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Little League World Series Rain Delay Rules

By Biraj Khanal / 14 August 2023 10:44 AM

Western Regional headquarters during the Day 6 of Regionals experienced rainfall
Source : instagram

Little League World Series Rain Delay Rules is the team leading the game will be the winner if the game is on fourth innings. It mandates playing on safe terrain.

Analyzing the safety of the Little League players during the games, the league officials advise the teams to play only on safe land as the rain can dampen the field causing slip or fall injuries to the players.

Every year Little League modifies and updates its tournament rules and guidelines seeing the program operations. The league also focuses on the player's parents to get updated with the new rules and regulations according to the season.

This season Little League World Series is being hosted in Williamsport, Pennsylvania. The players can continue to play in wet conditions if the game officials and the umpires allow them to play.

Rainout is the biggest factor in the baseball tournament and games including MLB, NCAA Baseball, and Little League which affects the game conditions as well as the field conditions leading to the postponement of games or players causing serious injuries.

Umpire officials are the one to see, observe, analyze, and make decisions during the rain delay games whether to continue on same day or not.

Little League Rain Delay Rules

LLWS rain delay rule suggests that the game must be paused or suspended if the field is wet and slippery until it is safe to play.

The league officials must follow the rules and regulations when deciding whether to cancel a game due to rain.

Salem LL player at the home plate during the Eastern Regional tournament in Bristol.
Source : instagram

The players can join the field after only the umpires and the coaches instruct them to play after the field inspection and use any safe dry tools to make the field, available for play.

Slippery patches in the grass or the deep puddles in between the base paths should not be in the field for the play to get started. Seeing those conditions will pause the game and will be resumed only after the condition is improved.

Here are some outcome results to be noted if there is a rainout during the game as per Little League rainout policy:

  • The game is considered the official game if the play already played 4 innings before a rainout occurs, and the leading team will be announced the winner even if the
    The game is incomplete.
  • If the game is tied before the rainout and is called it will be suspended until the play is available to resume the same day, It can also be resumed on another day.
  • If the rain delay occurs after only one inning is played before reaching the fourth inning, the game will be postponed until the rain stops and will be resumed on another day.
  • The postponed game will be resumed on the same position where the game is stopped with the same position players on bases with several balls, strikes, and outs consistent.
  • The rainout before the game is started will lead to the suspension of the game the same day and will resume on another day if resumed as a new brand game.

As the LLWS is being started in the coming days, if we see at the williamsport pa weather, there is no sign of rain after 15th August but is predicted to be cloudy during some days.

There might not be any obstruction caused by the extreme weather conditions as predicted by the weather report during the LLWS.

Little League Weather Delay In 2023

Nolensville Little League weather delay happened during the game between the Nolensville and the Lake Mary Little League from Florida.

It was the Southeast Regional Final game which was scheduled to start at 4 PM CST but was delayed to 8 PM CST due to rainout. 

Nolensville players enjoying the dark cloudy night at the Lamade Stadium
Source : instagram

Due to the heavy thunderstorms and the rain through the Warner Robins Are in Georgia, the game was four hours delayed and was later resumed after the officials inspected the field. 

The teams went to the outfield for the warm-up three hours before the game was initially scheduled, allowing groundkeepers to enter the field.

Nolensville has been consecutively making their appearance in the LLWS for the last two years and was hoping to make it three in a row. They later defeated the Florida team by 4-1 to make it into the World Series.

It has been a long way for the Nolensville to get to the World Series, as they were in the elimination bracket after the loss to Georgia. But later, Nolensville won all their games against South Carolina, Virginia, and Georgia to reach the finals.

They later thrashed Lake Marry from Florida by 4-1 to secure the spot in the LLWS.

Other Little League World Series weather delay games:

  • Games 19 and Games 20 of LLWS, originally scheduled for 21st August were suspended due to the inclement weather conditions. Japan and Latin America were playing against each other in Game 19 and were in the third innings when it got suspended.
  • The Raymond Little League team advances to LLWS defeating Massachusetts 2-1 in the finals which was started late due to the delay due to rain.
  • Elmhurst baseball team regional game was suspended due to heavy rainfall and storms as the game was delayed to Thursday from Wednesday due to harsh rain conditions.
  • Game 15 between Michigan and Texas and Game 16 between Oregon and South Dakota were postponed and were delayed to Monday's schedule due to bad weather during 2021 LLWS.

Lightning Rules

Little League lightning rules mention that the players should immediately clear the field after hearing the lightning and thunder until it crosses.

Two players observing the lightninig thunderstorms during the game delay from the tunnel.
Source : pin

The officials should insist the players follow the guidelines and should remain in the dugout or the clubhouse if one is available.

Lightning can be a serious threat during the Little League games and tournaments as it usually picks up during the spring seasons and peaks during the summer. Players' and fans' safety is the most crucial part for the officials to have their focus on against the lightning weather conditions.

Here are some of the criteria used to half the activities during lightning:

  • Lightning availability varies depending on the weather conditions and obstructions such as trees and mountains. At night, it can be seen from more than 10 miles away if there are no obstructions.
  • Thunder can be heard from 10 miles away if there are no background sound disturbances. If you heard the thunder from less than 10 miles away, if depicts that the storm is within the 10 miles.
  • If the time between the lightning and the thunder is 30 seconds or less, it indicates that the thunderstorm is 6 miles away. A designated person must monitor any lightning and the game should be halted if the weather seems in harsh condition.

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