Official Big D Sports Softball League Rules
Coed Softball Rules
All players must be at least 21 years old.
Field of play will be a standard softball field with 65 ft basepaths. Game balls will be provided by Big D. Men will hit a regulation 12” ball and women will hit a regulation 11” ball.
All games are seven innings or 50 minutes, whichever comes first. Clock shall begin after the coin flip. The ump will enforce this rule and will make the call at the top of the final inning. No new inning shall start after 50 minutes has elapsed.
League will follow the ASA approved bat list. Your bat must have the 2000 or 2004 ASA seal for approval and not be on the list of bats with the 2000 or 2004 seal that are no longer legal. First violation is a verbal warning. Second violation will be an out. Third violation will be a forfeiture of the game. Fouth violation will be a disqualification from the league.
Ten (10) defensive players (no more than 6 males) in the field at all time. There is no gender specification for field positions. Big D rules will allow a team to play with a minimum of 8 players (at least 3 females). If a team has less than the minimum required number of players to start a game, the undermanned team shall give up 3 runs to its opponent and has 5 minutes to have enough players show to begin. If after 5 minutes, the undermanned team is still short of the minimum required number of players to begin, the two team captains can agree to proceed with an official game. The undermanned team can not force a game, nor is its opponent required to allow an official game to take place. If no agreement can be reached, a forfeit shall be declared with a final score of 10-0. (Two up rule: If a team has 6 men ready to play but only 3 women they must make a choice. They can play 6-3 but must take an out in the 4th woman’s batting position. Their other option is to play 5-3 saving themselves the out but also requiring a unique defensive strategy.)
There can not be more than 6 players on the infield at any one time (includes pitcher & catcher). The infield boundary shall be defined by the infield dirt.
Teams may “bat the bench” but teams must alternate guy/girl throughout the lineup. A team is allowed to bat women back-to-back if they so choose without penalty.
All players in the field must be listed in the batting order. There are no designated hitters allowed (meaning that if you play defense, you have to bat). Any attempt at doing so must be brought to the attention of the umpire prior to game time and can only be deemed allowable by the opposing captain.
All balls & strikes will be determined by MAT rules. Pitches hitting the plate or plate extension and the appropriate height will be called a strike. A legal pitch must go above the batter’s shoulder and may not exceed 15’. Any pitch that is not deemed legal will be a ball, unless the batter swings at it. An umpire will assist in calling balls and strikes. All umpire judgment decisions are final. Any excessive disagreements will result in an ejection from the game and/or league if deemed necessary by Big D staff.
All batters will start with a one ball, one strike count.
If a male is walked he is automatically awarded 2nd base. The female following must bat unless there are 2 outs, at which time the female can choose to bat or take the walk.
A batter with two strikes is allowed one foul ball; two fouls with two strikes, the batter is out. If a foul ball goes above the batter’s head and is caught, the batter is out.
The pitcher will be protected. There will be two lines marked on either side of the pitcher's plate. Between these two lines will be considered the safety zone. Any line drive or sharply hit ground ball hit through this area will be ruled as an automatic out, regardless of the gender of the batter. Multiple violations by the same player can and will result in an ejection from the game and possible suspension from the league.
No leadoffs or stealing; runners can leave the base once the ball is hit by the batter. 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.
Inning run limit rule: There will be a 6 run limit per inning through innings 1-4. (Exception: unlimited runs may be scored if one of the innings 1-4 is declared the final inning of the game.) Unlimited runs may be scored in innings 5,6, & 7 always. Game mercy rule: 12 runs up after four complete innings, or 10 runs up after five complete innings.
There will be no extra innings to break a tie during regular season. During playoffs, ties will go to one-pitch with the 3rd out of the previous inning starting on second base.
Games start on time!!! Teams must be prepared to play.
Forfeit rule: 5 minutes after game time. If one team has less than the minimum number of players (8 total-3 females) at five past the designated start time, it is up to the staff and opposing team as to what is allowable - this decision will ultimately be made by the staff.
All thrown balls are deemed out of play when:
The ball is thrown over the fence
The ball is thrown beyond the fence (no complete fence)
The ball is thrown or carried beyond the imaginary line (if there is no fence) extending from the end of the backstop (*this imaginary line also applies to overthrows and caught foul balls)
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. On overthrows out of play, the runner is granted the base he/she is going to (at the point of the throw) plus one more. 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 an overthrow.
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 and runners can advance, but at their own risk once the ball is caught.
The umpire will closely watch base runner to defensive player contact. Any excessive contact or collision will result in an out and/or ejection. This includes contact with the catcher. Sliding is allowed. All plays at home require the runner to either slide or bail out. Any sliding into a base to break up a double play, or any intentional (in the eyes of the staff) interference with the defensive player, the runner and batter/runner will be called out.
There is no homerun rule as to a maximum number allowed per game or inning.
NO METAL SPIKES ARE ALLOWED.
Any equipment in question should be brought to the attention of the umpire. The umpire or Big D staff will make all final decisions with regard to equipment discrepancies.
Playoff rosters must be complete by the end of regular season play. (Players will only be added after the season for the purposes of a substitution due to an injury or other extreme circumstance as deemed acceptable by the Big D Staff). A player must have played a regular season game with the team to be eligible to play with that team during playoffs. A player, playing on multiple teams in the same league, must declare which team they will play with during playoffs and can not play for any other team during the playoffs.
Waivers and Rosters will be used as acceptable player-team identification during playoffs. All participants must present ID’s during the playoff tournament in the event of a roster check. All roster check requests must be made before the first pitch.
During the regular season games are to be played within time allotted.
An umpire will be provided by Big D to supervise the game. It will be the umpire’s responsibility to coordinate and run the games, which include the following tasks:
Starting games on time.
Calling outs, making final calls on any disputed balls or strikes.
Settling all disputes or disputed calls.
It is understood that umps will assist in the tracking of the score (i.e. announcing it between innings) and assist in any discrepancies with regards to the coed line-up ratios. However, it is the responsibility of both teams to maintain their respective line-ups and score on the scoreboard each inning.
If your team forfeits a game during the season, the following rules apply:
First Offense: Loss of game and warning issued.
Second Offense: Loss of game and staff reserves the right to remove team from playoffs.
Third Offense: Removal from the league.
If you know in advance that your team is going to forfeit a game, we encourage you to call our office so as to help find you subs or schedule your opponent a game.
Teams have until ten minutes past the designated start time to field a full squad (minimum numbers of players required to play according to the rules). Refer to rules regarding guy/girl batting ratio. The staff and opposing team must approve anything less then the minimum.
The updated standings will be posted weekly, displaying each teams rank within its skill level. Rank is based on winning percentage.
Top teams make the playoffs (teams that have not abused any policies are eligible). Playoffs are single elimination.
Seeding: Teams are seeded according to winning percentage. Ties will be broken by head to head matchups first then runs against. If a team has played more games than another, an average will be used to balance the comparison.
Teams may play more than one game per day.
Any questions regarding rules, policies, or eligibility must be addressed before the start of the game.
BIG D reserves the right to schedule playoff games on days other than your regularly scheduled league night.
In order to participate in the league, each participant must sign the team waiver. Waivers are provided and must be completed online. Players not present the first week of play can be added but will still be required to sign a waiver with our staff before participating. All subs must sign the waiver at the field.
A formal protest may be filed before a game if an opposing player’s eligibility is in question. The player in question will be required to provide his/her player information (name, address, phone #, signature) in writing to a Big D staff member prior to the start of the game. This qualifies as an official protest. The game will then be played in its entirety as scheduled. Teams will be notified of all rulings on the identified eligibility discrepancy by the following business day – decisions will not be made on site. If the protest is proven to be legitimate, it will result in the forfeiture of the game in question. Games subsequent to the protested game may be rescheduled. The above procedure will also apply for any other “logged” protests. All rulings by Big D staff are considered final.
The idea of Big D is to get out, play and have fun. We hope that all participants keep that in mind when becoming involved. Although the games may become intense, you still can be competitive while maintaining good sportsmanship. With this said, any behavior deemed unacceptable by staff may result in suspension and/or ejection from a game or the league.
To coordinate and run the league, our officials and/or staff will be available at all times to help the league run as smoothly as possible. If you have questions regarding schedules, policies, rule interpretations, directions to the bar, etc. please ask.
Leagues may be cancelled due to existing weather conditions, dangerous or unplayable field conditions, facility constraints, etc. Big D staff makes every effort to play all scheduled games, thus we will not cancel games until absolutely necessary. Therefore, if you are calling concerning a decision on a cancellation, remember we will not have an answer until close to the start of the league.
If the league is cancelled, Big D staff will change the voicemail immediately and the website as soon as possible. Big D will then contact all of the captains via e-mail. If a league is cancelled on site, Big D staff will attempt to contact those teams still scheduled to play the remainder of the league day/night. Depending on the time of cancellation, some teams will have to be notified on site. If we do cancel, follow next week’s schedule (ex. If April 13 is cancelled teams should follow the April 20 schedule for their next game). The games that are cancelled will be made up at the end of the season if time allows. In extreme circumstances, Big D reserves the right to run a shortened season without a refund of schedule matches on days other than our regularly scheduled league day/night.
Each team will receive up to 14 player participation gifts to be handed out to every paid player on the roster. Rosters will be considered final by the second week of the league and used for distribution of gifts. The gifts will be handed out at the sponsor bar during the season. Please look for the announcement at the league designating which nights the gifts will be dispensed. Those teams unable to pick up their gifts at the sponsor bar must call the office to make arrangements to pick them up at the office. Unfortunately, we can not guarantee that we can bring gifts out to the leagues. Big D cannot guarantee the availability of gifts after the last week of regular season, so please pick them up at “gift night” or soon after.
The top team in each division will receive a prize of great emotional, spiritual, and most importantly, social value.
These policies are designed to make the league run as smoothly and safely as possible, and provide continuity for its participants. Each player in the league is responsible for this information: please advise your team of these rules and thanks for playing.