rules

Rules are necessary! Here are the official rules of the Habersham County Church Softball League. 

SEASON & PLAYOFFS

  • Habersham Church Softball consists of a 14-game schedule

  • The league will feature two divisions - the Church Division and the Challenger Division (no cross-over games)

  • Top 8 teams make the playoffs in each division

  • PLAYOFFS: The top 8 teams of the church division will play a tournament, with the #1 playing the #8, #2/#7, #3/#6 and #4#5! In the event of ties in the final regular season standings, tie-breakers will be determined by head-to-head matchups and if need be, runs scored. For the industrial league, the top team gets a bye into the championship. #2/#3 play in the semifinals.

 

ROSTERS

  • MUST be 18 years of age or older to play in the league. Any 16 or 17 year old MUST have a signed waiver by the legal parent/guardian

  • Once rosters are turned in, players will NOT be allowed to switch teams

  • No player is allowed to be on two rosters

  • This is a co-ed league. Women are more than welcome. There is no rule with a minimum of women per team, but women are always welcome to join!

  • Any player participating in a game but not listed on that team's roster will result in a forfeited game

  • MINIMUM of 7 roster players are needed to play a game. A team only needs 9 to field a full team, and can bat up to 12 if they wish

  • In the event a team has less than 9 roster players available for a scheduled game, that team may pick up a non-roster player. Each team is limited to 1 non-roster player per game. (EX: Team has 8 roster players, they may pick up 1 non-roster player for that game)  If a team has 7 roster players, they still will only be allowed to pick up 1 non-roster players for that game

  • Teams CANNOT add a new roster player without consent from the league commissioner (Stephen Cain) or vice commissioner (Brian Carter). Once a team roster has been turned in, a new player can only be added by that team's coach contacting the league commish/vice commish prior to that team's next game

 

EQUIPMENT

  • .44 Core Balls (.375 Compression ONLY)

  • ASA & ISA Approved Bats (Titanium Bats NOT allowed)

  • NO Steel Cleats

 

GAMES *changes announced soon*

  • 7 Innings (50-minute time limit). When the 50-minute mark is hit, the current inning will be completed (home team bats last). Any tie at that point results in a win to both team's records.

  • NEW FOR 2021: Pitch to your own team. 3 pitches ONLY to put a ball in play. Fouls on the third pitch or hitting into the next on the third pitch is an out. There are no more walks and no more one-pitch. 3 pitches to hit one in play. Your bat against your own pitcher. When your pitcher's turn comes up to hit, someone else on your team pitches to them. If they get on base, they are immediately granted an additional courtesy runner and go back to pitching.

  • FIELDERS: You now only need 9 players to field a team, and technically can play with 8 and abandon the catcher's position. Pitchers can NOT field the ball off their own team. Defensively, teams will play with 9, but no additional infielder should play up the middle. Since your pitcher is pitching when your team bats, he/she will be able to play elsewhere on defense when the other team is batting.

  • Games are considered complete at 4 1/2 innings in the event of rain or inclement weather, regardless of score and which team is batting

  • A run rule of 20 after 3 triggers the end of the game if prior to 50 minutes, UNLESS the coach of the trailing team chooses to continue play

  • 5-Minute Grace Period at Start of 7 PM Game (Following games start at the conclusion of previous game)

  • Each Team Furnishes Their Own Softballs (Hit Your Own Ball). NEW FOR 2021: Softballs will be signed off on before the game, and kept behind home plate. If a new ball enters play, it will be checked off immediately and continue to be kept behind the plate.

  • Umpire Decisions Remain FINAL (Arguments are Prohibited)

  • Minimum of 7 Roster Players Present (Less than 7=Forfeit) ^

  • NEW FOR 2021: Teams with 7 may pick up ONLY ONE non-roster player to reach 8, or if they have 8 they can pick up one to reach 9.

  • Non-Roster Players who are picked up by a team will not be granted a HR should they hit one out.  Such over-the-fence hits will be an OUT (NEW FOR 2021). That non-roster HR (out) will not count toward the equalizer rule.

  • The great equalizer rule is in effect. Each team can go up one homerun on the opposing team, with all subsequent homers going as outs until the opposing team matches the homerun output.

  • Each team may bat up to 12 batters in their lineup

  • One Forfeit Permitted Per Team

  • Protests Waged Against Player/Team (ex: illegal use of non-roster players; illegal equipment) can be Brought Before Church League Committee (Pres/VP/Treas/2 Elected Members) #

  • The church division and industrial division require the use of a net in front of the pitcher's circle. A batted ball into the net is a dead ball, and if hit by the same batter a second time will be an out. With the net in place, there will be no stealing allowed.

  • A commitment line between third and home is in place. If you cross that line, you MUST go home. The home plate line means you don't have to touch home plate, but must beat the throw to the line. NO SLIDING/DIVING/COLLIDING at home plate is allowed. 

  • NEW FOR 2021: A 200-ft line in the outfield will be in place to protect women playing in the league. Outfielders MUST stay behind the line until contact is made. If a catch is made by an outfielder who was not behind the line prior to contact, the woman batter is awarded a single.

 

CONDUCT

  • Alcohol, Tobacco & Drugs are Strictly Prohibited*

  • Verbal (including cursing) or Physical Abuse against Umpires & Players is Strictly Prohibited*

  • Any ejection for player misconduct (arguing with umpire, profanity, etc.) will result in that player being suspended from his/her team's next scheduled game

  • Violators of the Code of Conduct (cursing on the field, physical altercations, tobacco/alcohol use) will be subject to a 3-strike rule. After an initial warning, and subsequent warning, a third offense results in the team being ejected from the league. The strikes reset for each season.

*will result in the ejection of individual(s) upon judgment of umpire & coaches

^teams may agree prior to a game to allow non-roster players to participate to avoid a forfeit

#a "bad call" by the officials/umpires is NOT a valid protest

SAFETY

  • The Habersham County Church Softball League is a PLAY AT YOUR OWN RISK league. We are not liable for any injury that may occur.

  • The league requires the use of a net in front of the pitcher's circle. A batted ball into the net is a dead ball, and if hit by the same batter a second time will be an out. With the net in place, there will be no stealing allowed.

SEASON LENGTH

Habersham Church Softball League runs from September 21 until November 9 (tentative based on weather). Games are played on Mondays, Tuesdays, and Thursdays at 7, 8, & 9 PM

Contact Us

field location

Ruby C. Fulbright Aquatic Center

120 Paul Franklin Rd.

Clarkesville, GA 30523

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© 2019 by Habersham Church Softball League