Rule 1 – Section 5 – PLAYER EQUIPMENT
1-5-1 It is mandatory for on-deck batters, batters, runners, retired runners, players/students in the coaches boxes as well as non-adult bat/ball shaggers to wear a batting helmet that has a non-glare (not mirror-like) surface and meets the NOCSAE standard at the time of manufacture. The batting helmet shall have extended ear flaps that cover both ears and temples and also display the NOCSAE stamp and the exterior warning statement. The warning statement may be affixed to the helmet in sticker form, or it may be embossed at the time of manufacture. A violation by a no adult bat/ball shagger shall result in a warning to the coach of the team and the individual. A subsequent violation may result in the individual not being allowed on the field.
PENALTY: When an umpire observes anyone who is required to wear a batting helmet deliberately remove his batting helmet while in live-ball territory and the ball is live (non-adult ball/bat shaggers required to wear batting helmet in live-ball area even if ball is dead), the umpire shall issue a warning to the coach of the involved team, unless the ball becomes dead without being touched by a fielder or, after being touched, goes directly to dead-ball area. A subsequent violation of the rule shall result in ejection.
1-5-2 A face mask/guard may be attached to batting helmets at the time of manufacture. All face mask/guards shall meet the NOCSAE standard. A face mask/guard specifically designed for a particular helmet model may be attached after manufacture, provided that procedure is approved by the manufacturer and meets the NOCSAE standard.
1-5-3 The catcher shall wear, in addition to a head protector, a mask with a throat protector, body/chest protector that meets the NOCSAE standard at the time of manufacture (Effective January 1, 2020), protective cup (male only), and baseball protective shin guards.
1-5-4 The catcher’s helmet and mask combination shall meet the NOCSAE standard. Any helmet or helmet and mask combination shall have full ear protection (dual ear flaps). A throat protector, which is either a part of or attached to the catcher’s mask, is mandatory. A throat protector shall adequately cover the throat. The commercially manufactured catcher’s head, face and throat protection may be a one-piece or multi-piece design. While in a crouch position, any non-adult warming up a pitcher at any location shall wear a head protector, a mask with a throat protector and a protective cup (male only).
PENALTY: Failure by a player to wear proper equipment after being so ordered by the umpire, shall result in ejection.
1-5-5 Defensive players are permitted to wear face/head protection in the field. If a pitcher or any defensive player wears face/head protection, its outer covering shall have a non-glare (not mirror-like) surface.
1-5-6 Defective equipment must be repaired or replaced immediately.
1-5-7 If a ball is touched with an illegal glove or mitt, that is discovered by the umpire, the coach or captain of the team at bat has the choice of taking the result of the play or having the award (8-3-3a, b, c) for use of an illegal glove or mitt. The illegal glove or mitt must be replaced immediately. A foul fly caught with an illegal glove/mitt shall be nullified and treated as a foul ball, unless the team at bat elects to take the result of the play.
1-5-8 Hard and unyielding items (guards, casts, braces, splints, etc.) must be padded with a closed-cell, slow-recovery foam padding no less than 1/2″ thick. Knee and ankle braces which are unaltered from the manufacturer’s original design/production do not require any additional padding. Each state association may, in keeping with applicable laws, authorize exceptions to NFHS playing rules to provide reasonable accommodations to individual participants with disabilities and/or special needs, as well as those individuals with unique and extenuating circumstances. The accommodations should not fundamentally alter the sport, allow an otherwise illegal piece of equipment, create risk to the athlete/others or place opponents at a disadvantage.
1-5-9 Any player equipment judged by the umpire to be unreasonably dangerous is illegal.
1-5-10 Any questions regarding legality of a player’s equipment shall be resolved by the umpire-in-chief.
1-5-11 Non-traditional playing equipment must be reviewed by the NFHS Baseball Rules Committee before it will be permitted to be used.
1-5-12 Jewelry shall not be worn (See 3-3-1d) except for religious or medical medals. A religious medal must be taped and worn under the uniform. A medical alert must be taped and may be visible.