S.L.M.B.A. – 9U (Rookie) League Division

I. Focus

The purpose of the 9U – Rookie Baseball Program is designed to promote development in our athletes aged 7, 8 and 9 years old. This will be achieved by:

  • Participant safety
  • Active participation
  • Teaching fundamental baseball skills through practice and modified play

II. Goals and Objectives

The 9U-Rookie League is a developmental and recreational program and is never to be intended to subject our athletes to fierce competition. This will be achieved by:

  • Creating an environment in which athletes of differing abilities and knowledge will enjoy learning the game of baseball
  • Develop or expand fundamental motor skills and game strategies for the athletes
  • Promote increased self-esteem and equality
  • Stress on good sportsmanship and fair play
  • Provide a positive experience so our athletes return next year and grow with our program.
  • Recruit new coaches and volunteers.

III. Coaches

As in the Rally Cap program our most important individuals are our coaches. The coach is looked at by the athletes and parents for instruction, encouragement, and inspiration. Success of the program is dependent on all coaches embracing our goals and working to achieve them.

IV. Parents

Parents are also essential to the success of the 9U Program. This is not a “drop-off” program, and it is encouraged that parents/guardians be involved on the field to assist the coaches in the following areas:

  • Setting up bases
  • Organizing equipment
  • Helping athletes find their equipment
  • Assisting players with rotating positions
  • Directing baserunners
  • Umpires
  • Take cues from the coaches and encourage good sportsmanship

*It is not the intent that parents will be responsible for skill development activities, they are there to “assist” the coaches with these activities.*

V. Teams and Players

Teams will consist of 9 players per team (teams of 8 will not have a “pitcher position”.

Coaches and Players will be provided a T-Shirt and Hat that is to be worn to each practice/game.

VI. Participant and Team Equipment

Participants will require the following:

  • Baseball Glove
  • Batting Helmet
  • Protective Cup
  • Water Bottle
  • Cleats and Batting Gloves (optional)

SLMBA will provide the following:

  • Practice/Game Balls
  • Bats
  • Cones
  • Hula Hoops – (for On Deck and Catchers locations)
  • Batting Tee
  • A set of bases
  • A set of Catchers Gear
  • First Aid Kit

VII. Practice/Game Format

  • 6:00 to 6:15 players arrive / Equipment set up
  • 6:15 to 6:25 Warm-Up (dynamic and static)
  • 6:25 to 6:55 Skill Development (Defensive and Offensive)
  • 7:00 to 7:45 (no new inning to start after 7:45)

VIII. Game Rules

  • Home and Visitor to be decided by a glove flip
  • No Score is to be kept
  • Coaches or parents can be utilized as umpires (each team to provide 1 umpire)
  • Teams will consist of 9 players. If a team has 8 players, the pitching position will not be occupied. If a team has only 7 or less players, the teams will then be divided into equal teams.
  • Defensively – one player is placed at each position:
  • Pitcher
  • Catcher
  • First Base
  • Second Base
  • Third Base
  • Short Stop
  • Left Field
  • Center Field
  • Right Field
  • Pitchers Position – Player to be lined up 5 steps behind the coach that is throwing to the hitters
  • Positional Players will rotate in a counterclockwise direction every 3 hitters or to start a new inning as follows
  • Pitcher to 1B
  • 1B to 2B
  • 2B to 3B
  • 3B to Short Stop
  • Short Stop to LF
  • LF to CF
  • CF to RF
  • RF to Pitcher
  • Catcher will remain catcher for entire inning and will switch after each inning
  • Each Hitter is entitled to 3 strikes or 5 pitches, whichever comes first.
  • If a player strikes out this will be identified as an out, but the Batting Tee is to be introduced to allow that player to make contact and run the bases.
  • If a player receives 5 pitches this will not be identified as an out nor a walk, again the Batting Tee will be introduced to allow that player to make contact and run the bases.
  • Outs – Will be called as follows:
  • Strike Out (player still will receive their swing with ball on Batting Tee)
  • A thrown and caught ball at first base beats the runner
  • Runner is tagged when not on base
  • A Caught fly ball
  • A defensive player touches his/her base while in contact with the ball on a force play before runner reaches base
  • No Lead Offs
  • No Stealing Bases
  • No advance on past balls by catcher
  • On an overthrow (ball thrown to the outfield or infielder overthrows 1B) players can advance bases until the ball is thrown into the infield. The baseball does not need to be in control of an infielder. If a base runner is in between bases when the ball is in the infield the runner will return to the last base, he/she touched.