12U SOFTBALL RULES 2019
All MHSAA rules apply unless specified below
1. Bases will be 60’ and pitching distance will be 40’. There will be a pitching circle measuring 16’ in diameter. A 12” ball will be used.
2. Regulation game will consist of six (6) innings. A 10 run rule will apply after 4 complete innings, or 3.5 if the home team is ahead. A 15 run mercy rule will be in effect after 3 complete innings or 2.5 if the home team is leading. A game called due to darkness or weather is considered complete after 4 innings or 3.5 if the home team is ahead.
**3. Regulation game will consist of six (6) innings no new inning after 1 hour and 30 minutes. If one game is scheduled on that field that evening, there will be no inning starting after 1 hour and 30 minutes of play from the start time.
If 2 games are scheduled that evening the first game will begin at 6:00, and no new inning will begin after 1 hour and 15 minutes. IF THERE IS A second game the first game will be dead at 7:20. The second game begin no later than 7:35, and be limited to 1 hour and 25 minutes from the time it started (9:00pm game is over).
4. A maximum of nine (9) players may be used for fielding purposes, 3 of which must be in the outfield and 6 in the infield. If not playing on a regulation size softball field, an arc measuring 20’ from the back corner of all bases (except home plate) will must be drawn. All outfielders must be behind this arc at the time of the pitch, and can move forward after the release of the ball.
5. Every player is included in the batting order. The batting order will remain continuous throughout the game, and all players must play in the field at least two innings.
6. A six run rule will be enforced. An inning will consist of three outs or six runs, with the exception of the last inning (only the sixth inning), where both the home and visiting team can score unlimited runs.
7. Teams may start a game with a minimum of 8 players. If a player arrives late for the game she must be entered last in the batting order. Players may be picked up to fill a game roster, but cannot pitch, must bat last, and must play in the outfield.
8. In the event of a player shortage, girls from only the 9-10 age group are legal to participate. Girls from the other 11-12 girls team may also fill in the roster spot if needed. Any player addition must play the outfield and bat at the end of the line-up for the entire game. This should only take place if you have 8 or less players for a game.
9. If a player leaves, or is injured during the game and is unable to bat her position in the batting order she will be skipped.
10. Unlimited substitutions of defensive players are allowed, but the original batting order must remain the same.
11. Each team will receive one warning per game for throwing a bat. The second violation of any team member throwing the bat shall be called out. (This is a dead ball situation)
12. A batter will be considered out on any combination of three swings or called strikes. Any batter receiving four called balls will be issued a walk.
13. If a fielder has the ball and is in position to make a play on a runner, the runner must avoid an intentional collision. If the runner, in the opinion of the umpire, intentionally or maliciously collides with the fielder, she will be called out.
14. In order to prevent delays, a courtesy runner, the last recorded out, for the catcher and the pitcher is allowed at any time.
15. Once a pitcher has hit 3 batters in a game, she must be removed and cannot return as pitcher at any time of the game. Batter must make an honest attempt to get out of the way.
16. A pitcher can pitch only twelve (12) outs per game or 4 innings. Starting pitcher may return to the mound once, provided she does not exceed twelve (12) outs per game. No other pitcher may return as the pitcher after she has been removed from pitching.
17. At the beginning of each half inning, or when a pitcher relieves another pitcher, not more than one (1) minute may be used to deliver not more than five (5) pitches to the catcher or another teammate.
18. Dropped third strike will be played.
19. No fake tags; runner will be awarded next base.
20. No jewelry is to be worn during games. Starter earrings must be taped.
21. All batters will be required to wear a protective face mask on their helmet as well as pitchers.
22. All uniforms must be worn. No sandals or metal cleats.
23. All equipment and teammates must remain inside the dugout, with the exception of the on deck batter. Batter and on deck batter must have helmets on until they reach the dugout.
24. Home team scorebook is official score.
25. Managers only may question only an umpire’s book rule interpretation--- NOT JUDGMENT CALLS. The manager must question the call before the next pitch.
26. No harassment by coaches, spectators, or players will be permitted. Managers are responsible for conduct of coaches, spectators, and players. Unruly spectators may be asked to leave or cause forfeiture of the game.
27. Infield fly rule will be played.
28. Home team furnishes at least one new 12” ball. Only ASA certified girls softball bats are legal for use.
29. Runners are allowed to steal all bases. The runner cannot leave the base until the ball is released from the pitchers hand. If a runner leaves before the pitch is thrown the ball will be called dead immediately, and is ruled a no pitch—runners may not advance, and must return to the base occupied before the pitch. The runner that left early will be called “out”. This rule also applies for runners that leave any other base early.
30. Each player must play minimum of two (2) innings, at the coach’s discretion, unless a player is unable to play due to injury, sickness, or disciplinary reasons.
*First offense for leaving early will be a team warning
* Only coaches and scorekeepers are allowed in the dugout during the game.
Coaches must attempt to maintain an orderly and safe dugout environment at all times.
**Please make sure dugout is cleaned up after each game. Also, encourage your fans to pick up after themselves at all times.
** Rules may be modified based on the pitching availability of each team.