Franklin Adult Coed Softball Rules (Adopted 2019) amended 7/2022
1) And maybe the golden rule, do not be an asshole! The main purpose of this league is to bring something back to our town, which should bring people together, to have fun, in a safe environment. We are adults and should conduct ourselves as such. Team managers must be held responsible to curb the temper of their players first and foremost. This league is a recreational league. However, the president should be notified about inappropriate behavior that is not handled between the team managers. The name of the team, the player’s name, and the accusation must be submitted by email. The accused team will be notified via email by the president of the logged complaint. The president expects the team managers to communicate with the accused player about the situation.
What does that mean?
-Do not ride players in a mean-spirited fashion, we are not pros and we will all make mistakes. Does that mean we cannot have fun and joke around? No, but again, do not be an asshole.
-Do not argue calls, I do not care if its balls, strikes or plays at a bag, don’t argue calls. The expectation is that ALL teams and players will make calls to the best of their ability. Again, we are not pros.
-Team managers, play your players, if they show up, they need to be in the batting order the entire game and in the field for at least 1 inning. I understand playoffs are a play to win scenario, but everyone paid the same to PLAY. No one wants to sit on the bench the entire game, week after week and everyone makes the playoffs. Don't be a DINK!
1A) Drinking, smoking (tobacco or weed), fighting, and/or loud rowdy behavior are prohibited. There is to be no alcohol on the field, in the dugouts or in the stands. If you want to smoke, you must leave the arches, Odell Park like all public parks in NH is smoke-free. The same applies for marijuana, it should not be brought to the filed or smoked on the city’s property.
1B) All players must wear their jersey, sponsors pay to have their businesses represented. I do understand that as the seasons change the temperature's drop at night and people may elect to wear sweatshirts in those conditions.
2) All teams must be comprised of at least nine males and four females. There must be at least three women in the batting lineup and at least three women in the field defensively at all times. If a team does not have enough players, we can fill those openings with rostered players in order to get the game in. If a team only has two women playing, the 10th position in the batting lineup is an automatic out each time, unless the opposing team overrides this. If a team has only one woman playing, that team must forfeit but the game should still be played. In order to fill positions, the opposing team can supply, a same sex player of their choice or teams can fill positions with players from other teams within the Franklin Adult Coed Softball League. Again, this should not be used as a strategic tool to provide a competitive advantage.
3) The minimum number of players needed to play a game is eight (and three of those players must be women). If a team does not meet this requirement by 10 minutes after the start of the game, the opposing team manager has the option of taking the forfeit or waiting for additional players to arrive. If eight players are available, the opposing team manager should supply a catcher for the team playing with eight players. Even in the case of a forfeit, there should be all attempts made to get the game in, including using tactics from rule one.
4) Team managers should exchange lineups prior to the start of the game. Each team should keep score as accurately as possible to avoid discrepancies.
5) No person shall be allowed to play on more than one team at any time during the season or
Playoffs, unless the individual is used as a fill-in, in order to get a game in. No poaching! If a player is filling in, to get a game in, you are not allowed to poach that individual for your team. If teams are struggling to field teams consistently, please contact the League President, so that roster spots can be filled. At the mid-way point of the season, all rosters must be updated and completed. The president is responsible for taking screenshots of all rosters at the beginning of the season, at the mid-way point, and at the end of the regular season, in order to ensure consistency to this rule during the playoffs and finals and verify players who can participate. ***No team can use a fill in player for the playoffs, unless all coaches are on board with the fill in. If they are, the fill in should be on an equal level from an ability regard.
6) Late arriving players must be placed at the end of the batting order but only if the team has not reached the end of its lineup. If you come to that spot in the order before the player arrives, it is to be an automatic out until said player arrives. During regular season the outs can be waived if the opposing team is in support of that.
7) There will be no substitutions in the batting order, all players must bat. Team managers are free to move players in and out of the field throughout a game. But once the batting order is established, it must not be altered. If there is a legitimate injury and a player cannot continue, that player can be skipped, no out will be granted, but once that player is skipped in the lineup, they cannot re-enter that game.
8) Pinch runners may be used for a batter if the batter is unable to properly run the bases. Each manager must notify the opposing team of any potential pinch runners before the beginning of the game. Generally speaking, players should be able to run the bases under normal circumstances and the pinch runner should serve as a last option. If a player can play defense and bat, they should be able to advance on the bases. The pinch runner will be the last previous out of the same gender. Each sex and only have one runner per inning, pinch runners will not be used ats a strategic tool or for a competitive advantage. The opposing manager of the team with a pinch runner may challenge pinch runners or waive this rule. A pinch runner may ONLY be used once the batter safely reaches first, ***2022 update, unless both teams agree prior to the start of the game in special circumstances. Play is deemed dead and at the point, the pitch runner maybe inserted. If the player that needs a runner advances past first base, they forfeit their right to a pinch runner. Again, pinch runners will not be used as a strategic tool for a competitive advantage.
9) As the Franklin Adult Coed Softball League is a league organized for adults, teams can only create rosters consisting only of adults. A 17-year-old can be rostered but cannot play until their 18th birthday.
10) We ask that members of teams that have a game that night, come early and/or stay the next game to ump. If that is not possible, then these rules apply:
Base coaches and catchers will act as umpires. The first base coach is generally responsible for plays at first and home; The third base coach for plays at third and second (unless the other base coach has a better view of the play). Teams are free to add an umpire at second, but that umpire must be able to stay out of the player’s way. Catchers are responsible for fair/foul calls down each baseline.
Catchers must be made aware of this responsibility and calls should be made loud enough to alert all players on the field. If no one can hear the call, the assumption is that a ball is fair. Team managers should ensure that players they assign to coach the bases and to catch understand this responsibility. No one else but the base coaches and catchers should be making calls, with the exception of balls and strikes which will be called by the team that is batting, keep in mind this league is meant to be fun! Any disputes that arise must be settled, as they occur, by the team coaches in a fair manner. Only players involved in the calls the first/third base coaches or catcher, players involved in the performance of the out itself, and team managers shall be involved in the process of settling any disputes that arise. Other players not involved in the calls should refrain from interacting during the dispute settlement process. There will be no replay of games due to disputed calls: Disputed calls must be settled during the game. REMEMBER DON’T BE AN ASSHOLE!
11) Pitching should be slow. The arc of the ball should be between 6 to 12 feet off the ground at the maximum height of the arc. Excessively high arcing pitches are not permitted and should be deemed illegal by the ump. So shall any pitch that comes in flat, not hitting the six-foot minimum.
Pitching must take place from the mound furthest from home plate on fields where there are two mounds. Pitchers do NOT have to be in contact with the mound if they pitch from behind the rubber, they DO have to be in line with the mound and in the circle. If a pitcher is unable to get the ball over the plate, they must be replaced. Pitchers should not be overly cautious in placing the ball. ***There is NO pump fake pitching allowed, pitchers can throw knuckle and spin balls.
12) Do not shoot the middle! Shooting middle is defined as hitting the ball between the lines to the left and right of the pitching rubber and under the 7-foot ceiling. If the ball is over 7 feet, it shall NOT be considered hitting middle. It is the home plate umpires job to access if the ball is hit between those two lines. If the ball is hit between those lines, the ump shall ask the pitcher if they feel violated/want the warning. If the answer is yes, the team that shot middle will be issued a warning. If it happens again, it will result in an out. If a warning has been issued and the ball hits the pitcher, it will be considered a dead ball out, no runner shall advance. If the ball is hit middle but does not hit the pitcher, the batter shall be called out and play will continue as it is a live ball. If a pitcher is moving off the rubber to the left and right, they become a fielder and it is no longer considered shooting middle.
13) A walk consists of four balls. If a pitch is over the plate, the batter should swing, hitters should not wait and wait for the "perfect" pitch. A strike plate extension will be used to discourage waiting for the perfect pitch. Balls that are pitched and hit the strike plate extension will be called a strike. Strike calls while using a strike plate will be made by the umpire. Three called strikes with a strike plate or three missed swings will be ruled an out. Calls by the umpire must be decisively made (loud enough to be heard) and is not arguable or debatable.
When no strikes are pitched to a Male batter that has a Female batting next in the lineup
The Male batter is awarded first base along with awarding the female batter the choice of their
at bat or taking the walk to first. The walk forces the male batter to
second. Advancement of other base runners are only awarded as a force. If a male batter is intentionally walked to get to a female batter, the male batter will be awarded second base regardless of if the female bats or not. An intentional walk is described as putting the batter on without pitching to them.
14) Infield fly rule:
- For the umpire to call an Infield Fly, there must be less than two outs.
- In order for the Infield Fly rule to be called, there must be runners on either first and second bases, or first, second, and third bases. Any other scenario does not permit the calling of an Infield Fly.
- The umpire cannot call an Infield Fly if the ball is bunted, or on a line drive.
- The umpire can only call an Infield Fly if it’s determined that the ball can be caught by an infielder with “ordinary effort.”
15) Infielders that are actively fielding a batted ball or are moving to field a batted ball have the
Right of way. Base runners are obligated to avoid contact with them. In all other circumstances, it is the infielders that must move to avoid impeding base runners. All infielders and the catcher should be cautioned to avoid standing in a position which blocks a batter rounding bases on a hit or attempting to score.
16) Games are seven innings in length. If the game is tied and there is no game after, the game can be played until there is a winner. If there is a game after, the game must be declared a tie as we need to proceed to the next game. If weather prevents the conclusion of a game, it should be considered suspended and completed after rescheduling by the president. Although the lineup is likely to be different, the score shall stand and be carried forward. Due to earlier dusk, games played later in the season
(August and/or September) should limit infield warmups between innings to facilitate a quicker game.
Related to this issue, team managers should encourage players to be early, so that the game starts promptly at 6 p.m. ***A game is considered complete at the end of the fourth inning.
17) The league is responsible for supplying the game ball. Only League issued or approved balls shall be used for game play. The official ball is the Dudley ASA Thunder Heat Slow Pitch 52/300 and in October the Pink Tattoo 52/300 will be permitted. The league reserves the right to pull the tattoo ball if the league feels it doesn’t meet playing standards.
18) No metal spikes or screw in cleats are allowed.
19) Bunting is only allowed for women, there will be NO slashing. If you show bunt, you either bunt or pull it back to take a pitch. If you slash, you will be out.
20) Sliding into bases is at the discretion of the baserunner but any type of "takeout" slide or attempt to make contact with a fielder is not allowed.
21) Overthrows that stay in the fenced area at any of the fields are in play. Otherwise, runners advance one base only.
22) Base runners are not allowed to lead or get a jump. A runner's foot must remain on the base until the hitter makes contact with the pitch, if not the runner will be called out. ***Umpires use discretion, if a player steps off to tie a shoe or to stretch do not be so quick to pull the trigger, this rule is meant to stop people from getting a jump or leaving early. When the play has ended, the runner must immediately return to the base and not try to draw a throw. Once the opposing player has control of the ball, the runner should return to the base (unless tagging up to advance). If the pitcher has the ball and is within the pitching circle, the play is dead, and the runner must return to the base they were advancing from. Once the runner has retreated to the base, they will stay on that base unless the ball is put back into play by the pitcher (i.e. – throws to a base, the ball gets past the defensive player and is live again, etc.).
23) Base stealing is not allowed; the safety base should be used at first and we will also have a safety home plate with a commit line. If home plate is used instead of the safety plate, the runner will be deemed out. Once the runner passes the commit line, the play at home becomes a force.
***Updated 2022, Commitment Line & Safety LineOnce a player crosses the Commitment Line between 3rd Base & Home Plate, they must continue through to Home. The act of crossing the Safety Line (Home Plate to backstop) will now act as Home Plate, whereas any player running Home that touches Home Plate will be considered out. Also, all plays at Home Plate will be force outs (i.e. once a player crosses the Commitment Line they can be forced out at Home)
The Safety Line shall be marked between home plate and the fence on the third base side of the diamond, perpendicular to the third base line. On a play at home plate, a runner will be called out if he or she touches or crosses the Safety Line after the catcher has the ball and is in contact with the plate (i.e. a force play). Otherwise, the runner will be safe.
A runner will be considered to have crossed the Safety Line once they touch the ground on or beyond the line. The catcher may still tag runners out if NOT standing on Home Plate.
If the runner touches home plate, runs over the plate or on the infield side (fair territory) of it, or makes intentional contact with the catcher, the runner will be called out.
EXCEPTION: The runner will not be out for any of these reasons if the catcher, or any member of the fielding team, is blocking the scoring/Safety Line so that the runner cannot be reasonably expected to cross it properly. NOTE:The runner is permitted to slide across the line.
Once a runner has touched or crossed the “Commitment Line”, he or she has committed to trying to score and may not return to third base. A force play will now be in effect at home plate and the conditions of the previous rule will apply. In the event that the runner returns to third base and does not try to score after having “committed”, the runner will be called out once the play is over, IF APPEALED TO THE UMPIRE.
EXCEPTION: A runner who “committed”, passed the commitment line, may return to third base after a caught fly ball OR to touch a base previously missed.
24) A foul ball caught by the catcher can be counted as an out only if the ball reaches above the height of the batter's head. Otherwise, the struck ball is simply a foul ball strike.
25) A mercy rule; ***2022 update 20 or more runs after four innings or 3 1/2 if the team up by 20 is the home team, 15 or more runs after five innings or 4 1/2 if the team up by 15 is the home team. 10 or more runs after six innings or 5 1/2 if the team up by 10 is the home team. If the team losing by 15 wishes to continue the game, they may proceed, unless there are time restraints. In situations where time is not an issue, the league encourages playing on. The games score does become final/official at the completion of the 4 1/2 or 5 innings, the score essentially freezes during continued play. The league will continue to run the scoreboard upon request if a team wants to gauge performance. 10 or more runs after six innings or 5 1/2 if the team up by 10 is the home team.
26) To eliminate crowding of batters, fielders will not be allowed to begin any play closer than two steps from the base line toward home plate. Outfielders must not be positioned at the start of any play closer than the outfield line which the league will maintain. The only person that can start in front of the outfield line is the F-10 position (short fielder/Rover) which can only be played by a female. ***2022 Update The F-10 position cannot start the play in the infield.
27) At the conclusion of all games in fields, the infield must be "dragged" with a screen and/or rake to smooth it out for the next games. Game 1, home team preps the field, visitors prep for game 2. If people from either home or away want to help above that, it is always welcome.
28) For obvious safety reasons, teams must ensure that children attending games are not allowed to roam free and/or onto the field.
29) Fairness and courtesy to all other players is the ideal. Everyone should make efforts to refrain from using foul language.
30) Bats: In order to be eligible for league play, a bat must be listed on the ASA approved bat list as
"Single wall (SW)" "multiwall (MW) "composite (C)" and/or “wood (W) are legal for use, with the exception, NO triple wall or senior league bats will be allowed. They are all deemed illegal for use within our league. ***Update, September 14, 2019. After further review with the insurance company and conversation with Miken representatives, we have voted to allow Miken tetracore bats.
For the complete ASAapproved bat list,
Further, all bats must be clearly marked as "ASA Certified" and must not be tampered or altered within any fashion. If the "ASA Certified" marking is not visible on a bat, for any reason including age/wear it is not approved for league use. Any team caught using an illegal bat, will be charged an automatic out, bat must be pulled asap. Any refusal can lead to a forfeited game and removal from the league.
There are no exceptions to the bat rules. Team managers should keep the number of bats used by their team to a reasonable number. Regardless of whether a bat has been used in previous years, all bats are subject to a review of eligibility. Both team managers should review the opposing team's bats for eligibility prior to each game in order to ensure fair play and safety. A bat is considered "used" when a player enters both feet in the batter’s box with said bat. The League's bat committee reserves the right to rule on which bats may or may not be used in league play.
30) No games will be played during a thunderstorm with lightning but games should be played during light rain or playable conditions. If the weather seems questionable, the president should contact all team managers involved in games ASAP via email, phone call, and/or text about field cancellations and weather alerts. Involved team managers should also contact each other no later than 5 p.m. This will allow adequate time to communicate with players about the status of the game. Every effort should be made to play each game.
31) Scoring: The winning team shall submit the game’s final score to the president immediately following the completion of the game. If a winning team’s manager is unable, for any reason, to enter the score within 24 hours, the score should be sent to the president by the manager of the winning or losing team.
32) Forfeits: Teams that fail to show up to play or forfeit two or more games, without notice, will be subject to removal from the League the next season. Should this instance arise, the possibility of removal from the League will be discussed by and voted on by team managers at the next preseason meeting. Forfeits will be scored as 40 against the team that forfeited.
33) Homerun rule, each team will allow be allowed to hit 3 homeruns per game, the next homerun will be counted as an out. ***The exception to this rule will be if we are in a 1 for 1 situation. Meaning, both teams are at 3 homeruns. The next team can hit a homerun and so can the other team. It would be in the team’s best interest to have at least 1 wood and 1 single wall bat on hands at all times.
34) Playoffs: ***This rule is open to change
All teams will make the playoffs. Teams 4 and 5 will start the tournament, the winning team will advance as the four seed, regardless to seeding prior to the start of the tournament. Which will leave, Team 2vs3 and Team 1vs.4, with the winner of each of those advancing to the Championship game. Tiebreakers for seeding for the playoff positions are as follows: If it is between two teams: First, head to head record. Second, win loss record. Third, will be RS, leaving fourth to RA. Lastly, if needed, lottery (team names from a hat performed by the commissioner with Rule Committee members as witnesses). For three or more teams: First, aggregate head to head records. Second, tournament run differential (runs for subtracted by runs against) with a maximum differential of four runs per game. Third, lottery (team names from a hat performed by the commissioner with Rule Committee members as witnesses).
35) All players and teams shall respect the league and the board, we will do our best to respond to all inquiries within the 24 hour professional courtesy window. Please respect that this is not a 24 hour business, meaning, do not feel comfortable enough to be texting, calling or messaging in late night hours.
36) The League President and board reserves the right to remove any team and/or any player for any reason, especially when it comes to league violations.