MINOR LEAGUE (3rd & 4th Grades)
Players in the 3rd & 4th Grades will compete in the "Minor" League. First introduction to competitive softball, with age appropriate rules.
MINOR League teams will play approximately 2 games per week.
IN 2017 - Games were played on Tuesdays and Thursdays
Games start at 6:00 pm weekdays. If either team does not have a minimum of 7 players by the beginning of the 2nd inning, the game will be forfeited. Exchange of players should be made so that the game can be played, but a loss will be posted for the forfeiting team with an 8-0 score.
Coaches should have their players arrive ½ hour prior to game time.
The home team scorebook will be the official scorebook of the game. Scorekeepers should confirm score after each half inning.
Six innings constitutes a complete game, with a minimum of four innings required for a legal game. If the home team is ahead after 3-1/2 innings, this would be considered a legal game. In the event that a game does not achieve the requirements of a legal game, it should be picked up at the top of the last complete inning and finished to the 4th inning minimum.
An inning should not be started after 7:45 pm.
Games should end by 8:00 pm, unless the final inning is in progress and conditions allow going past 8:00 pm.
No regular season game should go beyond 8:15 pm.
If an inning is unfinished at 8:15, or when the umpire calls the game, the final score for the game reverts back to score at the end of the previous inning.
Playoff & Championship games cannot end in a tie.
Home team should be positioned on the first base side of the field and should provide game ball.
Home team is responsible for providing the bases and umpire equipment and returning them to the shed.
The game can be called at the discretion of the coaches based on lighting or weather conditions.
The cancellation of a game due to inclement weather or poor field conditions will be decided by the home team coach at least 1 hour before the scheduled start of the game. A call will be made to the visiting team coach and the umpire(s).
Home team coach is responsible for rescheduling postponed games.
At this level, the pieces should start to come together. Building on the fundamentals of throwing, catching and hitting, new skills should be introduced and coached. When the players finish two years in this division, they will be smart aggressive base runners, be fundamentally sound at the plate and be aware of most defensive situations, (where to make the play). Pitchers and Catchers should begin to emerge, and develop.
Continue to improve on the fundamentals of:
Running the bases.
When they have finished the Minor League, the players should be able to:
Consistently make strong accurate throws.
Catch throws with proper glove position.
Field ground balls, with good range.
Catch pop ups and fly balls, always using two hands.
Field hits to the outfield, keeping the ball from getting through.
Pitchers should show good speed and decent accuracy.
Catchers should be able to block bad pitches.
Back each other up on defense.
Have good bunting mechanics.
Have good base running skills.
Have good hitting mechanics.
Have good field awareness.
Understand basic signs from coaches while at bat and on base, (bunt, steal, etc.).
Communicate and work as a team.
Pitchers and Catchers should be getting as much one-on-one coaching as possible in the proper mechanics of pitching and catching. Support is available from the league, just ask.
Division wide practices encouraged.
Season is 8 weeks beginning the week after school Spring Break.
Approximately ten (10) regular season games, 1-2 per week.
Playoffs, team seeded by regular season records. All teams make playoffs.
Playoff format determined based on total number of teams.
Awards Banquet following season.
Bases and Equipment
Double 1st base.
11” Ball (Yellow if possible).
32’ Pitching Distance.
60’ Base paths (standard).
Batting helmets with cages and chin straps (player provided)
Youth umpires (7th-12th Grade Players). Parent or coach umpires can be used if a youth umpire is unavailable.
When a batter reaches 4 balls, the offensive coach steps in to finish pitching the at bat. The count remains where it was when the coach took over. Coaches continue to call strikes. If a player swings and misses or reaches 3 strikes, she is out. With this rule, there will be no walks.
Nine players, (3 outfielders), unless both coaches agree on 10 players (4 outfielders) prior to game start.
Outfielders must remain on the outfield grass, no creeping in to the infield.
Infielders cannot be positioned closer to home plate than the pitchers rubber.
Five (5) runs maximum or 3 outs will end every inning, including the last inning.
Regular season Games can end in a tie. Playoff and Championship games cannot end in a tie.
A continuous batting order will be used.
Pitchers are limited to 2 innings per game.
All players must play the field at least 3 innings or half of the game, No player sits twice before all players have sat at least once.
All players should get equal time playing both infield and outfield positions.
Home team coach must report game results to the Division Coordinator as soon as possible after a game.
Playoff seeding determined as follows:
1. Won/Loss record. 2. Least runs allowed. 3. Most runs scored. 4. Head to head. 5. Coin toss.
Rules to Note:
There are no intentional walks.
ASA pitching rules apply. The pitcher must start with both feet in contact with the pitching rubber. A pitcher is not allowed to take more than one step in front of the pitchers rubber before she releases the ball. The back foot must remain in contact with the ground at all times, until the ball is released. There can be no backward or rocking motion.
Bunting is allowed, and encouraged, as it is a big part of Fastpitch softball.
Stealing is not allowed.
Base runners must remain in contact with base at all times prior to a pitched ball leaving the pitcher's hand. Runners can be called out if leaving the base early.
Sliding is mandatory on all close plays. No warnings will be issued and the runner will be called out if she doesn't slide.
The umpire will call out a player after one warning is issued for throwing the bat.
No dropped third strike rule, but should be taught.