illegal substitution or mandatory play violation?

  • I know the rules state that no starter may re-enter until his substitute has done his/her mandatory play. IF that rule is violated, and a pitch is thrown after the starter has re-entered the game, what is the penalty (both regular season and tournament rules, please?)

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  • @ Lee - As soon as the illegal substitution has occurred (and every pitch thereafter), a protest may be made. Even if a protest is not made, the error needs to be corrected as soon as it is discovered. However, everyone involved (managers, coaches, umpires, scorekeeper, Tournament Director), should try to prevent an illegal substitution before it occurs, however.

    If a pitch has been thrown, and then the error is discovered, that pitch counts. If it's discovered several plays later, all those plays count as well.

    To correct it, a third substitute (let's say that's Player C) must take the place of the ineligible substitute (Player B).

    That's because the starter (Player A) cannot re-enter until his/her substitute (Player B in your scenario) has completed mandatory play.

    In the regular season, since Player B has not completed mandatory play in your scenario, BOTH of those players cannot re-enter for the remainder of the game. In Player B's case, that's because subs cannot re-enter. (Exception: If one of the legal players in the lineup has to leave the lineup for some reason, such as injury, the opposing manager chooses who, among the ineligible players, will re-enter.)

    So the "penalty" during the regular season is actually the penalty levied against the manager for failure to meet mandatory play requirements.

    In Tournament play, Player B can re-enter once Player C has completed mandatory play (since subs can re-enter in tournament) - but only in the same spot in the batting order. Once Player B has completed mandatory play, Player A (the starter) can go back into the game - in the same spot in the batting order.

    Of course, depending on the inning in which the error is discovered, the manager may not be able to meet mandatory play. So the penalty is the manager's penalty for failure to meet mandatory play.

    However, if it is discovered that the manager knowingly and willingly violated the rule, a more severe penalty may be levied by the Board of Directors (regular season) or International Tournament Committee (Tournament).

  • On these same lines.

    Can a starter in the first inning play 2 outs and be taken out? Only to fulfill his mandatory play later in the 5th inning?


  • Michael, I'll let LLB&S confirm, but I believe:

    A) Tournament - must be 3 CONSECUTIVE defensive outs (Tournament Playing Rules, Rule 9)

    B) Regular - every rostered player must play a minimum of 6 defensive outs (Regulation IV, section i). I don't read anything about it being "consecutive."

  • Michael - The starter could be removed after only playing two outs defensively.

    However, for Tournament Play, that player must still, at some point in the game, play three CONSECUTIVE defensive outs. The two outs during which he/she played in the first inning would not count toward the mandatory play requirement.

    For regular season, the two outs played in the first inning would count toward the requirement, since only substitutes are required to play for six consecutive outs before being removed. (See Rule 3.03.)

  • Question...what happens if a manager re-enters a player who was originally listed as a substitute?

  • @LLB&S - Very clear explanation. Thanks.

    @Will - The answer to your question is pretty in depth. It depends on whether it is regular season or tournament, for the tournament, whether or not the sub goes back into the same spot in the batting line-up. Finally, it may also depend on whether or not the sub for the sub completed either MPR (tournament). However, you would essentially follow the same procedure that LL laid out in their first response.

  • @ E Mark - Thanks. Keep in mind, the answer we gave was from a year ago. In some cases, the requirement is for six consecutive defensive outs, for all players, including startes.

  • What about this scenario. During a 10U tournament, we have to fill out mandatory line up teams fills out, hand to other team and they fill out and then submit to umpires. We give our "unofficial" lineup cards to the other team. The other team had 10 players listed, before game started they change it on the "unofficial" card to a substitute. During the course of the game, in which this sub only ran for the pitcher and catcher, it was noticed that the player was listed on the "official" card that they were a player and not a substitute. We did not know this during the course of the game so we could not call it. We did protest the game and the director of record basically did nothing to the opposing team. I feel the game was altered and the outcome was affected because of this. He simply stated you have to call it once the next batter comes up, however it you don' t have the correct information how can you call it. Let me know your thoughts.