Sponsored By:   Go Minis of Northern Illinois
Sycamore, IL
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2023 Sycamore Girls’ Softball Rules 3rd/4th Grade (10u)  All rules follow IHSA(NFHS) except as modified below:

General Rules– Home team occupies 3rdbase dugout. Home team is responsible for field preparation. Home team is responsible to reschedule make up games as soon as can be arranged, and before the end of the regular season. Each team is to supply one game ball for each game.

Playing Field - Pitchers distance from back of home plate to front of pitchers plate is 35 feet. Distance between bases is 60 feet. Safety base is to be used at first base. On deck batter must be to back of player at bat.


Fielder’s Mask– must be worn by all players playing the infield.  This requirement applies only to SGS players.

Balls– 11” Approved optic yellow fast pitch

Bats – Official softball only

Batting Helmets– must have facemasks and chin straps. All offensive players must wear helmets while on playing field (includes on-deck batter). Any runner intentionally knocking off helmet may be declared out.

Catchers– Full equipment to be worn (helmet, mask, throat protector, shin guards, chest protector)

Uniforms – All players must wear their official uniforms with shirts tucked in. Wearing of jewelry is prohibited unless it is religious or medical and then must be taped down. Metal spikes are prohibited.

Players – player may be on roster of only one team. No travel players outside of Sycamore SYCOS allowed (exemption for Fall Rec. Season).

Requirement –Field 9 players. Outfielders must play 10’ behind baseline. Minimum 8 players needed to play. If playing with 8 the 9thspot in the batting order will be an automatic out.

Playing time/positions- Players may not play more than 2 consecutive innings at any position with the exception of pitcher.  Players must play at least 2 innings in infield each game. Players cannot sit out more than 3 innings in any game except for disciplinary reasons. Defensive players, including pitchers, may be moved in and out of positions freely.

Bringing up a player –A team may bring up players from a lower division if the team will have less than 9 players on the roster available for the game. The player must bat last and must play the outfield. She may not pitch or catch. Maximum of 3 players may be called up or game should be rescheduled.

The Game –Games are to start on time with no new inning to start after 1 hour and 30 minutes from scheduled start time. 6 innings are to be played if time allows.

Warm ups- Home team is to take field 30 minutes before the game and visitors are to take the field 15 minutes before the game for warm ups.

Complete Game -3 ½ innings if the home team has the lead or 4 complete innings if game is tied or visitor is winning. If the game is suspended prior to a complete game we will pick up the game where it was suspended

Scoring – 4 runs maximum per inning for first 5 innings. Unlimited runs in the 6thinning only.

Run ahead rule- Game will be called if home team is ahead by 10 runs or more after 4 ½ innings or visiting team is ahead by 10 runs or more after 5 complete innings.

Warm up pitches – At the beginning of each half inning the pitcher will be given 5 warm up pitches or a maximum of 2 minutes from the 3rdout of the previous inning to be prepared to deliver the 1stpitch.  

Pitching – IHSA pitching rules will be followed.

Restrictions - Pitcher may pitch a maximum of 3 innings per game. Innings may or may not be consecutive. 1 pitch in any inning constitutes an inning. Pitcher returning to pitch in same inning will receive no warm up pitches

Coach Pitch -There are no walks. If a pitcher walks the batter, the batter’s coach will come in to pitch.  Coach will resume the strike count the batter held.  The coach must pitch from within the circle.  The player who was pitching should be no closer to the batter than the coach who is now pitching.  The player may be behind or to the side of the coach, but must also be within the circle.  The coach will pitch until the batter either puts the ball in play or strikes out.  Batter will be awarded 1stbase if hit by pitch.


Batting order - A continuous batting order will be used. If a batter is hurt and cannot continue, the next batter takes her count. The injured batter may return to play when ready.

Bunting –Allowed

Fake bunting (slashing) –Not allowed

Dropped 3rd Strike – Not in effect

Infield Fly Rule– Not in Effect

Base Running 

Stealing – There is no stealing allowed until after June 1st, halfway through the season, when the following rule takes effect:  Base runners may attempt to steal a vacant 3rd base only.  If a throw is made to 3rd base to stop said steal, and is overthrown, or is a missed play, the runner may not advance to home.  Stealing home is not allowed. (Fall Ball Season: There is no stealing allowed.)

Lead Offs – Allowed after the ball leaves the pitchers hand. Runner’s leaving the base early will be called out.

Overthrows – Players may not advance on an overthrow at 1st base. 

Sliding – Optional, but runners must avoid contact when a play is made at any base.

Continuous Walk (Look Back Rule) – Not in effect

Dead Ball – Play is dead and runners cannot advance once any fielder has possession of the ball in the pitcher’s circle. If the runner maintains continuous movementto the next base they may advance at their own risk to the next base only. If the runner stops at any time they must return to the previous base.

Pick off – All runners can advance on pick off play


Decisions – All Decisions made by the umpire are final. Only head coaches can address an umpire. Appeals may be made on rules questions only and must be made before the next pitched ball. May not appeal a judgment call.

Weather – Umpire will decide if game should be suspended or called due to weather

Safety – A game will be called if there is visible lightning in the vicinity or if the lightning detection system sounds. All players and coaches must leave the field of play and move to a safe area. If lightning detection system stopped play then you may not return to play until “all clear” sound. If stopped because of visible lightning then may not return to play within 30 minutes of last seen lightning strike.

Communicable Disease Procedure – A player or coach who is bleeding or who has an open wound shall be prohibited from participating further in the game until appropriate treatment has been administered. If medical treatment can be administered in a reasonable amount of time, then the individual does not need to be removed from the game. “Reasonable amount of time” is determined by the umpire. If there is excessive amount of blood on the uniform then that part of the uniform must be changed before she returns to play.

Code of Conduct – Coaches, players, parents and guests will be held responsible for their own behavior.  Umpires and league officials may ask offending party to leave the field of play if SGS Code of Conduct is violated. Offending party will be automatically suspended for the next game.


Dropped 3rd Strike– Batter becomes a batter-runner if the catcher fails to catch the 3rdstrike before the ball touches the ground when there are fewer than 2 outs and 1st base is unoccupied at the time of the pitch, or anytime there are 2 outs. Batter-runner is called out if she fails to advance to first and enters the team area. 

Infield Fly Rule - When declared by an umpire, a fair fly that can be caught by an infielder with ordinary effort when runners are on first and second or bases are loaded with less than 2 outs. The rule does not preclude outfielders from being permitted to make the catch. The ball is live, the batter is out, which removes the force, but runners may advance at their own risk. 

Look Back Rule (continuous walk) – Once the pitcher has possession of the ball in the pitcher’s circlerunner may stop once but then must immediately return to the base or attempt to advance to the next base. The runner will not be called out if a play is made on them or another runner (A fake throw is considered a play), the pitcher no longer has possession of the ball within the 16-foot circle, or the pitcher releases the ball on a pitch to the batter.

Fake Bunting (slashing) – The act of the batter squaring to bunt at a pitch and then pulling the bat back to “slash” or swing at the ball. This action is disallowed at the 3rd– 6thgrade levels as a safety measure for the younger players.

Interference (Offense)-It is an act (physical or verbal) by a member of the team at bat who illegally impedes, hinders or confuses any fielder: or when a runner creates malicious contact with any fielder with or without the ball, in or out of the baseline.

Obstruction (Defense) – Obstruction is the act of the defensive team member that hinders or impedes a batter’s attempt to make contact with a pitched ball or that impedes the progress of a runner or batter–runner who is legally running the bases, unless the fielder is in possession of the ball or is making the initial play on a batted ball. The act may be intentional or unintentional, physical or verbal.

Pick Off Play – An attempt by the catcher to get a runner out that has taken a lead off after a pitched ball.