Softball rules

Softball Rules

SUMMARY

  • 10 players on the field maximum including 7 men and 3 women -UNLIMITED FEMALES ALLOWED.
  • 8 players, including 1 woman required to start a game (not forfeit)
  • Modified arc pitching rules – arc must be between 6’ and 12’
  • ToneSports will provide certified umpires for every game
  • To encourage participation, teams may bat as many players as they want, but must not exceed an approximately 7:3
    ratio of men to women (examples and details below)
  • No more than 3 men may bat in a row in the batting order
  • ONE & ONE COUNT: Will be used in all leagues with the addition of (1) courtesy foul
  • Intentional walks to a male batter with a female behind him in the batting order results in the male batter gets a two-base award and the female batter has choice of taking a walk or batting.
    Intentional walk defined as 3 consecutive balls at the start of an at bat.
  • TIME LIMIT: No new innings will begin after the 60 minute mark (home plate umpire’s time is the official time). The game will start with first pitch. All tied games will continue until the tie is broken using the tie breaker rule (person in lineup preceding the leadoff batter of that half inning will be placed at second base). This will continue until the tie is broken and a winner is declared. Due to a major injury on the field during the game, the game clock will stop at 90 minutes regardless of the outcome of the game. If after 90 minutes a complete game has been played (five innings), the game will be considered final. The game clock will not stop for the injury. Discretion may be used during this situation by the umpires. Championship game for tournament champion will not have a time limit.
  • RUN RULE: A run rule shall be in effect as follows: If one team is leading by 15 or more runs after four innings of play; if a team is leading by 10 or more runs after five innings of play.
  • Any UNSPORTSMANLIKE behavior will result in that player/team being suspended/removed from participating in all ToneSports events for one year.

 

START OF THE GAME

Home team determined by a coin flip except in the Championship game. The winners bracket team is automatically the home team.

Home team will also have the official scorebook. Each team is responsible for keeping the score and having its scorebook in proper order. Before the start of the game, both coaches will meet at home plate to discuss the ground rules with the umpire.

RAINOUT/TIME EXPIRATION DURING A GAME/INNING

If a rainout occurs while a game is in progress, 4 innings must be completed for the game to count. (If the home team is ahead after the completion of the top of the 4th, this constitutes a complete game). The umpire’s clock is the game clock and they will inform both teams when the game has started. No minimum number of innings for a complete game if the time limit has been satisfied. If a rainout occurs before a game is considered a complete game, the game will be replayed in its entirety. After your game is completed, please clear all benches ASAP and get to the bar.

RAINOUT INFOMATION

The ToneSports office will determine by one and a half hours before game time whether or not to cancel a game for that evening. At that time, we will update the ToneSports weather alert system

.Should the weather take a sudden turn for the worse, it will be up to the discretion of the umpire on the field whether or not to play, cancel, or postpone the start/continuation of the game.

We will make an effort to have games on every playable field possible.

Games will be on hold or canceled immediately if lightning is in the area.

 

RAINOUT MAKE UP DATES

Rainouts will be made up at a later date on the same day of the week.

Example- If the event was on a Saturday the make up day will be on a Saturday. We will get the first available date but that can depend on the city’s scheduled.

 

SOFTBALL RULES

ToneSports follows the ASA Rules of Softball, with the exception of these specific league rules. Only captains can discuss a rule with the umpire and no judgment calls will be discussed. Players will be ejected for unsportsmanlike conduct towards an umpire.

NUMBER OF PLAYERS ON THE FIELD

Maximum number of players in the field is 10, including at least 3 women. There are no position requirements of any players, (i.e., there need not be 1/2 females in outfield and 1/2 in the infield). However teams can’t have more than 6 players in the infield, including the pitcher and catcher. Minimum number of players in the field/your starting line-up is 8 (at least 1 of whom must be women), (or if a team has nine players, two out of nine must be women). There is no maximum number of women allowed on the field/in your line-up. No more than 7 men are allowed on the field at one time. A player arriving late may be inserted at the bottom of the order even if you have batted around one or more times. You are

Allowed to place that player in the field, if your team is not batting. Make the umpire and opposing team aware of these additions. If a team has less than the minimum required number of players it is up to the opponent as to what is allowable (i.e., the opposing team may give a team a player or allow them to pick up another ToneSports player). If this is not possible, the game will be ruled a forfeit.

NUMBER OF PLAYERS IN THE BATTING ORDER/LINE-UP

In order to encourage maximum participation, teams may bat more than ten players. Regardless of how many people you choose to bat, you must bat 3 women in the first 10 spots and no more than 3 men can bat in a row. In situations where additional players wish to bat, the line-up must come as close to a 7 to 3 ratio as possible, even if some women need to bat twice in the rotation. Line-ups must be given to the umpire for every game.

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 incorrect batter reaches base safely and the error is discovered, the correct batter will be called out. All runners will return to their original base and the incorrect batter will return to the bench. The opposing team must make the umpire aware of “batting out of order” before a pitch is thrown to the next batter. If not, then the incorrect batter will stay on base.

Position Changes/Substitutions – Players may move freely from one field position to another, but the batting order must stay the same. Teams must report ALL SUBSTITUTIONS AND PLAYERS REENTERING the game to the umpire & opposing team.

PITCH ARC

The arc on pitches must be between six feet and twelve feet above the ground. The umpire will call a ball not within the prescribed limits an “illegal pitch” as soon as possible. If the batter swings, the pitch shall be treated as though it were thrown within the legal limits. The umpire’s call on a pitch is absolutely final!

Strike Zone – The strike zone is that space over any part of home plate that is between the batter’s front shoulder and back knee when the batter is lined up with home plate.

COED LINE

Outfielders must be stationary and cannot cross the line until the ball has been hit when a female is batting. Infielders must play on clay area until the ball has been hit for female players only. If teams shift when a female batter is up, they must stay on their side of the field.

COURTESY RUNNERS

1 runner per inning is allowed. Any player (same sex) may run. If a courtesy runner comes up to bat and they are still on base, they are out. Any player whom is run for, must be safe and touch the base they will be on, prior to the courtesy runner being substituted in

LEADING/ NO STEALING

Runners can leave the base once the ball leaves the pitcher’s hand. If a runner leaves early, the ball is dead and the runner is declared out. If this is the 3rd out of the inning the batter will be first up in the next inning. If the batter does not swing or swings and misses, and the runner is still off the base (leading), a force situation is in play until the runner returns to the base.

OVERTHROWS/OUT OF PLAY

Runners are awarded two bases (the base he/she is going to at the point of the throw plus one more) on overthrows that go out of play. Direction of runner has no bearing on the award (i.e., when an overthrow is made on a runner returning to a base, they are awarded two bases from that base). Note: in cases where a base runner runs past first base, he/she must make a clearly aggressive turn towards second base to be granted 2nd and 3rd in overthrow situations. Otherwise, the runner will advance only one base to 2nd base.

All thrown balls are deemed out of play when the ball is thrown over/beyond the fence.

If the ball is overthrown and hits the fence behind the 1st or 3rd base lines, this is NOT considered out of play and the runner may advance, BUT at his/her own risk.

 

INFIELD FLY RULE

On an infield fly (any fly ball within the infield with significant arc and deemed an “easy catch”) with less than 2 outs and runners on 1st and 2nd or 1st, 2nd and 3rd, the batter is automatically out .

DOUBLE FIRST BASE

Two bases will be placed at first base to avoid collisions. A batted ball hitting the inside base is declared fair, and a batted ball hitting the outside base is declared foul. The hitter/runner (offense) must tag the outside base only when running to first and the 1st baseman (defense) must tag the inside base only to avoid collisions. If the defensive player tags the outside base, the runner can be awarded first base. If the runner (offense) tags the inside base, he/she can be called out. Once the runner has reached first base and attempts to go beyond first base, the inside base is the only playable portion of the base.

Interference/Base Running – When a runner interferes with a fielder attempting to field a batted ball or interferes with a throw, the runner is out. If the runner interferes with a fielder during a POSSIBLE double play and the runner did not slide, get out of the way, or slid with excessive contact to disrupt throw, the immediate succeeding runner shall also be called out. Interference can be physical contact, verbal distraction, or any other type of distraction that would hinder the fielder in the execution of a play.

HOME PLATE RULE

If there is a play at the plate, it is the runner’s responsibility to avoid contact. The umpire has discretion to decide whether the runner initiated contact and should be called out. Any excessive contact or collision will result in an “out” and/or ejection. This includes contact with the catcher. Sliding is allowed but not required.

Fake tags and barreling will result in immediate ejection from the game and will not be tolerated. Sliding is not required, however a runner must be attempting to reach base and the defensive player must be attempting to catch the ball. If there is no play, the defensive player cannot block a base. Warnings will be issued, followed by ejection from the game if necessary. Collisions and injuries are to be avoided if at all possible.

Fielders may not block the base paths. If obstruction occurs, the umpire can award the runner the next base.

SPORTSMANSHIP

ToneSports is a charity-focused, social sports club for professionals. Our goal is for you to have fun. We hope that you keep this in mind when participating. Although the games may become intense, you still can be competitive while maintaining good sportsmanship. With this said, any behavior deemed unacceptable by the umpire or ToneSports staff may result in suspension and/or ejection from a game or the event.

SUSPENSIONS/EJECTIONS

  • Any player wearing metal spikes will be ejected from the game. If that player is caught wearing spikes a second time,they will be removed from the league. No warnings.
  • Any player(s)/team(s) that are involved in a fight will be suspended from all ToneSports events for life. Any teams will forfeit all remaining games. The umpire has the right to sit a player for an inning if necessary.
  • Any excessive contact or collision will result in an out and ejection of player. You must give yourself up, get out of the way or slide. No exceptions, IMMEDIATE ejection if players do not follow this rule.
  • Any defensive player initiating a FAKE TAG (initiating a tag without the ball to stop or force a runner to slide) will result in an ejection of that player. The runner will be awarded 2 bases.
  • Any player abusing the umpire will automatically be ejected from the game without a warning.
  • A player ejected for ANY reason will be suspended for the next game. If that player is caught playing in that game, the team will forfeit.

EJECTED PLAYER An ejected participant must leave the grounds immediately and have no contact with the umpires or participants in the game. Failure to comply may result in forfeit or the player may be POLICE TRESPASSED from the park. No substitute is allowed in the ejected player’s position and their batting spot will be an automatic out

THROWING BATS

Players throwing bats after hitting the ball will be warned once. The batter will be called out for any second offenses.

UNIFORMS/FOOTWEAR

  • No metal spikes may be worn