VAVi SPORT & SOCIAL CLUB OFFICIAL ADULT COED SOFTBALL RULES

VAVi Softball contests will be governed by the official rules of the Amateur Softball Association of America (ASA) with the following modifications:

1. Safety base at home plate must be used at all times, except if there is an out of park homerun. If there is an out of park homerun (no play at home), then the hitter and base runners may cross the safety base or home plate base. If you do not use the safety base at home plate in all other situations, you will be called out. The safety of the players is our main concern so the umpires will be enforcing this rule. Please also remind your teammates before and during every game of this rule. Thank you for your commitment to keeping our leagues safe!

2. Courtesy Runner Rule: You are allowed to use a courtesy runner only if the batter makes it to first. If the batter gets to first safely, then the courtesy runner used will be the LAST guy or girl who was out. You may not use a courtesy runner from home to first base.

3. Infield Fly Rule: The batter will automatically be called out if there are less than 2 outs with runners on first and second or the bases are loaded and there is a pop fly which the umpire judges could be caught by an infielder in fair territory. The infield fly rule is called by the umpire and the play is dead.

4. Pitch Release Area: Pitchers must release the ball from the rubber area. This rule is to protect pitchers. If the pitcher moves away from the rubber closer to home plate to release the pitch, your umpire may call a flat pitch.

Bats
Each team must supply their own bats. Bats must be ASA certified and not appear on the list found here: http://www.softball.org/about/certified_equipment.asp

Helmets
Helmets are optional. We do not provide helmets for any of our leagues. Each team may bring their own helmets to use if they feel it is necessary.

Players
A full team consists of 9 players. There may not be more than 5 players in the infield. A maximum of 5 males allowed on the field at all times.

Lack of Full Team
If you do not have a full team ready to play at start time you may play with a minimum of 8 players (minimum of 3 females, or 3 males). If you do not have at least the minimum you must forfeit. You may split up the players on both teams there and play for fun. This is subject to change if team captains and umpire agree to an alternate plan

Attire
Please remove jewelry. No metal cleats. It is recommended that you wear your team shirt or a shirt of your team color to each week’s game.

Sliding
Sliding is allowed except at home plate.

Safety Base
Safety base at first base must be used whenever the ball is hit into the infield or if there is a play at first base or the runner will be called OUT. If the ball is hit into the outfield then the runner may use first base to round the bag to second base. In this case, the first baseman must move off the bag to allow the runner to round first otherwise it will be called obstruction and the runner will automatically be called safe at second.
Tagging at Home Plate: Runners that cross the commit line may NOT be tagged when running home. The ball must be thrown to the catcher otherwise the base runner will be called safe.

Time Limit
Games are seven innings or 55 minutes. Innings started before the time limit will be finished. Starting a final inning is up to the discretion of the umpire. Games called after 5 innings is considered a completed game.
Teams are given a 5-minute grace period to avoid forfeiting. If after 5 minutes a team doesn’t have the minimum of 8 players present, their team will forfeit. (For example, if a game time is 6:00PM, and at 6:06PM a team doesn’t have 8 players, they will forfeit.)

Home Team
The schedule does not always give each team an even number of home or away games so the home team will be decided at the beginning of each game with rock, paper, scissors or a coin toss.

Pitching
The batting team will be pitched to from a designated member of their team. Each batter will be allowed three pitches. A legal pitch is thrown underhand and must be over the batter’s head at the apex of the pitch. Pitcher must get out of the way of the ball. If the ball is thrown too low or the pitcher gets hit by the ball, that ball is dead and it counts as one of the three pitches allowed.

Run Limit
Once a team has scored 7 runs in an inning they must take the field and allow the other team an at bat. This rule does not apply in the last inning.

Batting Order
The batting order must alternate male and female players. All players must be put in the batting order (those playing the field and those substituting). Changes to the order can only be made at the top of the inning or due to injury. If an injured player is playing the field, but cannot run when batting, a courtesy runner may be used. Please refer to the Courtesy Runner Rule.

Pitcher’s Net
It is the pitcher’s responsibility to use the net. After the pitch is thrown the pitcher will go behind the net. Once the ball has been hit past the net the pitcher will put the net onto the ground. If the net is not dropped and a rally throw hits the upright net the base runners will be stopped at the last base they touched. If a ball is hit directly at the net and hits the net it will be called a dead ball and will count towards the 3 pitch count. If the pitcher does not stand behind the net and is then hit the ball will be called dead but will not count against the 3 pitch count.

Fielding
You can have no more than 9 players on the field with a maximum of 5 males. A team can have no more than 5 infielders at any given time and this includes the catcher. You may have 4 outfielders that must stay no less than 10ft from the infield dirt.
Tagging at Home Plate: Runners that cross the commit line may NOT be tagged when running home. The ball must be thrown to the catcher otherwise the base runner will be called safe.

Sportsmanship
Sportsmanship must be practiced at all times. Directors and umpires reserve the right to remove any player from the game for unsportsmanlike conduct.

Substitutions
Only roster players may play on a team and no last minute substitutions are allowed.However, please see below “ringer clause” To add a player to the roster you must contact the VAVi office at least 24 hours before game time.

*Ringer Clause: If before your game or during the first 10 minutes of your game, you feel that a player on the opposing team is not on an official roster and could possibly affect the outcome of your game, it is the responsibility of the team captain to approach the umpire/referee and log a complaint. If the opposing team captain confirms a player on their team is not on their roster and a possible “ringer”, then the non-rostered player in question must sit out that game or the rest of the game. However, if both teams agree to play with a sub or non-rostered player, then it will be played as a true game and the player must sign a waiver form.

Complaints about subs, non-rostered players or “ringers” cannot be logged after 10 minutes into your game or at the end of your game. If you have additional questions about a non-rostered player at your court or field, you may also call VAVi’s After-Hours Phone at 858-220-8328.

Scoring
The umpire will keep track of runs scored. However, teams are encouraged to keep their own score during the game for discrepancies at the end of play.

Stealing
No stealing bases or leading off. One foot on the bag until contact is made with the ball.

Commit Rule
After you touch or cross the Commit line (approx. 1⁄2 way from 3rd base to home plate) you must continue home. It is always a force out at home plate. This only applies for home plate. You must always use the “safety home plate” or you will be out. If there is a fly ball in the outfield you must not cross the commit line or you have committed home. *If there are 2 outs and a runner crosses home plate before or after a force out at another base, the run does not count at home.

In-Field Fly Rule
The batter will automatically be called out if there are less than 2 outs with runners on first and second or the bases are loaded and there is a pop fly which the umpire judges could be caught by an infielder in fair territory. The infield fly rule is called by the umpire and the play is dead.

Bunting
No intentional bunting allowed.

Ties
In the event of a tie, time permitting extra innings will be played. If time does not permit the game will end in a tie. See special rules for tournament play.

For Cabrillo Rec, Park De La Cruz, Mission Bay Athletic Area and Kearny Mesa Rec ONLY
Maximum of 1 OUT OF PARK homerun per team per inning. The team that hits a homerun must retrieve the ball thereafter. All subsequent OUT OF PARK homeruns will be called out. This rule stands in the last inning as well.

For Cabrillo Rec ONLY
If a foul ball is hit over the third base fence into the playground and is LEFT of the outfield light, it will be called OUT. If the ball is hit over the fence into the playground to the RIGHT of the outfield light and LEFT of the foul line, it will be called a FOUL ball.

For Rosa Parks ONLY
All foul balls over the outermost fence along both baselines will be called OUT.

For Presidio Rec Center ONLY
One Up Home Run Rule: All out-of-park home runs will be called OUT if that team is ahead by one out-of-park home run.
All foul balls that are hit over the outermost fence along the first baseline will be called automatic outs.

For Linda Vista and Kearny Mesa Rec Center ONLY
If a foul ball is hit over the third base fence, the batter will be called OUT.

For Carmel Valley Rec ONLY
A ball hit over the second fence on the right hand side of the field down into the pool area or canyon is called an OUT.

Tournament
The top 4 teams will go to the tournament based on season rankings. The top teams will be determined by record (3 points for a win, 1 point for a tie, 0 points for a loss). If time permits, we will occasionally take more than 4 teams to the tournament (ie. We have 5 or more hours of field time). In the event any team plays 10 regular season games, we will take the average runs for and average runs scored against versus the team they first played twice to determine a win or loss to get a total of 9 regular season games. This team may have to play their last regular season game on playoff night.
In case there is a two-way tie between teams, the following tiebreaker system will be used:
~Head-to-head matchup
~If there is still a tie or if they played each other twice and both have a 1-1 record we will move on to Head-to-head run differential (Head-to-head runs scored minus runs scored against)
~Overall season run differential (Overall season runs scored minus overall runs scored against)
~In the case that a tie still persists, a coin flip will determine the winner.

In case there is a three-way (or more) tie between teams, the following tiebreaker system will be used:
~Head-to-head match
~ If the winner of the head-to-head match can’t be determined (ie. 2 teams played each other twice), then the head-to-head run differential will be used and compared for all 3 teams. (ie. Average Runs scored minus average runs scored against). Whoever has the highest average run differential will take the higher playoff seed.
**Average run differential will be used when two tied teams in the three-way (or more) tie played each other twice. If Team A and Team B played each other twice and Team C (and D) only played them once, we will use the average score for Team A and Team B’s two games. To determine this, we will add up the runs scored for both teams in both games and subtract runs scored against. This number will then be divided by 2 to determine the average.
~Overall season run differential (Overall season runs scored minus overall runs scored against)
~In the case that a tie still persists, a coin flip will determine the winner.
In the event of a tie in tournament play extra innings will be played to determine the winner.
Intermediate **PLEASE NOTE: If one of these teams in the tiebreaker forfeits anytime during the season, that game will be counted as a 7-0 loss for the forfeiting team.
All other playoff scenarios that occur will be treated on a case-by-case basis by the Sports Director. The Sports Director has the final say on any disputes and will treat each situation in the fairest and most logical way.

*FINAL CALLS ARE DECIDED BY THE UMPIRE*
**All rules are subject to change: Last Updated Feb 2020**

For more information about our Softball leagues contact Wendy at Wendy@govavi.com

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