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Softball Rules

WAIVERS: 
In order to participate in the league, each player must sign the team waiver.

SPORTSMANSHIP –  Unsportsmanlike behavior may result in that player being ejected from the game. An ejection may result in further suspension from participation in any GUS League activities. Ejected players are required to leave the premises immediately. Refusal to leave the premises may result in a team forfeit and/or increased length of suspension.

NUMBER OF PLAYERS ON THE FIELD – The maximum number of players on the field is 10. The minimum number of players on the field is 8. The maximum number of males on the field is 6. There is no maximum number of females on the field.

GAME EQUIPMENT-  Bases and balls will be provided. The batting team will be responsible for retrieving balls hit out of the park (foul and home runs).

All bats must have either a USAA or ASA bat certification mark on them and not listed on any list of banned bats.

Any players using an illegal bat will be called out. The illegal bat will be removed from the game. If a batted ball has occurred, then all runners will return to their original base.

Catchers are recommended to wear a mask at all times (not league provided). Teams may bring personal softballs for practice between games.

Metal cleats are not permitted. Any player wearing metal spikes will have to remove them immediately or they cannot play.

FORFEITS –  If a team is short the minimum number of players by game time, the game will start as scheduled with that team automatically becoming the visitor and batting first. If the minimum number of players does not show up upon completion of the first 1/2 of the first inning, the game will be considered a forfeit. If the forfeiting team does not have enough players to play an officiated exhibition game.

LINE-UP BOOK – Each team must complete their lineup in the lineup book with the players name and gender specified. Each team will keep their own book, checked by the umpire between innings. The umpires score is the official score.

GAME CLOCK – The umpire’s clock is the game clock and he will inform both teams when the game has started. There is no minimum number of innings for a complete game if the time limit has been satisfied. No new innings will start after the umpire has declared time expired. After the game is completed, teams are required to clear the dugout for the next game.

FIELDING – The maximum number of infielders is 6 (including the Pitcher and Catcher). Outfielders must stay in the grass until contact is made. If an outfielder comes onto the infield dirt before contact is made and is in any way involved in that play, all runners will be ruled safe.

Fielding positions can be changed between players on the field while on defense, however new players may not substitute in except for a pitching change, the team is short fielders, or due to an injury. The batting order must always stay the same despite any changes in field position.

THE COUNT- Batters will start with a one-ball/one-strike count. With two strikes, the batter has one courtesy foul. The second foul with two strikes will be called strike three and the batter out.

BATTING ORDER – All players must bat but no more than two males can bat in a row. Females can re-hit if necessary. (For example, a team has 9 guys and 4 girls. One girl would be designated in the line-up to bat twice to ensure proper ratios).

There are no substitutions in the batting line-up.

If a team plays with fewer than four females, they must play short and will receive an automatic out when that position is reached in the batting order.

If a team began the game short the minimum number of females resulting in an out in that batting spot has a female show up after the game has started, that team may insert that female into the designated spot in the lineup at any time and will no longer have to take an automatic out.

All late arriving players may be inserted at any time. Late arrivals must be inserted into the bottom of the batting order, or as close to the bottom to ensure gender rules apply.

BATTING OUT OF ORDER – If the error is discovered while the incorrect batter is hitting, then the correct batter will assume the ball/strike count of the incorrect batter. If the error is discovered after the incorrect batter has safely reached base, the incorrect batter will be called out, and all runners will return to their original base. The opposing team must make the umpire aware of “batting out of order” before a pitch is thrown to the next batter. If it is not, then the incorrect batter will stay on base.

WALKED BATTERS – Less than two outs – All walks are one base awards.

Two outs – If there are two outs and a male batter is walked with a female batter up next, the male runner walks as normal (stops at first). The female batter will then have the option to walk or bat.

HOME RUNS – There is a one home run limit per team. Each home run hit after 1 is ruled an out. There is no limit to the number of inside the park home run hit.

BASE RUNNERS – There is no leading off or stealing of bases. Doing so will result in the runner being called out.

The field may have an extra first base bag, known as the “safety” base located outside the baseline. This is the bag that the runners must touch if running through first base. The inside bag is for the fielders.

Each league is a non-contact league and all players must avoid unnecessary contact at all time. Runners must give themselves up, get out of the way, or slide. Interference on the part of the runner or the fielder shall be at the sole discretion of the umpire.

If the contact was considered unsportsmanlike, that player will be ejected.

INFIELD FLY RULE – An infield fly is a fly ball in fair territory which, at the sole discretion of the umpire, can be caught by an infielder with ordinary effort, when first and second, or first, second and third bases are occupied with less than two outs.  In this situation, the umpire will declare “Infield Fly”.  The ball remains live and runners may advance at the risk of the ball being caught.  If the ball becomes foul, it will be treated the same as any foul.

HEAD FIRST SLIDE – Runners may not engage in a “head first” slide when approaching any base on the field. If a runner’s momentum has caused them to overrun a base, they may “dive back” in a head first manner to regain possession of that base.

INJURED RUNNER -Only injured players may receive a pinch runner once they reach a base. If a male player is injured, the last player out will become the pinch runner, regardless of gender. If a female player is injured, the last female out becomes the pinch runner.

SCORING – The maximum number of runs allowed per inning is nine. After the ninth run crosses the plate, play will stop regardless of the number of outs. The only exception to the nine-run rule will be in the final inning with the scoring team behind.

The run rule will be put into effect and the game called if one team is ahead by 12 runs or more upon completion of the fifth inning (4 ½ if the home team is ahead).

If extra innings are required in a playoff game, both teams will have the opportunity to bat. The player who was AT BAT the previous inning when the third out was recorded will start at 2nd base with no outs. The batter will start with a 3-2 count with no courtesy foul (1-pitch format). This extra-inning format will continue for all extra innings until a winning team is established.

*Any rules not mentioned follow those of the ASA governing slow pitch (www.softball.org)