Centennial Youth Baseball-Softball Association

League Vocabulary


All-Stars: A program where league officials and coaches attempt to put together teams in given age groups to compete in the state tournament. Winners of the state tournament can go to regional tournaments and even the World Series.

Assessments: Player assessments are done for most baseball divisions in the spring. These are not tryouts, as everyone who assesses makes a team. All players who are not already assigned to a team will be required to assess. Coaches will then draft from this pool of players until all of the free agents have been selected.

Babe Ruth Division: The division for 13-18 year old’s.

Balk: An illegal movement made by a pitcher to deceive a baserunner, of which there are 47 listed in the Official Playing Rules.

Bambino Buddy Ball: Commonly just referred to as Buddy Ball, a program for special needs players, provided complimentary to those players. Most teams in both Minors and Majors will be assigned to at least one game in this division to be “buddies” to these players.

Batting Order: This is the order in which all players will bat during a given game. Managers use several different ways to set this. They do it based on previous success, in an effort to get the entire team more at bats per game. They do it on a constant rotation, where the next player who was supposed to bat when the last game ended, will begin the batting order for the next game. They do it by flipping the order every game. They do it based on jersey numbers. Some may pull names out of a hat. This is completely up to the manager of the team and their coaches. The league does not get involved with team’s batting orders. The only exception is when batting the entire lineup, every player present must be in the batting order, but outside of this, the league has no involvement.

BBCOR Bat: The BBCOR .50 designation is similar to USA Bat, to have a similar “trampoline effect” of wooden bats. They only come in a drop 3 or -3. They are allowed in the Babe Ruth division only.

Cal Ripken Division: The division for all baseball players who are 12 and younger.

Calling Time: The only people who can call time on a field are the umpires. Players may request time, but until it is granted by an umpire, the ball is still live. A player can only request time be called.

Coach: Someone who coaches the team who may or may not be the team’s manager. A coach must be registered through the system and have gone through any requirements. A registered coach is the only adult who can be on the field or in the dugout during league games.

Committee: A group of board members and other volunteers who decide on various issues. Some of the committees include the competition committee, who decide on whether or not a player should “play up” to an older division, All-Star committee, disciplinary committee, and more.

CYL: An acronym, which has no affiliation with the league, but tends to be used be people on the west side of the league. Examples of its actual uses are for Colorado Club Youth League (a volleyball league), Colorado Young Leaders, the amount of lens power needed for astigmatism, or the publicly traded company Ceylon Graphite Corp which trades under the symbol CYL. They somehow feel this is the proper acronym to describe the league, despite having an official acronym of CYBSA.

Drop Weight: This is listed on all metal bats. It is the difference between the length of the bat in inches and the weight of the bat in ounces. A 30” bat with a weight of 21oz. would be a -9 or a drop 9 bat. Wood bats sometimes have drop weights listed, but not all.

ERA: The Equal Rights Amendment which was never ratified by three quarters of the states, except in the alternate world of For All Mankind, when Teddy Kennedy was elected president in 1972. Also sometimes used as earned run average.

Error: A play which should have been made with ordinary effort but wasn’t.

Exhibition game: A game which does not count in the standings, also called a scrimmage.

Fielder’s Choice: An out attempt made on a batted ball on another runner other than the batter-runner.

Field Provider: Generally, a municipality or park’s department, who leases us fields for a given period. Some provide no maintenance of said fields and do not allow the league to do it either.

Foul Tip: Commonly, a foul ball which glances off a bat is called a foul tip, which it is not. It is a foul ball. A foul tip is a ball which grazes a bat and goes directly into the catcher’s mitt and is held. If it is not held or doesn’t go directly in, it is a foul ball. A foul tip is no different than a swinging strike. It’s a live ball, unlike a foul ball, which is a dead ball.

Free Agent: A player who is not currently assigned to a team or a roster.

Hit: A ball put in play where the batter-runner reaches first base safely if there was no error or fielder’s choice.

Home Run: A batted ball which goes over the outfield fence in fair territory or a batted ball which goes so far where the defense cannot get the ball in to put the runner out prior to crossing home plate. This is not to be confused with the more common base hit, with the player scoring on 3 consecutive errors.

Injury: Something which requires medical attention, usually immediate. Not to be confused with being hurt, which is what 99% of on-field incidents are which cause pain. Being hurt is easily cured with rubbing dirt on the affected area.

Interference: Primarily an offensive penalty, where a runner interferes with a fielder trying to make a play. Not to be confused with obstruction.

League age: Age a player is considered to be in a given season. Baseball league age is what the player’s age is on 1 May of any given year. Softball is on 1 January. If a baseball player turns 12 on 2 May, or after, of a given year, their league age for the entire year is 11.

Lightning: A weather phenomena which causes practices and games to be suspended until it clears. Whenever there is a lightning delay all players need to be in vehicles or in lightning safe shelters for the duration. Adults can stand next to the tallest tree they can find holding a large piece of sheet metal if they want.

Little League: Little League is a brand, which we are not. We are part of Babe Ruth League with the 12 and under baseball division named Cal Ripken. While both are large, international organizations who provide youth baseball leagues, there are distinct differences in organization, rules, governance, and local-league autonomy. Guess which one we feel is superior.

Lost and Found: A place where we pick up what you left behind. Things rarely get claimed, so it’s known more aptly as the league’s tip jar.

Majors: A division for 11-12 year old’s. We play full National League rules in this division, with modifications made for the age.

Manager: Head coach of a baseball or softball team.

Minors: A division for 9-10 year old’s. This is the first year of player pitch. Stealing is allowed, including home, walks are also allowed.

Moving Target: A phrase uttered far too many times by league president Bob Yount Jr. Due to this, he is now limited to only one use of this phrase per month.

Obstruction: Is a defensive penalty, where the defensive player, while not in possession of the ball and not in the act of fielding the ball, impedes the progress of any runner. Not to be confused with interference.

Official Playing Rules: A book distributed every year which less than 0.5% of parents read or even know it exists, with maybe 10% of coaches even open to the first page.

Parent: An unfortunately, necessary evil, as most players cannot drive themselves to games or practices. Some choose to obnoxiously complain about calls on the fields, having little to no understanding of the rules of the game. Some choose to constantly annoy the manager or other coaches about their kid’s playing time or how they should coach the team. Some choose to insist their child is far better than they actually are, as well as make sure other parents are aware of this. Some feel they need to badmouth other kids to make their own kid look better. Some try to live vicariously through their children, overly driving them to perform while removing most of the fun from the game.

Participation Awards: Something not in the league’s vocabulary.

Phone: A communication device which allows for voice conversations between two or more people. Some millennials have this very app on their portable texting machines, but rarely know how it functions, some not knowing this technology even exists.

Pitch Count: A limit to how many pitches a player can throw within a given time frame. This is done to mitigate the chances for long-term injuries to arms from overuse. These are taken very seriously, and teams will have to forfeit games for violating these rules.

Players: These are the 4-to-18-year-old kids who play within the league. They are by far the most important people in the league. Coaches and umpires come next, and parents are way down on the list of important people in the league. We run this league for the players. Therefore, they are paramount and what we truly care about.

Playing Time: This is a decision made by the manager of each team, often including the rest of the coaching staff. There is a minimum playing time each player must receive. Outside of this it is up to each team’s manager to decide the allocation of playing time. Some teams try to even it out throughout the season, some award more playing time to players who show more effort in practices and games. If egalitarian playing time for your child is what you are seeking, please look into municipal rec leagues. CYBSA does not dictate to managers anything other than the mandatory minimum.

Rookie: A division for 7-8 year old’s, 6 year old’s if they have had at least one year of T-Ball. It is machine pitch with most baseball rules in effect. There is no leading off, stealing, walks, or uncaught 3rd strikes.

Rush: The greatest rock trio in human history.

Schedule: Something parents seem to want immediately upon registering and wait seemingly an eternity to receive. Coordinating more than 50 team’s practices and games on a very limited number of fields takes a lot of time. Once it is completed and published it is very difficult to change.

SSU Play: The webhost for our site as well as the app used for scheduling. Nearly all information can be found on one of these two places. If having issues with SSU Play (the app), where you don’t see your current team -and- rosters have been published, log out and then log back into the app and it should fix the issue.

Strike Zone: While officially described as the area over home plate between the bottom of the batter’s knees and the midway point between the top of the batter’s shoulders and belt, the true definition of the strike zone is whatever the umpire says it is . Arguing or commenting on an umpire’s strike zone is grounds for immediate ejection.

Supplemental Rules: Rules the league updates every season which either reiterate those in the Official Playing Rules or are changes or additions from the Official Playing Rules.

T-Ball: For players 4-6 years old (league age) which is a non-competitive division, combining hitting off a tee and coach pitch.

Team parent: Team mom or dad who assists the coaching staff with planning and other team functions.

Tournament: A competitive encounter between individuals or groups carried on for amusement, exercise, or in pursuit of a prize. Also, a place where parents and coaches start taking things way too seriously and tend to behave far more immaturely than the kids they are in charge of setting an example.

Umpires: The only people present at games who have no rooting interest whatsoever. They are there to make judgement calls and enforce the rules of the game to ensure a fair contest.

Uncaught Third Strike: Commonly referred to as a “dropped third strike,” which is technically a misnomer, as it doesn't have to be caught and then dropped, is a rule where if the catcher does not cleanly catch a third strike, the batter-runner may attempt to advance to first base. It is treated like any ball put in play.

USA Bat: A USA Bat is one which has been certified to have the same “trampoline effect” as a wood bat. Within the Cal Ripken divisions this is the only metal bat allowed to be used. It is used for the safety of the players, but more importantly, for the integrity of the game. USA Bats can be of any drop weight.

USSSA Bat: The USSSA 1.15BPF bat is illegal in all Babe Ruth and Cal Ripken baseball divisions. It has a “trampoline effect” which is far higher than wood, USA Baseball, and BBCOR. It is essentially a “juiced” bat which only gets more pop with use. The entire bat is a sweet spot and is more likely to cause injury to defensive players.

Walk: A free pass to first base after receiving 4 balls prior to 3 strikes. Note: players should not literally walk to first base.

Wood Bat: If you know what a bat is and what wood is, you can probably figure this one out.