BHGS 8U Division Rules
All rules for this division are standard USA softball rules except for the following exceptions and/or clarifications
Local Rules for Division 8U Games -(Modified 2021).
8U-1 Use a 10” safety ball (Dudley Protector series, or equivalent) for games and practices.
8U-2 Base distance is 50 feet.
8U-3 Pitching distance is 30 feet. An 8-foot radius circle centered on the pitcher’s rubber is used.
8U-4 Game time limit is one hour and ten minutes. Once the game playing time has passed the traditional “game time limit”, no new inning may begin. Game playing time is the elapsed time of the game including all timeouts and begins with the first pitch of the first inning. A regulation game is four innings long.
8U-5 Play games with as few as six players. Up to ten players appear on defense, six infielders and four outfielders. All players (except pitchers) must play a minimum of 2 innings, 1 in the infield and 1 in the outfield. Defensive substitutions can take place after the 1st inning or must after the 3rd inning.
8U-6 A half-inning ends when the defensive team achieves three outs or the offensive team scores 4 runs.
8U-7 A runner may leave a base to advance only on a batted ball or if awarded a base. There is no stealing and no sliding. Lead off permitted on release of pitch.
8U-8 Any runner on base may not advance any more bases than the batter does on a batted ball.
- Ball hit in the infield, batter may only advance 1 base
- Ball hit to the outfield, batter may advance until the ball is back in the infield (does not have to be controlled by a player). Batter can go to the base they were advancing to at the moment the ball is back in the infield with liability to be tagged out.
8U-9 If a ball is overthrown at any base and remains in the field of play, the ball remains alive but runners are limited to advance only one base on the overthrow with liability to be tagged out. If a ball is thrown out of the field of play, the ball is dead and runners advance one base beyond the base to which they were advancing at the moment the ball left the fielding thrower’s hand. One overthrow ends the play.
8U-10 Player pitchers may appear in no more than two innings per game. Pitchers who are removed from the defense may return to pitch at any time during the game as long as pitching eligibility is considered.
8U-11 A Team Staff pitcher begins pitching by inheriting the pitcher’s strike count and no (zero) balls. The coach shall pitch a maximum of 4 pitches, plus fouls on the last pitch. The batter will bat until:
- she puts the ball in play,
- the coach pitches all four pitches and she does not put the ball in play or foul off the 4th pitch, or
- she strikes out swinging.
- There are no called strikes during coach-pitching.
- Coach pitcher must stay in the circle during the entire play and MAY NOT provide any coaching assistance.
8U-12 Every Player is listed on the lineup and everyone bats. No bunting is allowed.
8U-13 The staff pitcher must pitch from the rubber in the pitching circle. Staff pitcher remains in the pitching circle while the ball is in play. The player pitcher takes a defensive position with at least one foot in the pitching circle. If a hit ball touches a coach whether in the pitcher's circle or in the field of play, the ball is dead and the play ends at that point.
8U-14 If a pitched ball from the player pitcher unavoidably hits the batter, the staff pitcher relieves the player pitcher for this batter only and begins pitching by inheriting the strike count from the player pitcher and a 0 ball count. Team staff pitching rules apply.
8U-15 Free defensive substitutions. First half of the season, one defensive coach may stand in the outfield (on the grass) behind players to coach between plays. The coach may not interfere with the play in any fashion.
8U-16 The league may provide junior umpires for these games. Their decisions are final. Do not argue with the umpires. If no umpire is available, the games will be controlled through mutual agreement of the coaches. If no umpire is available, the offensive coach (staff pitcher) calls ball and strikes from behind the pitcher.
8U-17 At the start of each pitch the outfielders must be positioned in the outfield grass.
8U-18 First half of the season - No official score or standings are kept.
Second half of the season - Official Score and standings are kept. Scorekeepers are responsible for keeping a complete scorebook. Home team is the official scorebook.
Scorekeepers are responsible for keeping pitching statistics and fielding playing time stats.
A game summary sheet will be submitted by the umpire immediately after each game. Summary sheet will be signed by a representative of each team. Umpire will verify the score.
Playoffs - Wednesday before closing ceremonies the top four teams play in a semi-final game. Any remaining teams play a consolation game, (if there is only one team, a fun practice will be scheduled...water balloon game, parents v players game). The top two winners of the game play a championship game on closing ceremonies. There must be a winner. No tie games and international tie breaker will be utilized for two additional innings. Tie after the two additional inning, game ends and reverts back to the last inning that was not tied.