Rainout Number

Bellingham Rainout Number 360-778-7055

NWWBL Rules and Regulations - updated July 2017

The NWWBL’s goal: enjoy competing, play and behave with class, show respect for the game – teammates, umpires, opponents, and spectators

  • General Information
    • Governance - general managers hire the commissioner(s); together they form the leadership group
      • ​​Jon Dillon and Ian Linterman will serve as Co-Commissioners for the 2017 Season
      • Each team needs to have a manager or team rep at clearly agreed upon meeting times so that each team’s voice may be heard and input from each team given; $100 will be added to a team who misses 2 meetings in a row; a commissioner will break tie votes if necessary
    • Pre-Season / Rosters - player eligibility for regular season games requires each player to have his photo ID on file with the commissioners along with contact information (cell phone and email address)
      • By May 1 each GM is required to have sent his season opening roster with full names and uniform number to the commissioners 
      • Players should be 18 years old to be on the roster
      • At the openers each team will receive these rosters so that reporting can be done accurately
      • Player eligibility for tournament games in the post-season requires 20 plate appearances or 20 IP; beyond that, any hardship cases must be reviewed by the leadership group
    • New Team - Mariners 2017 invited to join the league with the following parameters (agreed upon by managers):
      • Mariners allowed to use "unders" for pitching - 3 innings max per pitcher - for the 2017 regular season 
      • Do not allow more than 4 unders in the lineup at one time - following current league rules
      • Eligible for playoffs as long as M's comply with league rules about under/over pitching once the playoffs begin
      • If unable to meet the above pitching scenario, the M's would not make the playoffs
  • Fees
    • League fees are $3000 per team
    • Every team must pay earnest money of $1000 by April 1; each GM is urged to collect at least a downpayment of each player before the season begins. The leadership group’s goal is to keep per player expenses (beyond team gear and uniform costs) under $200.
    • The balance of all team fees are due by June 1, or earlier, or following games will be forfeited until payment has been completed
  • Scheduling Information
    • Opening Day May 6th or 13th (tripleheader or single games starting May 8th)
    • Mid-season break June 30th -July 9th
    • 65 mid-week days for games
    • Last day of regular season - August 23rd
    • Playoffs August 28th – September 13th
  • Fields Available (in scheduling priority order)
    • Sherman Anderson
    • Joe Martin
    • Bellingham High School - no alcohol at any high school fields
    • Sehome High School - no alcohol at any high school fields
    • Nooksack Valley High School - no alcohol at any high school fields
  • Game Related Information
    • League Games - with 7 teams in the league, regular season will expand to 21 games. In the first 18 games, each team will play each other three times. For the final three league games, teams will play each other based on the standings from last year. The Colt 45s, for example, who finished first in the regular season, will play the 2nd, 3rd and 4th place teams from the regular season one more time.
    • Pre-game items
      • Pick-up players (e.g. players not currently on your roster)
        • Can only pitch 3 innings
        • No pick-up pitchers are allowed the last 5 games of the regular season
      • Ground rules for most ballparks will be on the website; umpires and field managers should clarify ground rules prior to a game’s start at home plate
      • Designated runners identified - during a game, the league rules only allow for catchers to have a runner when there are 2 outs. This is in place to help speed up the game. No other position player may have a designated runner with 2 outs. Injuries occur, so there will be instances where a runner is required. Abuse of this rule needs to be reported to commissioners.
      • Lineup Cards required for all games – managers are required to fill out lineup cards with the following: 1) first or last name of player 2) field position 3) jersey number 4) designate a “U” for Unders in the lineup and 5) a circle around the position in the lineup for a player who requires a runner. Line-up cards will be presented to the other team before the game starts as an expected courtesy
      • Each manager’s scorebook will contain: the current schedule, rosters, and regulations
      • Regardless of the length of a game, an “under” may only pitch 9 outs
      • The “under 28” rule means that only 4 players who are under 28 years old may be in the field or in the batting order at one time; if a team had 5 “unders” show up for a game, it coud have 2 of the 5 alternate in one spot in the batting order
      • New baseballs for 8th and 9th innings on fields without lights - each team will receive four boxes of baseballs. That equates for baseballs for 24 games.
      • Each team will provide 2 (or more, if necessary) league-approved baseballs per game
      • The designated home team will occupy the 3B dugout
    • During game items
      • Late arriving players may only bat at the bottom of the batting order if the team is batting all (not just 9) players; also such a player is not an “out”
      • For any inning but the declared last inning by the umpire, there is a maximum of 4 runs scoring with the exception of an extra base runner(s) already past 3B who must be tagged out by a defensive player
      • A head or foot first slide or no slide at all at home plate is acceptable, but an intentional collision at home plate means an ejection; this step is left up to the umpire’s discretion with each manager’s input weighed; catcher obstruction, if it occurs, must be called
      • Bats -4 may be used; -5 bats are acceptable only for players 50 years and older
      • The limit on HBP is 3 in one game; if that number is reached, the pitcher must be replaced unless the “hit” team is indifferent
      • The offensive team may use a courtesy base runner (the player who made the last out) for a batter with an injury or after 2 outs for a catcher or playing field manager; teams are urged not to take unfair advantage of this rule
      • Although there is unlimited free substitution on defense except for the maximum of 4 “unders” at one time, a player may only bat in one spot in the batting order (even if he re-enters) or it is illegal substitution and he’s out then; 2 players could alternate in one spot
    • Post-game items
      • The winning team is responsible for reporting the final score to either the commissioner or the website within 24 hours; if the winning team can’t do this, the losing team should submit the report
      • Each team is responsible for a game summary for their team also to be submitted to either the commissioner or website within 24 hours
    • Game times/lengths
      • Normally Mon.-Fri. evening games begin at 6:00pm and/or 6:30pm if played at Sherman Anderson; Sat. game times will be determined around scheduling opportunities
      • If there is a tie at the time limit, a 2B-R (then 3B-R the next inning), player who made the last out the previous inning, is added till one team wins; any game suspended after 5 innings because of darkness or bad weather will be picked up prior to the next meeting of those 2 teams; new batter orders and pitchers may be used if a suspended game is resumed later
      • The length of all games prior to the last one of a tripleheader or quadheader is a 2 ½ hr. limit unless there is a tie to be broken
      • The umpire declares when the last unlimited scoring inning begins
  • Playoffs
    • Playoffs start week of 8/28/17
    • With 7 teams, only the #1 seed will have a bye into the second round. The tournament schedule will be based on a double-elimination format for 8 teams (i.e., all game for the #8 seed will be removed from the playoff bracket)
    • Two umpires during the playoffs
    • Playoff Seeding Rules - the following rules will be followed in order as needed to determine post-season tournament seeding
      1. Overall winning percentage
      2. Head-to-head record between tied teams
      3. Best record for 2nd half of the season
      4. Best record last 11 games, 12 games, etc
      5. Run Differential
      6. Runs Scored Per Game
      7. Runs Allowed Per Game
      8. Coin Toss
    • Playoff seeding for the 2017 season - the team from the winner’s bracket will hold home field advantage for the finals (Home, Away, Home). The winner of the loser’s bracket will be the away team for games 1 and 3.
    • Player eligibility for tournament games in the post-season requires 20 plate appearances or 20 IP; beyond that, any hardship cases must be reviewed by the leadership group.
  • Forfeits and Ejections
    • If unable to field a team on the day of the game, it is an automatic forfeit
    • If a team notifies the commissioner and the other team before the day of game:
      • Both teams come up with two dates that work for both and submit them to the commissioner
      • If the commissioner cannot get a field for either of those dates - field and date choice is made by the commissioner based on availability
      • If either of the teams cannot field a team on the new date - it results in a forfeit by the team that originally could not field a team
    • If a team forfeits a game during the regular season that loss will factor into tie breaker considerations in the final regular season standings
    • Forfeits count for 1 loss and NOT 1.5 as in previous years
    • If a player is ejected from a game there is an automatic one game suspension - ejection should be reported to the commissioners who will implement a one game suspension for player(s)
  • Special Notes
    • Umpires
      • One umpire during the first half of season
      • Two umpires during the second half of the season
      • Two umpires during the playoffs
    • Insurance
      • Waiver forms – Waiver forms must be signed and on file prior to opening day
    • Statistics
      • A spreadsheet template will be provided to each team and stats should be reported at 5-game intervals
      • If each team provides stats in a timely manner, website will be updated to share league-wide statistics on a regular basis
      • It is recommended that each manager designate a stat person for their team
    • League Name
      • Borderline Baseball League (BBL) – The BBL will be the name of the league for the 2017 season
      • Northwest Washington Baseball League (NWBL) – Starting in 2018, the name of the league will change to the NWBL