Minor A Playoff Rules





For Minor A Playoff Games, all rules from regular season play are in effect, with the following exceptions:

  • Home and Away Teams will be determined by a coin toss between the coaches before the game. This can occur in advance of game day or at the field prior to warm up. Both teams must assign volunteers to set up the field.
  • Run limits will be 2-2-4-4 in the first 4 innings, but the 5th inning will be “unlimited” and not once through the batting order.  For the 5th inning (and any extra innings), 3 outs must be made.
  • The Mercy Rule is not in effect.
  • There is no time limit to playoff games.
  • No extra innings will be played in "pool games" (each teams first 2 playoff games).  Pool games can end in a tie.
  • After pool play is complete, seeding will be done as per tiebreak procedures set out in the Little League Rulebook (page 150-151, 2018 edition)
  • For games played in the "elimination round" (games after pool play), games cannot end in a tie: 
    • If the score is tied after 5 complete innings, extra innings must be played.  Each extra inning will be played with the “California Rule” in effect.  The California Rule dictates that each half inning starts with a runner on second base and one out.  The runner on second base must be the last batter from the previous inning. Play continues until one team is ahead at the end of an inning.
  • All pitchers must pitch from the pitching rubber (i.e. there is no painted “rookie” line in front of the rubber).  For the first 2 innings, only rookie pitchers are permitted.
  • If the game is shortened due to poor weather or darkness, 4 innings will have to be played (3 ½ if the home team has the lead) to constitute a complete game.
  • For complete rules on how to handle a game that is halted due to weather or darkness, see Rule 4.00 “Starting and Ending the Game” in the LL rule book (pages 81-88 in 2017 edition).
  • Both teams must track pitch counts for both teams, and these numbers must be reported to the Minor A Coordinator within 3 hours of the end of the game. Particular attention should be given to whether or not a pitcher crosses a threshold while facing their final batter.  The total number of pitches thrown should be reported as usual but when a pitcher crosses a threshold (20, 35, 50 and 65) while facing their final batter, the pitch count should be reported with an asterisk beside it and an indication of the number of pitches at the beginning of the final batter.  For example, if a pitcher throws 39 pitches in a game, but started their final batter at 34 pitches, pitch count would be reported as 39* (started final batter at 34).
  • For pool play games, teams must report the number of defensive innings played in the game for each team. For instance, if the home team wins and doesn't bat in the bottom of the 5th inning, the away team has played 4 defensive innings and the home team has played 5.  This needs to be logged and reported as it might have to be used under the tiebreak procedures.


Other issues that coaches are asked to pay particular attention to:

  • Back catchers must wear all catching equipment, including the catcher’s mitt - fielder’s gloves are not permitted
  • If a pitcher throws more than 40 pitches in a game, that player is not permitted to then assume the position of catcher in the same game.  Note that this threshold is firm and the pitcher is not allowed to cross this threshold to finish their "final batter".  If the pitcher throws 41 pitches or more, they cannot catch in the same game.
  • If a player catches for 4 or more innings, they cannot then assume the position of pitcher in the same game. One pitch in an inning constitutes an inning "caught". Note, warm up pitches do not count. If a coach sends a catcher out for warm up between innings but no pitch is thrown yet in that inning, the catcher can be switched out before that half inning begins.


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