Rules

SKA or Saint Louis Kickball Association

2017 Season Rules (March 2017)

New, clarified or edited rules for the 2017 season appear in red.

     Officials

The umpire will be furnished by SKA.  All games will be officiated by 1 umpire, except in some playoff games.  At the discretion of SKA, some regular season games may be officiated by 2 umpires.  If 2 umpires are furnished, one will be the Head Umpire while the other will be the Line Umpire.  The umpire governs all game play and issues all final rulings.  Umpires have jurisdiction over play and may:

1.      Call a time out.

2.      Call off a game due to darkness, rain or other circumstance at the umpire's discretion, and must cancel the game if lightning is seen.

3.      Penalize a player, including game ejection, for un-sportsman like conduct.  Note: Any player that is ejected may not return to the game in which they were ejected. If a team only has 8 players and 1 player is ejected, the team must forfeit the game, unless both captains agree to continue the game (see Teams rule #2 below).

     Participants

SKA understands that competition can generate strong emotions.  However, player's emotions/actions must not affect the enjoyment, comfort, and/or safety of any other player, umpire, or SKA official.

All participants must meet the following requirements:

1.      Must be 21 years of age or older by the date of the season opener.

2.      Must have health insurance.

3.      Must be properly registered with SKA by completing the online Individual Player Waiver & Release Form.

4.      Must not play kickball professionally.

     Teams

It is highly recommended that each team maintain a roster of at least 16 players.

1.      The team should consist of 10 players.  A typical coed team on the field consists of 5 women and 5 men.   However, a team may play with 4 women and 6 men on the field.

2.      Each team must have a minimum of 8 players to start the game.  If a team does not have a minimum of 8 players after the 10-minute grace period, they will have to forfeit the game.  The ONE exception to this rule is if both captains agree to play the game, regardless of one or both teams failing to field at least 8 players at the start of the game.

3.      When playing with the minimum of 8 players, a team can field a team with either 3 women and 5 men, 4 women and 4 men or 5 women and 3 men.

4.      When playing with the minimum of 9 players, a team can field a team with either 4 women and 5 men, 5 women and 4 men or 6 women and 3 men.

5.      When playing with the maximum of 10 players, a team can field a team with either 4 women and 6 men, 5 women and 5 men or 6 women and 4 men.

6.      When playing with the maximum of 10 players, 4 of them MUST play in the outfield while the remaining 6 play in the infield (1 st base, 2nd base, 3rd base, shortstop, pitcher and catcher).

7.      All players do not have to play in the field.  However, whether fielding or not, all players must be in the kicking lineup and remain in the same kicking rotation throughout the game, unless they become injured.

8.      Each team must have a designated captain for each game.  The captain will ultimately be responsible for the team throughout the game.  The captain should ensure that all players participating in the game are listed on the scoresheet prior to the start of the game.  During play, the captain may request time outs from the umpire, which may or may not be granted at the umpire's discretion.  Only the captain or co-captain can discuss/dispute a call with the umpire .

9.      The home team is always listed second on the schedule.  The home team should record the runs, outs, etc. for the game.  The final score of the game, as recorded by the home team, will be the official score of the game.  It is recommended that the visiting team check with the home team each inning to ensure both teams have the same score.  If there is a discrepancy, it should be corrected as soon as it is noted.  The umpire is not a resolution to any score discrepancy.

10.      A team can recruit temporary players to avoid forfeiting any games.  However, the following guidelines apply:

a)   During the regular season, a team can only recruit a player, or players, from other SKA teams.  During the tournament, ONLY players that registered at the beginning of the season, may play for that team.

b)   The sum of recruited players and present team players cannot be greater than the total number of players of the opposing team.  For example, if Team 'A' has 7 players and Team 'B' has 9 players, Team 'A' cannot recruit more than 2 players.  See guideline d) for the exception to this rule.

c)   A team cannot recruit more players than they have at the field, prior to the start of the game.  For example, if a team only has 4 players prior to the start of the game, they can recruit a maximum of 4 players.  See guideline d) for the exception to this rule.

d)   Any recruited player will be allowed to continue to play, even if one or more of the team's permanent players arrives after the start of the game.

11.      A team cannot recruit any temporary players if the team already has 10 players.

12.      Each team captain must have completed the online Team Registration and have paid the league fees prior to the first day of the season.  Players can only be registered on 1 team.

      Game Play

1.      A regulation game lasts 7 full innings or 50 minutes, whichever comes first.  If a game is tied after 7 full innings and time has not expired, the game may continue as long as both captains are in agreement.  Tournament games last 8 full innings or 60 minutes, whichever comes first.  However, if a game is tied after 8 innings or 60 minutes, game play will continue until the tie is broken.

2.      A team failing to field at least 8 players after the 10-minute grace period will forfeit the game.  A forfeit shall count as a loss.  The exception to this rule is if both captains agree to play the game, regardless of one or both teams failing to field at least 8 players at the start of the game.

3.      If both teams forfeit the game, it will be recorded as 0-0 and considered a double forfeit.  No points will be awarded to either team.

4.      If, after 3 full innings, a game is stopped due to inclement weather or another reason, it will be recorded as a completed game.  Unless there is a tie, the score at the end of the last full inning will determine the winner. 

5.      A game that is stopped before 3 full innings shall not be considered a completed game and will be rescheduled, if possible.

6.      There will be a 10-run rule in effect per team per inning, except for the last inning.  This means that if a team scores 10 runs in an inning, regardless of the number of outs recorded, they must stop kicking and switch places with the fielding team.

7.      The game should be stopped by the umpire and recorded as a completed game if the following occurs:

a)   If a team is ahead by 20 runs following the completion of the 4 th inning.

b)   If a team is ahead by 15 runs following the completion of the 5 th or 6th inning.

8.      Only the captain or co-captain can discuss/dispute a call with the umpire.

9.      If a team knows it is unable to field the minimum of 8 players before the start of the game, they are strongly encouraged to call BT at (314) 941-0312 or email SKA.  Forfeit fees will be assessed as follows:

a)   If a team notifies SKA at least 24 hours before they are scheduled to play, they will ONLY be assessed a $35 forfeit fee , even if they have to forfeit both games.

b)   If a team DOES NOT notify SKA at least 24 hours before they are scheduled to play, a $50 forfeit fee will be assessed.  Both opposing teams' captains will be notified of the forfeit, as soon as possible.

10.      If a player is ejected from the game, the team CANNOT replace the player for the remainder of the game.  The ejected player must vacate the field and surrounding area.  The following guidelines apply:

a)   For each player that is ejected, there will be 1 less player in the field.  For example, if a team has 2 players ejected, they can only place 8 players in the field.  All remaining players however, should remain in the kicking lineup. 

b)   If a team has more than 2 players ejected, the game will be considered a forfeit.

c)   If the team's captain is ejected and he/she does not play in the field, then not only does the captain get removed, but the team must play with 1 less player in the field.

d)   If the ejected player is scheduled to kick during the current inning, their kick will be registered as an out.

e)   If the player is ejected during their first game and the team's second game is on that same field, it will be up to the discretion of the umpire who ejected the player whether to allow that player to play in the second game.

     Ball in Play

1.      All infielders must remain behind the 1 st - 3rd base diagonal line until the ball is kicked.  Failure to do so will result with the kicker being awarded 1 st base.

2.      The Outfield Line, arc shaped, extends from foul line to foul line and measures 100 feet from home plate.  This arc designates the boundary between infield and outfield and the following guidelines apply:

a)   Outfielders must position themselves behind this line when women are kicking.  If an outfielder crosses the line before the ball is kicked, the kicker will be awarded first base.

b)   Infielders must position themselves inside this line until the ball is kicked, regardless of whether men or women are kicking.  If an infielder crosses the line before the ball is kicked, the kicker will be awarded first base.

2.      The umpire will call 'time' once any fielder has control of the ball within the Pitcher's Circle.

3.      Fielders are allowed to kick the ball to a teammate or at an opponent.

4.      The fielder must have control of the ball (i.e., it must be off the ground) when there is a force play at a base otherwise, the runner will be safe.

5.      There is no infield fly rule.  However, if a fielder purposely drops or purposely does not catch the ball (as determined by the umpire) for the purpose of attempting a double play, the kicker will be out.  All other runners will be safe and remain at their current base.

6.      In the unlikely event that a ball strikes an object, such as a tree or bush, within the field of play, the ball is still live and play should continue.

7.      In the unlikely event that a ball becomes stuck in a tree or bush, within the field of play, the kick will be ruled a ground-rule double.

8.      A ball that is kicked foul can be caught for an out as long as the catch is within the out-of-bounds line.  If a ball is kicked beyond the out-of-bounds line, it is not an out if caught, but it is considered a foul ball.  Runners are allowed to tag up on a caught foul ball. The out-of-bounds lines are located 30 feet from the 1 st and 3rd base foul lines.

9.      If a ball is kicked foul, strikes an object, such as a tree, bench, etc., it is considered a dead ball. The ball must be within the field of play in order for a fielder to take advantage of a ball striking an object.

10.      If a ball strikes or is touched by the catcher while the catcher is standing in foul territory and is caught before it hits the ground, the kicker is out.

11.      If a ball strikes or is touched by the catcher while the catcher is standing in foul territory and lands on the ground in fair or foul territory, it is considered a foul ball.

12.      A run will not be scored if the third out of an inning is the result of:

a)   A runner being called out before reaching first base.

b)   Any runner being called out due to a force out.

c)   A runner being tagged out before the lead runner touches home plate.

     Pitching

1.      The strike zone extends to 1 foot on either side of home plate and is 1 foot high.

2.      If the ball touches any part of the strike zone lines, even the outer-most part of a line, it will be considered a strike.

3.      If the ball is pitched side-arm or spun upon release, it will be considered a ball.

4.      The ball must touch the ground at least twice before crossing home plate, otherwise it will be considered a ball.

5.      If the bottom of the ball is 1 foot or higher as it crosses the plate, it will be considered a ball.

6.      If the ball stops prior to reaching home plate, it will be considered a ball.

7.      The pitcher must start AND remain within the Pitcher's Circle until the ball is kicked.   Failure to do so results in a ball.

8.      If the pitcher 'intentionally walks' a kicker, the kicker advances to 2 nd base and the next kicker has the option of either kicking or just advancing to 1 st base.  4 consecutively and intentionally pitched balls thrown outside the strike zone will be considered an 'intentional walk'.

     Kicking

The Kicker's Line is located just in front of home plate and is 12 feet wide.

1.      All kicks should occur between the Catcher's Line (see Catching for a description) and the Kicker's Line.  A kick occurring outside of these lines will be considered a strike.  However, if a ball is caught by the fielding team after being kicked from outside of these lines, it is an out.  Subsequently, all other runners must return to the previous base.

2.      All kicks should be made with the foot.  However, if the ball bounces up and hits the shin as a player is attempting to kick the ball, the kick will be considered legitimate.

3.      The kicking rotation must alternate between men and women.

4.      Each team must have at least 3 men or 3 women in the kicking lineup in order to maintain the required kicking rotation.

5.      Only women are allowed to bunt.  The ball must travel in front of home plate (into the field of play) to be considered a bunt otherwise, it will be a foul ball.

6.      If a man bunts the ball (as determined by the umpire) it will be a strike.

7.      The 'count' for a kicker shall begin with 0 strikes and 0 balls.

     Catching

The Catcher's Line is located 6 feet behind the back of home plate and is 12 feet wide.

1.      The catcher may stand anywhere behind the Catcher's Line, as long as they do not impede the kicker. 

2.      The catcher must remain behind the Catcher's Line until the ball is kicked.  Failure to do so results in the kicker being awarded first base.

     Base Running

1.      Safety Base: The purpose of a safety base is to try to reduce or prevent collisions with the runner and the first baseman.  The safety base will be placed so that the white colored portion is in fair territory and the orange colored portion is in foul territory.  The runner should step on the orange portion of the base, while the first baseman should step on the white portion of the base.  The exception to this is as follows:

      If the first baseman is in foul territory, they should step on the orange portion of the safety base when attempting to make the tag.  When the runner sees the first baseman in foul territory, the runner should step on the white portion of the safety base to potentially avoid a collision.

2.      Runners should remain within the base line.  Fielders should stay out of the base line.  Fielders must not block the base or base line when attempting to make a play at a base.  If a runner is hindered by a fielder standing within the base line, they will be considered safe at the base to which they were running to.  However, if the fielder is attempting to field the ball within the base line, the runner should attempt to avoid the fielder.

3.      Once the umpire calls 'time', play stops and runners must remain on their current base.  If however, a runner is more than halfway to the next base they will be allowed that base.

4.      Sliding is allowed.   NOTE:  steel cleats are not allowed.

5.      The following guidelines apply if a ball touches a runner:

a)   If a kicked ball hits a runner while they are on base, the runner will not be out, but play will be stopped.  Subsequently, all other runners must return to the previous base and the kicker will have to re-kick.

b)   If a kicked ball hits a runner while they are off the base, the runner will be out, but play will be stopped.  Subsequently, all other runners must return to the previous base and the kicker will take first base; they will not have to re-kick.  If there is a runner on first, that runner will advance to second.

c)   If a runner intentionally touches or stops a ball, even if they are on base, the runner will be out and the play will be stopped.  Subsequently, all other runners must return to the previous base and the kicker will have to re-kick.

6.      If a runner is off of the base before the ball is kicked, the runner will be out.  In other words, neither leading off a base nor stealing a base is allowed.

7.      If a runner advances in front of another runner or touches the runner in front of them, that runner will be out.  Subsequently, all other runners must return to the previous base.

8.      If a base coach touches a runner in an attempt to either stop them from advancing or help them to the next base, the runner will be out.  Subsequently, all other runners must return to the previous base.

9.      The following guidelines apply to throwing or kicking a ball at a runner:

a)   Hitting a runner with the ball above the shoulders is not allowed.  A runner hit above the shoulders will be considered safe.  If a fielder intentionally throws at the head of a runner, they will be warned.  If the incident occurs a second time, by any member of the fielding team, that team will forfeit the game .

b)   If a runner slides feet first into a base and is hit in the head by the ball, the runner will be safe.

c)   If a runner slides head first into a base and is hit in the head by the ball, the runner will be out.

d)   If a runner intentionally uses their head to block the ball the runner will be out.

10.      After a ball is caught, the runners must tag up before running to the next base.  If they fail to do so, they will be out.   NOTE: Even if the ball is caught after being 'bobbled', runners may tag up and advance as soon as the ball is first touched.  Runners can also tag up on a caught foul ball.

11.      One extra base is awarded on an overthrow.  Any ball is considered an overthrow if it goes past either of the 30-foot out-of-bounds lines.  The awarded base is in addition to the base to which the runner is advancing.  The awarded base is determined according to when the fielder releases the ball.

     Strikes

A count of 3 strikes is an out.  A strike is :

1.      A pitched ball, touching any part of the strike zone lines, either not kicked or missed by the kicker.

2.      A ball that is kicked from beyond the Kicker's Line or before the Catcher's Line.

3.      A fouled ball when the kicker has less than 2 strikes.

4.      A bunted ball (as determined by the umpire) by a man.

     Balls

A count of 4 balls advances the kicker to first base.  A ball is:

1.      A ball pitched outside the strike zone.

2.      A pitched ball that stops prior to reaching home plate.

3.      A pitched ball that is higher than 1 foot from the bottom of ball as it crosses home plate.

4.      A pitcher releasing the ball from outside the pitcher's circle and/or a pitcher leaving the pitcher's circle before the ball is kicked.

5.      A side-arm or spun pitched ball.

6.      A pitched ball that does not touch the ground twice before crossing home plate.

     Fouls

A count of 4 fouls is an out.  A foul is:

1.      A ball kicked out of bounds.

2.      A kicked ball landing in fair territory but rolling into foul territory before reaching first or third base.  Note: Any ball landing in fair territory that is touched by a fielder is still in play even if that ball rolls into foul territory.

3.      A kicked ball that lands on the ground in fair or foul territory after striking or it is touched by the catcher, who is standing in foul territory.

4.      A kicked ball that fails to move forward of home plate.

     Outs

A count of 3 outs by a team completes half of an inning.  An out is:

1.      A count of 3 strikes, 4 fouls or combination thereof (see strikes).

2.      A runner that is touched by the ball at ANY time while not on base.

3.      Any ball, fair or foul, that is caught.

4.      A tagged base to which a runner is forced to run. 

5.      A runner off of the base when the ball is kicked.

6.      A runner that advances in front of another runner or touches the runner in front of them.

7.      A runner that intentionally touches or stops the ball, even while on base.

8.      A ball that is kicked from beyond the Kicker's Line or before the Catcher's Line and caught.

9.      After a player is ejected, their upcoming kick (if in the current inning) will be registered as an out.

         Designated Runner/Player Positions

In cases of injury or illness, a time out may be requested for player to be removed and replaced with a substitute of the same gender.  If the player later returns to the game, they must be inserted back in the kicking lineup in the same order previously held.  If a player is ejected, injured, or becomes ill and cannot continue, the kicking rotation must remain the same, less the removed player.  Each team is allowed ONLY one fielder position switch per inning.



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