Softball Rules

Download the 2015 Softball Rules

1. Rules and Regulations

1.1 The JCC Maccabi Games Softball competition shall be conducted under the following rules and regulations except as they may be modified by the Sports Advisory Committee (SAC).

1.2 The competition in softball shall be conducted in accordance with the Amateur Softball Association (ASA) Rules in force at the time of competition. In the event of a conflict between the ASA Rules and the rules and regulations below, the JCC Maccabi Games rules shall apply and be binding.

1.3 The Organizing Committee of the Host Community shall establish a Softball Committee, with an overall softball commissioner, to oversee and run the competition, and to resolve any controversies that arise. The decisions of the Softball Committee and/or the overall softball commissioner with respect to protests, disputes, and appeals shall be final. Protests must be submitted in writing within thirty (30) minutes after the completion of a game, and shall relate solely to the interpretation of the rules.

1.4 Prior to the start of the Games all rules questions shall be resolved by the Softball Committee, in consultation with the SAC, in accordance with the ASA rules in force during the previous softball season (See Rule 1.2).

1.4.1 A member of the host community must be available at each venue at which softball is played to help manage the softball tournaments in accordance with JCC Maccabi Games guidelines, control issues as they arise, and if applicable, to receive protests.

1.5 Rachmanus Rule–Rachmanus plays a key role in athletics and the JCC Maccabi Games. Compassion and good sportsmanship shall be displayed by athletes, coaches and spectators at all times during the JCC Maccabi games both on and off of the playing field. For more information on the Rachmanus rule please refer to Appendix 1.

Venue and Equipment Requirements

2.1 The Organizing Committee of the Host Community, acting through its Softball Committee, shall ensure that the following venue and equipment requirements are met:

2.1.1 All softball diamonds shall have skinned infields, and the pitching distance shall be forty-three (43) feet and the bases sixty (60) feet.

2.1.2 All balls shall meet ASA specifications.

2.1.3 In the event the Host Community cannot provide an official scorer for each game, the home team’s score book shall be considered the official score book. The score shall be checked with both teams after each inning.


2.3 The umpire calling balls and strikes will be referred to as the ‘umpire in chief’ and will be stationed behind home plate subsequent to each pitched ball.

3. Participants

3.1 A team shall consist of a minimum of twelve (12) players and a maximum of fourteen (14) players.

4. Competition Format

4.1 A complete game is seven (7) innings.

4.2 A ninety (90) minute time limit shall apply from the onset of play during preliminary round games. Once the time limit shall be reached, a new full inning shall not begin. TIME LIMIT supersedes the innings played.

4.2.1 In the preliminary rounds, extra innings may take place, but the time limit shall apply and ties may result.

4.2.2 The time limit shall not apply to medal round (i.e. any
game after the preliminary round) games. All attempts should be made to complete games in medal rounds when schedule permits.

4.3 An official game is four (4) innings or three and a half (3 1/2) innings if the home team is ahead when play is stopped.

4.3.1 If the umpire’s decision to call a game would cause the score to revert and change the outcome, the game becomes a suspended game and either continues to completion when play is resumed or ACTUAL PLAYING TIME has reached time limit (in preliminary rounds). The suspended time does not count against the time limit.

4.3.2 All canceled, suspended, or postponed games shall be rescheduled by the Softball Committee. In the event that it is impossible to reschedule such a game, the game shall be deemed a tie for determining team rankings for the medal round.

4.3.3 If a team is leading by ten (10) or more runs at the end of five (5) innings (or four and a half (4 ½) innings if it is the home team), the game shall be declared over and the leading team shall be declared the winner.

4.4 Teams should report a half hour before the scheduled start time.

4.4.1 A team shall be allowed a ten (10) minute grace period after the scheduled start time before the game is forfeit. The game shall not be delayed if and when at least nine (9) players on each team are present.

4.5 Each team will be allowed a ten (10) minute warm-up on the field if time permits, with the visiting team warming up first. The decision of the umpire shall be final with respect to warm-ups.

4.6 Before the start of the game, each manager shall submit the line-up to the umpire, the opposing manager, and the official scorer.

4.6.1 The batting order shall consist of nine (9) to eleven (11) players depending on the coaches use of the ASA Extra Player (EP) Rule (see rule 4.11). Each player shall be listed by name, number, and position. All players not included in the batting order shall be listed by name and number following the last batter in the order.

4.7 Substitutions for players on the field shall be made in accordance with the ASA Rules in effect at the time. Substitutions do not change a player’s place in the batting order.

4.8 Coaches of both teams must sign the game results’ card and return it to the umpire, who shall turn the card into the Softball site coordinator or member of the Softball Committee.

4.9 In preliminary rounds, teams receive three (3) points for a win, one (1) point for a tie and zero (0) points for a loss. If there are ties in the standings after preliminary rounds, the following procedures shall determine team rankings.

If 2 teams are tied:

  1. Head to head competition (if applicable)
  2. Record against common opponents in preliminary round play (if applicable)
  3. Overall opponents’ total won-loss points in preliminary round play
  4. Score differential versus common opponents in preliminary play (if applicable). Maximum run differential of ten (10) per game.
  5. Draw names to determine seeding. First name drawn is the higher ranked (better) seed.

If 3 or more teams are tied:

  1. Head to head competition (used only if all 3 teams have played one another)
  2. Record against common opponents in preliminary round play (if applicable)
  3. Overall opponents’ total won-loss points in preliminary round play
  4. Score differential versus common opponents in preliminary play (if applicable). Maximum run differential of ten (10) per game.
  5. Draw names to determine seeding. First name drawn is the higher ranked (better) seed. Continue process until all names have been drawn.


A. If 3 or more teams are tied, using the procedures listed above; the highest seed of the 3 (or more) shall be determined. If there are still 3 or more teams tied follow the same instructions above, pulling out one team at a time then restarting the entire process until there are two teams than only one left.

B. A member of the Softball Committee and/or the overall Softball commissioner or designee will draw names. Delegation heads will be notified of the results.

4.10 In addition to Rule 4.4.1 above, a team shall forfeit a game under the following circumstances:

4.10.1 If a team refuses to play a game or withdraws from the field before the end of a game without a valid reason as determined by the Softball Committee, in such an event, the team shall be disqualified from the tournament, and all previous and subsequent games shall be forfeited.

4.10.2 If a team cannot put eight (8) players on the field because of ejected or injured players.

4.10.3 If the coach is ejected from the game, and no other member of the coaching staff remains and no credentialed adult from the delegation, excluding spectators, is available to assume the coaching duties.

4.10.4 The score of a game that is forfeit shall be 10-0.

4.11 The ground rules for each site at which softball is played shall be determined by the Softball Committee.

4.12 The NSA Extra Player (EP) rules shall be in effect. The EP rule allows for a team to bat eleven (11) players and have a free defensive substitution amongst those eleven (11) players. Regular substitution rules for the remainder of the players shall remain in effect. At the start of each game, a team has the option to choose whether they would like to bat up to eleven (11) players. Should a person become injured, another player shall replace that athlete in the line-up. However, should there be no replacement available, an out will be given to that team every time that player’s spot is supposed to bat.

5. Tournament Format

5.1 The format for all team and individual sport competitions shall be created by the Sports Advisory Committee (SAC). Final sports competition formats will be determined after consultation between the applicable SAC Chair and the Host Community.

5.2 Slotting of teams in the preliminary rounds shall be done by a blind draw conducted by a member of the Sports Advisory Committee.

5.3 Every effort will be taken to create a tournament that allows each team to participate in a minimum of five (5) games.

6. Conduct During Competition

6.1 A player who intentionally removes her helmet while running the bases shall be called out.

6.2 A player who intentionally throws her bat or helmet while at the plate shall be given a warning by the umpire. A second offense, whether intentional or unintentional shall result in ejection from the game.

6.3 Only players, coaches, managers, and other credentialed team personnel shall be allowed in the bench area or on the field. All spectators must remain in the designated spectator area.

6.4 ASA Rule 10.9 A and C shall apply to spectators, and the umpire shall have the authority to compel spectators to leave the site for flagrant or continued conduct that is deemed not sportsmanlike. Abusive or intimidating language or aggressive behavior by any player, coach, manager, or team official shall be grounds for ejection from the game.

7. Dress and Equipment

7.1 Clean and customarily acceptable softball attire shall be worn by all participants. If there is a question as to the acceptability of the attire, the decision of the Softball Committee shall be final.

7.2 Each player shall have at least one (1) uniform top.

7.2.1 The backs of the uniform tops shall have numbers beginning with the number one (1). The numbers shall be at least six (6) inches high. Players shall wear the same number throughout the tournament.

7.2.2 Coaches are required to wear his/her team’s jersey or the delegation’s coach’s shirt.

7.3 If the uniform consists of shorts, Sliders are strongly recommended for all athletes.

7.4 Players should wear shoes with rubber cleats; tennis/running shoes are discouraged. Metal spikes or cleats are not allowed.

7.5 All catchers must wear face masks, throat protectors, helmets, chest protectors, and shin guards. Players warming up pitchers between innings must wear a face mask.

7.6 Each team is responsible for its own bats, helmets, and catcher equipment, which must meet ASA specifications.

7.7 A player taking part in the medal ceremony must wear shoes and her competition uniform.

7.8 No jewelry shall be worn.

8. Medals

8.1 The following medals shall be awarded:

First Place – JCC Maccabi Gold Medal
Second Place – JCC Maccabi Silver Medal
Third Place – JCC Maccabi Bronze Medal

Download the 2014 Softball Rules