Varsity and 13-14 Rules
South Dakota VFW Baseball Rules
Varsity and 13-14 Year Old
March 1, 2017
1. Competition is open to boys and girls who have not reached his/her 15th birthday before May 1st of the current year. In order to be eligible for the VFW 13-14 Yr. Old Baseball program, his/her name must be on the state roster.
2. If a player is found ineligible he/she shall be disqualified immediately. In the case a player is found guilty of losing his or her amateur status only, the player should be disqualified. In all other cases where the player is found ineligible the entire team shall be disqualified and all games forfeited that have been played up to that point in time.
3. A VFW Baseball team must register online at www.sdvfwbaseball.com
a. Registration fee is $150 per team and entry form is due
June 10 Jun 20.
b. This must include Team’s name, Sponsor’s name, Coaches Name, information, phone, cell phone, address and email.
c. You may list an unlimited number of players, you must have the following information: home address, school attended the last school year, date of birth, and age on May 1st of current year.
d. June 25th is the cutoff date for all roster changes, there will be no late submission and you are allowed only 18 players on your rosters for all regional and state tournaments.
4. All protests of player’s eligibility must be specific with definite proof.
a. Regional Commissioners will decide on issues on the local level. If a regional commissioner is a coach of a team within that region, consultation with the Director of Baseball Operations and/or Department of SD Baseball Chairman should take place and if conflict of interest is apparent, the ruling shall be made by the Director of Baseball Operations and/or Department of SD Baseball Chairman.
b. Director of Baseball Operations, Department of SD VFW Baseball Chairman, SD VFW Commander, or SD VFW Quartermaster shall render decision as they pertain to the protests directed to any of them on the state level.
c. All appeals on all levels must be in writing to the next higher authority within 48 hours after the decision has been rendered at each level. No protests will be allowed on judgments by umpires in league and/or tournament competition.
d. All protests of this nature will be settled on the field at the time of the dispute.
e. In regional, state or league competition on the field, decisions governing interpretation of rules may be appealed to the tournament officials; however, in most cases the umpire’s decision will be upheld.
f. No questions of eligibility may be raised after the first pitch of the second round in tournament play if all rosters and age verification certificates have been checked and the same player’s name as appears on the score book appeared on the checked roster for the complete tournament. In league play, player eligibility may be raised until the conclusion of the season league games.
5. A team seeking entrance into a South Dakota VFW State Baseball Tournament (Regional & State Tournaments) must be sanctioned by their local VFW post. If the local VFW Post does not provide a VFW program for its area youth, a team seeking to participate in a South Dakota VFW Regional, League play and/or State Tournament must be sanctioned and/or approved by its local governing youth baseball association and/or city park department and/or city official. A notice of approval must be included from the governing body with registration. The entry form and fee must be presented by the local governing unit. For the purposes of clarification, the mailing address of the registering team shall be used as the point of origin. The youth baseball association nearest to a team’s “point of origin” must grant approval. A list of sanctioned bodies will be placed on the website as soon as we update a new list.
6. If a player attempts to play for another team outside of his or her local governing baseball association where he or she attended school the previous year, he or she is required to be released by his or her local governing baseball association.
7. Any team is allowed two pick-up players from other towns/schools as long as those towns/schools do not have a team at that particular age group. However, more than two release players from another town/school on a roster mean all Average Daily Members (ADM) numbers, as defined by the South Dakota High School Activities Association (SDHSAA), will be added to the ADM of the registering team’s ADM based on what school district they pair with. The addition of ADMs to a team may/may not reclassify them into a higher class. Private and/or Homeschooled kids are exceptions to being added to the registering team’s ADM, and/or being required to be released but will be decided by the Director of Baseball Operations and/or Department of SD Baseball Chairman. Extenuating circumstances (non-custodial parents, etc.) will be taken under advisement.
8. A team wishing to register must have a minimum of four players from its local governing baseball association from where they are attempting to be sanctioned.
1. A boy or girl may not participate in VFW baseball and any other baseball program in the same season. For all purposes, July 15 will be considered at the beginning of the season. However, subject to approval of the Regional Commissioner and the Director of Baseball Operations, an entire VFW Baseball team may be registered in a program covering the ages of 13-14 and 15-16, for example, Babe Ruth, Pony, Colt Leagues and USSSA and if so registered all members of the VFW team shall be eligible even though the team is registered in the Babe Ruth, Pony, Colt Leagues and USSSA or some other formally organized baseball program. Exception to this rule will be allowed for teams who are signed up in the Varsity AA, A and Varsity B VFW Programs. These teams will be allowed unlimited players on their team to play also with a South Dakota Senior American Legion B or A Program. Players registered on a VFW team can play on an American Legion team and unlimited players from a registered Senior American Legion Team can play on a VFW team. Names of the players, roster of Senior American Legion team and birth certificates must be attached to the VFW Roster and Team Entry Form. Members of teams must be part of the same organized local governing body for baseball in the community. South Dakota VFW pitching rules will always apply. These other affiliations must be noted on your VFW team registration or disqualification may result.
2. Team roster forms must include the name of the player, complete address of the player, name of school attended the last school year, date of birth, and age on May 1st of the current year. If this information is incomplete, it can affect the eligibility of the player. Roster information must be postmarked by June 10th and sent to VFW Department Headquarters. Send original to VFW Department Headquarters and make copies for your records. A player can be listed on two different team in separate divisions, but a boy or girl can only be listed on one 10 and under, one 12 and under, on 13-14 year old roster and one Varsity roster. Except in 13-14 year old AA Class a player may be listed on the both majors and minors rosters, provided each player may only be listed on one state tourney roster.
3. VFW Baseball Varsity and 13-14 Year Old, divisions will be determined by using the South Dakota High School Athletic Associations enrollment figures as a guide to determine the enrollment figures for each class in each division. To determine Class A and B teams the ADM of the top half of teams will be Class A and all the other registered teams will be Class B. Two players may be registered on a team from a higher or same class schools without changing the base school ADM. More than two players from a school or combination of schools will require the addition of ADM to the base school. The Director of Baseball Operations and/or the Department of SD Baseball Chairman will determine extenuating circumstances such as player living with non-custodial parents/grandparents in the summer and not enforcing the added ADM rule. The player must also have a release form from the team he is leaving.
4. It is the duty of the Director of Baseball Operations to set up regional, state tournament dates and facilitate league schedules.
5. It is the duty of the Director of Baseball Operations to make the drawings for the state tournaments. A and B classes Regional Champs vs. Regional Runners up will be drawn by the Director of Baseball Operations and/or Baseball Chairman.
6. Each commissioner and duly authorized representative of a registered team is entitled to one vote at the annual meeting but in no instance may one person be entitled to more than one vote.
7. All proposed rule changes must be submitted in writing to the VFW Baseball Chairman no later than November 15th of each year or they will not be considered a the annual meeting unless two-thirds of those present and eligible to vote so determine. Rules committee will meet the second Sunday in December.
8. Proposed rule changes must be submitted to all participating teams three weeks prior to annual meeting to be held on the third Sunday in January.
Regional and State Tournaments
1. A regional tournament consists of teams from one area or region participating against each other.
2. Rosters for Regional tournament play cannot exceed 18 player’s boys or girls.
3. Entrants in the District or Regional Tournaments must be decided by the Regional Commissioners and State Director of Baseball Operations as soon as possible. Regional Tournament sites will be determined by Regional Commissioners and approved by the Department VFW Baseball Chairman. Regional Commissioner will make the drawings for Regional Tournaments. In a situation where the Regional Commissioner is also a coach of a team within the region, a drawing must take place in front of one or more coaches within the region or an official from the Department Headquarters. Before any Varsity A or Varsity B Regional Tournaments are held, the State A and B 13-14 Year Old Tournament must be completed. This is to facilitate teams who use 13 or 14 year olds for their Varsity A or B teams.
4. All VFW Baseball Tournaments games shall be 7 innings duration unless a team is leading by 10 runs at the end of 5 innings, 4 ½ innings if the home team is leading by 10 runs, or if a team is leading by that number of runs any complete inning thereafter. A team leading by 15 runs or more after 3 complete innings, or any complete inning thereafter until the ten run rule becomes effective will be declared the winner.
5. All of the umpires for regional and state tournaments must be registered. A certified umpire shall act as the umpire-in-chief. All games must have at least two umpires in state tournaments.
6. All varsity regional tournaments shall be double elimination or pool play with the decision to be made by the coaches and regional commissioner involved. All Varsity and 13-14 A and B State Tournaments shall be single elimination. When a four region (champions and runner up advancing to the state tournament) format is used, the four regional champions will be awarded home team status in the first round. All registered teams must play in a qualifying regional tournament. If pool play format is used in an “open” state tournament, there would be no need for a qualifying regional tournament.
7. Insurance is mandatory for each team in tournament play. A copy must be placed on file with the Department of SD VFW Headquarters by June 15th, at the same time team rosters are required.
8. All teams, including coaches, shall be in baseball uniforms for tournament play. If a coach or team player is not in uniform they will not be allowed on the field.
9. Class A Varsity and Class B Varsity tournaments consists of two teams from each region the champion and runner-up. The region hosting the state tournament will have a host team, that team will replace the runner-up if it does not place 1st or 2nd in the regional tournament.
10. The Class A and B 13-14 year old tournament will have two teams from each region the champion and runner-up. The region hosting the state tournament will have a host team, that team will replace the runner-up if it does not place 1st or 2nd in the regional tournament.
11. The regional commissioners in each class will pick the site of the State Tournament during the annual VFW Baseball Committee meeting. State tournament fees will be as follows:
Varsity A $400 13-14 Year Old A $400
Varsity B $400 13-14 Year Old B $400
12 and under $600 10 and under $600
12. Fee shall be paid to the Department of SD VFW Headquarters within 30 days prior to the tournament. The Regional Commissioners shall select a host site at the annual meeting the year the tournament will be played in. Rosters for State Tournament play cannot exceed 18 players for A and B tournaments.
13. The game to determine 7th and 8th place in the A and B State Tournaments will not be played in any of the tournaments.
14. Any team that does not report to play or notify the tournament officials at any regional or state tournament of a bonafide reason for being late by 30 minutes past the time established to play, shall forfeit the game.
15. State tournaments will not be played on any diamond where another baseball tournament is being played on the same diamond on the same dates.
16. Trophies shall be furnished for state tournaments by the Department of South Dakota Veterans of Foreign Wars. Trophies for all state tournaments with eight team format shall be awarded to the winner, runner-up, third and fifth place winners. Individual medals will also be presented to the members of all the teams that participate in the tournament. Trophies for all state tournaments with a pool play format shall be awarded to the winner, runner-up and third place winner and in some tournaments there may be a 4th place trophy. Individual medals will be presented to members of the top four teams. Sportsmanship Team Plaque will be presented in the memory of Louie Thury by the South Dakota Baseball Umpire Association for the Varsity AA, A and B Tournaments. Sportsmanship Team Plaque will be presented in memory of William Radigan by the Department of South Dakota Veterans of Foreign Wars for 13-14 Year Old AA and A Tournaments. These awards are the only awards presented at the VFW State Tournament.
17. Photo copies of Birth, Baptismal or Hospital Certificates, Certified Copy from the Bureau of Vital Statistics or a valid Driver’s License must be presented at the regional and state tournaments.
18. Age verification certificates and team rosters for state tournament play should be submitted to the tournament chairman at the tournament meeting held before the tournament starts. It is also necessary to check birth age verification certificates and rosters at regional tournaments.
19. Tournament officials have complete autonomy on taking whatever action is necessary in behavior problems of participants. Severe cases may result in a team being disqualified.
20. In interest of time all rained out or postponed championship round ball games in tournament play will begin from point of stoppage unless the Ten Run Rule has taken effect. It is recommended during regular league play that if a game is rained out it should be called a game if five or more innings have been played.
21. Gate fees will not exceed five dollars per adult per day.
22. Pool Play Tie Breakers Formats for all VFW Baseball Tournaments.
a. Win-loss record in pool play
b. Head-to-head competition provided all teams have played each other.
c. Fewest runs allowed (overall).
d. Best run differential in all pool play games (maximum per game run differential of +10 or -10).
23. If, in the event of a 3-way tie or more, the 3-way tie is broken either before step #4 or upon completion of step #4 and a 2-way tie still remains, the two remaining tied teams will revert back to step #2 and repeat the tie-breaker criteria from that point in order to break the tie. In the event of forfeit in Divisional/Pool Play, the non-forfeiting teams will be credited with a 10 run differential victory. Teams that forfeit a game cannot advance in tournament play.
1. Bat requirements for Varsity Team Divisions. All bats cannot be lighter than -3 ounces under the length of the bat and the barrel cannot be larger than 2 5/8 inches in diameter. Starting in the 2013 season, all bats for varsity team players must be wood, bamboo, composite wood or BBCOR.
2. A batter without protective headgear including ear protectors will be declared out when the pitcher comes to the set position, or begins his motion. Protective helmet including ear protectors is required for all base runners, and if the base runner refuses to put on a helmet after being advised by the umpire, he shall be automatically out.
3. Catchers must wear protective headgear, throat protectors, chest pad and catcher’s cup. Warm-up catchers must wear protective headgear and throat protectors. Courtesy runners may be used for catchers attaining first base at any time. Courtesy runners are not allowed for pinch hitters for catchers. A player, who has already participated in the game, is not eligible to be a courtesy runner.
4. Bat requirements for 13-14 Year Old Team Divisions. Starting 2012 all bats can’t be lighter than -9 ounces under the length of the bat and the barrel cannot be larger than 2 3/4 inches in diameter.
1. If a pitcher is removed from the mound during the game he may not return to the mound in the same game though he is retained in the lineup. Designated hitters may be used in VFW Baseball for any position. In 2012, South Dakota VFW Baseball adopted the NFHS rule for re-entry. Any of the starting players may be withdrawn and re-entered once, including a player who was the designated hitter, provided such player occupies the same batting position whenever he is in the lineup. A substitute who is withdrawn may not re-enter.
2. All protests will be decided by the official on the level where they occur, but may be appealed to the next higher authority.
3. Adult managers who are at least 18 years of age only will be allowed in the coaching boxes, with permission granted to use one player in one box through state tournament play. Players in the coaching box must wear a helmet with ear protection. Coaches must wear helmets in a coaching box.
4. Professional rules of baseball will apply to all VFW Baseball games except in all cases where VFW League Rules and Regulations conflict with major league professional rules, VFW League rules will supersede professional rules. In the event of a serious injury and there are no other players on the bench who have not played, the last player taken out may be placed back in the game in place of the injured player or players. In the alternative, in a serious injury situation, a team may continue to play with eight players and the team shall receive an automatic out at such player(s) turn at bat. The applicability of the rule shall be determined by the head umpire.
5. This pitching rule is for Varsity and 13-14 Year Old Divisions. Fourteen (14) innings will be the maximum total number of innings a pitcher may pitch in any consecutive seven (7) day period. A pitcher may not pitch more than a total of seven innings in any one day or on two consecutive days. The fifth through seventh innings must be followed by four (4) days of rest. If a pitcher pitches on two consecutive days with the combined total fewer than five innings, he will follow with two days. One pitch to home plate will be considered an inning. In summary:
a. Once a pitcher, pitches in the fifth inning of a game he or she will not be allowed to pitch again in the tournament. The rule states once a pitcher pitches the fifth through seventh inning he or she must rest for four days and the tournament will be over.
b. If a pitcher pitches four innings or less on the first day (Friday) and pitches on the second day (Saturday) he or she may only pitch a maximum of seven innings for the two days and will not be allowed to pitch again in the tournament. The rule states a pitcher may not pitch more than a total of seven innings in any one day or on two consecutive days. The rules also stated that once a pitcher pitches the fifth through seventh inning he or she must rest for four days and the tournament will be over.
c. If a pitcher, pitches on two consecutive days (Saturday and Sunday) with a combined total of fewer than five innings he or she will not be allowed to pitch again in the tournament. The rules states if a pitcher pitches on two consecutive days with the combined total fewer than five innings, he or she will follow with two days off for rest and the tournament will be over.
d. If a pitcher, pitches four innings or less on the first day of the tournament (Friday) and does not pitch on the second day (Saturday) of the tournament he or she will be allowed to pitch seven innings on the third day of the tournament. (Sunday). The rules state fourteen innings will be the maximum total number of innings a pitcher may pitch in any consecutive seven day period. The rule of a total of seven innings pitched in any one day or on two consecutive days with four days of rest will not apply. The rule stating two consecutive days with the combined total of fewer than five innings, followed with two days off for rest will not apply.
6. All games scheduled on a definite date will be considered part of that day’s play even though the scheduled is not completed until past midnight. In the event of interruption due to weather conditions and participating teams leave the ball park because the complex is closed for that session, all pitching records will be counted for the calendar day that they are started in.
7. No more than two complete games will be played by any one team in any one day, except when an “open” pool play format is used.
8. A legal slide can be either feet first or head first. If a runner slides feet first, at least one leg and buttock shall be on the ground. If a runner slides, he must slide within reach of the base with either a hand or a foot. A runner may slide or run in a direction away from the field to avoid making contact or altering the play of the fielder. A slide is illegal if:
a. The runner uses a rolling, cross-body or pop-up slide into the fielder, or
b. The runner’s raised leg is higher than the fielder’s knee when the fielder is in a standing position, or
c. The runner goes beyond the base and then makes contact with or alters the play of the fielder, or
d. The runner slashes or kicks the fielder with either leg, or
e. The runner tries to injure the fielder, or
f. The runner, on a force play, does not slide on the ground and in a direct line between the two bases. Any player may be ejected from a game for flagrant conduct, which in the umpire’s judgment; either injures or is intended to injure another player.
9. The Director of Baseball Operations is authorized to move a team to a different class after reviewing and consulting the situation with the commissioners of the regions involved, and the final decision will be approved by the Department of SD Baseball Chairman. Such ruling must be made by July 10th.
13-14 Year Old Regulations
1. Competition is open to boys and girls who are 13 and 14 years of age and eligible to play VFW Baseball. A boy or girl who has reached his or her 15th birthday before May 1st of the current year is not eligible for the 13-14 year old programs. A boy or girl who is under 13 years of age may play if permission is secured from the regional commissioner prior to the time of play.
2. The games will be played on a regulation field.
3. The 13-14 year old State A and B Tournament will be completed before any A Varsity or B Varsity region tournaments are held. The 13-14 year old State AA Tournament will be completed one week before the AA Varsity State Tournament is held.
4. VFW Baseball rules will apply to all games unless a change is listed above.
South Dakota VFW Baseball Code of Sportsmanship
(It is recommended that this Code is recited by both teams before a game during the season. At regional and state tournaments, it is a requirement.)
- Keep the rules.
- Keep faith with my teammates.
- Keep my temper.
- Keep myself fit.
- Keep a stout heart in defeat.
- Keep pride under in victory.
- Keep a sound soul, a clean mind, and a healthy body.