2003 SMSS LEAGUE RULES
1. GENERAL RULES
A. All competition shall be conducted in accordance with the rules set forth in the ASA "2000 OFFICIAL RULES OF SOFTBALL", except as modified herein this guide.
B. All coaches and managers shall participate in any dealings involving League rules and procedures. At League meetings, only one (1) vote will be permitted for each team.
C. The Commissioner of the League shall have the final authority to act in the best interest of the league, in all decisions, whether competition or otherwise.
2. MEMBERSHIP AND REGISTRATION
A. Membership in the League is open to any individual who turns 55 years of age, or is older than 55, in the current calendar year.
B. Players may be required to prove their age with a valid Driver's License.
C. The annual player registration fee shall be $15. This will be paid upon signing the Waiver Form. This fee may be adjusted at the discretion of the league office. The registration fee collected will be used to pay for the expenses of the league operations.
D. By signing the Waiver Form, each member agrees to be bound by the rules of the league, and agrees to hold the league harmless for any personal injury, and/or property damage while involved in league activities, whether competition or otherwise.
E. Each player must be registered before playing a game. Any team that permits a non-registered person to play may forfeit their game that day or any days of league games using the unregistered player.
A. The SECOND HOME PLATE shall be placed eight feet (8') from the back tip of home plate on an extended line from first base. A line shall be drawn from third base to the SECOND HOME PLATE. A runner attempting to score must touch this plate. Running between the two plates is invalid. A scoring runner must touch the SECOND HOME PLATE.
B. A three-foot COMITTMENT LINE shall be marked perpendicular to the foul line 20' from home between third base and home plate. Once a runner's foot touches the ground on or past this line said runner may NOT re-cross it in the direction of third base (i.e., the runner must continue toward the SECOND HOME PLATE). Violation will result in an OUT.
C. A STRIKE ZONE MAT shall be used. The mat shall be 17" wide and 24" long, measured along the "long edge" of the mat - and shall have a vee-shaped notch (90 degrees) that conforms to the backside of home plate. OR, the mat shall be cut so it covers home plate in its entirety, in which case the mat shall be 17" wide and 32 ~/2" long
D. A DOUBLE BAG or mat of equal size (30" x 15") shall be used at 1st base. The red or orange portion of this DOUBLE BAG shall be in foul territory abutting 1st base. Whenever a play is being made on the batter-runner, the defense must use the white portion and the batter-runner the colored portion. The batter-runner is OUT when there is a play being made at 1st base and the batter-runner touches only the white portion.
A. BATS imprinted with "BPF 1.20" may be used. Titanium alloy bats have been ruled to be illegal. Bats imprinted with "Exceeds BPF 1.20" are illegal. Wooden bats so marked “Official Softball” that meet the 2.25” ring test shall also be considered a legal bat. See ASA Rule 3-Section 1.
B. BALLS will be furnished by the League. We are currently using a COR 47 or higher.
C. SHOES must be worn by all players. No metal spikes nor hard plastic or polyurethane spikes similar to metal sole and heel plates are allowed.
5. PLAYERS AND SUBSTITUTES
A. ASA rules for RE-ENTRY and EXTRA PLAYERS will apply. Extra players may play defense at any time provided the number of defensive players on the field does not exceed the total allowed under league rules. Any player removed from the game may return later, but must occupy the same batting position whenever he is in the lineup.
B. NINE PLAYERS shall constitute a team (i.e. a team must have NINE players at the start and finish of a game). Failure to have nine players will result in a forfeit. Additional players may be added as they show up, however they must bat after the original players in the order.
C. EVERY PLAYER must bat and play three (3) innings in the field. The manager has the discretion to "bat the lineup".
D. MARGINAL PLAYERS - players of any age but with limited physical ability - may be permitted to be used as a “designated hitter” or can have a “runner substitution” at the discretion of the team manager, and may be exempt from rule 5c above. This rule may be altered only by approval of both managers at game time.
E. There shall be NO ROSTER LIMIT.
F. Any NEW PLAYERS coming into the league will be assigned to a team at the discretion of the Commissioner. Any majority conflicts with a team assignment (3 or more teams) shall be decided by a vote of the team managers.
6. THE GAME
A. The LENGTH OF EACH GAME shall be SEVEN (7) innings. No game shall end in a tie. All games will be played until a winner is determined.
B. The FIVE-RUNS-PER-INNING RULE will govern through eight (8) innings. After eight (8) innings, teams may score at will with no 5-run maximum.
C. Each team will provide their own SCOREKEEPER during all games and each scorekeeper will speak to the opposing scorekeeper after each half inning for comparative information. Any disputes on run count will be decided before the 1st pitch of the next half inning. Any dispute arising after a specific half inning of the ball game, and after the end of the appropriate dispute period, shall be as the home team scorekeeper recorded it.
A. Each team will designate a player to be their HOME PLATE UMPIRE. Said person should be familiar with the pitching regulations, the 6'-12' pitching rule, the infield-fly rule, and other basic rules and premises of umpiring.
B. BASE UMPIRES - The 1st base coach shall also be the BASE UMPIRE at 1st base. Likewise, the 3rd base coach shall be the BASE UMPIRE for 2nd base and 3rd base. Said Base Coaches/Umpires should be instructed as to their umpiring duties before play starts.
C. Each manager and/or the designated home plate umpire will ensure that play starts only with all Base Coach/Umpires in their proper position.
D. Obvious "MISSED CALLS" on the bases may be overruled by the HOME PLATE UMPIRE.
E. DISPUTED PLAYS AND CONTROVERSIAL CALLS will be handled by the umpires and managers on the field, before the next pitch is thrown. There will be no appeals.
8. PITCHING REGULATIONS
A. Legal pitches striking any portion of the STRIKE ZONE MAT or the ACTUAL HOME PLATE will be called a STRIKE. (See Definition 3C.)
B. The ball must be delivered with a perceptible arc and reach a height of at least 6' from the ground, while not exceeding a maximum height of 12' from the ground.
C. The umpire shall call "ILLEGAL" on a pitch thrown below the legal height of 6' or over the legal height of 12', and said pitch will be called a "ball". However, if a batter swings at or contacts any illegal pitch, said call is nullified and all play stands.
D. A third-strike foul that results in an OUT, whether caught or not. If caught, runners may NOT advance (i.e.: The ball is dead).
E. We shall use a 3-ball, 2-strike count with a courtesy on the second strike, (i.e.: A batter may hit three foul balls before he is out. The third ball batted must be fair.)
9. BASE RUNNING
A. A batter-runner going to first base, if there is a play at 1st base, MUST touch the portion of the DOUBLE BAG or mat extending into foul territory. The batter-runner shall be called out for touching only the white portion of the bag. (See Definition 3D)
B. There will be NO run-through, run-by, or overrun at 2nd base or 3rd base allowed. The base runner must either STOP OR SLIDE, but must be in contact with the base to be considered safe (see exception at 8E).
C. Once a base-runner's foot touches the ground on or past the COMMITMENT LINE, the runner may not recross it in the direction of 3rd base (i.e.: The runner must continue on toward the SECOND HOME PLATE only. Violations will result in an OUT. See Definitions 3A and 3B.)
D. To be safe at home, a base runner must touch the SECOND HOME PLATE. A base runner may be retired at home in a non-force situation without a tag. The defensive player has only to hold the ball while touching the ORIGINAL HOME PLATE. If the base runner touches the original home plate, or crosses over any portion of the original home plate OR the strike zone mat, he shall be called out.
E. The base runner must avoid collisions or be at risk of being called out. If a runner misses the base to avoid a collision, the runner will not be called out. (Umpires judgement)
10. SUBSTITUTE (COURTESY) RUNNERS
A. Any player on the roster may run whether they are in the lineup or not, and the same courtesy runner may not be used more than once in any one inning. If a player runs more than once per inning he will be called OUT.
B. No courtesy runner can be substituted for another courtesy runner. Doing so will result in an OUT.
C. It will be up to the manager of the opposing team to keep track of the other teams courtesy runners.
D. A courtesy runner FROM HOME PLATE may be used if the opposing coach is notified prior to the game. Said runner must start from the mid-point of the backstop and directly behind the catcher. He may not run until the batter makes contact with (hits) the ball.