Softball Rules

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Forest Hills Diamonds    4/15/2021

Softball Rules and Regulations

All rules are the official slow pitch rules adopted by the United States Specialty Sports Association (USSSA) unless otherwise stated.

Legal Roster

  • Men and women teams may have a maximum of 20 players on their roster; Co-rec may have a maximum of 30. Roster changes may be made until May 15th. Additional changes may be made until Aug 1st for a fee of $10 per change. All in-league roster-to-roster changes after May 15th require a 7 day waiting period, counting the day of the change.
  • A player may be on only 1 roster in the same league. If a player is caught playing for another team in that league, that game is forfeited and the player is suspended 1 calendar week.
  • Female players are not allowed to play on any men's teams.
  • A legal line-up consists of 10 players. A team may have up to 2 additional hitters (AH). A team may start with nine players and add the 10th player at any time, but if a team starts with only nine players, they may not add an AH. If a team starts with nine players, there will NOT be an automatic out each time the 10th spot in the line-up comes up to bat. Co-rec teams may bat 2 additional hitters, but not just 1.
  • If a player is ejected for any reason and no substitute is available, nine players can continue to play, with the 10th batter being an automatic out.
  • A player will not be allowed to participate in any game while wearing a protective cast. It is highly recommended that pregnant women not participate in softball. Be advised the league or complex is not responsible for any accident or injury involving the expectant mother or unborn child.

    Playing Rules

    • A line-up including first and last names must be turned in to the umpire no later than scheduled game time.
    • Home team will be determined with a double-flip coin toss prior to start of each game.
    • All games will use a three ball/two strike count. Each batter starts with a 1 ball, 1 strike count. A third strike foul is an out, the ball is considered dead, and the runner may not advance.
    • 10, 15, and 20 run rules will be in effect for all games which end the game and award a win to the leading team if they are ahead by more than 10 runs after 5 innings have been completed or are ahead by more than 15 runs after 4 innings have been completed or are ahead by more than 20 runs after 3 innings have been completed.
    • Home Runs allowed: Women and men will have a designated homerun hitter. Each team are allowed 2 additional homeruns that are not the DHH. Corec Leagues have 1 male and 1 female DHH plus 2 additional team homeruns. After limit is reach subsequent homeruns are outs.
    • Bats must be USSSA or One Nation compliant including passing a compression test if administered. 


    • A 5 minute grace period will be given for the first scheduled game if a legal lineup (9 players) is not present. Neither team shall take the field until both teams have at least 9 players. After the first scheduled game, a legal line-up must be present at the scheduled game time or the game is a forfeit. 
    • Men's and Women's leagues can play with 9 players without an automatic out. Co-rec leagues can also play with 9 players but the 10th position is an automatic out.
    • Any team that forfeits a game must pay a $25.00 fine before playing in their next scheduled game.
    • Team managers are responsible for the conduct of their team. All team managers must inform their players of all rules and regulations. It is also the responsibility of the team manager to inform their team of all rescheduled games. (Please check web site for information and rescheduled games.)
    • Abuse of any kind to umpires will not be tolerated. Any person(s) demonstrating this type of behavior will be banned from the softball complex.
    • Throwing or tossing the bat for any reason will result in ejection from that game plus the next scheduled game.
    • All other ejections will result in a suspension for the next scheduled league game plus any additional games as determined by the complex manager. The second offense will result in ejection for the remainder of the season.
    • If a player is ejected from the game and there is no substitute available, the team may play with 9 players and the 10th position will be an automatic out.
    • Any team using a player not officially on their roster will forfeit that game and the offending player will be suspended for one calendar week. This offense must be determined between the time of the first pitch and the last out of the game. To appeal an illegal player on an opposing team you must (1) make the appeal (protest) prior to the end of the game; (2) notify the umpire of the appeal; (3) notify the scorekeeper (if available) of the appeal and the person in question.
    • To be in the dugout, you must be on the team roster.
    • Drinking alcoholic beverages and smoking will not be tolerated on the playing field or the dugout. The umpires may remove any player they feel is intoxicated.
    • Minors are not allowed to consume alcoholic beverages in the state of Illinois. Any minor detected purchasing, attempting to purchase, or consuming alcoholic beverages will be banned from the complex. Any adult detected purchasing alcoholic beverages for a minor will also be banned from the complex and subject to Illinois state law. 


    • In the case of inclement weather, no decision or cancellations will be made until after 4:30pm. To check the status of the diamonds, please call (815) 654-3900 or go to League officials determine whether games will be played. During games, umpires may delay or end the game early. If a game that is ended early has played at least four innings, the game will be considered a complete game and the score will revert back to the last completed inning played. Incomplete and tie games will be replayed from the beginning.
    • If a game is called because of darkness on Diamond 4, games will be considered suspended and will be resumed at a later date.
    • Cancelled games will be rescheduled. Check the web site for makeup games. 


    •  Any protest will be in accordance with the USSSA book and it must be accompanied with a $50 fee at the time of the protest.
    • No player may be added to a roster after Aug 1st without approval from the complex manager.
    • Team Playoff Standings determined by: 
      1. Win/loss record
      2. Head to Head
      3. Least runs given up
      4. Most runs scored
      5. Coin flip

    The Park Commissioner has the authority to alter any league rules or regulations.

    Be advised the leagues or complex is not responsible for any accident or injury.