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Sports Leagues


Summer Softball: Boys Majors 4th-5th: Rules

DSN Softball rules grades 4th-5th  Grade 

The rules written in Blue are specific to 4th-5th. The rules writing in black are the same for all ages.

Please remember that you are representing much more than your team. You are representing the DSN & the highest of standards that have been set for this organization.

MANDATE: KIDS ARE TO HAVE FUN. COACHES ARE TO BE GOOD ROLE MODELS.

Go over these rules with each other & the umpire before each game; it takes less than one minute. Refer to them when necessary.

Timing/Game Play

  • The games are 6 innings long or until time runs out (120minutes from slotted game time, or if ump or weather delay, from first pitch). 15 minutes or more must remain within the allotted time slot to begin an inning. If there are less than 15 minutes the game will be called. In the event of a tie after 6 innings, extra innings will be played if time is permitted within the allotted time slot if the game is tie after 7 innings, this rule shall apply again, time permitting. No matter what –for the playoffs – if time is up & there is another game waiting to be played, the remainder of your game will be finished at the end of the day. NOTED: We will be scheduling a longer time slot for playoff games. While this is not optimal for the team or parents watching, it is equally not fair to the next 1, 2 or 3 games players & parents who plan their days accordingly. Also, NOT having this rule gives a big advantage to the team that plays first / early games on the day.
  • After 4 complete innings game is official (rain) or 3 1/2 if losing team already batted. In the event of a rain delay – the team will have until their allotted time to possibly resume play in the event the rain subsides & field is deemed by the umpire in playable condition. 15 minute rule still applies.
  • Innings may be able to start without a catcher defensively. A coach should start as a catcher until the catcher is in full gear.
  • Must have a minimum of 7 players for a real game to take place. Less than 7 will cause your team to forfeit. If both teams have less than 7 players it's a double forfeit and both teams get a loss. The number of players is determined after 15 minutes from game start time. For example, if game time is 530pm, then at 545pm the ump counts the players and if there are less than 7, he calls it a forfeit. If your 7th player arrives at 5:46pm, it’s too late and no game is played. If you are playing with only 7 or 8 players, a father can be catcher but he must wear a protective mask and he cannot make any out plays

Batting

  • EVERY player on the team must bat, subject to Slotting in rule below
  • If a teams has more players then the team they are playing they have the option to slot down to match the team with less players or they can allow all their players to bat.

Coaches

  • Offensive coaches are allowed at first & third base ONLY. Defensive coaches must stay in the dugout.

Score

  • 5 runs maximum allowed per inning. This applies to every inning. Once 5 runs are scored, the inning is over. If a team is out of reach of winning, the game is over.

Base Running/Hitting

  • Stealing and leading are not allowed. Base runner must remain on the base until the batter makes contact with the ball. Ball is in play at all times unless ump calls time out. Runners can run around the bases until time is called. (note – rules about stealing still apply)
  • Third strike foul tip is a do-over unless the ball is caught – REGARDLESS of how high the foul tip was. There is no running to first on a third strike dropped by the catcher.
  • A runner is out if hit by a batted ball.
  • Bunting is not allowed.
  • Traditional fly ball “Tagging up” rules are in force.
  • A base runner will be called safe if a defender, who is not making a play, seriously impedes the runner's ability to run straight to the next base and the play at that bag is a close call. On the other hand, if the ball is going to that defender, then the base runner cannot interfere with the defender, and must avoid any contact. If there is contact, the umpire can call “interference” and the runner will be called out.
  • Once the Batter is in the batter’s box the pitcher may pitch the ball.
  • If the ball is overthrown, they can run at their own risk but only one additional base. If there is another overthrow, then the runner can advance to yet another base. For example, batter hits the ball to shortstop who throws to 1st but ball sails over the 1st baseman's head, the runner can go to 2nd base at her own risk. If the 1st baseman then throws to 2nd base and the ball sails over the 2nd baseman’s head, the runner can go to 3rd base at her own risk.

Pitching

  • Pitchers can pitch the full game. Once he is taken out No splitting appearances: a pitcher cannot, for example, pitch the second inning and then come back in the 5th inning.
  • Pitchers will pitch from 35 feet away.
  • Coaches can visit the mound 3 times per pitcher per inning (barring injury or special circumstance as deemed by the umpire) – on third time the pitcher must be taken out of the game.
  • Pitcher is removed as pitcher on third batter hit by pitch in one inning.
  • Intentional Walks are permitted. The pitches must be pitched; the batter must stay in the batter’s box.\
  • Pitchers warm-ups will be limited to 3 minutes. Switching sides in between innings will be limited to a time frame of 2 minutes. If umpire suspects intentional delay of game than a walk will be issued for the batting team for every minute the defense is not ready, or an out will be issued to the batting team if they do not have a batter ready.
  • Starting pitchers must be announced 15 minutes before game time to allow each team to finalize their starting lineups accordingly.
  • A pitched ball going through the backstop at home plate is a DEAD BALL. A batted fair ball going under any other fence is an automatic ground-rule double.
  • Balls and strikes will be called for this league. There is no hit by pitch rule for this league—if a batter gets hit by a pitch she is not awarded a free base. However, if the pitcher hits 3 different batters in 1 inning, she must be removed as a pitcher from the game. She can play any other position instead.

Fielding

  • Minimum of 7 to start to play and the other team will provide 1 outfielder. 
  • Catchers can only block the plate if they have the ball. The runner must “slide or avoid” meaning they must avoid contact all together slide or avoid into home. Any player who does not slide or avoid will be called out and risks being ejected from the game. If there is no play at the plate the runner does not have to slide or avoid.
  • Catcher interference: If any part of a catcher or his equipment gets in the way of a swing of the batter, it is a dead ball & the batter is awarded first base. All other runners remain where they were, except if they are forced to move by the batter going to first base.
  • Once the 1st batter of the half-inning has seen 1 pitch, no timeouts permitted in order to move players in defensive position. It is up to the coach to move his players before or during the at bat without a time out being called. If you want timeout, you need to visit the mound and it will be counted as a visit to the mound.
  • Each team is allowed one short center position in the outfield, in addition to the 3 outfields already I the outfield.

Equipment

  • Clincher balls will be used in play.
  • All Bats must be ASA approved. 

 

The Basics

Coaches

  • Be nice & respectful to each other. If there is a disagreement, the 2 head coaches & umpire (if necessary) ONLY should quietly talk it over & come to an agreement. If the rule is unclear, the umpire will rule for that call & at the next meeting we will bring up the situation to make a rule for the future.
  •  ONLY Coaches (up to 4) are allowed in the dugouts. No adults, kid’s friends or family. Coaches must be listed on the back of the lineup card, along with the batting order prior to the start of play.
  • Offensive coaches are not allowed to touch, hold or impede their own players in an effort to stop them, if they do, that runner will be called out
  • As a general rule every player should play 3 innings in the field. Coaches should try not to sit a player out 2 consecutive innings in the field.

Uniform/Equipment

  • All Players must be in their proved DSN uniform ( Jersey/ Pant and Hat)
  • Cleats are allowed, except metal spikes.
  • All players should wear a cup.
  • Approved Equipment - Bats (wood & non-wood). DSN follows the same rules as little league baseball with regards to approved bats. You can check their web site for reference.http://www.littleleague.org/learn/equipment.htm

Batting/Running

  • A batter throwing the bat is warned first offense. Second offense he is automatically called out.  
  • A runner is out if hit by a batted ball and as in MLB rules, play is dead immediately. All other base-runners must return to the initial base they were on prior to the hit. 
  • No head first sliding or the runner will be called out. Headfirst sliding is not allowed, except when going BACK to the base. Any headfirst slide even WITHOUT a play at the base, will be called out. 
  •  For safety reasons No “ON DECK “batters are allowed. The ONLY person swinging a bat should be the hitter. 
  • Runners may not run out of the base paths or they risk being called out by the ump. 
  • A batter throwing the bat is warned first offense. Second offense he is automatically called out.
  • Pinch Running is prohibited. There are 2 exceptions. 1) If a runner gets injured  and cannot run, he must get to first base and then they can have a replacement runner. The replacement runner MUST be the last batted out. 2) If there are 2 outs and your catcher is on base, you should pull him off the base and put a pinch runner in so the catcher can get dressed. The replacement runner MUST be the last batted out. 

Fielding 

  • If a fielder tags the runner with his glove, however the ball is in his bare hand – batter is NOT OUT.
  • We are not playing with infield fly rule.
  • Defenders MUST give a clear path for base runners to run to the next base. It is the coach’s responsibility to teach this to his players. A base runner will be called safe if a defender seriously impedes his right to run straight to the next base and the play at that bag is a close call.
  •  Outfielders MUST be OUT on the grass & NOT on the infield making a wall around the field.

Sportsmanship 

  • All players & coaches must line up at the end of the game to congratulate one another - one team at first base, one team at second base. Good sportsmanship is a MUST.
  •  All players, parents & coaches are expected to abide by the DSN code of conduct.

Missing Player

  1. If a player gets injured and is out-for-the-season with at least ½ the regular season games remaining, he can be replaced by a child that is not playing in the league yet.  The new player must be of equal or lesser talent.  If there is a waiting list, do not just choose the 1st child on the list. Rather, in our competitive leagues to ensure parity and fairness, the new player is the 1stchild on the list that is of equal or lesser talent. For example if the player injured is an average player, and on the waiting list the 1st player is an excellent player and the 2nd player is an average player, then the average player is selected.  The talent comparison supersedes the waiting list order.
  2.  No substitute players are allowed. This means if a team is missing a player or a player is injured, a player from a different team or a non-player cannot be added to play in that game

Games

  • The Home team has the first base dugout regardless of field. The home team is the second team listed on the schedule. DURING HOT WEATHER BOTH TEAMS SHARE THE SHADY DUGOUT.
  • Season tie breakers will be decided as follows
    • head to head wins
    • Points for vs Points against between the tied teams 
    • Points for vs Points against all team
  • Home team must bat 2nd, whether regular season or playoffs. The home team cannot choose to bat 1st
  • VALIDATE each other’s score cards at end of each game – it may be needed for tie breakers
  • Playoffs/World Series: With 4 teams. Home team is always the highest ranked team. The first round of playoffs will be held as follows: team 1 will play 4 and team 2 will play 3.
  • Only DSN Staff has authority to cancel a game before its scheduled time.  Coaches have NO authority to cancel a game on their own. Even if both headcoaches agree to cancel, without DSN staff approval the game is on and will not be made up.
  • Once a game is underway, only the umpire can postpone the game due to weather or any other potentially unsafe conditions. It is the umpire's decision. If the umpire postpones the game, but headcoaches want to play anyway, they are not allowed to play even without the umpire.  Umpire's decision is final.
  • If both teams do not have the minimum # of players for a game, it's a double forfeit with both teams earning a loss, and the game will not be made up.
  • No regular games, playoff games or World Series can be cancelled, postponed or re-scheduled due to a missing player, regardless of the player's talent level or position on the team.
  • No regular games, playoff games, or World Series game can be cancelled, postponed or re-scheduled due to a missing headcoach. Another parent coach must fill in.  

Missing Player

  1. If a player gets injured and is out-for-the-season with at least 1/3 the regular season games remaining, he can be replaced by a child that is not playing in the league yet.  The new player must be of equal or lesser talent.  If there is a waiting list, do not just choose the 1st child on the list. Rather, in our competitive leagues to ensure parity and fairness, the new player is the 1stchild on the list that is of equal or lesser talent. For example if the player injured is an average player, and on the waiting list the 1st player is an excellent player and the 2nd player is an average player, then the average player is selected.  The talent comparison supersedes the waiting list order.
  2.  No substitute players are allowed. This means if a team is missing a player or a player is injured, a player from a different team or a non-player cannot be added to play in that game