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New Bat and Pitch Count Rules 2018!

New Bat & Pitch Count Rules 

New Bat Rules for 2018!  
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 -3 (BBCOR certified), all other 2 1/4" and 2 5/8" barrel bats with a minus factor of (-5, -7, -9, etc.), must be USABat certified with the USABat licensing stamp on the bat in order to be used for league and tournament play. (This includes composite bats)

All 2 1/4" and 2 5/8" minus factor bats -5, -7, -9, etc. used in 2017 will be illegal to use in 2018. 

Wood Bats are permitted at all age levels. 

Tee ball bats are not required to undergo lab testing to receive approval under the USABat program. However, to be approved for play, tee ball bats must carry the USA Baseball mark accompanied by the following text: "Only For Use With Approved Tee Ball Bats." 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 USA Baseball and place it on your bat. You can purchase a USA Bat sticker, click here. Tee ball bats manufactured after the new rule was adopted will already include the USABat Baseball mark. 

The new USABat certified bats bearing the USABat licensing mark are expected to be offered in retail stores September 1, 2017.

To find out more about the USABat standard click here.
To find PONY's official approved bat list, which is in accordance with USABat, click  here.

Pitch Count Rules:

•       PONY will implement MLB recommended Pitch Smart standards.

•       Numerous changes in rule book replacing “innings” with “number of pitches”

•       Defined Number of Days Rest as “Full Calendar Day”

•       Example: A player who pitches on TUESDAY and requires 2 Days of Rest, cannot pitch until FRIDAY

•       PINTO, MUSTANG, BRONCO, PONY, COLT, PALAMINO and THOROBRED are to use the attached pitch chart.

•       No pitcher shall appear in a game for three consecutive days, regardless of pitch count.

•       Pitchers reaching their maximum number of pitches in a day while pitching to a batter, may finish pitching to that batter before being removed.

•       Number of pitches shall be recorded in the scorebook or we also recommend the use of electronic scoring devices at all levels to help ensure accurate pitch count

Pitch Count Table

Following approval by the PONY Baseball Rules Committee and the International Board of Directors, PONY Baseball will be following a pitch count instead of an innings limit, as recommended by MLB Pitch Smart Guidelines, beginning in 2018.

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.

New Concussion Protocol

New Concussion Protocols 

•Remove a player suspected of sustaining a concussion or head injury for the rest of the day
•Need written clearance to return (Dr.)

•7 day graduated return if they have a concussion
•Parents of players 17 and under must be notified of the    events
•Responsibility for following this protocol rests with the team manager of the player involved
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