Golden Girls exists to foster physical fitness, recreational activities, fun and fellowship through active participation in sports.  To this end, players are encouraged to participate in as many aspects of the game as possible given any injuries, physical limitations, etc.  (See Rules of Play #8).

League Rules – 2019

 

General

  1. Inform your team manager or assistant manager when you cannot attend a game.

  2. Be ready to play. When next up to bat or "on deck," move to the designated "on deck" area. The "on deck" batter is also responsible for removing the previous batter’s bat from the playing area.

  3. A set of mats will be kept in the equipment box at Southside. The home team is responsible for placing the mats and providing one new ball for a game. The home team is also responsible for drawing the Commitment Line and the Courtesy Runner Starting Line. All Managers will report the scores to the Chairman of Operations (Vice President).

  4. Do not wear jewelry – it can cause injury.

  5. The Team Manager will designate a player to bring the equipment when the manager cannot attend.  If the manager is absent on short notice, at least designate a player to bring pen and paper for the lineup and manage the team.

 

Rules of Play

  1. Saturday Double Headers (all seasons):  Games will last one hour and fifteen minutes. The first game will be 9:00am-10:15am and the second game will be 10:30am – 11:45am. Managers may agree to shorten games because of weather conditions (preferably before the game starts).

  2. Weekday Single Games (Spring and Summer):  Games will last one hour.  Both games will be played simultaneously 6:30pm-7:30pm using both fields at Southside. 

  3. Weekday Single Games (Fall):  In the Fall, the games will be played simultaneously starting at 6:00pm using both fields at Southside for the month of September only. In October the games will be played on the lighted field only.  First game will be 6:00pm-7:00pm, second game will be 7:10pm-8:10pm.  If we are only allocated the lighted field in September, then we will play by October rules.

  4. Legal Limit/Forfeit: 

    1. Saturdays:  There must be a minimum of 8 players from your own team to start a game.

    2. Wednesdays:  There must be a minimum of 6 players from your own team to start a game.  However, the team must be able to field 8 by borrowing players (see rule 5) or the game will be a forfeit.

    3. Less than the minimum number of players will result in a forfeit. Teams will have 10 minutes (from the designated starting time) until a forfeit

is declared.

  1. Borrowing Players:  Borrowing players is allowed.  Any team with sufficient players to play, but less than 11 players may borrow players from the opposing team (first choice) or other players at the field to fill out their team.  Borrowed players will be returned to their team as regular players arrive starting with players from the opposing team.  Other players at the field may continue to play until the team reaches 11 regular players.  Borrowed pitchers do not have to be returned unless an arriving player is a pitcher.  Arriving players will be subbed in for borrowed players at the end of a half inning when they are ready to play.

  2. If the defensive team has less than 11 players, the batting team will supply a catcher.

  3. Playing Time:  Everyone will play in the field a minimum of three innings if time allows. All players will be in the batting lineup.

  4. Courtesy Runner:  Players are encouraged to run for themselves and courtesy runners provided only if players are physically unable to run. (“Slow” is NOT a valid reason for a Courtesy Runner in league play.)  Players unable to run may have a runner from home (or any other base).  The option to request a courtesy runner is at the player’s discretion, not the manager’s.  Any player may be a courtesy runner once per inning but not more than 3 times per game.  (Manager or designee must keep track of the courtesy runners, preferably by making a mark next to the runner’s name on the batting order each time a player is used as a courtesy runner.)  EXCEPTION:  When a team has less than 11 players, the managers may agree to suspend the 3 times per game limit.  If the courtesy runner is on base when her turn comes to bat, she will be called “out” and must come in to bat (if less than 2 outs). 

  5. Courtesy Runner Starting Line: There will be a line drawn from third base and extending beyond home plate.  The courtesy runner will stand facing first base two steps behind that line AND far enough down the line so as not to interfere with the umpire or catcher.  It is the courtesy runner’s responsibility to get out of the way of the catcher making a play on a foul ball.  If the courtesy runner interferes with the catcher, it will be a dead ball; the batter is out and runners on bases will return to their base at the time of the pitch.

  6. Learning Player:  A Learning Player is defined as a player new to the game of softball or a player who has not played for many years and needs to rebuild her skills. For up to the first two months of play (regardless of how far into the season it is when she begins playing) Learning Players will be granted 3 extra strikes after the regulation at bat has ended in a strike-out.  When the two months of playing time has ended, she must abide by regular softball rules regardless of skill level.  Learning Players will be encouraged to come to the games early to work on their batting skills. Learning Players who have become sufficiently proficient should be taken out of the Learning Player category before the end of the two month period.

  7. Bat Rules:  Bats must not exceed 1.21 Bat Performance Factor (BPF).  Titanium, fast pitch, original gray Miken, or original Freak bats cannot be used.

  8. Pitching Arc:  The pitching arc is a least 6 feet but no greater than 12 feet from the ground.

  9. Home Plate Pitching Mat: This mat is for pitching only. If the proper pitching arc is thrown and the pitched ball touches home plate or any part of the home plate mat, a strike is called. 

  10. Orange First Base/Mat: Players rounding first may use the white base without penalty; however, for a defensive play at first or for a one-base hit, the runner must touch the orange base/mat while a defensive player must touch the white base. A runner touching the white base instead of the orange base/mat will be called out. The runner will be called safe if the defensive player touches the orange base/mat instead of the white base.    EXCEPTION:  If the defensive player is forced into the path of the runner by the throw/play, either player may use either base without penalty in order to avoid a collision.  The object of this rule is to protect both the runner and the defensive player. 

  11. Overrunning of Bases:  No overrunning of second and third bases, sliding is optional.

  12. Scoring Plate:  In senior softball there are no tag plays at home.  A separate Scoring Plate will be placed eight feet from the left side of Home Plate on an extension of the first base line. On a non-force play, if the catcher touches home plate (not the Pitching Mat) with the ball in hand before the runner touches the scoring plate after stepping on or over the Commitment Line (see #17 below), the runner is “out”. The runner may NOT be tagged out once she has stepped on or crossed over the Commitment Line.

  13. Commitment Line: A Commitment Line is a line drawn 20 feet from home plate across the third base foul line.  Runners stepping on or over this line are then committed to continue running to the scoring plate. Runners may not return to third base after stepping on or crossing the line and will be called out if they do so. 

  14. Five Run Rule: A team may score no more than five runs in each inning except the last inning. In the last inning there is no limit to the runs a team may score; the team in the field must get three outs. The team managers MUST designate the final inning BEFORE it begins. If the last inning cannot be completed, then the score reverts back to that of the previous inning.

  15. Blood Rule: A player who is injured and has flowing blood must leave the field until the bleeding is stopped. If blood is on clothing, those clothes must be changed.

  16. Courtesy Foul, Walk Limit, etc.

    1. No courtesy fouls will be allowed. All games have a 3-2 count with third strike foul being an out (consistent with tournaments and most recreational leagues).  EXCEPTION:  If managers agree to start with a 1-1 count when conditions warrant, there will be one courtesy foul allowed.

    2. Only 3 walks per inning are allowed on Saturdays, 2 walks on Wednesdays. When the maximum number of walks has been reached, the umpire will call and count only the strikes.  Subsequent batters must hit the ball to get on base. 

  17. A legal game is 4 innings, 3.5 innings if the home team is ahead.

 

 

If both fields at Southside are unplayable, the league games will not be played and an email will be sent out to that effect.  The managers will call those players without an email.

Field-Specific Rules

  1. Meadow Lane may be used if only one of the fields at Southside is unplayable and Meadow Lane is playable and available.

    1.   Parking is limited at Meadow Lane. Please be thoughtful of area residents and latecomers. Park along the chain link fence on side of the driveway and park along the other side of the driveway down to where the chain link fence ends on the other side.  Do not park beyond that point – keep the area at the end of the driveway free to turn around, i.e. do not park at the end of the drive or in front of the wooden fence. Parking in the 2 slots between the bleachers and the fence is OK as long as the vehicles clear the drive.  If there is no room inside the park, players are encouraged to park either on the street or in the church parking lot (but NOT in the church lot on Saturdays).

    2.   A ball which lands on or over the hill on the fly or flies into the trees from left field to center field will be considered a home run.  A ball that rolls or bounces into the trees or onto the hill despite normal effort to field it will be declared dead by the umpire and the batter awarded second base (ground rule double) with each runner on base advancing 2 bases.  The same applies to a ball rolling down the drop-off (toward the ditch).  [This rule was created for the safety of the outfielders.]

  2. Southside:  On Saturdays when only one field is playable, the game scheduled for the unplayable field may be played at Meadow Lane. If Meadow Lane is unplayable or unavailable, only the first set of games will be played.  The teams scheduled for the usable field will play first followed by the teams scheduled for the first game on the unusable field.  Each game will have the normal time limit of 1 hour 15 minutes.  The second game will begin as soon as feasible after the first game ends.  Teams waiting to play may conduct drills and/or batting practice if parts of the other field are usable for these activities, socialize, etc. 

  3. Pond Rule:  [Applies to any field that has a large wet or muddy area (The Pond) but is otherwise playable] Any time The Pond negatively affects play, the umpire will call the ball dead.  In addition, the fielder may raise her hand(s) to alert the umpire of the problem.  Any ball hit on the ground through this area will be declared dead by the umpire and the batter awarded a ground rule single with each runner on base advancing one base.  The same will apply if a batted ball is only playable by entering The Pond.  Any batted ball going over the area either on the fly or on a clean bounce where a play on the ball is not affected by The Pond will not be subject to this ground rule.