These are the most common and/or most unique rules being used for this event. Please see "Official Rulebook" for exhaustive list of playing rules.
As a player, you are responsible for knowing all official rules of the game. By participating in the league, you are agreeing that you are aware of all rules associated with the league and the sport, and agree to abide by them at all times.
This event is intended to be FUN first. We welcome players of ALL SKILL LEVELS to our fields, and therefore set rules that ensure the safety and enjoyment of our skilled players and our novices equally.
Be supportive of one another. Fighting, excessive verbal abuse, and poor sportsmanship will not be tolerated.
Length: All games will run for a maximum of 50 minutes plus 1 additional inning, or the completion of 7 innings, whichever comes first. At the conclusion of the 50 minute timer, both teams will complete the currently active inning and then the following inning will be the last inning. The final matches of the tourney will be no time-limit, 7-inning full games.
Run Rules: Games will be declared over by "run rule" if the winning team is ahead by 20 runs at the conclusion of the 3rd inning, 15 runs at the conclusion of the 4th inning, or 10 runs at the conclusion of the 5th inning or later.
Extra Innings: Games tied at the conclusion of the time limit will go into extra innings. During extra innings play, the batting team will have a runner automatically placed on second (must be the last out from the previous inning) and all batters will face a 3-ball, 2-strike pitch count when they approach the plate.
Home/Away: The coaches will meet the umpire at home plate ahead of the game, and the game timer will start. During pool play, the umpire will flip a coin to determine home team. During tourney play, the higher seed has the option of selecting home or away.
Umpires: Excessive arguing and/or abusive language will never be tolerated. Umpires may issue warnings and dismiss players from a game if they are found to be abusive. Event officials reserve the right to ban players from the event with no refund if abusive behavior continues.
Unsafe Throws: Outfielders are not allowed to complete force out throws to first base. Any throw from outfield to first base for the intention of a force out will be ruled a dead ball and the runner will be awarded 2nd base. Infielders brought into the outfield grass through defensive actions are allowed to complete the throw for a force out at first base.
Hitting Middle: It's not illegal, but it is dangerous and some of our novice players may not be able to control it. But for those of you that can - don't do it. If you feel the other team is hitting middle a lot, don't take revenge and start.
Pitching Screens: These screens are intended for safety, not to create an extra defensive player on the field. Screen must be positioned no more than three feet ahead of the pitching rubber. One of the pitching screen support legs must be lined up within the width of the pitching rubber and cannot be set to the side of the rubber. Pitchers using the screen must stay near the screen and cannot extend their defense away from it to create an extra fielder advantage. There's no multiple swapping between screen and helmet during an inning.
Injury Exceptions: In the cases of injury, some rules may be bent to avoid placing players in harm's way. Coaches facing a situation that they believe requires an adjustment must discuss with the opposing coach a recommended solution. Opposing coach must approve the solution, and such approval should not be unreasonably withheld.
Injured Player / Can Not Continue: If a player is significantly injured in the course of play and cannot continue, they shall be removed from the lineup. When their batting position comes up, it shall be skipped and not counted as an automatic out. Player is unable to return to play for that game and, at a minimum, the game following.
Commitment Line: Seniors Only - On the third base line, there will be a line drawn on the dirt. If the runner passes that line, they must commit to finishing their run to the plate and may not return to third base. Once you cross the commitment line, the play at the plate will be considered a force out, and the running player must cross the run line to score before the ball is caught at home plate. If a runner advancing from third touches home plate, they will be called out - the runner must cross the run line to score.
Equipment (Bats): Any USSSA 1.20 stamped bat may be used in this event. Bats must be in good condition, and not modified in any substantial way (i.e. shaved). Compression equipment will be onsite to test bats to ensure bats do not exceed safety standards. We reserve the right to test and disqualify any bat that doesn't pass the standard. We will hold the DQ-ed bat until the end of the tournament and it is the player's responsibility to retrieve it. Senior division may use Senior approved bats.
Equipment (Balls): All balls will be supplied for this event, external balls are not allowed. Each team is responsible for providing the opponent with 1 12" ball for male batters and 1 11" ball for female batters. Non-binary players will declare to the tourney director ahead of the event whether they will play "Big Ball" or "Small Ball" rules and will maintain that status for the duration of the event. No player may change their ball selection after the event starts.
Defense: For Senior division, A minimum of 2 female players must be on the defense at all times. For Mixed division, a minimum of 1 female player must be on defense at all times.
Walks: If a male batter is walked with a female batter coming up to bat, the male batter is awarded second base and the female batter is given the option to choose an automatic walk or to hit as normal. The decision to walk is up to the sole discretion of the batter and coaches shall not force a walk on any player who wishes to hit.
Home Runs: Home runs are limited in this event. Each team is allotted FIVE home runs without penalty. All home runs hit over the fence that are higher than the allotted total of home runs are automatically counted as an "out". Women home runs are unlimited and do not count towards team totals.
Pinch Runners: One unrestricted runner, per gender each inning. Any additional runners required over the allotted one due to injury or runner request must be supplied as the last out who matches the gender of the runner being substituted, and opposing coach must be informed of this necessity. Runners have the right to reject a coaches' suggestion for a runner. Senior Division: Unlimited runners, but a substitute runner can only run once per inning.
Strikes: A mat shall be placed behind home plate. Any ball that hits the mat while matching the height and speed pitching requirements shall be called a strike. A ball batted into a pitcher's screen will be ruled as a dead ball, foul ball. There is no extra foul ball for this occurrence. Senior Division: The Senior division strike mat will include home plate as part of the strike zone.
Foul Balls: This is a WSL event and follows the extra foul ball rule established by WSL. The first foul ball with a 2-strike count is called a foul, and any additional foul balls will be considered outs.
Score Limits: Senior Division Only: A maximum of 5 runs can be scored in an inning prior to switching the teams. After the time limit expires, there are no run limit on the +1 inning.
Minimum Innings on Defense: During Pool Play, each rostered player must complete a minimum of three defensive innings in the field. During the final tournament, the minimum innings played requirement is reduced to two.
First Team to Bat: During pool play, this is determined by a double coin flip with the umpire ahead of the game. During tourney play, the higher seed has the option of selecting home or away.
These are guidelines and rules for the event that all coaches must acknowledge and follow. Please review all rules carefully.
All decisions for your team come down to you and you alone. You should not invite other players to participate in rule discussions, or allow them to participate in debates over rule disagreements. As coaches, we will at times disagree and may even sometimes get testy with one another, but it is important that we keep these discussions to the back of the house and do not allow rule issues to spill over to the general players. Keep it fun for everyone and don't let the inmates run the asylum!
Win on the field, not in the rulebook.
Rules are made to be enforced, but in our game - things happen. Players get hurt, or they disappear, or they are late, etc. Please always be flexible in dealing with unusual situations. It is much more important to complete a game than it is to take a cheap, easy, rule-forced win. You don't need to put your team at a disadvantage, but at least allow the game to be interesting.
A little trash talk never hurt anyone, but don't be that person yelling "By You!" on every single play. If you see a player struggling, don't instruct your team to intentionally pick on them. Don't tell a player coming up to the plate that they should walk, because the person behind them can't hit (even if it's true). Play to win the game in a manner where you know all players from both teams will be happy to grab beers with their opponents when the dust settles.
The official rules for the sport, which may or may not be from a sanctioning body.
This league follows the WSL rules for Slowpitch Softball. Please use the following link to download and read full rules.
The operator of this event is Sports Drafts, LLC. League Joe is a promotional partner and provides the website services on behalf of the operator.
For all questions and inquiries, please use the contact page to reach out to the operator.