2017 Co-Rec Softball Rules

Rule 1: Facility | Rule 2: Player Eligibility | Rule 3: Team Composition | Rule 4: Equipment | Rule 5: Ground Rules | Rule 6: Game Time and Length | RainOut Line Information

The rules and regulations for 2017 Intramural Softball will be those set by USA Softball with the following exceptions.  The Intramural Sports Staff will have the final say on any rules or protests.  Recent rule changes appear in italicized font.

Rule 1: Facility

  1. All games will be played at the Hawkeye Softball Complex unless otherwise communicated directly with teams. Alcohol and tobacco are not permitted inside the complex or in the parking lot.

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Rule 2: Player Eligibility

  1. All Intramural Sports eligibility rules apply. Please check the Intramural Sports Rules and Regulations carefully.
  2. All players must check-in with their University ID cards or government-issued photo IDs with the Intramural Supervisor prior to the start of each game.

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Rule 3: Team Composition

  1. Eight players must be present to start a game. Players may be inserted into the lineup upon arrival after they have checked-in with the Intramural Supervising Staff.
  2. Teams can choose to bat up to a maximum of 12 players or bat the 10 players in the field and use any remaining players as substitutes.
    • Co-Rec modification: Teams may have a maximum of five males and five females in the field at one time. Teams may also participate with four males and four females in the field at one time. Teams with nine players may have five males and four females or four males and five females in the field.
    • Co-Rec modification: The pitcher/catcher combination must consist of one male and one female.
    • Co-Rec modification: The batter order must alternate between male and female batters. 
    • Co-Rec modification: If a team is playing with an uneven number of each gender, the players of the outnumbered gender will advance one spot in the batting order each time through the order. 
      • Example - Batting order for a team with 5 males and 4 females:
        • Male 1, Female 1, Male 2, Female 2, Male 3, Female 3, Male 4, Female 4, Male 5, Female 1, Male 1, Female 2 etc. 
    • Co-Rec modification: The alternating batting order will utilize the difference of one principle. The line-up requirements are as follows: 
      • 12 players in the batting order – 6 males and 6 females
      • 11 players in the batting order – 6 males and 5 females or 5 males and 6 females
      • 10 players in the batting order – 5 males and 5 females
      • 9 players in the batting order – 5 males and 4 females, 4 males and 5 females
      • 8 players in the batting order – 4 males and 4 females
  3. A player may leave the game and return after his/her substitute has batted and played at least three defensive outs in the field provided the player occupies the same batting position in the batting order. 
    • A team may only use one Courtesy Runner per inning. The Courtesy Runner can be anyone on that team's roster provided that they match the same gender of the person needing a runner. If an injury occurs during the at-bat or while a running the bases, a Courtesy Runner may be used to take the place of the injured runner. If a Courtesy Runner's spot in the batting order comes up while that runner is on base, an out will be recorded, the base vacated, and that person shall bat. A Courtesy Runner will not be allowed if, after batting the ball, the batter-runner reaches third base safely. 
  4. A team must finish a game with at least eight players, except in the event of an injury. If players have to leave with no available substitutes, play will continue as long as eight legal players are available to play. When a player leaves a game early for any reason (injury, ejection) and no substitutes are available, an out will be recorded when that player is scheduled to bat.

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Rule 4: Equipment

  1. All players must wear closed-toe shoes. Tennis shoes, soft-soled shoes, and one piece softball shoes are legal. Metal spikes or cleats with metal exposed are not allowed.
    • Any player found wearing metal spikes in the field of play during his/her team’s defensive half of the inning will be removed from the game. If no substitute is available, his/her team must play down a player. The player will not be allowed to enter/re-enter the game until the metal spikes have been replaced with legal shoes.
    • Any player found wearing metal cleats in the field of play during his/her team’s offensive half of the inning will be declared out.
      • Any runners that have advanced as a result of a hit by the player wearing illegal spikes will return to the bases they previously occupied.
    • If the player does not have other shoes/cleats, he/she will not be allowed to participate in that game.
    • A player cannot be called out once the play is completed and the player in question has entered into his/her team’s dugout.
  2. Each team shall provide their own softballs that must be 12” softballs (USA Softball approved .52 COR or under and 300.0 lbs.). At the start of each game teams will exchange one of their own balls with their opponent who will verify these specifications. The batting team will hit their own balls that will be pitched to them by the pitching team. Throughout the game the pitching team will be responsible for verifying that the correct balls are being used as they are introduced into the game.  
  3. Participants are encouraged to wear personal safety equipment.
  4. Players must supply their own gloves and bats.
  5. Only USA Softball approved softball bats may be used.
  6. A complete list of legal bats is available from the Intramural Supervisor.

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Rule 5: Ground Rules

  1. A coin toss will determine the home and away teams.
  2. Each batter will start with a 1-and-1 count. A foul ball on the third strike will be recorded as a strikeout.
    • Co-Rec modification: Males who receive three straight balls and no strikes will be awarded second base on a walk. Base runners on base at the time of this walk will only advance as far as they are forced.
      • Example 1: A runner is on second base and no other runners are on base. That runner will advance to third base.
      • Example 2: A runner is on third base and no other runners are on base. That runner will not advance.
      • Example 3: A runner on first and a runner on second. The runner on second scores, the runner on first advances to third base.
    • The female who follows the walked male in the batting order has to take her at bat.
  3. A runner may not lead-off or steal. He or she must remain on the base until the ball crosses home plate or is contacted by the batter. 
  4. There will be a three over-the-fence home run limit for each team in each game.  Any home run over the limit will result in an out. If both teams reach the home run limit, teams can then hit additional home runs until one team has one more home run than the other. At this point, only the team with fewer home runs may hit one.
  5. Teams not competing in that game shall remain clear of the fields while games are in progress. Warming up can occur only in the designated areas. No infield practice before games or between innings is allowed.
  6. The infield fly rule will be applied.
  7. A legal pitch will have a minimum arc of six feet and a maximum arc of 12 feet.
  8. The batting team is responsible for keeping its own score and reporting it to the umpire after each half inning. The umpire is the final judge in case of a score discrepancy.
  9. Base path lengths will be 70 feet.
  10. Outfield Restriction Line: All outfielders must begin the play behind the outfield restriction line (180- foot arc from home plate), and remain behind the line until the batter hits the pitch. Penalty: The batter and all base runners will be awarded one base unless each has advanced one base safely, in which case the play proceeds without reference to the violation, and all runners may advance at their own peril.

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Rule 6: Game Time and Length

  1. Games will last seven innings (six and one half if the home team is ahead) or 50 minutes, whichever occurs first. No new inning may begin after the 50-minute mark has been reached.
    • Exception: If a game is tied after 50 minutes or seven innings have expired, extra innings will be played until a winner is determined.
  2. A game that is tied at the end of seven innings or 50 minutes will continue into the next inning, and each half inning thereafter, with the offensive team placing the player that was last scheduled to bat in the previous inning on second base. The inning will begin with zero outs. Each half inning will continue as such until a winner is declared.
  3. In the case of rain, or other occurrences, a game will become official after the completion of five innings (four and one half if the home team is ahead). If less than a legal game has been completed, the game shall be suspended at this point.
  4. There will be a 10-run mercy rule in effect after the fifth inning and a 15-run mercy rule in effect after the fourth inning.
  5. If inclement weather occurs while games are in progress, the decision to continue or stop will be made by the Intramural Sports Supervisor.

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RainOut Line - (319) 333-7032 Ex. 3

If there is inclement weather and outdoor sports are scheduled, call our RainOut Line for the most up-to-date information on the status of games.

NEW FOR 2017: You can download the RainOut Line app in the Apple App Store or Google Play. You can use this app to check the status of Intramural Sports contests right from your smartphone! Once you have downloaded the app, search "Recreational Services" and select "The University of Iowa Recreational Services." It's that easy!

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