SESPA League Rules
Please keep a copy of Slo-pitch National (SPN) rules with you at all games.
AND PLEASE REMEMBER, NO MATTER WHO YOU ARE OR WHERE WE ARE PLAYING, OPEN ALCOHOL IS NOT PERMITTED BY THE CITY. WITH THAT IN MIND, LET'S BE RESPECTFUL OF THOSE THAT LIVE AROUND THE DIAMONDS OR PLAY IN THE NEIGHBOURING FIELDS AND PARKS AND AVOID GIVING REASON FOR SOMEONE TO FEEL THE NEED TO COMPLAIN.
Before game commencement discuss any probable issues with team captain. I.e. Are there any objects in the field that will result in a ground rule double or home run?
Approved Bats- ** PLEASE SEE SPN WEBSITE FOR MORE DETAILS. All legal bats used in Slo-Pitch National will have the USSSA compliance mark located on the bat.
DETAILED RULES BREAKDOWN
EACH PLAYER ON THE SIDE AT BAT SHALL BECOME A BATTER IN THE ORDER in which their
names appear on the score sheet.
Outfielders may not be on the infield surface.
At the beginning of the game when starting lineups are exchanged between team captains,
the required three (3) ladies must be in defined positions within the batting lineup. Ladies may
appear anywhere within the batting lineup at game start. The three 3 (4 when an “EP” is in use)
batting positions defined as female, must remain female for the duration of the game.
? Infield fly rule is to be called
An infield fly is a fair ball, not including a line drive, which can be caught by an infielder with
ordinary effort when first and second or first, second, and third bases are occupied, before two
(2) are out. Any fielder can catch an infield fly.
NOTE: When it seems apparent that a batted ball will be an infield fly, the umpire shall
immediately declare "INFIELD FLY - BATTER IS OUT" to aid the runners. If the ball is near the foul
lines, the umpire shall declare "INFIELD FLY - BATTER IS OUT, IF FAIR". The ball is alive and
runners may advance at the risk of the ball being caught or retouch and advance after a fielder
touches the ball. If the hit ball becomes a foul ball, it is treated the same as any other foul ball.
A RUN SHALL NOT BE SCORED IF THE THIRD OUT OF THE INNING IS A RESULT OF:
a. The batter being put out before legally touching first base.
b. A baserunner being forced out due to the batter becoming a batter-baserunner.
c. A baserunner leaving base before a pitched ball reaches home plate or before the pitched
ball is batted.
d. An appeal play at first base on the batter-baserunner for the third out of the inning.
? There is a 6 ft minimum and 15ft maximum arch on the pitch. Except A division, there is
no height maximum, just a 6ft minimum.
? Strike zone if ball is to land on the rectangular mat/board/plate, if the mat covers the
whole plate, the full rectangle is the strike zone, even if it just touches the corner. Mat
dimensions are 17" x 32".
A LEGAL DELIVERY shall be delivered with an underhand motion.
a. The pitch shall be released at a moderate speed. The speed is left up to the judgment of the
umpire, who shall warn the pitcher who delivers a pitch with excessive speed. If the pitcher
repeats such an act after being warned, he/she shall be removed from the pitcher’s position for
the remainder of the game.
b. The hand shall be below the hip.
c. The ball must be delivered with an arc and reach a height between six (6) and ten (10) feet
from the ground.
SAFE BAG AT FIRST & RULES AT HOME
? There is a commitment line that is 2/3’s down from 3rd to home where if the base
runner crosses it running home, he can’t turn around and go back.
? No touching home plate, you are to draw a line in the ground as a safe line that is to be
crossed instead. This avoids collision.
NOTE I: First base double base — At facilities that use the safety bag at first base, the following
rules will be implemented. If the first play is at first base, either from the infield or outfield, a
baserunner will be called out for touching the white or inside portion of the base. If the play is
not to first base, the inside base may be tagged in a continuation toward second base. The
baserunner running toward first base may cross over to the white or inside portion of the base
to avoid a collision if a wild throw occurs. The white or inside portion of the base will be used by
the batter-baserunner if attempting to get back to first base. (safe portion of first base is
orange). SECTION 1-9 (p.20)
? No leading off, that is an automatic out
BASERUNNERS ARE ENTITLED TO ADVANCE WITHOUT LIABILITY TO BE PUT OUT:
a. When forced to vacate a base because the batter was awarded a base on balls, the ball is
b. When a fielder obstructs a baserunner from making a base, unless the fielder is trying to field
a batted ball, has the ball ready for a tag, or is about to receive a thrown ball.
EFFECT: When obstruction occurs, the umpire shall call and signal obstruction. If a play is being
made on the obstructed baserunner, or if the batter-baserunner is obstructed before reaching
first base, the ball is dead and all baserunners advance to the bases they would have reached, in
the umpire’s judgment, if there had been no obstruction, without liability to be put out.
EXCEPTION: A baserunner obstructed in a run down shall be awarded the lead base at the time
of the obstruction. Any preceding baserunners, forced to advance by the award of bases for
obstruction, shall advance without liability to be put out.
• If no play is being made on the obstructed baserunner at the time of obstruction, the play shall
proceed until the play is completed. The umpire shall call “time” and impose such penalties, if
any, as in his judgment, will nullify the act of obstruction.
Base stealing: under no circumstances is a baserunner permitted to steal a base.
1. The ball is dead. In all cases where a thrown ball goes into the spectator’s seats, goes over,
through, or under any fence surrounding the playing field, hits any person or object not
engaged in the game, goes into the players’ benches, including bats lying near benches,
whether the ball rebounds onto the playing field or not, or remains in the meshes of any wire
screen, each and every baserunner shall be awarded two (2) bases from the last base they
2. When the first throw is made by an infielder, two (2) bases shall be awarded. The award shall
be governed by the position of the each baserunner at the time the pitch was made, however,
if all baserunners, including the batter-baserunner, have advanced at least one (1) base when
the infielder makes the wild throw, on the first play after a pitch, the award shall be governed
by the position of the baserunners, when a wild throw was made.
3. When a throw is made by an outfielder, or is the result of any succeeding play or attempted
play, the two (2) base award shall be governed by the position of each baserunner and the last
base he/she has touched at the time the throw was made. If two (2) baserunners are between
the same base, the award is based on the position of the lead baserunner.
THE BASERUNNER IS OUT:
a. When, in running to any base, he/she runs more than three feet from a direct line between
that base and the next base in regular or reverse order to avoid being touched by the ball in the
hand of a fielder. When a play, such as a rundown, is made on a runner who has “rounded” a
base, and that runner is outside of a direct line between bases, the runner establishes his/her
baseline as a direct line between him/her and the next base in regular or reverse order.
b. When, while the ball is in play, he/she is legally touched by the ball in the hand of a fielder
while not in contact with a base.
c. When, on a force out, a fielder tags him/her with the ball or tags the base on a force out.
d. When the baserunner fails to return to touch the base he/she previously occupied when play
is resumed after suspension of play.
e. When a baserunner physically passes a preceding baserunner before that baserunner has
been put out.
f. When the baserunner leaves his/her base to advance to another base before a caught fly ball
has been touched by a fielder, provided the ball is returned to a fielder and legally held on that
base, or a fielder legally touches the baserunner before he/she returns to his/her base.
g. When the baserunner fails to touch the intervening base or bases, in regular or reverse order,
and the ball is in play and legally held on the base, or the baserunner is legally touched while off
the base he/she missed.
h. When the batter-baserunner legally over runs first base and then attempts to run to second
base and is legally touched while off the base.
MERCY & HOME RUN RULES
? There is a 10 run Mercy rule in affect after the 5th inning.
HOME RUN LIMITS: (any untouched ball which travels over the fence, over fair ground)
a. Three (3) and one up
NOTE I: The one up rule is in effect only after both teams have reached their home run limit.
Once both teams have reached their home run limit, either team may hit an additional home
run, however, no team may ever go more than one home run up on the other team. Any
additional home runs above the one up will be scored an out. The home team, in the bottom of
the seventh or later innings, may hit one home run to pull even in the number of home runs as
the opposing team, but may not hit a home run to go one up.
? This applies only when the count is 4 balls, 0 strikes and a female is on deck.
b. When a male batter is walked, intentionally or unintentionally, the male batter is awarded
first and second bases and the following female batter has the option to bat or walk.
? Injured players can have a courtesy runner from home plate who is the last out in the
line-up of the same gender as the batter. The courtesy runner can start from home plate
(start running form behind the home plate) or from first base. No courtesy runners are
permitted if a batter gets to 2nd or 3rd
Females are allowed to bunt.
THE BATTER IS OUT:
k. When the batter attempts a bunt on the third strike and bunts the ball foul.
? Ticked catches off the bat do not count unless there was a 6ft arch.
? When females are up to bat, there is a respect line that keeps outfielders approx. 20-
30ft from infield so that when girls are up that whole team hasn’t moved right in.
? Ensure you mark the commitment line ¾ way from third to home plate with a pylon.
? Batting team provides the umpire and please respect the umpire.
? No throwing bats.
? No drinking on the field in a fashion that will cause a problem
? Cancellations - As long as the city has not closed the fields, it’s up to the 2 team
captains to decide whether to cancel a game or not. If a decision is made to cancel a
game, please let the league know (Adam or Chris) of the planned makeup date or
? Field Closures - The city is the one who deals with field closures. Field status is updated
by 4pm weekdays. Captains please ensure you are keeping an eye on this to ensure we
are not playing on closed fields. You can sign up for notifications from the city at
or call 311. If the city has closed the fields you are NOT allowed to play on the
? Winning Team reports scores by Noon the next day to Colin. IF YOU DO NOT REPORT
YOUR SCORES YOUR TEAM WILL FORFEIT THE GAME 7-0.
? Must have players in tournaments that have played on your team throughout the
season (unless mandatory, then no ringers allowed just to win tourneys).
? Respect each other.
? Have fun ?