocation of Membership Appeal Format
The Board of Directors will determine the format, ground rules and logistics necessary to fulfill its obligation to do what is best for the League during any hearing or appeals process.
5.00 NEW TEAM APPLICATION PROCESS
The Board of Directors shall annually appraise new teams wishing to gain entry into the Yawkey Baseball League. The membership officer will establish the format, ground rules, logistics and other necessary requirements to accomplish the task.
5.02 Application Fee
A non-refundable $50.00 application/interview fee plus a $200.00 deposit of a franchise fee will be required of all new applicants. The deposit fee will be refunded to teams not accepted into the YBL. Upon acceptance in the league the deposit will be credited towards the upcoming season’s franchise fees.
Teams wishing to gain entry into the YBL must comply fully with any and all requests for information from the membership officer on a timely basis. Failure to do so may jeopardize the team’s chances for entry into the league and result in the loss of the application fee.
5.04 “New Team” Requirements
A new team gaining entry into the league must pay a supplementary “new team” franchise fee assessed over a three-year probationary period after which the franchise fee will be equal to that of existing franchises. Additional financial requirements may be added for other league events or undertakings. The Board of Directors will determine the supplemental fees to be assessed annually.
Here is the current schedule for new teams in the YBL.
- Year 1 – 75%
- Year 2 – 66%
- Year 3 – 50%
6.00 GAME DAY DUTIES
6.01 Scheduled Games
Each team is required to field a team on all dates their team is scheduled to play (original schedule and makeups).
6.02 .400Hitter Updates
Teams should be sure that .400Hitter is updated to assure the following:
- All players attending the game are listed as ‘active”
- Any new player(s) to the league or your team are registered with the YBL (re: signed waiver)
- No more than 25 players are listed as active (you will be limited to use these players)
(Note: Please feel free to bring a .400Hitter printout of your roster to validate on game day.)
6.03 YBL Baseballs
The home team is required to have a supply of officially approved baseballs necessary to complete all their games in that season. The league will approve the brand of baseballs to be used annually and have a name or logo stamped on each ball. In the event a team’s stock of YBL stamped balls is depleted a team (and can no longer obtain more from YBL surplus) may substitute using the same brand of approved ball without the stamp. All baseballs are to be rubbed up by the home team prior to the game.
(NOTE: In 2017 Diamond D1Pro is the approved balls for all league sanctioned games.)
The home team must supply MLB sized bases for play (15”x15”x3”). Teams should own both anchored bases and heavy throw-down bases as fields will vary in the Greater Boston area
6.05 Line-up Card Guidelines
- The HOME TEAM is responsible for the official lineup card for each game. The lineup card process is as follows:
- Prior to the game, the home team manager is to fill out the lineup card with his team’s starting lineup, list the reserves that are present at that time, and provide the card to the visiting team manager.
- The visiting team manager is then to fill out his team’s starting lineup, list the reserves that are present at that time, and return the card to the home team manager during the discussion of ground rules.
- Players can be added to the card as the game continues by notifying the home plate umpire and the opposing coach. Once the game has become official, no one else can be added to the card for the purposes of attendance/eligibility. ***the game becomes “official” after the home team has batted in the 5th inning. If the home team is ahead after the top half of the 5th, the game is considered official at that point***
- (Note: Players can play still but will not gain credit towards playoff eligibility if they arrive to game later than this point).
- Once the game has become official, the home team manager should bring the lineup card to the visiting team manager, where each manager is to review the card for accuracy, and sign the card to validate the rosters for the game.
- The white copy is kept by the home team.
- At this time, the lineup card is official, and the home manager is responsible for submitting a picture of the lineup card to the YBL for the maintenance of playoff eligibility. Players will not receive credit for games attended if no card is submitted. Please title the picture with the date and teams playing, such as “SBS @ RR on 6/12”.
- (Note: Players will not receive credit towards playoff eligibility until the lineup card has been received. It is in the interest of both teams and managers that these cards are submitted in a timely fashion)
- Any remaining legible copy is then given to the visiting team.
- Both teams are advised to keep their line-up copy (as well as their scorebooks) as they may be needed in case of a challenge to the accuracy of the league’s playoff eligibility count. If a team cannot support a claim with documented evidence, it will be denied.
- Please try to fill out the lineup card as legibly as possible, and to include jersey number and position for the starters. Do not make any other marks or notations on the official white copy. Other copies can be used for in-game management, but the white copy must be as clean as possible.
- Visiting teams should bring a few extra copies to games in the event the home team is unable to provide one.
- The line-up cards should not be completed until the team has finalized its lineup. The cards should not be used as scratch paper, as extra copies may be needed later for rainouts, canceled games or if the home team is not able to provide one.
- No more than 25 players may be listed on the line-up card for any one game as well as no more than 25 players may be listed as active on .400Hitter at any one time.
To be included on a line-up card a player must:
- Present at the game prior to the game becoming official.
- In full uniform.
- Listed as active on the .400Hitter website.
6.06 Forfeit Line-up Card Guidelines
- In the event of a forfeited game that never started (a 7-0 no show or prearranged forfeit where the game is not played) the forfeiting team’s players receive no credit for any player in attendance. The non-forfeiting team will get credit for all active players on its roster on the day of that game per .400Hitter and by completing a line-up card and submitting it to the umpire or to the league.
(Note: pitchers and position players will only earn attendance credit towards the playoffs. No start or innings can be granted for pitchers, no appearance can be granted for position players.)
- If the game has started and was played to a point where a forfeit is declared, the winning team will only get credit for the players that are on the lineup card up to the point where the game was stopped. The losing team will not get any credit for the players on their card for that game.
(Note: The stats will count and the final score will be logged in as of the stoppage of the game if winning team is leading, if not – a 7-0 score will be recorded and the stats will still be entered as played.)
6.07 Line-up Card Compliance
Any team that submits false data on a line-up card (listing players that are ineligible, inactive, etc.) will have its players ruled as ineligible for the game and for playoff credit. The team may also face sanctions for inappropriate unsportsmanlike actions for violations of the YBL’s Code of Ethics.
6.08 Ground Rules
Prior to all games, each team will discuss and review the ground rule for the park. The home team should explain to the visiting team and the umpires the ground rules. The YBL does not have a standard set of rules for each park, and may change from game to game (depending on field conditions) or from team to team. If there is a dispute, it needs to be resolved prior to the start of the game in the pregame conference. Once the game starts these may not be changed, unless for safety reasons per the games assigned umpires and both teams agreeing.
6.09 No Lights/Power Outages
- City of Boston – For any games on City of Boston field you should contact Dave McKay at 617-938-7150. He will contact the Parks Department to work on the situation (do not call the COB directly)
- Non-Boston Field – The team that provided the permit should contact the local Parks Department to work on the situation.
Each team should maintain a scorebook at all games. We ask that teams do their best to fairly score each game. If there is a dispute on a particular play or plays, we ask that you meet post game to be sure the scorebooks match to assure stats that are updated on .400Hitter are correct and match. Should inconstancies be posted the YBL may rule on it to have stats match.
6.11 Tobacco at Fields
Tobacco products of all kinds are illegal at all Yawkey League fields. New City of Boston Law is posted on the YBL website.
6.12 Changing Clothes
All Yawkey League fields are in residential neighborhoods therefore changing clothes and publicly nudity is prohibited.
6.13 Field Maintenance
Home teams are asked to perform routine maintenance on fields so as to have them ready for play if they are allowed to do so according to their permit. It is recommended that home teams have equipment (shovels and rakes) to assist in providing maintenance before and during a game.
(Note: In the event of inclement weather conditions BOTH teams are asked to assist in performing maintenance necessary to have fields ready for play (unless prohibited by a town or a certain fields rules). It should be the goal of both teams that the game gets played as scheduled).
Each team should be allowed enough time to take I/O before games. This may be shortened or cancelled depending on the group using the permit before ours. Please be respectful of the game going on before the YBL game. The home team decides what the pregame schedule is if there is the field is open before the Yawkey League game. It must include equal time for both teams.
- Teams should exit the fields in a timely and orderly manner.
- Please review the dugout areas and be sure to remove all trash and be sure that it is picked up and thrown away. If you find any equipment left behind please contact the other team or a YBL officer to assist.
- Within 15 minutes of the completion of an official game the winning team’s management is required to contact Stu Sklaver at (781) 513-3250 to report the line score.
- Team management is required to update the .400Hitter website with scores, stats and a game summary (game summary to be provided by the manager of the winning team) within 24 hours of the completion of an official game.
7.00 OFFICERS / EXECUTIVE BOARD OF DIRECTORS
The Board of Directors is the body of elected or appointed members who jointly oversee the activities of the Yawkey Baseball League. The board acts on behalf of, and is subordinate to, the organization’s full group, which chooses the members of the Board each season by a vote of the league’s Franchise Holders. The board is the supreme governing body of the Yawkey Baseball League.
(Note: All members of the BOD *and each franchise holder of the league* should read this document and be familiar with it as to our duties as published by the Massachusetts Attorney General’s Office). http://www.mass.gov/ago/docs/nonprofit/guide-for-board-members.pdf
7.01 Election of Officers
Annually, at the end of the calendar year (December or last meeting of Membership of that calendar year), the League Secretary will accept nominations for positions on the Board of Directors by or / for a franchise holder or their representative. Nominations may be made by email or other acceptable communication to the League Secretary.
Any franchise holder or his designated representative may be nominated for a position on the board and shall be placed on the ballot by the League Secretary once nomination is seconded. Nominations may be given to the League Secretary at any time up to the start of the December meeting.
7.03 Election Process
- When the deadline for nominations has closed and there are no contested positions for the Board of Directors the League Secretary will cast a single vote for the slate of candidates assembled.
- If any positions on the Board are contested then a duly called meeting of members will be held for the purpose of electing a Board of Directors. Additional nominees for any board position from the floor may be accepted at this election meeting.
- At the December meeting, the League Secretary, will poll voting members for each contested position on the Board and the winner will be the candidate who obtains the majority of votes.
7.04 Ex-Officio Board Members
Ex-Officio board members may be appointed by the Commissioner and ratified by the Board of Directors. The ex-officio board member would be someone who holds a special talent, skill or expertise or be someone who may be asked to perform a special task, assignment or project for the league. The ex-officio member need not be a franchise holder. An ex-officio board member will have no voting rights but may provide input on matters that come before the board.
The term for each office on the Board of Directors is one year (January to December).
Should a vacancy on the Board of Directors occur during the Term period the Board shall appoint a replacement from the membership. Said replacement’s term will be on an interim basis and expire at the next election period.
7.07 Duties of the Commissioner
- Appoint committees as deemed necessary.
- Ensure that league officers discharge their duties impartially, accurately, faithfully, and promptly.
- Enforce adherence to the rules, guidelines, directives and code of ethics of the league.
- Handle correspondence and communications with outside organizations.
- Supply reports as may be requested or required from the Board of Directors.
- Perform any other duties and powers assigned by the league.
- Communicate with members in between membership meetings with updates and information.
- Settle all ties in league votes by the Board of Directors.
7.08 Duties of the President Emeritus
- Assume the role of Commissioner in his absence.
- Oversee all League discipline including suspension and fines during regular and post season.
- Oversee Board & General Membership Meetings including dates, location and agenda.
- Continue work on EMass Classic and other all-star games.
- Continue relationship with Boston City Hall and the Boston Red Sox Organization.
- Game Day Operations including field and weather conditions.
- Lead fundraising efforts with local businesses and corporations.
- Chair the Yawkey League banquet and serve as Master of Ceremonies.li>
7.09 Duties of the Vice-President
- Assume the role of President Emeritus in his absence.
- Serve as the liaison between the YBL and local leagues and teams and alumni members, teams and players and Hall of Fame inductees.
- Examine performance and compliance issues of each franchise annually and report to the Board of Directors any problem areas that need to be reviewed.
- Supervise the application process of potential new franchises and establish guidelines and logistics for the board to interview and examine new applicants for membership.
- Perform additional duties and powers assigned by the league.
7.10 Duties of the Treasurer
- The Treasurer handles all Yawkey Baseball League finances and works closely with the League accountant in doing so.
- The treasurer must supply financial reports to the league on a regular basis or as requested by the Commissioner and/or the Board of Directors.
- The treasurer must also file all IRS and Yawkey Trust forms at year end and 1099 Forms for umpires.
- The treasurer may be assigned additional duties and powers as requested by the league.
7.11 Duties of the League Secretary
- Record the minutes of all league meetings and record the votes of decisions made at membership and Board of Directors meetings.
- Read into the minutes all official communications affecting the status of the league.
- Take nominations and conduct elections of officers at a duly called election meeting.
- Cast a single vote for all uncontested board positions annually.
- Perform other duties and powers as may be assigned by the league.
- Handle League Awards voting process.
- Running the schedule software to get the master schedule complete.
7.12 Duties of the Members-at-Large
The Members-at-Large are expected to assist Board officers in the execution of their duties properly and promptly. Additional duties will be assigned Members-at-Large as needed by the Board of Directors.
8.00 MEETINGS & VOTING PROCEDURES
8.01 Membership Meetings
The Commissioner and President Emeritus will schedule and run all meetings. Notifications will be sent out via email and posts will be made on social media. All teams are to be represented at all Membership Meetings. The YBL will attempt to hold at least one meeting per month during the offseason months and as needed during the season.
8.02 Franchise Vote
Each franchise in attendance at a league meeting is entitled to one vote on all matters brought before the membership. The franchise holder or his delegate will vote when multiple members of a franchise are in attendance. When there is an instance a franchise cannot be in attendance, they may communicate their proxy vote to any member of the Board.
A quorum for the transaction of any league business is established as 50% of the membership.
8.04 Majority Vote
Matters brought to a vote at a league meeting will be decided by a simple majority of members present and voting unless otherwise stated in these bylaws.
(Note: Failure to attend a meeting where a quorum of teams is in attendance could result in votes being taken without your input).
Each year the YBL may or will need the cooperation of its members to be parts of committees to run special events or to work on league business. Each year these may change based on need. There is one committee that will be yearly:
10.00 LEAGUE EVENTS
Each year it is essential that the YBL host events to promote the YBL. Help and assistance is often needed by the membership to ensure success at events such as banquets, golf tournaments, All-Star Games, franchise fundraisers etc.
11.00 REGULAR SEASON SCHEDULE
11.01 League Format
The league format will be two conferences adjusted by the number of teams to match the number of games.
11.02 Length of Schedule
The YBL regular season schedule will be determined each season based on factors that affect the organization of the YBL for that season (re: amount of teams). Based on factors such as teams, permits and costs we always seek to play 30-34 regular season games.
The regular season schedule shall be completed by May 1st of each year. All franchises must submit to the league their home field locations, dates available, and any dates they will be unable to play well in advance to ensure that the schedule deadline is met. The Board of Directors may adjust the deadline date should it become necessary or required.
11.04 Changes to Schedule
Once the schedule has been declared official no changes may be made without the approval of the League Scheduler. The YBL Scheduler may move games that he deems are in the best interest of the League. The Commissioner and/or the Board of Directors may review for cause.
11.05 Starting Times
The starting time of weekday regular season games will by 7:30 p.m. or 8:00 p.m. Starting times for Saturday and Sunday games may not be earlier than 12:00 p.m. or later than 8:00 p.m.
11.06 Format & Schedule Changes
The Board of Directors may adjust the number of games or teams in the league should circumstances require adjustments to either or both situations before or during the season of play.
11.07 Shortened Season
The Board of Directors may cut short the season and/or the playoffs in order to complete the season and/or playoffs in a timely manner in the event of extenuating circumstances such as weather, going past planned end of the regular season for unforeseen conditions or events that might necessitate doing so.
11.08 Make-Up Games
All regular season games must be played unless YBL 11.07 has been implemented. The league scheduler will directly supervise the re-scheduling of postponed or cancelled games. Failure to complete your make up schedule will result in forfeits for any make up games that are scheduled and not played.
(Note: Neutral sites can and will be used to best complete the season when needed)
Games must be played as scheduled. Failure to show for a scheduled game inconveniences others and damages the reputation of the league. Consideration may be given for a team that makes an effort to inform the league prior to 24 hours of the start time that a forfeit will result and such notice enables the league to notify the opponent and the assigned umpires in advance. Please note we cannot guarantee that all requests can be honored.
11.10 Day Off Request
Teams are asked to contact the YBL Scheduler in the preseason of any and all dates that will prohibit your team from fielding a team. Such an event should remove a majority of your players from being able to play (re: Wedding, Bachelor Party, Group Trip). We do not grant days off to accommodate games in other leagues. If an event comes up after the schedule is posted, you must inform the YBL immediately in order for us to assist you. If we are told a wedding is “this weekend” that will not be granted as like event are planned well in advance.
12.00 ROSTER GUIDELINES & PLAYER MOVEMENT
Players may not be recruited or contacted by any existing franchise holder/team official for the express purpose to take them away from another existing YBL team. This rule is limited to players who have qualified for postseason play the prior season for a team per YBL rules (re: if a player from the Red Sox qualified for the postseason he is bound to the Red Sox for the next season and falls under the limit of players that can move. If a player for the Red Sox did not qualify for the postseason there are no restrictions on the player’s movement under this rule).
– In cases where a franchise holder or team official has been found to have recruited or contacted any players (regardless of whether they move or not), a team will be sanctioned and penalized.
12.01 Preliminary Roster
Each team must submit a copy of its preliminary roster and staff to the YBL Board prior to or at the May preseason league meeting. Rosters must also be posted on the .400Hitter website prior to the May meeting. Failure to meet these requirements may result in the punitive actions and possible suspension of team membership.
12.02 Amateur Status
- No franchise holder, manager, coach or player shall be paid for his playing services.
- No player who is currently on a professional roster (Independent, MILB or MLB) can play any YBL games.
(Note: If anyone is found in violation of this rule he will be suspended for a full season of games and the team will forfeit all games in which said player participated while in violation.)
12.03 Obtaining Players
All teams are free to seek out players to play on their teams each season. We strongly urge that teams work to build from players that are not currently on any YBL roster from the prior season. The YBL will also make available all names that we receive from the website signup system in a player pool. Ideally all teams will find people from the community or towns in which they play.
12.04 Additions/Changes to Active Roster
Any player who participates in a game must be listed as active on the .400Hitter website prior to the start of the game. Please add new players to your roster both on .400Hitter and by emailing a Board member.
(Note: The daily activation and deactivation of players is vital to compliance.)
12.05 Roster Management (.400 Hitter)
- Team management is required to update the .400Hitter website with a complete active roster in accordance with guidelines set up each season.
- The .400Hitter website must include the player’s full, legal name, uniform number, DOB, address, phone number(s) and biographical information. No team can have more than 25 players active at any time.
- All players playing in a game must be listed as “active” at the start of the game. If a player does play while listed as inactive, he will not get an official game credit for eligibility and his team may face other sanctions for failure to update and have correct active status roster listed for each game. A game like this may be played under protest.
12.06 Player Movement Period
The time between the completion of the playoffs until the May Preliminary Roster has been submitted for the upcoming season is considered the “Player Movement Period”. A grace period for which a player on one team’s roster may move to another team’s roster is before the 8th game of that season. This transfer may only be done upon the full agreement of the managers of both teams. A player transfer after the 8th game of the season may only be done upon the approval of the Commissioner and the Board of Directors.
12.07 Player Movement Limits
A maximum of 3 players can move to one team from within the league per season.
Teams that are acquiring the player(s) per our Code of Ethics and rules are required to contact the franchise holder/team official from the team to which the player was previously bound. This is required in order to have all parties aware of the situation and to be able to discuss any outstanding items covered per our rules (re: return of uniforms and equipment and any payment of outstanding balances).
In cases when a franchise has been found to have recruited players, or contacted players and not communicated this with the other franchise (whether the player moves or not) that team and/or its member(s) that violates these rules will be sanctioned and penalized for the violations per YBL rules and the Code of Ethics. Penalties may include but are not limited to: fines, suspensions and/or the loss of the ability to add YBL players in future seasons.
12.08 Compound Rosters
Players may not be listed on more than one team’s roster at any time. A player who appears on more than one roster must declare which team he is on prior to being considered eligible, if said player is in attendance and listed on a team’s lineup card in a game he shall officially be on that team’s roster.
13.00 POSTSEASON FORMAT/PLAYER ELIGIBILITY RULES
Upon completion of the regular season the YBL will starts its postseason play. The playoffs will consist of 8 teams and typically starts the first week of August and runs up to or beyond Labor Day. Upon completion the YBL will have one team remaining that will be named Champion for that season.
13.02 Final Regular Season Roster
Each franchise will submit a Final Regular Season Active Roster of all potentially playoff eligible players by email to the Board of Directors, prior to playing its 20th game or by July 1st (whichever comes first).
13.03 Playoff Roster
Each franchise qualifying for the league championship tournament must submit their Playoff Roster by email to the Board of Directors prior to the league playoff eligibility meeting, or by the date as designated by the Commissioner prior to the start of the playoff eligibility meeting. Players eligible for 25 man playoff roster must be submitted on the Final Regular Season Active Roster (see above). Additions or changes to the playoff roster (from YBL 12.05 above) can be submitted the Board of Directors for approval. Roster changes can be made between series during the postseason.
13.04 Qualification for Postseason Play
The first place and second place team in each conference or division will earn automatic entry into the postseason tournament. The next teams with the best overall records during regular season play will earn wildcard berths into postseason play through the 8th and final playoff slot.
13.05 Playoff Seeding
Seeding for the playoffs will be determined as follows:
- There will be 8 teams seeded at the start of the postseason.
- The champions from each conference/division will earn the 1 seed and 2 seed (the conference/division champion with the most points will have the #1 seed).
- The second place teams in each conference/division will earn the 3rd and 4th seeds, with the 3rd seeding going to the team with more points.
- Each wild card team that has qualified will be slotted 5th through 8th based on points.
Home fields and seeding for teams tied for the 1st through 7th playoff spots will be determined by head to head records, when possible, by record versus tied opponents; then by record versus playoff teams in the order of finish or conference record. If not resolved by these methods the Board of Directors will determine the method needed to resolve the tie including a coin toss.
13.07 Tie for 8th Place
If there are two teams tied for the final playoff spot, a single elimination game will decide which team advances. If more than two teams are tied for the final playoff spot a “round robin” single game elimination will be played. Match-ups will be determined by coin flip. Dates at the end of the regular season will be left open for this possibility each year and used if needed. The game is considered a regular season game for the purposes of stats for the season, but the roster will be limited to each team’s active playoff roster.
13.08 Playoff Meeting
The Commissioner may call a meeting of all YBL managers (playoff and non-playoff teams) for the purpose of reviewing the playoff schedule and to approve each team’s final roster of playoff eligible players. All teams in attendance must bring scorebooks / line-up cards and be able to adjudicate all matters regarding eligibility.
13.09 Playoff Series Guidelines / Schedule
The YBL championship will consist of three rounds of play. Rounds one and two will be a Best-of-5 series and the final round shall be a Best-of-7 series. In all series, the home team will be the team with the higher seed. The first 2 rounds will be played in a 2-2-1 format and the finals will be either 2-2-1-1-1 or 2-3-2. Reseeding will occur between rounds 1 and 2. The highest seed remaining will play the lowest seed remaining. The league scheduler and Board of Directors reserve the right to handle any unforeseen circumstances with guidance and approval from the membership.
13.10 Playoff Eligibility
In order to be playoff eligible, players must fulfill one of following:
- Must have been in attendance for at least 51% of his team’s games and have participated in at least 4 of those games. Additionally, the player must have been listed on the team’s final regular season roster (from YBL 13.02 above).
- Pitcher Exception – Any player who does not qualify under 13.04A may qualify for postseason eligibility if he starts or enters in at least 8 of his team’s games as a pitcher and pitches at least 32 total innings. This player is eligible to play any position without restriction.
- Military Waiver – Any veteran YBL player on a team’s roster whose participation in league play is interrupted by active duty requirements in the military will be granted a waiver of the 51% eligibility rule upon return from such service. Team management is responsible for notifying the Commissioner promptly in order to be granted a military waiver.
- Injury Waiver – Any veteran YBL player on a team’s roster whose injury or illness prevents him from attending and/or participating in league games may be granted an injury waiver. Team management is responsible for notifying the Board of Directors with proper documentation from a medical doctor in order to be granted an injury waiver. A maximum of 2 injury waivers can be granted per team per season.
- A “veteran” YBL player is defined as any player who has earned playoff eligibility in any prior season. A player in his is first season would not be able to obtain a waiver for that year’s postseason, nor would he be able to get one until a season after this player becomes postseason eligible under 13.04A and 13.04B.
- A Waiver under rule 13.04C and 13.04D must be asked for as soon as a player either leaves for duty or becomes injured. In both cases no time will be granted retroactively. Requests can be made at anytime.
- (Note: If a player is hurt in preseason and the injury prevents him from playing in enough games to qualify he can get credit for a whole season. Or if the player plays in 15 games and is hurt in Mid July he can be given credit or a partial season that can be added to games played to make him eligible).
- In cases of an injury waiver, once the player is cleared to play a note will need to be provided showing the date that he can once again play so the league can validate that he can be reinstated as support for teams and to be sure we are not allowing anyone still injured to play a game under our insurance and on a YBL field.
- At no time can a Yawkey League player obtain an injury waiver if he is found to be healthy enough to play in another league at that time.
13.11 Player Eligibility Tracking
Designated members of the Board of Directors will verify and tally the line-up cards submitted for each league game. The line-up cards will be cross-checked with the .400Hitter website to substantiate and verify the eligibility of players.
13.12 Playoff Protest
The Commissioner may designate a league officer or name a special representative to supervise playoff games. Said officer or representative at the scene will adjudicate any protest that may arise during the game. Any decision made will be final.
14.00 INCLEMENT WEATHER
- Postponements due to inclement weather, poor field conditions or other circumstances will be announced via email, on the .400Hitter website and on YBL social media pages.
- Managers, coaches, players and umpires should check these places prior to every game to verify a game’s status.
- The President Emeritus will follow weather reports throughout game day, check on fields, consult league members and make a final decision by 5:00pm when possible. At 6:00pm on weekdays (or 1.5 hours before a game on a weekend), the decision is passed on to the assigned umpire crew.
- The YBL will look at every possible factor to make the most educated decisions possible.
- Teams failing to attend a scheduled game can be given a forfeit no matter how the field looks.
14.02 Rain Delays/Restart of the Game
- Once a game has started the umpires are the sole judge on whether a game is to be stopped for unsafe weather conditions.
- When a delay is called, all players and coaches are to stay at the park in a safe area in uniform.
- Teams are responsible for being ready to play when the umpires are ready to resume.
- If a team cannot field 9 players when the game is restarted, the umpires will rule a forfeit of the game.
15.00 LEAGUE STANDINGS
16.00 BASEBALL PLAYING RULES
16.01 Yawkey League Rules of Play
The Major League baseball rulebook shall govern the playing of all league games except for the following rules adopted for use in the YBL. Additional exceptions may be added as needed or necessary. Any rules not covered in this rule book will default to the MLB rules.
16.02 Called Game is Official
Games that are stopped due to inclement weather or for a scheduled light shutdown will be considered official if the losing team has completed five turns (innings) at bat.
16.03 Suspended Games
Suspended games are not allowed in the regular season except in circumstances deemed extreme by the Board. Light failure and other dangerous or unforeseen situations are examples.
No inning shall start 15 minutes before the scheduled time for the field lights to be shut down or for the scheduled start of another permitted game on the same field.
(Note: This time may fluctuate from field to field as permits and lights may vary, these should be addressed during ground rules to assure teams and umpires are in agreement).
16.05 Grace Period
The YBL allows a 15-minute grace period beyond the start time of a scheduled game. Should a team fail to field a team by the end of the grace period then the game may be declared a forfeit. A forfeited game will be reported as a 7 -0 score in favor of the non-forfeiting team on the .400Hitter website.
16.06 Length of Games
The length of a game shall be 7 innings (starting pitcher must pitch 4 innings to earn a victory).
Games tied after 7 innings will continue as time allows (ties are allowed for official games).
16.07 Designated Hitter
The use of a Designated Hitter under MLB 6.10 is allowed.
16.08 Slide Rule
The use NCAA Slide Rule will be in effect at all YBL games. Please use the following link to further educate yourself on the responsibility of both the runner and the catcher.
16.09 P/DH Rule
The NCAA P/DH rule will be in effect at all YBL games.
16.10 Intentional Walks
Pitchers must throw the pitches.
16.11 Early Termination Rules
If a team is up by 12 runs at the end of the 5th inning or by 10 runs after 6 innings the game is complete. If the road team is winning, the home team will still get to bat in the bottom of that inning.
If the home team reaches 12 run lead in the bottom of the 5th or a 10 run lead in the bottom of the 6th or 7th, the game is immediately over.
17.00 PROTEST PROCEDURE
17.01 What can be protested?
Protests for a misapplication of the rules or for player eligibility are the only protests given consideration.
17.02 What cannot be protested?
No protest of an umpire’s judgment will be allowed.
17.03 Protests at Game
A protest of an umpire’s misapplication of the rules must be made in accordance with Major League Baseball / Yawkey Baseball League rules to be valid. Managers or coaches should ask the umpire for instructions on how to properly lodge a protest immediately following a questionable play. Requests and protests to the umpire must be made in a courteous manner.
(Note: There is no cost for a hearing on a protested game.)
17.04 Investigation of Protest
If the appeal is made in compliance with the rules regarding protests, the Commissioner will investigate the matter by consulting with the umpires, umpire in chief and members of both teams in order to gather information to assist in making a ruling. All parties are required to cooperate fully in any investigation.
17.05 Protest Decision
After the Commissioner has gathered the needed information he may decide the following:
- The protest is invalid or that no misapplication of the rules occurred.
- The protest is valid and a misapplication of the rules was made. If in the Commissioner’s opinion however, the misapplication of the rule did not affect the outcome of the game, the game will not be replayed or continued and the results will stand.
- The protest is valid and a misapplication of the rules was made. In the opinion of the Commissioner, if the misapplication affected the protesting team’s chances of winning the game, he may order the game be continued from the point of the protest or begin anew.
18.01 Umpires / Commissioner of Umpires
The YBL will hire a Commissioner of Umpires to assign, track, supervise and account for umpires who will work our games. The League will negotiate umpire and commissioners fees with the appropriate parties on a regular basis.
18.02 Regular Season Games
Two umpires will be assigned to work each game during the regular season. A game may start and proceed with one umpire should it become necessary to do so.
18.03 Post Season / All Star Games
A minimum of two umpires will be assigned to work each post-season game. The league may request additional umpires to be assigned to work post-season games or all-star games as needed. The maximum for any post-season or all-star game will be six.
19.00 BYLAWS AND AMENDMENTS
These bylaws will be effective upon the approval of the Board of Directors and by the membership at a League meeting called for that purpose. A majority of votes is needed for ratification.
Amendments to these bylaws may be made if approved by a two-thirds majority vote of league members present at a duly called meeting of members. The membership must be notified, in writing (email), of any proposed amendments as a part of the agenda for the meeting.
20.00 CODE OF ETHICS / PLAYER CONDUCT
The YBL Code of Ethics has been developed in order to help create a guideline as to the behavior that is expected of all Yawkey Baseball League participants. All YBL participants are expected to show respect to players, coaches, officials, personnel and fans at all times at any YBL game or event. Being a part of the YBL is a privilege provided by League officers and League benefactors and not something to which any individual is automatically entitled.
The COE is developed for the general welfare and betterment of our league. Regulations have been established to deal with those who break their promise to play in accordance with this Code. Implementation of fines and suspensions will take place if a player, manager or coach fails to live by this code. Those who fail to act according to this Code may lose their right to participate in the YBL.
Players ejected from a game are subject to penalties including fines, suspensions and expulsion from the league. Each ejection shall be examined for its severity to determine appropriate sanctions, if any.
20.02 Abuse of Officials
Disputing an umpire’s judgment, making contact with an umpire or directing unsportsmanlike conduct toward any official will not be tolerated. Players or team personnel involved in such behavior will face disciplinary action up to and including permanent removal from the league.
Any player or coach that participates in a fight will be ejected and suspended for the team’s next three consecutive games. Additional sanctions may be assessed.
20.04 Intentionally Throwing at a Batter
Any pitcher that is ejected for intentionally throwing at a batter shall be suspended for the team’s next four consecutive games. Additional sanctions may be assessed.
20.05 Verbal Abuse
Game personnel will not use language that reflects negatively on opposing players, coaches, umpires or spectators. The umpire will issue a warning and if the abuse continues will eject the offending person(s).
20.06 Social Media Behavior
While online, YBL participants are expected to stay within the spirit of the YBL Code of Ethics. Freedom of Speech will always be honored but airing negativity in a public forum can reflect poorly on everyone. Disagreements can be handled much easier by simply reaching out to any YBL Board member for discussion. Our Board will always be accessible to its members.
20.07 Behavior at YBL Fields
- Public Drinking: The drinking of alcoholic beverages before, during or after a game is prohibited.
- Field Decorum: Teams and players are guests at the fields we use during the season. Each franchise is asked to be mindful of their surroundings when it comes to cleaning their benches and obeying local parking rules before, during and after YBL Games.
- Tobacco Products: The use of tobacco products is prohibited at all times.
- Changing of Clothes/Uniforms – We play in neighborhoods all over Greater Boston and we ask that players do all they can to arrive at, and leave games in uniform (at least pants) to minimize the need to change at a park.
21.00 LEAGUE DISCIPLINE
21.01 Appeals of League Discipline
- Only multi-game suspensions or fines over $50.00 can be appealed.
- A Franchise Holder or Manager must make an appeal to the President Emeritus via phone, email or in person within 24 hours of the penalty being announced.
- The League decision will be final with no further appeal allowed.
Suspensions will begin immediately. If a suspension is under appeal it will not begin until a final ruling is made. No player can receive playoff credit while under suspension. If a suspension goes past the end of the last game of the regular season it will be continued into the postseason (if the team and/or player qualifies) or will be continued into the next season until completion.
21.03 Ejection Discipline
- All ejections will be handled on a case by case basis by the President Emeritus.
- If a member is ejected a second time they will be given a 1 game suspension and may be fined.
- If a member is ejected a third time he will be given a 3 game suspension and may be fined.
- If a member is ejected a fourth time he will be suspended for the remainder of that season and postseason. He must pay a $200 fine to be reinstated.
- An ejection automatically cancels a member’s playoff credit for that game.
21.04 Payment of Fines
A fined player may not participate in any league games until the League Treasurer has received payment of the fine in hand. Any player in violation of this rule will be considered an ineligible player. The team will be subject to taking a forfeit and the player may receive additional discipline.
22.00 YBL CALENDAR – 2016 SEASON
- January 1 ORDER YBL BASEBALL FOR UPCOMING SEASON
- January 15 FILE 1099’s
- January 21 CITY OF BOSTON TEAMS TO SUPPLY YBL ROSTERS FOR UPCOMING SEASON
- February 1 SUBMIT PERMIT APPLICATIONS TO CITY OF BOSTON PARKS DEPARETMENT
- February 15 ORDER YBL LINEUP CARDS (ballcharts.com)
- April 15 FILE PRIOR YEAR’S TAXES (and update Guidestar)
- April 30 ALL SEASON DUES PAYMENTS COLLECTED
- May 8 ESTIMATED START OF YBL GAMES
- May TBD PRELIMINARY ROSTER MEETING
- July TBD YBL ALL STAR GAME
- July 9 EMASS CLASSIC
- July 30 ESTIMATED END OF YBL REGUALR SEASON
- July TBD YBL GOLF TOURNEY
- July 21 COLLECT YBL AWARD NOMINEES
- AUGUST YBL PLAYOFFS
- August 3 VOTE ON YBL AWARDS
- August 21 ANNOUNCE YBL AWARD WINNERS
- September YBL CHAMPS TO BE INVITED TO BOSOX LUNCHEON
- September FINALIZE AWARDS / YBL HALL OF FAME CLASS – ORDER(SMI Awards)
- November 1 SUBMIT NEXT SEASON’S YAWKEY TRUST GRANT APPLICATION
- November 7 YBL AWARDS / HALL OF FAME DINNER
- December LAST MEETING – OFFICER ELECTIONS
- December 31 NEXT SEASON’S RETURNING TEAMS YBL DUES DEPOSIT