Tournament Rules

Atlantic Coast Baseball Tournaments follow NFHS Rules for all Tournaments unless otherwise specified below.

Revised 11-15-18

Registration
All teams registered for any Atlantic Coast Baseball tournament must submit a completed roster form and provide verification of proof of insurance that list Atlantic Coast Baseball as additional insured at least 45 days before the event along with the completion of the Coaches Checklist found on the ACB website.

Special Start Requests
Before entering a tournament, make sure your team has no other conflicts on the listed Tournament Dates. ACB cannot accommodate any special game time requests! Teams need to be prepared to start as early as 8 AM.

***Forfeit Note: Forfeit Time is Game Time. Any Team that forfeits CAN NOT advance to the Championship Rounds and are not eligible for any refund. At the discretion of the Tournament Director that team may also be removed for the remainder of the tournament. Games will be scored 5-0. GAMES CAN START WITH 6 PLAYERS***

Hotels
All out of town Teams are required to stay in an "Approved ACB Hotel" (in order to particiapte in one of our events) and book through our Online Reservation System that can be found on the specific Tournament page or the Hotels page. If you need help with reservations, or have any hotel questions, please contact us at info@t1housing.com.

Eligibility
Age cutoff is April 30 for all teams. Players cannot be double rostered in the same age division. Each team is responsible to keep a copy of the official state-issued birth certificate for each player on the Coach at all times. If any player does not have his birth certificate, he/she cannot participate in the Tournament. If a team caught using a player that is older than the cutoff for the division, that team will forfeit every game that player has played in and the Team will be removed from the Tournament. If there are multiple divisions within an age group (Elite & Open) a player may be double rostered on a team in the Elite and a Team in the Open. Player may also "Play Up" on another team as long as he is on the Official Roster of both teams submitted prior to the tournament. To figure out your appropriate Age Division, please Click Here.

Special Exceptions (Teams MUST provide BOTH Birth Certificate & Latest Report Card stating Grad Year):
16U - 2021 Graduate or Younger
17U - 2020 Graduate or Younger
18U - 2019 Graduate or Younger

Official Tournament Roster
All teams must submit an official tournament roster online prior to the first game of the tournament. The online roster will be made public for every tournament (Player's First & Last Name, Jersey #). Any player not found on the online roster will be ineligible to play in that tournament, and any game that said player is found to have played in will result in a Team Forfeit (game will be scored 5-0)! **Roster/Waiver link will be sent to all Team Coaches and Contacts**.

Time Limit
All tournament games in pool play and playoffs will have a time limit. Championship games will not. The time limits are as follows:
  • 07U-12U: 1 hour and 45 minutes
  • 13U-19U: 2 hours

No new inning can start after the time limit. If a new inning has started prior to the time limit, then that inning will finish. If the home team is winning after the top half of inning and the time limit occurs, the game is over (even if it is the middle of an inning). If both teams are tied at the end of regulation, and the Time Limit has not expired, proceed to extra innings. If games are tied after the Time Limit expires, they will be recorded as a tie. (This includes Consolation Games and Consolation Brackets)

In Playoff Games (Championship Bracket), no new inning can start after the time limit. If a new inning has started prior to the time limit, then that inning will finish. If the home team is winning after the top half of inning and the time limit occurs, the game is over (even if it is the middle of an inning). If both teams are tied at the end of regulation, and the Time Limit has not expired, proceed to extra innings. If games are tied after the Time Limit expires in Playoff Games (Championship Bracket) we will use the California Tie Breaker. Each Team will start the inning with their last batted out on 2nd base and the batters will have an 0-0 count. Each Inning will proceed this way until the tie is broken. No Tie-Breakers or Time Limit in Championship Games.

***TIME LIMITS & INNING LIMITS MAY CHANGE DUE TO WEATHER AND/OR TOURNAMENT FORMAT***

Playoffs/Tie Breakers
Seeding results will be available on the Atlantic Coast Baseball website between 10pm and 11pm Saturday evening. (or once Pool Play Games have been completed for your age division.)
In the event that teams are tied after pool play, the following process will be followed:
  • Head to Head (only if 2 teams are tied. 3 or more, go to next tie breaker)
  • Fewest Runs Allowed (may be averaged if there is an uneven amount of games played)
  • Runs Scored (may be averaged if there is an uneven amount of games played)
  • Coin Flip
  • In the event there is an uneven amount of Pool Play games between teams due to rain, there is a possibility we could seed based off of Win %.
  • Please note: there will be no re-seeding in the playoff brackets

Pitching
PENALTY FOR VIOLATION: HEAD COACH EJECTION
Responsibility lies with the Coaching Staff! 1 Pitch = 1 Inning. Once a player is removed from the mound, he/she cannot return to the mound in the same game. Second trip to the mound in the same inning results in removal of the pitcher.
  • 8U, 9U, 10U: 3 Innings per game
  • 11U, 12U: 4 Innings per game
  • 13U, 14U: 5 Innings per game
  • 15U & Older: No per game limit

USA Pitch Smart
Arm Health and Recommended Pitching Limitations
Tournament management will not be involved in counting pitches or regulating pitching during tournament events. The ultimate responsbility of managing pitch counts rests with each team's Head Coach.

Atlantic Coast Baseball endorses the Pitch Smart program, developed by USA Baseball and Major League Baseball. This program is a series of practical, age appropriate guidelines to help parents, players, and coaches avoid overuse injuries and foster long, healthy careers for youth pitchers.

About Pitch Smart: USA Baseball and MLB teamed up to help young players reduce arm injuries by providing a comprehensive resource for safe pitching practices. Baseball is a safe game to play at all ages, but research has shown that pitching too much - particularly at a young age - can increase a pitcher's risk of injury.

Risk Factors: Some factors that increase the risk of arm injury include:
  • Pitching while fatigued
  • Not taking enough time off from baseball every year
  • Throwing too many pitches and not getting enough rest
  • Pitching on consecutive days
  • Playing for multiple teams at the same time
  • Throwing breaking pitches at a young age

Recommended Pitch Count Limits and Recommended Rest:
Age Daily Max 0 Days 1 Day 2 Days 3 Days 4 Days
7-8 50 1-20 21-35 36-50 - -
9-10 75 1-20 21-35 36-50 51-65 66+
11-12 85 1-20 21-35 36-50 51-65 66+
13-14 95 1-20 21-35 36-50 51-65 66+
15-16 95 1-20 31-45 46-60 61-75 76+
17-18 105 1-20 31-45 46-60 61-75 76+

Balks
There will be no warnings on balk calls. Umpire discretion may be used on younger ages. Fake to 3rd, throw to 1st, is a balk!!!

Re-entry
Defensive: Free substitution. A player DOES NOT have to be in the batting order to play the field.

Offensive: You may bat nine players, your entire lineup, or anywhere in between. After the start of the game you cannot change the number of batters you have, it must remain the same for the whole game. If you bat your entire lineup and a player should get thrown out, or injured, and no substitute (a player not in the batting order) remains then you must take an out in that spot. This is the risk you take with Roster Batting!

If you are NOT Roster Batting, regular substitution rules apply (see NFHS Rules). Games can start with 6 Players. Players can be added to the batting order in the order they arrive. Batting Spots 7-9 will be outs until enough players arrive. NO MARRIAGE RULE IN 2016

Home Team
In pool play, the Home Team will be determined by a coin flip. Whoever wins the Coin Flip, has the choice to be Home or Away. In Playoffs and the Championship the higher seed will have their choice to be home or away. If two teams should have the same seed, then a coin flip will determine home team.

Scorekeeping
  • Each team's manager must prepare 1 written copy of his lineup listing first and last names and numbers of all players and substitutes prior to each game. Lineups then must be provided to the opposing team’s manager.
  • The Official Scorebook is to be kept by the home team. Both teams are to confer after each inning to confirm the score.
  • A completed Scorecard (kept by the umpire) must be filled out and signed by THE SCOREBOOK KEEPER from each team AFTER each game. Please make sure to double check the game score! This is done so that we can make sure we stay on top of the scores, and post the results accurately ASAP. A signed Scorecard by the Scorebook Keeper/Coach is deemed a verified score!
  • In the event of a rain delay, please write down the Entire Situation, including: INNING, SCORE, BATTER, COUNT, RUNNER'S, TIME OF DELAY and both scorekeepers must email that information to info@playacbaseball.com.

Slide Rule
In the event of a close play the runner must avoid contact. If the Umpire determines that the Player slid to intentionally make contact then he is out and so is the player as to where the defensive player was trying to make the play. All close plays and slides are at the umpire’s discretion.

Baseball Cleats/Sunflower Seeds/Gum/Candy/& Tobacco Policy
Forfeit Rule: Any team found in violation of this rule by an AC Representative, Umpire, or Field Official will automatically forfeit all games, and fined $300, payable to the Field Owner. No exceptions!
Metal spikes are allowed ONLY in division's 13U and older. Molded Cleats, Turf Shoes, Running Shoes are acceptable for any playing surface. For a complete Field List, including information on our fields of play, please Click Here.

**No metal spikes allowed at ANY park using a Portable Turf Mound OR TURF FIELD**
**There is a Strict NO SUNFLOWER SEEDS/GUM/CANDY Policy on ANY park or field that has TURF**
**Atlantic Coast tournaments have a strict NO TOBACCO policy for any: Player, Coach, Parent, Official, or Tournament Manager!**


Bat Restrictions - **NO CHANGES FOR 2018**
PENALTY FOR BAT VIOLATION: PLAYER EJECTION & HEAD COACH EJECTION
  • 7U-8U Coach Pitch: USA and USSSA Stamped bats are permitted and must meet the BPF of 1.15. However these bats cannot exceed a 2 1/4" Barrel (regardless of USA or USSSA Stamp).
  • 8U Kid Pitch - 13U (54' 80' events): All bats -5 or greater must be stamped BPF 1.15 USSSA or USA Baseball. There are no bat size restrictions on weight or length as long as bat has "BPF 1.15" stamp.
  • All 60' 90' events: will follow PA High School Rules and use a BBCOR certified bat. (Click Here)
  • Wood Bat Tournaments: To be considered a wood bat, a bat must be made of a single piece of wood. No Bamboo Bats or Bamboo Composite Bats. Any other bat composed of Wood and/or Wood Composite bats are allowed.

Effective April 17th, 2018, the following bats may not be used in Atlantic Coast Baseball events (unless properly retooled by DeMarini or manufacturer- see below link):
  • DeMarini 2017 CF Zen Balanced (-8) (29/21, 30/22, 31/23, 32/24)
  • DeMarini 2017 CF Zen SL 2 3/4" (-10) (28/18, 29/19, 30/20, 31/21, 32/22)
  • DeMarini 2017 CF Zen Zero Dark 2 3/4" (-10) (29/19, 30/20)
  • DeMarini Custom 2017 CF Zen 2 3/4" (-10)
  • DeMarini Custom 2017 CF Zen Balanced (-8)
  • Dirty South Kamo BB KA (-8) (30/22, 31/21, 32/22, 31/23, 32/24 only)
  • Easton Ghost X (30/20 only)
  • Marucci Cat5 MCB2 33/30 BBCOR
  • Nike BT0636 CX2

To see the official release by DeMarini, including how to proceed to retool your bat, CLICK HERE.

Catcher's Mask
All Catcher's must wear a Hockey Style Mask at all ages. Otherwise they will not be permitted to play.

Protests
ANY PROTEST MUST HAPPEN AT THAT POINT IN THE GAME! THE PROTESTING COACH MUST TELL THE UMPIRE, THE OPPOSING TEAM MANAGER, AND A TOURNAMENT OFFICIAL, THAT HE IS GOING TO PROTEST. THE PROTEST MUST BE ACCOMPANIED BY $100 CASH AT THAT POINT IN TIME!
  • Judgment calls by the umpire cannot be protested, RULES ONLY.
  • Protests include questioning a player's age and/or Official Roster
  • A $100 cash protest fee must be presented to the Site Director at the time of protest. If a Site Director is not available, please call 866-6-PLAYAC.
  • A protest is only "Official" if accompanied by the $100 and done before the next pitch.
  • If the protest is upheld, then the $100 will be refunded and the game will be replayed from the point of the protest.
  • Burden of Proof lies with the Protestor

Entry Refunds
There will be no entry refunds for withdrawal from a tournament within 90 days of the start of that particular event. If a team registers, pays, and then drops out prior to the 90 days, they can either transfer their entry, or receive a refund less a $150 administrative fee. Refunds due to weather postponement will be calculated by the number of games played. If payment was made with a Credit Card, the payment will be refunded minus the Processing Fee. Please Note: If you withdraw from an Age Division that is FULL you will not receive a refund until/if your spot is replaced by another team! ($150 Admin Fee still applies). The weather refunds will go as follows:
  • 0 games played: Entry fee minus a $150 administrative fee
  • 1 game played: 50% Refund
  • 2 games played: No Refund

**Teams also have the option to transfer their entry into a future ACB Tournament**

***Specialty Tournaments refund policies***

ACB Cap Classic® Pittsburgh/Louisville Slugger Wood Bat W.S.
Prior to your cap order being placed and before April 1st - your refund will be your full tournament registration less a $150 administrative fee. Once your cap order has been placed and prior to April 1st - you will receive your team caps plus your registration fee less $500. After April 1st - no refund will be given. You will receive your team caps. In the event your team ordered additional caps beyond the 18 included with the tournament registration, no refund will be issued while any outstanding balance for additional caps remains. Below refunds will be calculated based on the entry minus $350 for hats (Cap) or $150 for bats (Slugger)

  • 0 games played: Entry fee minus a $150 administrative fee (If bats received, entry fee less admin fee plus $350 for hats/$150 for bats)
  • 1 game played: 50% Refund
  • 2 games played: 25% Refund
  • 3 games played: $100 credit
  • 4 games played: no refund

**Teams also have the option to transfer their entry into a future ACB Tournament**

Dugouts
Please help keep the tournament fields and common areas clean. Please be sure to pick up all your team's trash after the game. ONLY 2 COACHES AND A SCOREKEEPER, OR 3 TOTAL COACHES, ARE ALLOWED IN THE DUGOUT AT ANY TIME. HEAD COACH IS ONLY ONE ALLOWED TO DISCUSS ISSUES WITH THE UMPIRE.

Ejections
  • NO WARNINGS will be given to Coaches, Players, or Fans for unsportsmanlike or unruly behavior.
  • Upon ejection, the Coach, Player, or Fan must completely leave the premises. Failure to comply will result in a team forfeit.
  • Any Player ejected from more than one game will not be permitted on the premises for the rest of the tournament.
  • COACHES ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR THEIR FANS. IF A FAN IS EJECTED FROM ANY GAME, THE HEAD COACH WILL BE EJECTED FOR THAT GAME ONLY

Should a Coach, OR FAN, be ejected from 1 game, they will not be permitted to participate in the rest of the Tournament as a Coach, or a Fan, and will not be permitted on any Tournament Game Site for the duration of the Tournament. If the Coach or Fan does not completely leave the premises (this includes the parking lot) the team will forfeit that game.

Official Game
All games are official after the completion of the 1st inning. If a game should be called due to darkness, weather, etc. and it is the middle of an inning, then the game will revert back to the score from the previous inning if the first inning has been completed (unless the Home Team is winning). If there are ample game slots left, the game may be re-scheduled to resume!!!

Format Alterations
Atlantic Coast Baseball reserves the right to alter, change, or abbreviate Tournament Formats and Rules, when necessary. This includes, but not limited to, shortening times limits in order to maintain the game schedule and to ensure all games are played.

Intentional Walk
Coach must notify the home plate umpire and the hitter will be granted 1st base.

Baseballs
Baseballs will be supplied by the Tournament for each game. Teams are responsbile for retrieving foul balls. Only approved ACB Baseballs will be allowed for tournament play.

Courtesy Runners
Courtesy Runners for Pitcher and Catcher AT ANY TIME. If not roster batting: Must be a Player off the Bench/Player not in the Batting Order. You cannot use the same player to run for both the Pitcher and Catcher in the same inning! If you are batting your entire lineup, then you may use the LAST BATTED OUT. Please remember the purpose is to SPEED UP THE GAME! If the Courtesy Runner is not ready with his helmet and at the entrance to the field at the time the Batter reaches the base, the Umpire reserves the right to refuse the Courtesy Runner option if it slows the speed of the game. Please have a Coach or Player ready to warm up the Pitcher.

Umpires
If there is not a Tournament Representative on site, the Umpires will serve as the on-site Tournament Representatives. There will be 2 umpires at every age group. Younger age divisions (7U-12U) may have one umpire.

Infield/Outfield
Games may start early! Please be prepared to play 30 minutes prior to scheduled start time!
There will be no infield/outfield practice prior to tournament games.
Hitting whiffle balls, or any type of ball, into nets, FENCES, etc. is not allowed on any part of any field!!! Please hit outside the FENCES!!

Alcohol & Tobacco Policy
Many of our tournaments are hosted on College & High School Campuses, & Community Parks. These locations do NOT permit their players, parents, or fans to consume ALCOHOLIC BEVERAGES, CHEW TOBACCO, or SMOKE on the premisesOF ANY OF OUR SITES and we will enforce those policies at our events as well. Please remind your fans and players to respect these policies, as improper conduct will be dealt with as needed. ACB has a Zero Tolerance and Law Enforcement Officials will be called. Ejection may take place for the remainder of the game or tournament at the Tournament Director’s discretion.

Division Rules
8U will play Little League Rules and 3 Outfielders. Kid Pitch. No Stealing Home. No Leading. Steals are allowed after the ball crosses the plate. Runners cannot advance on a dropped 3rd Strike. Infield Fly Rule IS in effect. If a player is on 2nd base and attempts to steal 3rd, he cannot advance home on an overthrow. (Applies to steal attempts only)
9U and older will play leads and steals.
Plum Wood Bat Tourney - 9U and down = Little League Rules. Kid Pitch. No Stealing Home. No Leading. Steals are allowed after the ball crosses the plate. Runners cannot advance on a dropped 3rd Strike. Infield Fly Rule IS in effect.

Coach Pitch Rules

8U 9U & 10U 11U & 12U 13U (Cap PGH) 13U (Cap NC & FL) 14U & Up
65' bases** 65' bases* 70' bases** 80' bases**** 90' bases 90' bases
40-43' mound*** 46' mound***** 50' mound*** 54' mound**** 60' 6" mound 60' 6" mound
6 inning game 6 inning game 6 inning game 7 inning game 7 inning game 7 inning game
1 Hour 45 Min. Time Limit * 1 Hour 45 Min. Time Limit * 1 Hour 45 Min. Time Limit * 2 Hour Time Limit * 2 Hour Time Limit * 2 Hour Time Limit *
Mercy Rule
20 after 1 20 after 1 20 after 1 20 after 1 20 after 1 20 after 1
15 after 2 15 after 2 15 after 2 15 after 2 15 after 2 15 after 2
12 after 3 12 after 3 12 after 3 12 after 3 12 after 3 12 after 3
10 after 4 10 after 4 10 after 4 10 after 4 10 after 4 10 after 4
8 after 5 8 after 5 8 after 5 8 after 5 8 after 5 8 after 5
Run Rules apply to all games. Championship Games - No 8 Run Rule. Must be 20, 15, 12, or 10.
* Can be 60' or 70' bases depending on Tournament and field availability
** Can be 65' bases depending on Tournament and field availability
*** Can be 46' to 50' mound depending on Tournament and field availability
**** Can be 60' mound and/or 90' bases depending on Tournament and field availability
***** Can be 40'-43' mound depending on Tournament and field availability
** 8U - Little League Rules. Kid Pitch. No Stealing Home. No Leading. Steals are allowed after the ball crosses the plate. Runners cannot advance on a dropped 3rd Strike. Infield Fly Rule IS in effect.