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Little League windup step


Guest Sanjay Arwade

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Guest Sanjay Arwade

Little League Rule 8.01 (a) states that from the windup a pitcher can step back with the free foot to initiate the windup.  But I am being told that the step must be to the side.  This is LL Majors level.  What's the deal?  If the side-step is the rule, where is it in the rule book?

Sanjay Arwade

Amherst, Mass.

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11 hours ago, Guest Sanjay Arwade said:

Little League Rule 8.01 (a) states that from the windup a pitcher can step back with the free foot to initiate the windup.  But I am being told that the step must be to the side.  This is LL Majors level.  What's the deal?  If the side-step is the rule, where is it in the rule book?

Sanjay Arwade

Amherst, Mass.

It isn't there because it isn't a rule.

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Mr. Sanjay Arwade, as Mr. Rich Ives so succinctly put it there is no such rule. So is it possible that there is simply a misunderstanding here? Perhaps what you were told is that it is permissible for the pitcher to step laterally in his delivery motion (i.e., can step instead of must step to the side).

Little League rules are based on Official Baseball Rules (OBR). It used to be in OBR that it was prohibited for a pitcher to start with his free foot off to the side of the rubber or to step to the side during his delivery motion. They changed that rule in 2006 or 2007 but I don’t think Little League ever felt the need to amend the rule—I guess LL is not concerned about the step of a pitcher’s free foot because runners don’t take leads and so it couldn’t be a balk.

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Guest Sanjay Arwade

Thanks for your replies.  I have now confirmed this from many sources including of course, the actual rulebook.  Unfortunately an umpire in our district tournament last year stopped a game to 'correct' one of our pitcher's motions, telling the kid that he _could not_ step back to start the windup.  It really screwed the kid up and was totally bizarre and for a variety of reasons I just found out about this incident and am trying to resolve it before next spring.  

 

Thanks again.

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Additional evidence that may be of value is LLWS footage (I imagine you can find something on point). It’s hard to argue with something that was allowed at the highest level of the league. I personally don’t have a good argument ready for it and they did debatable things at times.

Other thoughts (in case you haven’t tried them already) are your getting your league and District UICs involved.  Best of luck.

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