Baseball Instruction/1st and 3rd pick off


Hi Martin, I am coach of the HNLL Intermediate(50/70) Braves.  My question is in regards to having a runner on 1st and 3rd, a right handed pitcher does a fake to 3rd and try's to get the running at first.  Are we following MLB rules that you can't do this anymore and you must pick to 3rd?  Also does the same apply with just a runner on 3rd, does he have to complete the pick or does he act as a lefty would to first base and that being he has to throw the ball.  Thanks for your help and have a great day.

Tim Lockhart


At this time, Little League HAS NOT amended their rules to include the new MLB reference to the 3rd to 1st pickoff.  At this point in time it is still a legal pickoff attempt.  Should it change I'm sure that your league will notify you.  I have a feeling that it probably will not change this season, but will probably happen with the 2014 season (MLB official changed the rule AFTER Little League sent their rule books off to be printed).

My understanding is that a throw must be completed.

For reference, it is MLB Rule 8.05(b): "The pitcher, while touching his plate, feints a throw to first or third base and fails to complete the throw;"

I hope this has helped.

-Martin Hoover

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Martin Hoover


Questions regarding the Rules and Regulations of Little League Baseball and Softball. Questions regarding the history and organization of Little League Baseball at local, state, regional, and international levels. Advise regarding certain operational procedures and recommendations to Local League representatives.


Volunteer Little League Umpire since 2000; 2003 Little League, Junior League, Senior League and Big League Softball European Regional Umpire; 2005 Little League Softball Western Regional Umpire; 2007 Junior Softball Western Regional Umpire; 2011 Little League Softball World Series Umpire; Hesperia National (Hesperia, CA) Little League Board of Directors (2003-2012); President- Hesperia National Little League Board of Directors (2005-2011); Little League District Administrator (2012-present).

Little League Baseball, Inc is the main operational center. I fall under Little League Western Region, and California District 49. I currently serve as a Little League District Administrator.

Western Regional Junior Umpire School(2000)(Named Outstanding Junior Umpire of the Western Region Area); Have instructed at numerous umpire schools & clinics.

Awards and Honors
Outstanding Junior Umpire of the Western Regional Area(2000)

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