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MINNESOTA SOFTBALL 8-UNDER FAST PITCH RULES

These rules were created by Minnesota USA Softball Staff after consulting with many other states about how they conduct 8U softball. The idea is to get kids playing short games, learn how to play the game properly, and to enjoy playing the sport. The premise of this is not to develop pitchers. You can and should work on pitching during every single practice, with every single kid. If you have a kid that is an advanced player for that age, place them on a 10U team if feasible.

GENERAL

  • Teams play single games on Wednesday night starting on May 10th. Each team will play eight (8) play dates on consecutive weeks concluding on Wednesday, June 28th. The last two league games will be double headers as a transition to 10U travel ball.
  • The league will be combined with Big West and Tri County communities participating.
  • The league will be hosted on one web site and teams will be divided in to multiple regions to keep drive and costs down.
  • The league fee per team will be $50.  The State Tournament fee will be $100.
  • The State Tournament will be held at Rosemount on July 8-9, 2017.  A $100.00 check will be made payable to Rosemount Fastpitch to secure a spot.
  • If a team can demonstrate geographic hardship and keeps them from playing in the league, they may apply to play in the State Tournament.

EQUIPMENT

  • We will use an eleven (11) inch softball, preferably a Dudley SBC11 with an ASA stamp.
  • Pitching will be handled by a blue Louisville Slugger Pitching Machine and set at 30-34 mph.
  • We will not use umpires in league or at the State Tournament.

DIMENSIONS

  • The pitching plate will be placed at 35 feet.
  • Base distances will be 60 feet.
  • 200 foot fences are preferred but are not required.

GAME PLAY

  • Games will be played on Wednesday night.
  • Defense will have 9 players on the field.
  • Each batter gets 3 swings or 5 pitches unless last pitch is a foul ball. The at bat will continue on a foul ball just as with all other age groups.
  • Bunting is not allowed.
  • The Infield Fly Rule will not be apply.
  • Runners will not be allowed to advance after a dropped third strike.
  • Stealing is not allowed.
  • Designated players (DP) will not be allowed.
  • Leading off is not allowed.  Runners may not leave their base until ball contact with the bat. 
  • Pitcher must stay in the pitcher’s circle (behind or on side of coach) until ball contacts the bat.
  • Outfielders must start the play standing on the grass at the edge of the infield. If the infield is cut for baseball create an arc 15 feet behind the bases and the outfielders must start behind that.
  • Players and runners will stop when:
    • A ball that never leaves the infield:  Once a fielder has control of the ball the runners should stop at the next base. This encourages the infielder to throw the ball to the appropriate base with out the fear of runners advancing to the next base because of an overthrow. 
    • ​A ball hit to the outfield:  If no outfielder has control of the ball the runners may continue to advance. Once the outfielder gains control of the ball and throws it toward the infield the runners will stop at the next base. Even if the ball doesn't make it to the "dirt" on the throw, the act of throwing the ball in is the attempt at making the correct play.  Players must stop at the next base.
  • ​Teams will bat the roster.
  • Innings are complete after 3 outs or 5 runs
  • Run ahead rule:  15 after 3, 12 after 4, 8 after 5Games will be 5 innings or 65-minute time limit. On double-header nights there will be a no longer than 10-minute break between games. The teams may engage in a kid pitch scrimmage following the completion of the game. This scrimmage must be agreed upon by both head coaches and last no longer than 20 minutes.
  • Teams may have as many coaches on the field as they wish to help train and teach the game.
  • Coaches need to make every effort to stay out of the player’s way.
  • The coach feeding the pitching machine must keep extra softballs in his possession, not laying on the ground around the machine.
  • Coaches are part of the field and are in play. They should give the pitcher a verbal that they are about to place a ball in the pitching machine.
  • Coaches need to operate the game with the highest amount of integrity. At all times keep the kid’s best interest in mind.