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Local Softball Rules




The USA Softball Rule Book, formerly ASA, will be the Official Rule Book of the Cañon City Recreation District Adult Softball Program. All leagues are to be considered Class D leagues or below as pertains to all rules.  The Cañon City Recreation District Rules take priority over the USA Softball rules. Rules may be changed to better benefit our individual program. The Rec. District rules are below.  You may download the app for the updated rules in the App Store for $14.99.    

1.         Manager’s Responsibilities

  • Read and understand league rules and park policies prior to participation.
  • Obtain league information pertaining to League Schedules, Standings, Rules, the Participant Code of Conduct and Adult Sports Policies. All information will be posted on the District’s website at
  • Adhere to the Rules, Participant Code of Conduct and the Adult Sports Policies.
  • Maintain control over his/her players and spectators in all circumstances, including disputes on the field. Umpires will discuss disputes on the field with the “team representative” only.  The team representative is the person who represents the team at home plate for the coin toss.
  • Have all players sign rosters and or waivers before participating in a game.  Only players on the roster may be on the field or in the dugout during the games.  Rosters lock in week five in Men’s League.  In the Coed League the men lock in week five and the women lock in week eight.
  • Turn in your Line-up Card to the Field Supervisor at least 15 minutes prior to game time.  Provide a copy of line-up card to the manager of the opposing team and the home plate umpire at the coin flip.  Line-up Card is to include players’ last name, first initial, shirt number (if available), annotation of first time players, and all substitutes who may play that game. Only players listed on the original line-up card can start the game, or be used as a substitute in the game (no exceptions).
  • If there is a protest, only the team representatives from each team will be allowed to state their case with the umpires. Any other player who attempts to get involved in the protest discussion is subject to immediate ejection and suspension for the following game.  The protesting team must submit a $25.00 cash protest fee immediately to the on-site supervisor. The protest fee will be refunded if the protest is decided in the protesting team’s favor. The only ones allowed behind home plate for protests are one team representative, the umpires and supervisor.
  • Teams are encouraged to keep their own scorebook during their games. After the game has started, team players or representatives are not allowed to enter the score booth without permission from the home plate umpire and on-site supervisor. Players or representative will not be allowed to enter score booth without a completed scorebook.

  1. Regulation Game

  • Game time starts at the coin toss to determine home team. 
  • Game time is forfeit time for all league games. Teams may start games with 8-players for both Men’s and Co-Ed teams. Teams that start with less than 10-players can add additional players up to a total of 10-players at any time. If you start the game with 10-players, any player showing up late must be either in the line-up or on the substitute list in order to be eligible to play in the game.  If players show up late and are in the line-up, it will count as an out every time they are supposed to bat until they are present.  Substitutes can be inserted into the line-up in accordance with USA Softball.
  • Games will consist of 7-innings, but no new inning will start after 55-minutes of playing time have elapsed, unless the game is tied.  There is a clock on both fields.                   
  • All batters will start with a 1-1 count.  There are courtesy fouls in the co-ed league.  There are no courtesy fouls in the men’s league.
  • Umpires do not have to officiate forfeited games. Teams will be allowed to use the field for practice. The field must be vacated 10-minutes prior to the start of the next game.
  • The League Tournaments will be played on regular nights and on a selected weekday or weekend if there were multiple cancellations during the season. 
  • The mercy rule is in effect in all games, which consists of the following: 15-run after four innings and 10-run lead after five innings.

3.         In Case of Weather

  • Games will not be called before 4:00 pm on regular game days.  For information on cancellations, you may call the Recreation District Offices at any time, 275-1578.  Cancellations will be recorded on the answering machine, posted on the District’s website at, and posted on our Facebook page.
  • Make up games will hopefully be played on the same night as your team regularly plays, but they may be played on Tuesday’s, Thursday’s, or Friday’s.  Games will not be rescheduled for personal reasons.

4.         Bats        

  • The District will allow bats displaying the 2004 or 2013 ASA certification mark.  These bats all meet the ASA 2004 Bat Performance Standard of maximum batted ball speed limit of 98 mph. USA Softball stamps are allowed as well. ASA is now USA. Any bat not displaying one of these stamps will not be eligible for use.  Types of bats include single wall, multi wall, and composite.  Titanium bats are illegal.
  • There are 29 bats with Certification Marks, but were ruled illegal by ASA. You may download this list on the District website. 
  • Wood bats are allowed, but they must be official softball wood bats.
  • Fast Pitch Softball bats are not allowed.
  • At the start of all games the bats must be lined up along the fence for inspection by the officials.  Any bats ruled illegal will be removed at this time. No bat may be used without the authorization of the game umpire.                                                                                             
  • If caught using an illegal bat, the player who used the bat is out and ejected from the game.  The opposing team has the right to protest the final result of the game.

5.         Alcohol Rules

  • There will be no alcohol allowed on the playing field or dugout at any time.
  • The Cañon City Recreation District staff has the authority to remove any player(s) from the field whose overindulgence of alcohol may cause injury to themselves, other players or spectators. The Participant Code of Conduct will govern actions taken regarding intoxicated players.


6.         Slide Rule

  • There is no slide rule in USA Softball.  The decision on if there is interference or obstruction is at the sole discretion of the umpires.  We do advise offensive players to hit the dirt or give themselves up on close plays for safety reasons.  However, any decision will rest with the umpires as it is a judgement call.
  • The defensive player IS NOT allowed to block the base/plate or the base path if they do not have possession of the ball (penalty is obstruction).  The lone exception to the rule is whether or not the throw takes the defensive player off the bag.

7.         Walking a Male Batter in a Coed Game

  • If a male batter is walked with less than two outs he will be awarded second base.  The female batter must bat.
  • If a male batter is walked with two outs he will be awarded second base.  The female batter will have the option to go to first base or bat.

8.         Game Balls    

  • All leagues will use 12-inch balls.  However in the Coed League only, the women will be allowed to hit an 11-inch ball.  No more coed line. Regardless of ball outfielders may position themselves wherever they want in grass. Also, infielders must stay in dirt until ball is hit.
  • The offensive team is responsible for providing their softballs. It is the offensive teams’ responsibility to provide enough balls to continue play after foul balls and home runs. Delays will result in automatic strikes and outs.        
  • The ball of the league is the .52 core, 300 lbs. compression, yellow optic ball.  The core and compression of the ball must be able to be read clearly by the umpire.  If the markings on the ball are becoming difficult to read, then the Recreation District supervisor may mark the balls to show they are legal.
  • If the pitcher notices the ball is illegal, it is up to them to throw the ball out and alert the umpire. First offense will be a warning. Every offense after will result in an out. If the illegal ball is pitched, then the defensive team is allowing the ball to be played.  The result of the play stands.
  • If the offensive team continues to present illegal balls during the game, the outcome of the contest is subject to protest.

9.         Home Runs

  • Each team will be allowed five (5) home runs in Men’s Softball.
  • In Coed Softball, the women will have unlimited home runs, but the men are only allowed five (5). 
  • Hit and sit.  On a home run the player who hit the ball may return to the dugout as the umpire gives the home run signal.  If there are runners on base they may leave the field once the home run has been hit and the signal has been given by the umpire. 

10.       Stealing Bases

  • There is NO stealing in any of the softball leagues.

11.       Umpires

  • All umpires will go through the USA Softball Certification process and receive training from the USA Softball staff.
  • The Recreation District will provide additional training and input throughout the season.
  • Poor treatment of the umpires will not be tolerated and the Participant Code of Conduct will be enforced.

12.       Pitching (in accordance with USA Softball rules)

  • In USA Softball the pitcher must deliver the ball with one continuous motion, no deception is allowed.
  • Pitchers may pitch up to six feet behind the rubber and outside the framework, AS LONG AS, one foot remains inside the framework at all times. 

13.       Line Ups, Injuries and Substitutions

  • If a player has to leave the game due to injury or other personal reasons the team will not be charged an out in the spot they vacated.  If the injured player is a runner, then any other player on the line-up card may enter the game to run for them. The player leaving the game may not return. If a player is ejected from the game and if there is no available substitute player, an out will be charged in that line-up spot. Other than what is addressed here, normal USA Softball rules apply.
  • Co-Ed League: Teams can play with an odd number of players as long as there is one more female. Teams must have a minimum of 8-players and a maximum of 12-players.  Any more than 12-players can be listed as a substitute.  USA Softball rules will be followed.

14.       Uniforms and Caps

  • All players on the same team must wear shirts of a similar color. It is preferred they all wear the same style of shirt or uniform.  Numbers on shirts are desired, but not required.
  • Caps are not required. If a cap is worn, it must be a baseball cap, and must be worn with the bill towards the front.


15.       Other Notes

  • NO INFIELD WARM UP before the game is scheduled to begin. NO GLASS CONTAINERS will be allowed in Rouse Park.
  • NO batboys or girls will be allowed on the field or in the dugout at any time during the game due to possible injury. Umpires may call interference and award bases according to their judgment, if someone other than an adult team member comes onto the field
  • No children in the dugouts during game time to prevent injury. They need to be supervised at all times when at Rouse Park.
  • Anytime a game gets out of hand, the umpires, on-site supervisor, or any District Official has the authority to remove players from their position, eject, or possibly forfeit the game.
  • Anytime a team has three (3) or more team members (players and coaches included) ejected from the game, the game shall be declared a forfeit.
  • Players will not be allowed to dig up dirt with their feet in the batter’s box.  Players will first receive a warning for digging in the batter’s box and an out will be charged against the team for the second offense.
  • The field of play is 10 players on defense, one player in the batter’s box, one player in the warm-up circle, one 1st base coach, and one 3rd base coach.  If there are any more players on the field the umpire will begin a five count and add strikes to the batter until the person leaves the field for the offensive team and balls for the defensive team.

16.       Rouse Park Rules


  • Kegs of beer and glass bottles are not allowed.  Rouse Park closes at 11:00 p.m.

Vehicles must be parked in designated areas of Rouse Park.  NO parking is allowed along Park