Minor League Rules

Updated Monday April 24, 2017 by MLL.

Melrose Little League Minor League Rules


Each Minor League team will have a full team batting order which will be continuous from game to game. Players maintain their batting position in the line-up even if they miss a game. However, a change in the batting order may be made at the end of the first week of the season and at the beginning of the first week of the second half of the season. The batting order must otherwise remain consistent throughout the season.  Exception:  A different batting order may be used for each playoff game.



The strike zone is from the knees to the shoulders.

There is no infield fly rule.

Bunting is allowed.


At Hesseltine Field

  • Ground ball through the infield, through the outfield, and past the cones is a maximum of two bases.  This is not automatic (i.e., a ground rule double) the runner must earn second base
  • Fly ball over outfielder’s head at normal depth to grass in outfield and before the cones is a maximum of three bases.  This is also not automatic.  The runner must earn third base. (i.e., advance at his/her own risk).
  • Fly ball landing on, between, or over the cones is an automatic home run. 
  • 5-Run maximum per inning both teams until the last inning. The last inning will be determined on the field by the managers and the umpire.



-No leading:  runner may not leave base before ball crosses home plate (i.e., is in the catcher’s glove.)

-Stealing 2nd and 3rd base will be permitted (starting the 1st game of the season). No base advancement on overthrows by catcher during a steal attempt.

-Stealing home will begin 5/16/16. 

-There will be no intentional base on balls.

-A passed ball by the catcher on a third strike is a strikeout. 

-Runner must slide to avoid contact with a fielder “or attempt to get around a fielder who has the ball and is waiting to make the tag.”  See 7.08 (a) (3)

-No head-first slides - runner will be called outSee 7.08 (a) ( 4 ).



-No 12 year old may pitch in the minors.

- Little League pitch count rules as stated in the rules book will be in effect for the season.

- League officials, designated by the President, will keep the pitch count during any playoff games.

- Once a pitcher is removed from the mound he/she cannot return as a pitcher in the same game, even if he/she has played another position. 

- Pitcher cannot have distracting clothing or equipment, e.g., no batting glove hanging out of back pocket, etc. Different color batting glove under catching glove is permitted, just not white, grey, or optic yellow permitted.

- We will be using Rule 6.05 (B2) in the Minors.

-Ball is dead when in pitcher’s possession on the mound, (i.e., when the pitcher has possession of the ball on the dirt within a three-foot radius of the rubber) - Runner/s may not advance.

-Number of visits by Manager to pitcher is covered in Rule 8.06 A, B, C.

-Refer to Rule 8.06 D for Manager making defensive player visits. 



-Maintain scorebook for each game.   Game scores and summaries will be posted on the league website.  It is the responsibility of the winning team to update the game results and pitch count within 24 hours. 

-One manager and two coaches may be allowed in the dugout, or in the first or third base coach’s boxes.  One adult-base coach and one player-base coach.

-No one is allowed behind the fence behind home plate. 

-No coaches are allowed on the field, except to meet with pitcher, or to tend to an injured player.   See 8.06 also 4.05.

-At the start of each inning, a pitcher may be warmed up by another player who must be wearing a catcher’s mask, but cannot be warmed up by a coach or other adult.  Coaches may not warm-up pitchers during the game, either on or off the field.  See 3.09

-All managers/coaches are responsible for team deportment/behavior (see below).

-At the reasonable discretion of either or both coaches spectators may be requested to be removed from the field area if their presence is disruptive to the game.

-Each player must play a minimum of three innings in a six inning game.   Players may be assigned to any field position; this will not affect the standing batting order.  Specific rules apply to pitchers (see above).

-Every effort should be made to keep games moving and on schedule, including ensuring that the next batter is prepared to go to bat and that catcher’s equipment is on as close as possible to the end of each inning.

-Both teams using Lewis-Monk need to ensure that one adult is available to staff the concession stand.



-Provide two new baseballs at each game; see League Representative for additional baseballs as needed.  Please do not use game balls for practice.  During a game please replace a ball only if it is wet or dirty enough to make play difficult or unsafe.

-A red First Aid kit will be provided to each field and put in an accessible/visible spot.  If the First Aid kit from the field is used, it should be returned to its original location after the game.

-Ensure that all equipment including umpire gear, bases, and cones are returned to storage shed.

-If bad weather or poor field conditions are a concern, consult with the President and/or Safety Director and the visiting team manager before game time to determine if the game should be called off.  Every effort should be made to call off games by 4:30 p.m. on weekdays and 45 minutes before game time on weekends. [1]  Please also let the Minor League Representative know about field concerns or cancellations.

Pay umpire in cash and record their name(s) in your scorebook.  A game should never be cancelled because an umpire did not show up.  Coaches or other Melrose Little League (MLL) personnel should umpire games instead.  See UMPIRE section below.



Umpires will be provided for all games.  Managers/coaches should respect the decisions of the umpire, and make every effort to ensure that players and spectators are equally respectful.  Concerns over an umpire’s decision should be handled discretely.  Under no circumstances should a coach, player, or spectator be allowed to yell at or in any other way intimidate or interfere with an umpire.

The umpire is responsible for calling off a game after it starts.

Home team pays the umpires in cash at the prevailing rate.  Managers will receive a check from MLL treasurer at the beginning of the season for the number of home games on the schedule.



-Entire team must be in dugout unless on the field and playing the game, assigned to coach first or third base, warming up a pitcher, or given another specific game-related assignment by manager. 

-Since there is no on-deck circle, no player should ever be allowed to swing a bat except in the batter’s box at home plate.  In addition, no players should be allowed to play catch during the course of a game. 

-All batters must wear batting helmets.

-Players must not wear watches, rings, pins, jewelry, or other metallic items.  See 1.11 ( j ).

-All male players must wear athletic supporters.  Male or female catchers must wear protective equipment (including hard cups for males) as set forth in section 1.17.

-All catchers must wear masks, including while warming up pitcher.

-Manager is encouraged to assign a player to be a first/third base coach.  Player-coach must wear a batting helmet and cannot have a catching glove.  One base coach must be an adult.



-Managers/coaches will, in conjunction with League Representative, determine frequency of practices based on availability of fields.


Player Rules:

All players will play a minimum of 3 innings.

All players bat even if they are not on the playing field.

If you have any questions, or if you need additional equipment please call the Minor League Representative and or President.