Softball Farm Rules

Arapahoe Little League doesn’t currently offer softball Farm Division 

Please refer to the 2022 Little League Softball Rule Book for an exhaustive list of Little League Softball Rules. Below are some of the more frequently identified rules, as well as rules that are specific to Arapahoe Little League softball.

When on Offense

- All batters must have a facemask on their batting helmet.
- There is no on-deck circle. Players in the dugout (besides the active batter) are not allowed outside the dugout to take practice swings or use a hitting stick.
- Base runners may slide feet first when headed to a base (no head-first slides to a base they have not reached yet). They may slide feet first or head first when returning to a base already passed.
- Runners may advance one base on infield hits, and one base on an overthrow. A second overthrow in the same play is a dead ball and runners are held at their bases. An overthrow is considered an attempt by a fielder to throw the ball to any infield position, and the ball gets past the intended target.
- Coaches pitch underhand to their own team’s batters from a distance of 25 – 30 feet.
- There is no stealing in Farm Softball, though players are allowed to take a lead off their base when the ball reaches the batter.
- A maximum of five (5) runs can be scored per half-inning. A team’s turn at-bat is over when the defense gains three outs or the offense scores five runs.
- Coaches should limit the number of pitches thrown to a batter to 6 pitches. If the batter does not put the ball in play, she is out after the 6th pitch. A batter cannot be put out if she fouls off a pitch.

When on Defense
- Players can field their entire team on defense. Six players should be assigned infield positions (pitcher, catcher, 1st base, 2nd base, 3rd base and shortstop), with the remaining players on outfield (outfielders should be at least 20 feet behind the baseline path between 1st and 2nd and 2nd and 3rd).
- Catchers must wear full catching gear (shin guards, chest protector, and catcher’s helmet with dangling style throat guard). Catchers may wear a fielder’s glove or catcher’s mitt.
- Pitchers must be in the pitching circle when the opposing team’s coach delivers the pitch. Players playing in the pitcher position are required to wear a defensive face mask. Infielders and outfielders (other than catcher) are encouraged to wear defensive face masks, but not required.
- The infield fly rule is not in effect in Farm softball.
- Teams on defense may station a coach behind home plate to help return ball that pass the catcher.
- Teams on defense may have a coach in the field to assist players with positioning. Coaches must avoid making contact with the ball when the ball is live.

Game Rules
- Games last for a minimum of 75 minutes.
- Farm softball will not have umpires. The coach pitching and the defensive coach on the field are responsible for making calls of outs or safe. Keep in mind the age and level of play when making calls.
- One umpire will be present on the field during playoffs.
- Games last for a minimum of 75 minutes or six innings, whichever comes first.  The inning in progress at 75 minutes will be completed in its entirety unless (1) the home team has the lead and is at-bat after time has expired, (2) the home team gains the lead after time has expired, or (3) the visiting team has a lead of 6 or more runs after time has expired.  The next inning officially starts after the third out of the previous inning.  
- The game is over if there is a 15-run (or more) lead after three innings (or 2 1/2 if the home team has the lead) or a 10-run (or more) lead after four innings (or 3 1/2 if the home team has the lead).  
- Pitcher’s plate is 35’ from home plate. Solid-core 11” softballs should be used.
- Pitcher’s plate is 35’ from home plate. Soft-core 11” softballs should be used.

All Divisions:
- Players must wear batting helmets with face masks
- Bats must be softball bats with a stamp showing a BPF rating of 1.20. Baseball bats should not be used (baseball
bats are affected by the new USA Baseball Rule, where all non-BBCOR baseball bats must have the USA Baseball
stamp. This rule does not affect softball bats, though softball bats must be stamped with the BPF rating).
- Base path distance is 60 feet for all divisions.
- Because of the short distance, it is highly recommended for infielders to wear defensive facemasks, and is
required for pitchers in Farm, Minors and Majors divisions.
- Pitching distances are as follows: Farm/Minors: 35’; Majors: 40’; Juniors/Seniors: 43’
- Ball sizes are as follows: Farm: 11’ (soft-core); Minors: 11’ (solid-core); Majors/Juniors/Seniors: 12’
- Little League’s 10-run ‘mercy’ rule is in effect for all divisions: Farm/Minors/Majors: after 4 innings;
Juniors/Seniors: after 5 innings
- Game lengths are as follows: Farm: 75 Min; Minors: 90 Min; Majors: 105 Min; Juniors/Seniors: 120 Min
- Teams are allowed a maximum of three coaches on the field, one of which must be in the dugout at all times.
- There is no on-deck circle in Farm, Minors and Majors; players waiting their turn at bat are not allowed to take
practice swings or use a hitting stick outside the dugout while waiting their turn at-bat.
- ‘Donuts’ or batting sleeves are not allowed in the on-deck circle in Juniors and Seniors.

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