T-ball Rules (Ancaster Baseball)

PrintT-ball Rules
House League T-ball Rules

These are variations from the Official World T-ball Rules to be more applicable to house league play.
Revised April 18, 2012


1-1 The Game - T-ball is a game of baseball between two teams of up to 14 players under the direction of a manager and coaches played in agreement with the playing rules under the authority of an umpire or umpires on a recommended T-ball field.

It is designed to get young children interested in the game of baseball by stressing and maintaining active participation of all the players.

1-2 Field Decorum:
a) The actions of players, managers, coaches, umpires and league officials must be above reproach.
b) The use of tobacco, alcohol and non prescription drugs in any form are prohibited from the playing field, benches and dugouts.
c) Players and coaches while participating in a scheduled game are not permitted to deliberately harass or direct any discourteous remarks at the officials or any member of the opposing team.
d) Managers, coaches, or players engaging or persisting in conduct inimical to the spirit, principles and objectives of good sportsmanship in T-ball, shall receive a single warning from the umpire. If the offense or offenses continue, offender and offenders will be removed from the game.
e) Anyone removed from the game must leave the playing field and the spectator area. Failure to do so could result in forfeiture of the game.
f) Offensive Manager and coaches must remain in the dugout or coaching boxes at all times. Defensive Manager and Coaches may be in the outfield- no limit to number in outfield, but one must remain in the dugout at all times.

Definition of Terms

2-1 Playing line- is a chalked line (real or imagined) running from the 30 ft mark of the 1st base line to the 30 ft mark of the 3rd base line. Any ball that stops within the area will be deemed as a dead ball. However the rule is intended to give the defense a fair chance at obtaining an out. If a ball is hit so that the defensive team cannot get a fair chance at an out, regardless of where the ball is, the ball will be deemed a dead ball. The 30ft line is a guideline, not a set line of play, except for the last batter rule.

2-2 Forfeited game - a game declared ended by the umpire for violation of the rules.

2-3 A fair hit ball - is a legally batted ball that in the plate umpire's opinion will or could have firmly crossed the playing line in fair territory, even if it is fielded before crossing the line.

2-4 A dead hit ball - is a legally batted ball that; a) could not have crossed the playing line, even if fielded in front of the playing line. b) in the umpire¹s opinion the batter has made an illegal swing. But if the ball is caught in flight by the defensive team the batter is out and the ball is in play until time is called.

2-5 An illegally batted ball - is when the batter hits the ball, either dead, fair or foul with one or both feet on the ground entirely outside the lines of the batter¹s box.

2-6 A fielder’s choice - When any defensive player has control of the ball in the area of play and in the judgment of the plate umpire there is no attempt to make a play on any of the base runners, TIME WILL BE CALLED, and the base runners, in the judgment of the umpires, will be held on the last base they occupied or the unoccupied base they were approaching when time was called.

2-7 Asking for Time – An Infielder raising his/her hand with the ball therein, above his/her head.

2-8 Infield area - is the area in the judgment of the home plate umpire in which the defensive infielders would normally play in performance of their duties. It also includes the adjacent foul territories which are encompassed by the playing line being extended to the playing field boundaries.

2-9 An appeal - must be made by a player or manager before "Play" is called for the next batter or in the case of the last batter, it must be made before the last defensive player is off the playing field.

2-10 Batter's box - is an area on each side of home plate within which the batter shall have both his feet during his time at bat. This is an umpire judgement call.

2-11 Illegal swing - when the batter does not take a full swing or chop swings downward on the ball.

2-12 Overthrow- a ball that is thrown to a defensive player by another defensive player and is missed, and goes past the player. The ball remains in play

2-13 Out of Play- a ball that is thrown or hit out of the field, either over the fence, through the door, or into a dugout. If a defensive player throws the ball out of play, then baseball rules apply.

2-14 Continuous Batting Order-Each player present at the game is entered into the batting order. When a team is minus 3 players or beyond this is the batting order option that must be selected. Each batter will bat continuously with no set last batter. Ex. Team A has 11 batters, Team B has 8 batters. Team B in the first inning will bat batters 1-8, then 1-3, batter 3 being the last batter. In the second inning, Team B will bat batters 4-8, then batters 1-6, batter 6 being the last batter. In the third inning, Team B will bat batters 7-8, then batters 1-8, and then batter 1, batter 1 being the last batter.

General Rules

3-1 In T-ball there shall be no pitching to the batter therefore no bases may be awarded on balls, there is no bunting and the infield fly rule does not apply.

3-2 Each team shall have a starting lineup of up to a maximum of 14 players but if due to unavoidable circumstances the minimum number of players a team can play with is 8. The game can be played with an unequal number of players on one team. If at the time a game is scheduled to begin, a team does not have a minimum of eight players, a maximum extension of 15 min. will be allowed before the plate umpire declares the game forfeited to the non-offending team.

Any team can call up a player from Blastball to fill out their lineup and this will be encouraged. Teams cannot call a player from a higher division to play for them or use players from other teams in their division.

3-3 In Tball, all players play in the field and all players are in the batting lineup.

3-4 Batting Orders - A player must be listed to bat in the same batting position for each inning. Since there are no substitutions in TBall and every player is listed in the batting order, if a player cannot continue due to unavoidable circumstances that player will be removed from the batting order and the team will continue to the next batter. If a player is removed from the game but is then able to return he/she will go back into the batting order in the position they were originally placed. For the extra hitter, the team will use the procedures outlined in rule 4-3. After the game begins, changes or additions to this line-up must be made before the umpire calls "Play" for the first batter at the beginning of an inning, except in the case of injury or sickness. Prior to the game, each coach will present two line up cards to the umpire. The cards will be identical, and the umpire will keep one card for himself, and give the other card to the manager of the opposing team. All line-up changes must be reported to the plate umpire, the scorekeeper and the opposing manager.

3-5 In the event that neither team can field eight players, the game will be rescheduled.

3-6 Each defensive team shall have:
a) A Catcher: who shall play a position normally taken by the catcher behind home plate, far enough back so he does not interfere with the batter while batting. The catcher shall be in full equipment however he/she can use their own baseball glove.
b) A Pitcher: who shall play in the infield, and must assume a set position directly behind the pitcher¹s plate with both feet touching but not in front of the pitcher’s plate, or with one foot touching and one foot directly behind the pitcher’s plate, until the ball is hit. The pitcher MUST wear a pitcher’s helmet that has a face shield on it.
c) A 1st baseman, a 2nd baseman, a 3rd baseman and a shortstop: who will play in position regularly played by those infielders and they shall not cross the playing line until the ball is hit.
Penalty - In the event a defensive player does cross the playing line before the ball is hit, the umpires will call time immediately and the ball is dead. The offending player(s) are warned, and if the offense continues the player(s) shall be moved to the outfield and an outfielder moved in to the position just vacated. As a guideline the players should remain on the infield dirt until the ball is hit.

d) All other players are placed in the outfield.

Outfielders must remain in the grassy area (outfield) until the ball is hit. In the case of the bigger diamonds (Major, CC) they will remain behind the chalk line that separates the infield and outfield. If there is no chalk line, the outfielders must remain at a safe distance behind the base paths.

e) Once a player assumes a defensive position at the start of an inning, he may not be assigned another position in the field during that inning except due to injury, safety concerns or sickness.

3-7 The offensive team - Coaches shall –

a) Be adults, or an older sibling, but under the age of 16, must wear a batter’s helmet.

b) Remain within the coaches box at all times

c) Not physically assist any runner while the ball is in play. (In the event that he does, the base umpire will call the runner out at the time of the infraction.)

d) Talk to members of his team only.
Note: A bat boy must be appointed from the members of the current game line-up. May also be an older sibling registered in Ancaster Little League, wearing a helmet, or an adult base coach. We do encourage that a member of that team is the bat boy, and the older sibling and adult coach be used as a last resort. No other is permitted.

3-9 A regulation game
a) Will consist of three complete innings. If the score is tied after three innings then it will be declared a tie.
b) In the event the umpire terminates the game before the end of the third inning and there has been at least two completed innings played, the game will stand as it was finished.
The visiting team scores one or more runs to tie the score or take the lead in the uncompleted inning and the home team does not score enough runs to tie the score or retake the lead.
c) A regulation game that is tied after two or more completed innings and halted by the umpire, shall be resumed from the exact point play was halted. The game shall continue until one team has scored more runs than the other team in an equal number of innings at a later date.
d) Any game which does not meet the two inning status shall not be considered a regulation game and will be replayed from the beginning.

3-10 Protesting a game: There are no official protests in T-ball. A call may be questioned but the umpire’s judgment will stand. Any conflicts in the interpretation of rules will be addressed after the game by the division convener in a constructive fashion but will not affect the outcome of a game itself. It is an instructional level of baseball for all involved.

Playing Rules

4-1 To begin the game, the plate umpire shall instruct the home team to take their positions in the field, place the tee, of batting team’s choice, on home plate and call play for the first batter of the offensive team.

4-2 Safety Bags are going to be used in TBALL at 1st base only. The fielder is to make an out by placing his/her foot on the white base (while having control of the ball). The base runner is to touch the orange base while running to first after an Infield hit. If it is the batter’s intention to round first and advance to 2nd base they are to step on the white base. These rules will not be strictly enforced but they are to be encouraged

4-3 Batting Line-ups – Both teams must bat the same number of players each inning. The batting order must be followed as written each inning. Teams may set their last batter, when they are even with their opponents, minus 1 or minus 2 batters in comparison with their opponents. If they are minus 3 batters or more, they must adopt a continuous batting order (see rule 2-14), and may not set their last batter. Below is a chart to assist coaches with the batting order rule:

For this chart, assume that you are Team B.

No. of players

Team A: 11
Team B: 11

Team A: 11
Team B: 10

Team A: 11
Team B: 9

Team A: 11
Team B: 8

Batting order

Even or Plus players

Minus 1 player

Minus 2 players

Minus 3 players or more












































Sheldon- 1stinning
Howard- 2ndinning
Penny- 3rdinning




Sheldon- 1stinning
Leonard- 2ndinning
Howard- 3rdinning

Leonard- 1stinning
Raj- 2nd inning
Greg- 3rd inning







4-4 The batter becomes a base runner when -
a) He/She hits the ball hard enough to cross the playing line in fair territory.
b) The catcher interferes with him/her while he/she is attempting to hit the ball. The batter is awarded first base, the ball is dead and no runners may advance, except those forced by the batter becoming a base runner. In the event that the batter, in spite of the interference, hits the ball fairly and reaches any base safely and all other runners have advanced at least one base safely, then the interference is disregarded.
c) In the case of catcher interference on the last batter, while he/she is attempting to hit the ball, the ball is dead, no runners may advance and the last batter is allowed to continue his turn at bat, with the same count.
d) In the event the last batter in spite of the catcher interference hits the ball fairly and reaches home plate safely, the ball is alive and the catcher interference is disregarded.
e) However, in all cases of catcher interference, the offensive manager has the option of accepting or refusing the catcher interference.
f) He/She hits the ball illegally, ball is dead and runners may not advance.

4-5 A Batter is OUT when:
Hits fair, dead hit or foul ball is caught by a member of the defensive team. The ball is alive and in play until time is called. At T-Ball, batters are not allowed to strike out. They continue until they hit the ball.

4-6 A base runner is out -
a) on a force play
b) when he/she is tagged while not touching a base.
c) when running off his/her baseline, avoiding a tag
d) when he/she is hit by a fair batted ball, either on or off his/her base, before it has touched or gone through an infielder trying to make a play on the ball, not including the pitcher. The ball is also dead and no runner may advance unless forced to do so.

4-7 Lead-offs - No player on the offensive team, while a base runner, shall take a lead-off from the base he/she is on until the batter has hit the ball from the tee. The ball is dead, and the play is reset on a lead off.

4-8 If a fielder intentionally drops a fly ball or a line drive, provided first base is occupied, the force is removed. The base runners will have to be tagged.

4-9 Overthrows – Base Runners are to be held at the base they were attempting to get to on ANY overthrow.
4-9 a- Out of Play- If the ball goes out of play, baseball rules apply

4-10 Base Running - Runners may only advance extra bases on hits to the outfield. Any infield hit is to be considered a single assuming the batter isn’t put out.

- In the event the ball leaves the playing field, the offensive players shall be permitted to advance in accordance with Little League Rules.

- Infield hits or once the ball has entered the infield, the runners get only the base they are attempting to get to. Ex. Runner A is attempting to get to first base on an infield hit, they may not advance to second base on an ordinary play.

4-11 Asking For Time – A player raising his/her hand with the ball therein, above his head.

Asking for time is accomplished by Infielders ONLY. They must be in the INFIELD area when they are asking for time.

Outfielders ARE NOT permitted to ask for time. If the outfielder has the ball, they MUST throw or hand the ball to an infielder. Unless they are in the area (about 2-3 feet) of the infield, and their momentum is carrying them into the infield. This is an umpire judgement.

4-12 The offensive teams turn at bat ends when:

a) The last batter’s fair hit ball is returned to the catcher at home plate. The ball must be thrown over the playing line at least once on its way to the catcher. In the event that a player fields a live ball in front of the playing line he may return the ball to the catcher without having to throw it over the playing line. Home plate must be touched by ONLY the catcher with the ball in his possession and only the pitcher is allowed to assist the catcher in the home plate area. The catcher, once he/she has touched home plate and the umpire indicates an out, must move off of home plate to avoid the base runners that are continuing to run to home.
Penalty - In the event a defensive player other than the pitcher, in the judgment of the umpire crosses the playing line into the home plate area, the umpire will call the inning over and allow only legal runs to score.
b) The last batter’s fly ball is legally caught and there are no runners on the bases.

4-13 Last batter status - Any players on the offensive team who are base runners when the last batter is at bat are regarded in the same way as the last batter and no defensive play can be made on them on the bases. They are all forced to home plate when the last batter has hit the ball fairly.

4-14 In the event that the last batter’s fair hit leaves the playing field by going over the outfield fence in flight, it will be considered a home run and all the runners having last batter status will be allowed to score. But if the ball bounces over, goes under, or gets caught in the outfield fence and in so doing interferes with the fielder’s chances to field the ball, all base runners will be allowed to score but not the batter.

4-15 In the event that the last batter of the offensive team is out on a fly ball, the members of the offensive team who are base runners shall be permitted to score, provided they are on base when the ball is caught or they retouch it after the ball is caught or if they try to retouch it after the ball is caught before touching the next base. These runners have to score prior to the ball being returned to home plate.

4-16 In the event that the last batter of the offensive team or any other base runner with last batter status is obstructed in any manner by any member of the defensive team while running the bases, it shall be the discretion of the umpires as to how far he would have advanced had there been no obstruction.

4-17 A run does not count when a runner with last batter status:
a) reaches home plate after the plate has been legally touched by the catcher.


5-1 Once the coaches and captain’s meeting has begun the plate umpire takes charge of the game and takes his place behind home plate.

5-2 The decisions of the umpires shall be final; however the managers of each team shall be entitled to ask for permission to approach the umpires for an interpretation of the rules. No umpire shall overrule any other unless invited into consultation.

5-3 The umpires are the only ones that can call Time.

5-4 To resume play after time has been called the plate umpire will call for the next batter, and after the batter has stepped into the batter¹s box, the umpire will place the ball on the tee and call Play. The batter is then allowed to hit.

5-5 The plate umpire must remove the tee from home plate to prevent any interference with a play at home plate. Failure to do so will be no cause for the umpire to change the results of the play.

5-6 The plate umpire must call out dead ball and foul balls. He/She must do so as soon as possible, especially on a dead hit ball.

5-7 The plate umpire shall notify opposing managers of any changes or additions to the original line-up as reported to him/her.

5-8 Base umpire shall:
a) Judge the position of the runners when the ball is thrown out of the playing area.
b) Watch for and indicate lead-offs, also inform the plate umpire which runner(s) lead off if the runner(s) have last batter status.
c) Watch for and inform the plate umpire of runner(s) that do not retouch when the last batters fly ball is caught.
d) Hold up runners when time is called.

5-9 All umpires must make sure the fielders are all behind the playing line and the pitcher is in his proper position before play is called on the next batter.

5-10 It is the duty of the plate umpire, after he/she has been notified, to call out, “Last Batter” (for both teams to hear). Failure to do so will result in a re-do of the play.

5-11 The plate umpire may terminate a game before its completion for reasons of darkness, bad weather or dangerous field conditions, etc.

5-12 The umpires shall have the authority to rule on any situation not covered specifically in the Official Playing Rules.
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Printed from ancasterbaseball.ca on Sunday, December 17, 2017 at 8:56 AM