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A Division Softball Rules of Play

Softball – A

  1. All players league age 7 and 8 are eligible for the A division. League age 6 players who have played one year of T-Ball may also participate.
  2. At all times (On offense or on defense), there must be at least one parent present in the dugout. That parent must have cleared a Little League approved background check.
  3. The entire player game roster shall be used as the batting order, regardless of defensive position. Players arriving after the game has started shall be placed in the batting order after the last player named in such batting order. “Free” substitution is allowed.
  4. If playing on a non-fenced field, the home run line will be marked by cones a distance of 120 feet from home plate. A batted ball that passes over the coned home run line on the fly shall be a home run. A batted ball that touches a fielder’s glove, or any other part of said fielder, and passes over the coned home run line on the fly, without ever touching the ground prior to passing the cones, shall be a home run. A batted ball that passes the coned home run line after first touching the ground shall be a ground-rule double, regardless of whether a fielder touched it or not.
  5. If available, a safety base (Flat, rubber base) will be placed next to first base to reduce collisions and to give batters a better chance of running through first base on a ground ball to the infield. In general, the defense is entitled to the inside base, while the batter / runner is entitled to the outside flat, rubber base. Coaches should instruct their players to make plays to the inside base while playing defense, and to run through the outside base while running to first.
  6. Each team must provide a scorekeeper who is not a manager or coach. The home team is considered the official scorekeeper.
  7. If agreed to by the managers during the plate meeting, the defensive team may place a coach behind the first and second baseline and the second and third baseline to coach the defensive players. Defensive coaches cannot touch the ball or interfere with play. Otherwise, only the coach pitcher and two (2) adult base coaches are allowed on the field. Players are not allowed to act as a coach in any manner on the field.
  8. The home team is responsible for supplying the home plate umpire for the game. The visiting team is responsible for providing the field umpire for the game.
  9. The game will be played using a 10” safety ball.
  10. No new inning can be started after 1 hour and 30 minutes. No new batter after 1 hour and 45 minutes. Games not completed after the 1 hour and 45 minute time limit will revert to the last completed inning (Ties are allowed).
  11. A curfew shall apply to all games played Sunday through Thursday while school is in session. No new inning may begin after 8:15 pm, and no new batter after 8:30 pm. School is not considered to be “In session” during vacations and holidays.
  12. Managers and coaches should make every attempt to keep the game moving along at a good pace. Catchers should be identified in advance of their assigned inning, get geared up and be ready to play when their team takes the field. The umpire will remind managers of this requirement as needed.
  13. For safety reasons, players are not allowed to hold a bat in the dugout / bench area, or swing a bat outside of the batter’s box. Practice swings will be allowed in the batter’s box only under the coach’s direction.
  14. Coaches may use a pitching machine selectively to encourage success for all skill and ability levels. If both teams supply a machine, the home team’s machine will have priority for the game. If either team uses the pitching machine, it shall remain in place for the whole game, not removed and put in place repeatedly.
  15. Gloves may be worn by the adult pitcher during pitching as a safety measure; however, all defensive handling of the ball is to be done by the players. A live ball coming into contact with the adult pitcher is considered incidental contact, and the ball is in play.
  16. Each team will be allowed to use ten (10) defensive players, four (4) of which will be in the outfield. If a team has less than ten (10) players, the game may be played with all of the infield positions being used before the outfield. Outfielders must start play approximately 15ft behind the infield base lines to encourage proper defensive positioning. Outfielders are permitted to cover bases once the ball is put into play.
  17. Managers are required to follow a defensive player rotation provided by the league. This rotation encourages equal playing time for all players in all positions:
    TWELVE
    Player Roster
    ELEVEN
    Player Roster
    TEN
    Player Roster
    NINE
    Player Roster
    EIGHT
    Player Roster
    SEVEN
    Player Roster
    P P P P P P
    C C C C C C
    1B 1B 1B 1B 1B 1B
    RF RF RF RF OF OF
    2B 2B 2B 2B 2B 2B
    OUT RC RC CF OF SS
    RC SS SS SS SS 3B
    SS LC LC LC 3B
    LC 3B 3B 3B
    3B LF LF
    LF OUT
    OUT

    Once a manager has determined their playing roster (12 player, 11 player, etc) for any given game, players are assigned a starting position per the table above. Each player then rotates one position down for each subsequent inning played throughout the game. All managers are required to provide the opposing manager a copy of their defensive rotation Point of emphasis – All players shall rotate through all positions as defined above over the course of the season. If there is a player “Safety issue” that prevents a manager from doing so, it must be negotiated with the opposing manager prior to the start of the game.
  18. Bunting and stealing ARE NOT allowed.
  19. The side retires when there are three (3) outs, when five (5) runs score, or when the entire batting order has batted, whichever comes first. EXCEPTION: If a batter hits a home run over the fence or outfield boundary line, or a ground rule double, all runs driven in by that play will score (Maximum of two runs on ground rule double). During the sixth inning, and every inning thereafter, there is no five run limit, but the number of runs is limited to one rotation through the batting order.
  20. A batter or runner will be allowed to advance a maximum of one base on a batted ball hit in the infield, and a maximum of two bases on a batted ball hit to the outfield. A ball hit over the cones / fence on the fly will be considered a home run. For dirt or turf fields (No grass outfield), a ball must travel at least 15 feet beyond the baselines to be considered in the outfield. Defensive players are encouraged to make the correct play by throwing to the appropriate base. For that reason, runners will not be allowed to advance on an overthrow.
  21. Pitching shall be by a coach or pitching machine within one foot of the pitcher’s circle, The pitching rubber is located at a distance of 35 feet from home plate. The player assuming the defensive position of pitcher shall remain completely within the pitching circle during pitches, even with or behind the line of the pitching rubber until the ball is put in play. The player may choose which side to stand on.
  22. Each batter is allowed seven (7) live pitches. If not successful after seven (7) live pitches, they are out. A player fouling off the seventh pitch, or any subsequent pitch, is allowed another pitch, unless the foul ball is caught on the fly, at which point the batter is out.
  23. A batter hit by a “Coach pitch” does not take first base.
  24. Runners must remain in contact with their bases until a pitched ball crosses home plate.
  25. The “Infield fly” is not enforced for the A Division.
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