3.00 Game Preliminaries

3.01 Before the game begins theumpire shall_
       (a) Require strict observance of all rules governingimplements of play and equipment of players;
       (b) Be sure that all playing lines (heavy lineson Diagrams No. 1 and No. 2) are marked with lime, chalk or other white materialeasily distinguishable from the ground or grass;
       (c) Receive from the home club a supply of regulationbaseballs, the number and make to be certified to the home club by the league president.Each ball shall be enclosed in a sealed package bearing the signature of the leaguepresident, and the seal shall not be broken until just prior to game time when theumpire shall open each package to inspect the ball and remove its gloss. The umpireshall be the sole judge of the fitness of the balls to be used in the game;
       (d) Be assured by the home club that at leastone dozen regulation reserve balls are immediately available for use if required;
       (e) Have in his possession at least two alternateballs and shall require replenishment of such supply of alternate balls as neededthroughout the game. Such alternate balls shall be put in play when_
             (1) A ballhas been batted out of the playing field or into the spectator area;
             (2) A ballhas become discolored or unfit for further use;
             (3) Thepitcher requests such alternate ball. The umpire shall not give an alternate ballto the pitcher until play has ended and the previously used ball is dead. After athrown or batted ball goes out of the playing field, play shall not be resumed withan alternate ball until the runners have reached the bases to which they are entitled.After a home run is hit out of the playing grounds, the umpire shall not delivera new ball to the pitcher or the catcher until the batter hitting the home run hascrossed the plate.

3.02 No player shall intentionallydiscolor or damage the ball by rubbing it with soil, rosin, paraffin, licorice, sandpaper, emery paper or other foreign substance.
PENALTY: The umpire shall demand the ball and remove the offender from the game.In case the umpire cannot locate the offender, and if the pitcher delivers such discoloredor damaged ball to the batter, the pitcher shall be removed from the game at onceand shall be suspended automatically for ten days.

3.03 A player, or players, maybe substituted during a game at any time the ball is dead. A substitute player shallbat in the replaced player's position in the team's batting order. A player onceremoved from a game shall not re enter that game. If a substitute enters the gamein place of a player manager, the manager may thereafter go to the coaching linesat his discretion. When two or more substitute players of the defensive team enterthe game at the same time, the manager shall, immediately before they take theirpositions as fielders, designate to the umpire in chief such players' positions inthe team's batting order and the umpire in chief shall so notify the official scorer.If this information is not immediately given to the umpire in chief, he shall haveauthority to designate the substitutes' places in the batting order. A pitcher maychange to another position only once during the same inning; e.g. the pitcher willnot be allowed to assume a position other than a pitcher more than once in the sameinning. Any player other than a pitcher substituted for an injured player shall beallowed five warm up throws. (See Rule 8.03 for pitchers.)

3.04 A player whose name is onhis team's batting order may not become a substitute runner for another member ofhis team. This rule is intended to eliminate the practice of using so called courtesyrunners. No player in the game shall be permitted to act as a courtesy runner fora teammate. No player who has been in the game and has been taken out for a substituteshall return as a courtesy runner. Any player not in the lineup, if used as a runner,shall be considered as a substitute player.

3.05 (a) The pitcher named in thebatting order handed the umpire in chief, as provided in Rules 4.01 (a) and 4.01(b), shall pitch to the first batter or any substitute batter until such batter isput out or reaches first base, unless the pitcher sustains injury or illness which,in the judgment of the umpire in chief, incapacitates him from pitching.
       (b) If the pitcher is replaced, the substitutepitcher shall pitch to the batter then at bat, or any substitute batter, until suchbatter is put out or reaches first base, or until the offensive team is put out,unless the substitute pitcher sustains injury or illness which, in the umpire inchief's judgment, incapacitates him for further play as a pitcher.
       (c) If an improper substitution is made forthe pitcher, the umpire shall direct the proper pitcher to return to the game untilthe provisions of this rule are fulfilled. If the improper pitcher is permitted topitch, any play that results is legal. The improper pitcher becomes the proper pitcheras soon as he makes his first pitch to the batter, or as soon as any runner is putout. If a manager attempts to remove a pitcher in violation of Rule 3.05 (c) theumpire shall notify the manager of the offending club that it cannot be done. If,by chance, the umpire in chief has, through oversight, announced the incoming improperpitcher, he should still correct the situation before the improper pitcher pitches.Once the improper pitcher delivers a pitch he becomes the proper pitcher.

3.06 The manager shall immediatelynotify the umpire in chief of any substitution and shall state to the umpire in chiefthe substitute's place in the batting order. Players for whom substitutions havebeen made may remain with their team on the bench or may "warm up" pitchers.If a manager substitutes another player for himself, he may continue to direct histeam from the bench or the coach's box. Umpires should not permit players for whomsubstitutes have been made, and who are permitted to remain on the bench, to addressany remarks to any opposing player or manager, or to the umpires.

3.07 The umpire in chief, afterhaving been notified, shall immediately announce, or cause to be announced, eachsubstitution.

3.08 (a) If no announcement ofa substitution is made, the substitute shall be considered as having entered thegame when_
             (1) If apitcher, he takes his place on the pitcher's plate;
             (2) If abatter, he takes his place in the batter's box;
             (3) If afielder, he reaches the position usually occupied by the fielder he has replaced,and play commences;
             (4) If arunner, he takes the place of the runner he has replaced.
       (b) Any play made by, or on, any of the abovementioned unannounced substitutes shall be legal.

3.09 Players in uniform shall notaddress or mingle with spectators, nor sit in the stands before, during, or aftera game. No manager, coach or player shall address any spectator before or duringa game. Players of opposing teams shall not fraternize at any time while in uniform.

3.10 (a) The manager of the hometeam shall be the sole judge as to whether a game shall be started because of unsuitableweather conditions or the unfit condition of the playing field, except for the secondgame of a doubleheader. EXCEPTION: Any league may permanently authorize its presidentto suspend the application of this rule as to that league during the closing weeksof its championship season in order to assure that the championship is decided eachyear on its merits. When the postponement of, and possible failure to play, a gamein the final series of a championship season between any two teams might affect thefinal standing of any club in the league, the president, on appeal from any leagueclub, may assume the authority granted the home team manager by this rule.
      (b) The umpire in chief of the first game shallbe the sole judge as to whether the second game of a doubleheader shall not be startedbecause of unsuitable weather conditions or the unfit condition of the playing field.
      (c) The umpire in chief shall be the sole judgeas to whether and when play shall be suspended during a game because of unsuitableweather conditions or the unfit condition of the playing field; as to whether andwhen the play shall be resumed after such suspension; and as to whether and whena game shall be terminated after such suspension. He shall not call the game untilat least thirty minutes after he has suspended play. He may continue the suspensionas long as he believes there is any chance to resume play. The umpire in chief shallat all times try to complete a game. His authority to resume play following one ormore suspensions of as much as thirty minutes each shall be absolute and he shallterminate a game only when there appears to be no possibility of completing it.

3.11 Between games of a doubleheader,or whenever a game is suspended because of the unfitness of the playing field, theumpire in chief shall have control of ground keepers and assistants for the purposeof making the playing field fit for play.
PENALTY: For violation, the umpire in chief may forfeit the game to the visitingteam.

3.12 When the umpire suspends playhe shall call "Time." At the umpire's call of "Play," the suspensionis lifted and play resumes. Between the call of "Time" and the call of"Play" the ball is dead.

3.13 The manager of the home teamshall present to the umpire in chief and the opposing manager any ground rules hethinks necessary covering the overflow of spectators upon the playing field, battedor thrown balls into such overflow, or any other contingencies. If these rules areacceptable to the opposing manager they shall be legal. If these rules are unacceptableto the opposing manager, the umpire in chief shall make and enforce any special groundrules he thinks are made necessary by ground conditions, which shall not conflictwith the official playing rules.

3.14 Members of the offensive teamshall carry all gloves and other equipment off the field and to the dugout whiletheir team is at bat. No equipment shall be left lying on the field, either in fairor foul territory.

3.15 No person shall be allowedon the playing field during a game except players and coaches in uniform, managers,news photographers authorized by the home team, umpires, officers of the law in uniformand watchmen or other employees of the home club. In case of unintentional interferencewith play by any person herein authorized to be on the playing field (except membersof the offensive team participating in the game, or a coach in the coach's box, oran umpire) the ball is alive and in play. If the interference is intentional, theball shall be dead at the moment of the interference and the umpire shall imposesuch penalties as in his opinion will nullify the act of interference. NOTE: SeeRule 7.11 for individuals excepted above, also see Rule 7.08 (b). The question ofintentional or unintentional interference shall be decided on the basis of the person'saction. For example: a bat boy, ball attendant, policeman, etc., who tries to avoidbeing touched by a thrown or batted ball but still is touched by the ball would beinvolved in unintentional interference. If, however, he kicks the ball or picks itup or pushes it, that is considered intentional interference, regardless of whathis thought may have been. PLAY: Batter hits ball to shortstop, who fields ball butthrows wild past first baseman. The offensive coach at first base, to avoid beinghit by the ball, falls to the ground and the first baseman on his way to retrievethe wild thrown ball, runs into the coach; the batter runner finally ends up on thirdbase. The question is asked whether the umpire should call interference on the partof the coach. This would be up to the judgment of the umpire and if the umpire feltthat the coach did all he could to avoid interfering with the play, no interferenceneed be called. If it appeared to the umpire that the coach was obviously just makingit appear he was trying not to interfere, the umpire should rule interference.

3.16 When there is spectator interferencewith any thrown or batted ball, the ball shall be dead at the moment of interferenceand the umpire shall impose such penalties as in his opinion will nullify the actof interference. APPROVED RULING: If spectator interference clearly prevents a fielderfrom catching a fly ball, the umpire shall declare the batter out. There is a differencebetween a ball which has been thrown or batted into the stands, touching a spectatorthereby being out of play even though it rebounds onto the field and a spectatorgoing onto the field or reaching over, under or through a barrier and touching aball in play or touching or otherwise interfering with a player. In the latter caseit is clearly intentional and shall be dealt with as intentional interference asin Rule 3.15. Batter and runners shall be placed where in the umpire's judgment theywould have been had the interference not occurred. No interference shall be allowedwhen a fielder reaches over a fence, railing, rope or into a stand to catch a ball.He does so at his own risk. However, should a spectator reach out on the playingfield side of such fence, railing or rope, and plainly prevent the fielder from catchingthe ball, then the batsman should be called out for the spectator's interference.Example: Runner on third base, one out and a batter hits a fly ball deep to the outfield(fair or foul). Spectator clearly interferes with the outfielder attempting to catchthe fly ball. Umpire calls the batter out for spectator interference. Ball is deadat the time of the call. Umpire decides that because of the distance the ball washit, the runner on third base would have scored after the catch if the fielder hadcaught the ball which was interfered with, therefore, the runner is permitted toscore. This might not be the case if such fly ball was interfered with a short distancefrom home plate.

3.17 Players and substitutes ofboth teams shall confine themselves to their team's benches unless actually participatingin the play or preparing to enter the game, or coaching at first or third base. Noone except players, substitutes, managers, coaches, trainers and bat boys shall occupya bench during a game.
PENALTY: For violation the umpire may, after warning, remove the offender from thefield. Players on the disabled list are permitted to participate in pre game activityand sit on the bench during a game but may not take part in any activity during thegame such as warming up a pitcher, bench jockeying, etc. Disabled players are notallowed to enter the playing surface at any time or for any purpose during the game.

3.18 The home team shall providepolice protection sufficient to preserve order. If a person, or persons, enter theplaying field during a game and interfere in any way with the play, the visitingteam may refuse to play until the field is cleared.
PENALTY: If the field is not cleared in a reasonable length of time, which shallin no case be less than fifteen minutes after the visiting team's refusal to play,the umpire may forfeit the game to the visiting team.

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