SSUSA Rules Changes 2021

Jan. 1, 2021

During a meeting conducted remotely on Dec. 9, the National Rules Committee changed the penalty for erasing batter box lines, expanded the mercy rule to all divisions, made equalizers optional and capped championship games at 80 minutes plus an open inning.

In addition to tweaking two more rules, the committee voted to table several requests involving the number of under-age players allowed on rosters until staff could survey managers of the affected divisions.

“Some of the under-age player recommendations could have a cascading effect on multiple age divisions,” Committee Chairwoman Donna McGuire said. “We felt it wise to gather input from managers before proceeding.”

Most of those recommendations called for tweaking the number of such players allowed on rosters in the 70+, 80+ or 85+ divisions. Another player suggested changing age brackets starting at the 70+ level from five-year increments to four-year increments with no under-age players allowed. That would mean divisions of 70+, 74+, 78+, 82+ and possibly 86+. The committee will revisit these suggestions after getting input on how each potential rule would impact roster-building.

Changes approved for 2021:

The committee also considered, but did not approve, recommendations for using pitching screens in the 80+ and 85+ divisions; moving the strike zone mat backward; having teams flip a coin for home and visitor in games involving equalizers; tweaking equalizer scoring rules; prohibiting walks in 65+ and older age divisions; and a change to neighboring state rules.