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GENERAL PLAYING RULES FOR ALL LEAGUES

1. A game will consist of (See matrix last page) innings or until time limit is reached. No inning will be started after (See matrix last page). Extra innings will be played if the score tied and the time limit has not been met. If the time limit is met and the home team is leading or took the lead and at bat, then the game will be called official at the point the time limit is met. Time of game shall be governed by umpire based on actual start of game (not scheduled start time), and new inning continuation shall be based on the time of last out of previous inning. (i.e. if the last out in the 4th inning of a Mustang game is made at the 1:49 mark, the 5th inning will start, regardless of when the first pitch is made.)

a. All regular season, in-house softball and baseball games will have a maximum playing time of 15 minutes beyond the division’s time limit. Once this time the maximum time is reached the game will stopped and the official game score will be recorded as the results of the last completed inning.


2. Mercy Rule - If a team is leading an opponent by ten (10) or more runs in baseball or twelve (12) or more runs in softball and the minimum number of innings have been played as detailed in the matrix on the back cover (Note - home team does not need to bat in the bottom of inning if leading by ten (10) runs), the game shall be terminated and the team with the ten (10) run lead shall be declared the winner.

NOTE- In divisions where a maximum number of runs can be scored in an inning and a team is unable to score enough runs in an inning for the mercy rule not to be invoked their turn at bat should still be completed if they have not reached the minimum innings for Mercy rule. Example Team A is a mustang team as leading Team B 16 to 0 going into the 4th inning. Team B’s at bat should still be completed prior to invoking the Mercy rule provided time limit not yet expired, at time it should be called.


3. The entire roster of players present for the game shall be included in the batting order. The batting order will be continuous for the game. Players arriving late will bat last in the order. In a game where ten (10) or more players are listed to bat, a player not able to bat due to injury sustained during the game will be skipped in the batting order and not recorded as an out. In a game where nine (9) batters are listed to bat, a player not able to bat due to an injury sustained during the game will be skipped in the batting order and recorded as an out. Teams will be allowed to start and finish a game with eight (8) players and the ninth spot in the batting order will be recorded as an out.


4. When replacing a player on a team to prevent a forfeit or to avoid falling below 9 players, replace with equal or lower rated player from within the same league who will play the outfield for 4 innings and infield 2 innings and will bat last. A team may only use the same substitute once per season. The commissioner must approve substitutions. If the commissioner is unavailable, the opposing manager may grant approval, but the commissioner must be notified that the substitution was made. If a player from the team that has a substitute shows up, the substitute will play at least two (2) innings and bat once.


5. The home team will keep the Official Scorebook.


6. Any game suspended prior to becoming an official game (See matrix last page) shall be resumed at a later date from the exact spot at which it was suspended. Managers need to record in their scorebooks the time at which the game was suspended, the balls, strikes, outs, base runners, Pitchers, elapsed game time and any other information necessary to

resume the game. Scorebooks of the opposing teams should be in agreement and each scorebook initialed by the opposing manager before leaving the park.


7. Pitchers removed, for any reason, during the suspended game will not be permitted to pitch in the continuation game (See PITCHING rule #5). Example: Pitcher removed in 2nd inning. Game suspended in 3rd inning. Pitcher removed in 2nd inning will not be eligible to pitch when game is resumed.


PLAYING TIME

 

1. Each eligible player will play at least three (3) full innings per game if time allows. Any combination of three (3) innings played in compliance with league rules will suffice. Players not playing their three (3) innings due to the "slaughter" rule, weather, injury, etc. will be required to play the first three (3) innings in the next game. First violation of this rule by the manager will result in the forfeiture of the game. Second violation of this rule will result in the suspension of the manager for the season.


2. Managers are required to give equal playing time to all players on the team. This includes innings on the bench, infield innings and outfield innings played. The child's ability, safety, and comfort are factors, which must be considered when positioning players at different positions.


3. Free substitution of all players will be allowed except for the pitcher. Players may be removed from and reentered.

SOFTBALL PLAYING RULES

 

Play will be governed by A.S.A Softball Rules. The order of rule interpretation for all decisions at all games is as follows:

1. OBSA

2. Southwest Suburban (SWS) League – (if applicable for age group)

3. ASA

 

The OBSA rules that follow will be in effect.

 

PITCHING

 

1. After throwing one (1) pitch to a batter, the pitcher shall be considered as having pitched one (1) inning.

2. Neither a pitcher withdrawn from the line-up, nor a pitcher who is withdrawn from the mound but who stays in the game at another position shall be permitted to pitch again in the same inning. Only one pitcher per game can re-enter to pitch again in the same game.

3. A calendar week is defined as 12:01am Monday to 11:59pm Sunday for the purpose of the pitching matrix.

4. If a manager or coach goes onto the playing field to talk to a pitcher more than once in a half inning, a pitching change shall be made. The only exceptions to this rule are in the case of injury.

 

PITCHING REGULATIONS

ART. 1 . . . Prior to starting the delivery (pitch), the pitcher shall take a position with the pivot foot on or partially on the top surface of the pitcher’s plate and the non-pivot foot in contact with or behind the pitcher’s plate. Both feet must be on the ground within or partially within the 24-inch length of the pitcher’s plate.

a. Prior to pitching, the pitcher must take a position with shoulders in line with first and third base with the ball in the glove or pitching hand, and with the hands separated.

b. While in this position, the pitcher shall take (or simulate taking) a signal from the catcher.

c. After completing “b” above, the pitcher shall bring the hands together in front of the body for not less than one second and not more than 10 seconds before releasing the ball. The hands may be motionless or moving.

d. The pitcher shall not be considered to be in pitching position unless the catcher is within the lines of the catcher’s box and in position to receive the pitch.

e. The pitcher may not take the pitching position on or near the pitcher’s plate without having possession of the ball.

f. The pitcher may remove herself from the pitching position as follows:

1. before the hands come together, the pitcher may legally step back from the pitcher’s plate with both feet;

2. when the hands are together and no part of the windup motion has been made, the pitcher may legally step back from the pitcher’s plate with both feet; 3. either foot may be removed first.

PENALTY: (Art. 1) An illegal pitch is called.

ART. 2
. . . About the Pitch:

a. The pitch starts when one hand is taken off the ball or the pitcher makes any motion that is part of the windup after the hands have been brought together.

b. Once the hands are brought together and are in motion, the pitcher shall not take more than one step which must be forward, toward the batter and simultaneous with the delivery. Any step backward shall begin before the hands come together. The step backward may end before or after the hands come together.

NOTE: Towards is interpreted as within or partially within the 24-inch length of the pitcher’s plate. (See Figure 6-1)

c. the pivot foot may remain in contact with or may push off and drag away from the pitching plate prior to the front foot touching the ground, as long as the pivot foot remains in contact with the ground and within the 24-inch length. Pushing off with the pivot foot from a place other than the pitcher’s plate is illegal.

NOTES:

1: It is not a step if the pitcher slides her foot in any direction on the pitcher’s plate, provided contact is maintained.

2: Techniques such as the “crow hop” and “the leap” are illegal.


ART. 3
. . . A legal delivery shall be a pitched ball that is delivered to the batter with an underhand motion.

a. The release of the ball and the follow-through of the hand and wrist must be forward past the vertical line of the body.

b. The hand shall be below the hip and the wrist not farther from the body than the elbow.

c. The pitch shall be delivered on the throwing arm side of the body and not behind the back or between the legs.

d. The pitch is completed with a step toward the batter.


ART. 4
. . . The pitcher may use any windup desired provided:

a. no motion to pitch is made without immediately delivering the ball to the batter.

b. the pitcher does not use a rocker action in which, after having the ball in both hands in pitching position, she removes one hand from the ball, takes a backward and forward swing and returns the ball to both hands in front of the body.

c. the pitcher does not use a windup in which there is a stop or reversal of the forward motion.

d. the pitcher does not make more than 1½ clockwise revolutions of the arm in the windmill pitch. The ball does not have to be released the first time past the hip.

e. the pitcher does not continue to wind up after taking the forward step or after the ball is released. NOTE: Continuation of the windup is considered any action that, after the ball is released causes the arm to continue to rotate past the shoulder.

PENALTY: (Arts. 2, 3, 4) Illegal pitch. The ball is dead at the end of playing action, if the ball is pitched. A ball is called on the batter, and base runners are awarded one base without liability to be put out (10u and 12 u see grid on back cover)

 

 

LOOK-BACK RULE (Applies to the 12u division and above)

ART. 1 . . . The look-back rule will be in effect when the ball is live, the batter runner has touched first base or has been declared out, and the pitcher has possession of the ball within the pitcher's circle.


ART. 2
. . . The runner(s) may stop once, but then must immediately return to the base or attempt to advance to the next base.


ART. 3
. . . Once the runner stops at a base for any reason, she will be declared out if she leaves the base.


ART. 4
. . . Responsibilities of batter-runner after completing a turn at bat, and while the pitcher has the ball within the 16-foot pitching circle, including a base on balls or a dropped third strike are as follows:

a. A batter-runner who rounds first base toward second base may stop, but then must immediately, without stopping, return to first or attempt to advance to second base.

b. A batter-runner who overruns first base toward right field, turns left and immediately stops, must then return non-stop to first or attempt to advance to second base.

c. A batter-runner who overruns first base toward right field, turns left and moves directly toward second base and stops is committed to second and must attempt to advance non-stop to second base.

d. A batter-runner who overruns first base toward right field, turns left and moves back toward the infield in any direction except directly toward second base is committed to first and must return to first base.

e. A batter-runner who overruns first base toward right field, and turns right, is committed to first base and must return to first base.

PENALTY: (Arts. 2, 3, 4) The ball is dead. "No pitch" is declared when applicable, and the runner is out. If two runners or more are off their bases, when one is called out, the ball is dead and other runners are returned to the last base touched. Only one runner may be called out.

EXCEPTION: The runner will not be declared out if a play is made on another runner (a fake throw is considered a play), the pitcher no longer has possession of the ball within the 16-foot circle, or the pitcher releases the ball on a pitch to the batter.

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