7U & 8U GHVBL Rules

In general, we follow Cal Ripken / Little League rules in 7U & 8U


UMPIRE FEE – $60/game – split evenly among both teams.

BASEBALLS – Approved Game Balls – Teams may use league issued Diamond DOL-A or DOL-LSA, or other league cleared Cushioned Cork Baseballs.
Each Team shall provide at least 2 game balls for each game. After that, each team alternates – away team first…. No rubber pill, or solid cork baseballs. 

ROSTERS – Your age on APRIL 30th of the current year is your baseball age for the entire Spring/Summer seasons – teams “move up” in the Fall….. Rosters are limited to 20. A player may play “up” to help a team in the event that the older age group is in need of a player short of players.

POST-SEASON ELIGIBILITY – TEAMS must play 6 games (Spring/Fall) or 8 games (Summer) in order to be eligible for playoffs.  NO EXCEPTIONS. ALL eligible teams are entered into playoff tournament. 

PLAYERS (Specific Team Members) must play in at least 4 games (Spring/Fall) and 6 games (Summer) (FOR THE TEAM THEY ARE PLAYING WITH IN THE PLAYOFFS) to be eligible for participation in Post-Season Play.  Only exceptions made in situation of injury – contact league email for league exception consideration.  PLAYERS may not play playoffs for more than ONE TEAM in the same DIVISION.   

Coaching staffs – may consist of a Head Coach, Assistant Coach, Scorekeeper, & One Bench Coach for a total of no more than 4 coaches. There should never be more than 4 coaches in the bench area.

STARTING LINEUP – GHVBL uses the “Sports @ The Beach” rule on lineups. It is flexible and easy to implement. We want to let the Coach play as many players as he/she wants. The only information needed regarding a “Starting Lineup” is the number of batters. 

Offensive – Team may bat 9 players, the entire lineup or in-between. Once the number of batters is determined, it must remain for the entire game. No automatic outs unless an ejected player’s turn comes up and there are no subs available.  Unless a team only has 8 players, the 9th position in the order will be recorded as an automatic out.  Those are the only scenarios that will result in an automatic out. Once a substitution bats or runs for a player, the sub and the original starter are locked into that batting position. Either one may bat or run in that position ONLY and are interchangeable for the game – no limit on re-entry. TEAMS MAY PLAY WITH 8 PLAYERS

If a player is removed due to injury (and skipped in the lineup – that player MAY NOT RETURN TO THE GAME)

Defensive – Any player on the roster may play in any defensive position at any time, regardless of being in the batting order. 8U May play 10 players in field – 10 players playing defense consists of a catcher, a pitcher, 4 infielders and 4 outfielders. Outfield will be defined as in the grass or at least 20′ behind baseline- no outfielders allowed to be on the infield/dirt.  On a batted ball that reaches or goes past the outfielder, only an outfielder must be the player that retrieves the ball and makes the throw attempt back to the infield.

MINIMUM PLAY RULE – In 8U all players in uniform must play 2 innings in field & have at least 1 at bat.

HELMETS – Any player at-bat, on the bases, or in the coaching boxes must wear a double ear-flapped helmet.

ONLY TIME an automatic out is recorded is in the event of an ejection the next time the players spot comes up in the order OR the 9th position in order if team only has 8 players.

If a player is removed due to injury (and skipped in the lineup – that player MAY NOT RETURN TO THE GAME)

ON DECK WARM-UP – On Deck Batter – ONLY IF THERE IS AN ENCLOSED designated area.  NO open area on deck batters.

8U – 10U & Fall 11U(60) – (All 46′ x 60′ fields) – Wood or USABat (non-wood bats must have USABat stamp or label)
see for more information

CLEATS – 8u – Plastic Molded (No Spikes)

CATCHER’S MASK, HELMET, AND THROAT PROTECTOR (ALL DIVISIONS) – An extended “dangling” throat protector is considered a required part of the catcher’s mask. Hockey-style catcher’s masks with built-in extended throat protection are approved and do not require an extended “dangling” throat protector. The catchers mask shall not have a chrome or mirror-like surface.    The catcher’s helmet and mask combination shall meet the NOCSAE standard which includes having full ear protection with dual ear flaps.  The skull cap and mask combination does not meet the NOCSAE standard nor does it provide full ear protection with dual ear flaps and is not permitted in GHVBL.  

RE-ENTRY – Any of the offensive starting lineup may be withdrawn and re-entered AS MUCH AS YOU WISH, providing such player occupies the same batting position whenever in the lineup.

PITCHING RULES – GHVBL has adopted the Pitch Smart Compliance Program.  Please adhere to the very specific documented pitching limits here.  This is a ENFORCED RULE. Pitch limits and “Daily Max” are HARD STOPS – meaning there is no exception for the pitcher to finish the batter.  Teams should communicate between innings – to properly document pitch counts. In areas of disagreement – HOME TEAM owns OFFICIAL PITCH COUNT.  Pitch Smart is a safety rule, so ALL PITCHING, regardless of league is relevant.  Meaning a pitcher’s daily limit would include pitching in a local rec game, in addition to the GHVBL game the same day.

ADDITIONAL PITCHING RULES – On 46/60 fields & games, a pitcher once removed MAY NOT RETURN TO THE MOUND in the same game.  While this practice is not encouraged, in 50/70 & 60/90 games, this is allowed as long as the player is under their daily limit.  Also not encouraged, but a pitcher may pitch in multiple games in a day as long as they are under their daily pitch limit.

PITCHING DISTANCE (8U): When a home field has the ability to place the pitching rubber/portable mound at 42′ – that will be the pitching distance in the 8U division.  Exception – if both teams agree on a distance of 46′ OR the home field does not have a 42′ capable pitching distance.

BALKS – 8u: There are no balks. Illegal Pitches or Quick Pitches will be recorded as balls after one warning per pitcher.

TRIPS TO THE MOUND – 8u: 2 trips per inning, the third he must be removed. At any time in the game – the third visit to a pitcher must result in the removal of the pitcher.  Once a pitcher is removed he can no longer pitch in that game.

SLASH-BUNTING – 8u, 9u, 10u, 11u, 12u: Slash-Bunting is not permitted. Once a player squares around to bunt, he/she must either bunt or take the pitch. If they make any attempt at swinging they will be called out, regardless of whether contact was made or not.

SPEED-UP – With any # of outs, running for the catcher, pitcher OR INCOMING catcher, pitcher is allowed. However, it is not mandatory.

STEALING – 8u – Only one base per steal attempt and NO STEALING HOME AT ANYTIME! There is no advancing on overthrows from steal attempts or pickoff attempts. To help clarify if there is a runner on third at the start of a play, he can only score from a ball put in play or being forced in by a walk or hit by pitch.  Runner may lead (after ball passes home plate) at their own risk and is subject to pickoff, but there is NO BENEFIT to leading as they MAY NOT SCORE unless a ball is put in play or is forced in by a walk or hit by pitch.

BASERUNNING – GHVBL IS A SLIDE OR AVOID CONTACT LEAGUE – Forceful, purposeful collisions are grounds for immediate ejection.  Players are not required to slide into all bases, if they are avoiding contact.   No headfirst sliding into a base on 46/60 fields although you may slide headfirst BACK to a bag. If a play is being made he may go in standing but must make every effort to avoid contact.
Courtesy Runners – permitted at ANYTIME – for Catcher and/or Pitcher OR INCOMING Catcher and/or Pitcher (not required). Courtesy Runner must be last batted out.

MERCY RULE – RUN LIMITS IN 8U – 8u – A 6 run maximum each inning until the 6th inning, which is UNLIMITED.  MERCY RULE – If a team is winning by 10 runs after 4 full innings, game is complete.

TIME LIMITS – 8U – No Inning Starts after 1:45 – make good judgement – tie game at 1:45 is ump discretion.  

EXTRA INNING RULES & TIES – All games in tie after 6 innings (8U – 12U) shall play one extra inning “straight up”, then inning 8 & 9 use California Rule (Last Batted out goes to second base & inning starts with ZERO OUTS).   Game is TIE after 9 innings (8U – 12U) Regulation games called due to darkness or weather related MAY end in a tie.

PLAYOFF EXTRA INNING RULES – All playoff games in tie after regulation play ONE extra inning straight up.  Starting with the second extra inning and forward until completion – play the California Rule.

DUGOUT – ONLY 4 COACHES ALLOWED in dugout/field.  No parents allowed in dugout area.

BASE COACHES – Not allowed to touch player when ball is in play.  At umpire discretion – batter runner may be directed back to base OR called out.

DOUBLEHEADERS – Each team will be home one game. No one team should be home both games of a doubleheader. The host team will have choice of which dugout they will use regardless of which team arrives at the field first.

PLAYOFFS – Teams must play 8 games in Summer (6 in spring and fall) to participate in playoffs. May play teams twice in summer – 4 times in Spring/Fall – never more.

FORECAST FOR RAIN – HOME TEAM MAKES THE CALL – Most importantly – please contact opposing coaches and call umpires DIRECTLY. Secondly, copy league director – theghvbl@gmail.com and umpire director – task3389@verizon.net – Please make a call at least two hours before game time – if game is called after the umpire travels to the game – they are entitled one-half game fee.

GHVBL THUNDER & LIGHTNING POLICY – Thunder and lightning necessitates that games be suspended. The occurrence of thunder and/or lightning is not subject to interpretation or discussion ‐ thunder is thunder, lightning is lightning. With any weather in the forecast, please set up a plan for shelter prior to the start of a game.  When thunder is heard and/or when lightning is seen, the following procedures should be adhered to:
Suspend play and direct participants to go to shelter, a building normally occupied by the public or if a building is unavailable, participants should go inside a vehicle with a solid metal top (e.g. bus, van, car). Do not permit people to stand under or near a tree; and have all stay away from poles, antennas, towers and underground watering systems. After thunder and/or lightning have left the area, wait 30 minutes after the last boom is heard or strike is seen before resuming game.

GAME CANCELLATIONS & PENALTIES (non-weather related) – when a game must be cancelled, you must inform the league to give our umpire assignor Tom Kienzle enough time to redeploy the umpire crew.  Please inform the league email (theghvbl@gmail.com) and Tom (task3389@verizon.net) AS SOON AS POSSIBLE.  If the cancellation occurs within 24 hours of game time – your team is subject to forfeit & must pay the umpire crew if we can not reassign for the game (or games if a doubleheader).  Remember, we have great umpires that depend on our league for their income.  It is not fair to leave them hanging.