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2018 Pitching and Bat Information

PONY Baseball to adopt pitch count, new bats in 2018

Following approval by the PONY Baseball Rules Committee and the International Board of Directors, two baseball rules have been updated for the 2018 season. For the first time, PONY Baseball will be following a pitch count instead of an innings limit, as recommended by MLB Pitch Smart Guidelines, and, in conjunction with USA Baseball and its other participating National Member Organizations, PONY Baseball has adopted the new USA Baseball Bat Standard (USABat).

Pitch Count

As will be stated in Section 10 “Pitching Rules” and T-8 “Tournament Pitching,” any team member may pitch, subject to the restrictions of the pitch count, as recommended by MLB Pitch Smart Guidelines, for age divisions Pinto 8U, Mustang 10U, Bronco 12U, Pony 14U, Colt 16U, Palomino 18U and Thorobred 23U. Players in the Shetland 6U age division are not permitted to pitch. Pitchers are to adhere to the chart below for league and sanction tournament play.

 

Pitchers reaching their maximum number of pitches in a day, while pitching to a batter, may finish pitching to that batter before being removed. A pitcher is charged with the number of pitches in the specific calendar day and week in which they are pitched, regardless of whether they are local organization league games, the playoff of postponed games or suspended games, tie games, or exhibition games.

Rest is calculated as per calendar day. No pitcher shall appear in a game as a pitcher for three consecutive days, regardless of pitch count.

The league should assign an official scorekeeper for each game to track pitch counts.  In the absence of an official scorekeeper, the home team book shall be the official record of games statistics including pitch count. Electronic scoring devices are recommended at all levels of tournament play in order to ensure accurate pitch count.

USABat

As will be stated in Section 8 “Equipment,” in conjunction with USA Baseball and its other participating National Member Organizations, PONY Baseball has adopted the new USA Baseball Bat Standard (USABat).

Effective January 1, 2018, with the exception of the -3 bat (BBCOR certified), all other 2-1/4” and 2-5/8” minus factor bats (-5, -7, -9, etc.) must be certified with the USABat licensing stamp on the bat in order to be used for league and tournament play. 2-1/4” and 2-5/8” minus factor bats (-5, -7, -9, etc.) used in 2017 will be illegal to use in 2018.

2-¾” barrel bats are prohibited in all divisions of PONY Baseball. Colt 16U and Palomino 18U players are only allowed to use 2-⅝” -3 BBCOR certified bats. Thorobred 23U players must use wooden bats only as specified by Major League Baseball.

If using a tee ball bat manufactured prior to 2018, these bat must carry the USA Baseball mark accompanied by the following text: “Only For Use With Approved Tee Ball Bat.” If you already have a tee ball bat you would like to continue using, all you have to do is purchase a USA Bat sticker directly from USABB and place it on your bat.



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