ABA Rules

League Rules


Amateur Baseball Association, Inc.
Rules & Regulations

This league was created to provide baseball players 18 years and older an opportunity to play in a recreational league. We believe in fair play, adult attitudes, and behavior. The responsibility that this ethic is sustained will remain with the co-commissioners, their officers, the league offices, and team managers. Anyone who abuses the league's code may be suspended or expelled from the league. Major League Baseball rules are used in the Amateur Baseball Association, Inc. of New Jersey and Illinois, with the following exceptions, modifications and additions:

1. All players, managers and coaches must sign and submit the league waiver to the league before participation in any league sanctioned games, practices and/or activities. In the event that a player is signed the day of the game, the manager must have the signed waiver in his possession and the league must be notified to give approval for same day play. 


2. ABA Manager Information Lists are a work product of the Amateur Baseball Association (ABA) and as such is to be used only for the sole purpose of managing ABA league games, practices and rainouts. Any other use, communications or solicitations without the written consent of the ABA are strictly prohibited.

3. All rosters must be entered in full on the team's web site (www.AllStarTeamStats.com) by the first regular season scheduled game. 

4. Open roster (once team fee is paid in full, any additional fees collected are property of the team).

5. Umpires fees are the teams’ responsibility.

6. All teams must be fully uniformed.
-A. Spring - baseball pants, cap, same color shirt.
-B. Fall / Summer - baseball pants, cap, same color shirt.

7. No non-uniformed player will be allowed to participate after: 
-A. Spring - May
-B. Fall - September
-C. Summer - June

8. Baseball caps must be worn on the field.

9. All batters and base runners must wear helmets. There is no exception to this rule.
-A. Single ear helmet, plate side, is minimum requirement for batters.
-B. No ear helmet is minimum requirement for base runners.
-C. No ear helmet is minimum requirement for catchers.
-D. Plastic Major League helmets that have safety disclaimers are strictly prohibited. 

10. Official league baseball, equivalent or superior is permitted for use in league sanctioned games. Each team is required to provide three (3) baseballs per game. Baseballs are provided by the league to each team at the beginning of each season.

11. Wood, aluminum (metal) and ceramic bats are permitted for all games and tournaments. Aluminum or ceramic bats with the differential of -5 or lower will only be permitted for play.

12. Metal spikes are permitted otherwise stated by field regulations.

13. No WHITE or GREY pitching sleeves, batting gloves, wristbands or any other items of WHITE or GREY on hand or arm will be permitted for pitchers.

14. There will be no alcoholic beverages permitted before, during or after the game on park or field premises. No player is permitted to participate in game if under the influence of alcohol or any other controlled substance. If this situation arises and the player(s) notified refuses to adhere, this player(s) is subject to expulsion and the player's team will forfeit the game. 

15. Players are not permitted to engage in any verbal exchanges concerning personal matters with other players or umpires. If such a situation arises, the umpire shall issue one warning to the responsible player(s) manager. If such a situation arises again, the responsible player(s) team will forfeit said game. 

16. Players are not permitted to engage in any physical exchanges or threat of physical harm or danger to players, umpires, and/or spectators. If such a situation arises, the league may expel said player(s) without warning.

17a. All players must abide by the over 18 rule. A player is eligible to compete in league play if their 18th birthday falls within the calendar year of season in question. This rule must be abided above all others. The manager must recognize his responsibility to the league and the perpetuity of it as not to cross the line where winning is more important than fair play. 
17b. All players should have proof of identity on their person at all times for fair play. 
17c. Games that said ineligible player is involved (see rule 19b for protest procedure) will result in forfeits for the team involved (see rule 20). Acceptable proof of age and identification:
-A. Driver's license
-B. Birth certificate
-C. Passport 
-D. County or State ID

18. In the event a player does not have proof of identity on their person on game day, a digital picture or in-person visible inspection by a league commissioner or representative will be needed within 4 days of protested game.

19. For fair play, a manager may ask for proof of a player’s identity or age at any time. If the player has none of the identifications (listed in rule 16) in his possession, the questioning manager may protest the game. (See rule 19b for protest procedure.) 19b. Any protest of ineligible player for any reason can made to the league office within 24 hours of the game in question and does not require that the umpires or opponent be notified at the time of game.

20. Protested games:
-A. All protests to be lodged to league co-commissioners. 
-B. There are (2) grounds for protest:
--1. ineligible player 
--2. incorrect rule interpretation by an umpire
-C. Protests must be lodged within (5) days of game in question
-D. Protest must be made to the umpire and other team’s manager at point of protest before another pitch is thrown. All other protests are void. 
-E. Circumstances should be noted at time of protest:
--1. Pitcher
--2. Batter
--3. Count
--4. Outs
--5. Bases occupied, and by whom
--6. Score
--7. Home plate umpire is to initial both team scorebooks at the point in question.
-F. $ 100.00 protest fee required and must be submitted to the league along with the protest itself. Only protests that are accompanied be the protest fee shall be examined.

21. Two (2) forfeits by any team will result in their ineligibility for postseason play. Three (3) forfeits by any team will result in their immediate banishment from the league. A forfeit of a doubleheader will count as only (1) forfeit.

22. Teams must have eight (8) fully uniformed team roster or team affiliate ‘pulled’ (see rule 22) players to start an official game. The ‘borrowing’ of players from the opposing team will be allowed if both teams agree to make the game(s) official.

23a. In order to avoid forfeits, teams that know they will be short players before the game may ‘pull’ players from teams in other levels/regions. The league will designate before the season starts from which league level/division players including pitchers may be pulled from. 
23b. There will be a maximum of 5 ‘pulled’ players per team and all ‘pulled’ players must bat from start to finish in the entire game. As ‘pulled’ players are there to help as a courtesy, they must be guaranteed to bat in the entire game.
23c. The team that is requesting ‘pulled’ players must have at least 5 but not more than 10 original team members at the game. And the combination of ‘pulled’ and original team members may not exceed 13 players. If the requesting team has 11 or more original members present at the game, than there is no need for ‘pulling’ players as you have enough players to play the game. This prevents the requesting team from attempting to play ‘ringers’ in any game and leaving original team members on the bench. In the event that this scenario happens said team will forfeit the game.
23d. Pitchers may not be pulled from a higher level league to pitch in a lower level at any time.

24a. Players may not switch teams without receiving a release from their team’s manager. No player(s) may change teams during the season once their team has been eliminated from post-season eligibility. 
24b. If teams wish to trade players and the teams have the players’ consent, the league only needs to be informed.
24c. If a team releases a player, all other teams in that league level/region have an opportunity to claim that player.
24d. For fair play, if a player chooses to play on teams in different levels/regions, the player must also get approval from the league. Also, if the player pitches he/she must declare only one (1) level per season (Spring, Summer or Fall) at which to pitch in. If the player quits the team he/she is pitching for, he can only pitch for another team in the same league level/region. Also, If a player quits, he must get approval from his old manager as well as the league to pitch for a different team in the same league level/region. *There are only 2 exceptions to this rule and that would be #1 in the event of a pitcher ‘pulled’ (see rule 22) in which case the league would have deemed eligible the league level/region in which players can be ‘pulled’ from prior to the start of the season. But he/she may only pitch in that different league level/region if he/she is ‘pulled’ according to league designation for that game. #2 a pitcher is promoted from one level to another to permanently player with his parent team. Then in which case he can only pitch at his new level and cannot go back down.
24f. For fair play during playoffs....players who play on multiple teams/levels must pick only one team to participate in the playoffs with. 1 expection to this rule would be for a manager who manages 2 or more teams in his farm system. This manager would then be allowed to play in all the teams' playoff games. This is a reward for those managers who devote all their time and energy to running multiple teams.

25. In order to be eligible for postseason play, a player must make the following appearances in regular season games and the stats should be entered in the team’s box scores completely before playoffs begin:
-A. Spring - 20 plate appearances and/or 15 innings pitched
-B. Summer / Fall - 10 plate appearances and/or 8 innings pitched
Only a forfeit by the opposing team will be counted for eligibility for post season. And each player’s average innings pitched or plate appearances will be credited. In the event that a team does not enter all their stats into AllStarTeamStats.com, they must fax or mail copies of their regular season game book pages to the league before the playoffs begin so that we may have proof of eligibility.

26. There will be 2 courtesy runners allowed per team.  If any additional courtesy runners are need, the opposing team must give their approval.  Teams are allowed to employ the speed up rule in which pitchers and catchers can have courtesy runners.  The last batted out MUST be used as the courtesy runner.  If there are players not in the starting lineup, they may be used as a courtesy runner.  A bench player can only be a courtesy runner for ONE PLAYER.  Example.  Joe Smith is not in the starting lineup.  Joe Smith may be allowed to be a courtesy runner for a designated batter, the catcher, or pitcher.  He may not be allowed to run for multiple people.  If a player has been removed from the starting lineup, they are not allowed to be used as a courtesy runner.  If a player suffers an injury during the game, he either participates at his own risk or is removed from the game.  The injured player may only have a courtesy runner if the opposing team gives their approval and must be the last batted out.

27. If a player is forced to leave a game due to an injury, commitment, or ejection a reserve player, not previously entered into the game as a hitter, must hit in the injured/commitment/ejected players spot. If no reserve is present or available, a player who has previously been in the lineup may be used. If no player is available an out will be declared the first time this position in the batting order comes up. After the automatic out has occurred, the line up is then condensed and continues without another automatic out for the remainder of the game. A team may continue play with only 8 fielders / hitters if the 9th player is injured or must leave due to prior commitment. Batting order may not go below eight (8) hitters. If a team goes below eight (8) fielders or hitters, said team must immediately forfeit game.

28. Each manager will use his prerogative to bat as many players as he desires in his initial lineup (minimum of nine (9)). There is no lineup limitation on batters. If the manager wishes to add players to the bottom of the lineup, he may do so at any time. If a player is pinch hit for, he may reenter the game as a hitter, but must be reentered in the same spot in the batting order as before.

29. All players may be substituted for defensively, at any time, except for the pitcher. If a pitcher, other than the starter, is removed, he may not re-enter the game as a pitcher but is eligible to play another position. If the starting pitcher is removed from the game......he may re-enter again as a pitcher at any point in the game. 

30. If an umpire suspects that a pitcher is throwing at a hitter, the pitcher will be given one (1) warning. This warning will be given to both teams to prevent any retaliating measures. After initial warning, the umpire will eject the pitcher from the game upon a second occurrence. The pitcher(s) involved will be subject to disciplinary action from the league, which may include suspension or expulsion if multiple ejections exist.

31. If an infielder decoys a throw or decoys a tag, all runners will be entitled to advance one (1) base. If same fielder decoys twice in same game, said player will be ejected from game and subject to disciplinary action from the league. This rule is designed to prevent injury due to unnecessary sliding by the base runner.

32. All players must avoid an intentional collision with a fielder. In the case of a collision, the umpire will determine if it was an accidental or intentional collision. If ruled deliberate or intentional by the umpire, player will be ejected from the game and subject to disciplinary action from the league, which may include suspension or expulsion if multiple ejections exist.

33. Intentional walks are permitted. Pitches must be thrown.

34. Hidden ball tricks are permitted. The pitcher must NOT be on the slope of the mound for hidden ball tricks to be valid.

35. There is no limit to how many innings a pitcher may pitch in a game, week or season. 

36. There will be a thirty (30) minute grace period for the start of all games. Including doubleheaders - 30 minutes per game. If the team(s) do not have 8 players each the game is forfeited. If both teams do not have 8 players it is a double forfeit.


37. Pitchers are not allowed to use the fake to third, throw to first pickoff attempt. This will be called a balk.


38. Catchers are not allowed to block the plate without having the ball.

39. Official games:



-A. Single game 
--1. Saturday/Sunday
---a. 9 innings - 10 run discrepancy (post season - 15 run discrepancy).
---b. 7 innings 
---c. 5 innings in the event of rain or darkness (umpires discretion - post season games postponed).
---d. League assigned fields may be subject to a 7 inning, 2:30 hr time limit due to field availability. Innings may not be permitted to start after 2:15 hrs time period passes.
--2. Week night
---a. 7 innings or 9 innings (teams' discretion)
---b. 5 innings - 10 run discrepancy
---c. 5 innings in the event of rain or darkness (umpires discretion) 
---d. No inning will start after 2:45 hrs time limit from game start on A LEAGUE FIELD WITH MULTIPLE GAMES
-B. Two games (doubleheader)
--1. 7 innings
--2. 5 innings
---a. 10 run discrepancy
---b. Rain or darkness (umpires discretion)
---c. No inning will start after 2:15 time limit from game start on A LEAGUE FIELD WITH MULTIPLE GAMES.

---d. Playoff double headers will be two - 9 inning games. (15 run mercy rule)

40. Rain outs:
-A. Home team responsible to check field for playing condition. If not playable, the home team must report to umpire’s or league office 2 hours prior to game time. In as such notification does not take place, the home team will be solely responsible for the full fee per umpire and a forfeit (if opposing team was not notified at least 2 hrs. prior to game time and shows up at game site with enough players to field a team). 
-B. If field is playable, teams are to report to appropriate fields and umpires shall determine game status. If umpire determines that game will be played, team not present and prepared to play will forfeit said game (see rule 20). 
-C. All regular season rained out games must be made up :
--1. For the Spring Season – within 15 days 
--2. For the Fall Season – within 10 days
-D. If rained out game occurs with 14 days or less in the season, games must be played under the following circumstances:
--1. The game has a bearing on any other teams playoff eligibility or seeding. 
--2. The game is required for a team or teams playoff eligibility 
-E. Home team is required to provide up to two (2) make up dates to the opposing team.
-F. If home teams dates are unacceptable to the opposing team, opposing team is required to provide one (1) date to the home team.
-G. If away teams date is unacceptable to home team, the game site, date and time will be assigned by the league office and cannot be challenged.
-H. If no attempt is made by either team, a double forfeit shall be declared.
-I. If one team proposes date(s) according to the above, and the opposing team does not respond, that team shall incur a forfeit.

41. Home team manager is required to insure all fields are left in condition they were in before start of game. If a field is lost to league due to abuse, team responsible is subject to disciplinary action, including expulsion, from the league.

42. Each team is required to pay one (1) umpire each prior to start of game.

43. Complaints
-A. Team managers to file complaints regarding umpires with league office.
-B. Umpires to file complaints with league office.

44. Player ejections (regular season and post-season will be considered as the same season. If a player's 2nd ejection occurs during a playoff game the 3 game suspension will be applied. However, suspensions will not be carried over into a new season.)
-A. Two (2) ejection's - three (3) game suspension.
-B. Three (3) ejection's - season ending suspension.

45. Standings are determined by point system. Win = two (2) points, Tie = one (1) point.


46. Any comments or suggestions should be emailed to the league office / officers. The league office / officers will reply in a timely manner. Customer service is our #1 priority.