SSSL COVID-19 RULES & GUIDELINES
CONDUCT, CONSTITUTION AND RULES
(Last revision: July 1, 2021) – New / Updated Rules in Red
Rules on the SSSL website will be considered current.
SSSL Code of Conduct
No team member, umpire or fan shall:
• Demonstrate behavior contrary to this Code both on and off the field.
• Cause any form of personal abuse, including verbal, physical and emotional abuse, towards other athletes, officials, spectators and others.
• Refuse to abide by an official's decision, threaten an official, or at any time lay a hand upon, push, shove, strike, or make incidental physical contact with the body or kick dirt or other matter on the official or attempt to cause physical contact when disputing a decision. This includes causing or attempting to cause physical contact with another participant at SSSL sanctioned events.
• Make any disparaging remarks or actions towards other athletes, officials, South Scarborough Softball League, Slo-Pitch National, spectators and others.
• Neither reacts in a violent manner to any incident nor use any form of profane, vulgar, obscene or abusive language or gestures, whether it is directed at an official, opponent, playing colleague, team official, or spectator. Neither will they tolerate profane, vulgar, obscene or abusive language or gestures from any supporters and other members of their team.
• Use intimidating or threatening behavior towards officials, opponents, playing colleagues, team officials, or spectators nor will they permit any others to openly or maliciously criticize, badger, harass, or threaten an official, opponent, playing colleague or spectator.
• Make objectionable demonstrations by throwing bats, gloves or other equipment in a forceful manner.
• Discuss publicly with participants and spectators in a derogatory or abusive manner any decision by the officials or any opinions of players.
• Cause the destruction of property belonging to others.
• Use any intoxicating substances during the course of the game, or appear to be in an intoxicated condition while participating in a game.
• Harass, heckle, insult, jeer, or use verbal tactics to embarrass or insult any umpire, league official, opponent, team member or spectator at the site before, during or after a game.
• Make derogatory, disdainful, disparaging comments or remarks regarding any person or program connected to any umpire, league official, opponent, team member or spectator on any public forum, message board or bulletin board.
• Use any improper and unapproved equipment.
• When requested by the game official, will refuse to assist him/her in the enforcement of this Conduct of Members and the control of players making threats.
• Engage in a continuous verbal attack upon an official or other participant or spectator after they have been ejected from a game or make a verbal threat of physical violence upon an official.
COVID - 19 RESPONSE AND RECOMMENDATIONS
- If you are not feeling well, do not come to play your game.
- We highly recommend that all players wear masks. While we cannot enforce this, it is a safety precaution that everyone can take to ensure we all stay safe and well.
- Players are responsible for bringing their own sanitizer.
- We recommend that everyone bring / use their own bats. We understand that this may not be feasible, but it will add to the safety of all players if it can be achieved.
- Cover your mouth and nose with your bent elbow or tissue when you cough or sneeze. If using a tissue, sanitize immediately after discarding the tissue in the garbage.
- We highly recommend that players DON’T ARRIVE more than 15 minutes before game time. We understand that sometimes it can’t be avoided. However, when you arrive at the diamond, adhere to social / physical distancing rules as set by the Federal, Provincial and Municipal governments.
- Teams / players are not to linger after their game.
- No handshakes / High Fives during or after the game.
- Warm ups are not permitted at any time, unless otherwise specified.
- Players must keep 6 feet apart in the dugout. Otherwise, please stand outside of dugout, 6 feet apart.
- Base coaches are not permitted.
- Catcher must stand 6 feet away from mat/ batter / umpire.
- No huddles / coaches meetings.
- No garbage – teams / players are to clean up after themselves once game is finished.
- NO LINE UP CARDS for the 2021 Season!
- Captains WILL BE ASKED to screen shot THEIR line up and send in to verify player is on insurance.
- Playoffs – All Players WILL be eligible for 2021 Playoffs based on Insurance / Being on the Roster.
- Any plays at base bags are to be made quickly. Fielders are to make the play and get out of area.
ADMITTANCE OF NEW TEAMS
The criteria used to admit new teams into the league shall be as follows:
(1) Existing teams which are splitting or want to play on a different night shall be given first priority
(2) Second priority shall be based on a consideration of chronological order of application, maintaining a high proportion of Scarborough based players and on maintaining the competitive balance of the league.
ALCOHOL, MARIJUANA, TOBACCO USE & ELECTRONIC CIGARETTE
Under no circumstances can alcohol, marijuana, tobacco or electronic cigarettes be consumed anywhere in the area covered by the permits before, during or after the game. Anyone caught in violation will be removed from the game (for Safety), and fined a 1 game suspension for 1st offense. Additional Offenses will be reported to the league for review, which could result in expulsion from the League.
This applies to any player(s) whether they have already played or are in the next game(s).
The use of any substances outside the permit area (Parking Lot) is the sole responsibility of the individuals involved. Any legal issues that may occur are again the sole responsibility of the individuals involved and in no way will South Scarborough Softball League be liable or become involved.
At both Glamorgan and L’Amoreaux the permits are for city owned property and do not include Board of Education property (Parking Lot).
Any grievances, protests or problems, will be settled by a league executive. These submissions must be documented in writing and presented to any member of the League Executive within 24 hours of occurrence. At time of protest, both teams will have the umpire record the game situation and sign their scorebooks, before the next pitch. The umpire will later make his report on the back of the home teams score sheet that will be forwarded to the league. A protest may be lodged by a team captain or alternate captain only.
No anticipation step allowed. A runner on base may not leave that base until the ball is hit, or forced to leave base because of a walk. The runner is out if he leaves the base before the ball is hit. If that runner is the 3rd out, the batter at the plate will bat again the next inning.
All players bat. Each team shall provide the other with a copy of batting order prior to the start of the game. If a player is present but is not included in the batting order, they may be added later. Players who arrive late (any time) may be added to the bottom of the order in accordance to gender. Deletions from the batting order shall be permitted (without recording an out) for legitimate reasons only at the discretion of the umpire. Batting order is by 2 males, 1 female, with the females going back up to bat as required by the batting order. Male players are set and cannot be changed in the order. A Ghost player is treated as female and will be followed by a male batter.
A full board that covers home plate will be used in all games to determine balls and strikes. A pitched ball that hits the board is a strike. Any batted ball that makes contact with the board will be a foul ball. On plays at the plate, the catcher must be in contact with any part of the board to record an out.
A captain may now ask anyone from the League to play in order to be “legal” (MUST be on SPN Insurance through the league). A captain can borrow only if: 7 players or less OR less than 3 females. (a team can only borrow players to become legal with the minimum 8 players 3 of which must be females) *Borrowed players are not playoff eligible* Any team who has to borrow a player from another team to avoid defaulting their game will not be allowed to insert any other player during their game.
The umpire shall advise the teams of the foul lines and out of play areas prior to the start of each game.
Home team is responsible for setting up the bases and having a completed game form for reference.
CHALLENGE A CALL?
ONLY Captains & Alternate Captains can talk to umpires about calls or concerns. Alternate captain (s) MUST be listed through SPN Insurance as such.
CODE OF CONDUCT VIOLATIONS
Any Violations to the Code of Conduct or COVID - 19 RESPONSE AND RECOMMENDATIONS will be reviewed on a case by case basis, which can result in Suspension and / or Penalty fees.
COMMITMENT / SAFE LINES
The commitment line and the safe line have been added to all games for safety reasons in order to prevent injuries and make the game enjoyable for everyone.
The commitment line is to be drawn on the third base line 20 feet from the corner of home plate closest to third and will be perpendicular to the third base line and extend to the screen.
Once a base runner has touched or passed the commitment line they must continue directly home. Any stopping or motion back to 3rd base will result in an out. Ball is still live. No tagging is allowed past the commitment line. All plays at home plate are force plays.
In addition to the commitment line, a safe line will be drawn in foul territory at the corner of home plate closest to third base and would run perpendicular to the third base line and extend to the screen.
A base runner must come in contact with the ground on or past the safe line without touching home plate or the board prior to being forced out at the plate in order to score a run. If a base runner touches the plate they are out.
Each team shall be allowed a maximum of seven (7) courtesy runners per game. The courtesy runner can be any same gender male or female player the Captain chooses without limitation to the number of times the same player can be used.
If the courtesy runners position comes to bat, then another courtesy runner must be utilized. If maximum has already been used, then batter will have to run for them self.
If a team is in default, a Penalty fee of $25.00 will be charged by the league, a recreational game can be played by the teams. The umpire will stay and officiate. The opposing team is awarded a win by a 7-0 score.
If Any player is ejected from a game for any reason, a $100.00 Team Penalty fee will apply & an out will be recorded when it’s their turn in the batting order. If the ejected player is a female and the ejection brings the number of females to less than 3, the game will be considered a forfeit and a score of 7-0 will be recorded.
Ejected players will serve at least a 1 game suspension to be determined by league executive after reviewing incident. Incident reports MUST be received within 24 hours from all those involved and the captains of both teams.
Infielders are not permitted to step over the baseline until the ball is hit. Outfielders, including the rover, must be on the grass until contact. If you are only playing with 3 outfielders, all 3 must be behind the encroachment cones. The rover must be 10 feet away from the baseline. Once the inning starts, the rover must remain the same player.
ENCROACHMENT RULE (OUTFIELD CONES)
Outfielders cannot encroach within 175 feet until contact is made with the ball.
With the exception of metal and hard plastic cleats, any standard article of softball equipment is allowed. Any player found with improper equipment will be ejected from the game.
ASA bat policy will be followed.
There will be no scheduling requests, other than 1 day special request or field preference.
Requests are not guaranteed.
-6:40pm, 8:05pm & 9:30pm
For all games, a team will be allowed a grace period of up to 5 MINUTES from the scheduled start time to field their team which must consist of a minimum of 8 eligible rostered players (three female players).
A team with 8 eligible players and only 3 female players will play with a ghost in the roster spot of the missing female. An out will be recorded on the batting order and the team will have an empty field position. No more than 6 male players can play field positions.
GROUND RULE DOUBLE (GLAMORGAN)
Fielders must continue to play any ball hit into trees as it is a LIVE Play until a call is made by the umpire. Ground rule doubles at GLAM are umpire discretion. Balls hit on a line into the trees will be a home run.
Bunting and chop hitting are not permitted and shall result in the batter being out.
A foul ball on the third strike shall result in the batter being out.
HOME RUN RULE
In games with fenced diamonds, each team's first 3 balls hit fair over the outfield fence will be counted as a home run. All subsequent balls hit fair over the outfield fence will be counted as a ground rule double.
No home run rule will exist for any game played on an unfenced field. All home runs will count. An exception is when there are obstructed areas that restrict the defensive player from making a play for the ball.
HOME RUN WALK OFF
Walk off at L’Am and Glam. Over the fence at L’Am, batter must touch 1st and then sit. Runners on base can walk off the field. Glam – if it clears the trees, same thing.
ILLEGAL BAT HOUSE RULE
If a non-approved bat is seen in the dugout, ONLY the team captain or co-captain is allowed to bring it to the Umpires attention. If the bat is non-approved by the Umpire it will be removed from play.
If a Player comes to the plate with an non-approved bat, that player will be ejected from the game along with the team Captain and the League Executives will determine if further action is required.
If there is an injury to a player, that player may leave the game without incurring an out. However, if that injury is to a female and the team is not in default status (2 females), the remaining females can rotate without the team incurring an auto-out.
If the team has available an eligible substitute player then that player can be slotted into the injury position.
If a runner is injured, they can have a replacement that does not count as a courtesy. Only during the play that has occurred. If a runner is need their next at bat, it counts as a courtesy.
- If a Pitcher at any time during a player’s at bat wants to intentionally walk that player they can point to first to indicate to umpire they wish to walk the batter. If a pitcher indicates an intentional walk before a strike is thrown the batter will be awarded 2 bases.
To protect the safety of all Players, Umpires and Spectators, if anyone is found to be intoxicated by any means, they will be removed from the game. The 2nd Offence will result in removal & fined a 1-game suspension. Additional Offences will result in removal & be reported to the league for review, which could result in expulsion from the League.
Jewelry allowed at Individuals / umpires discretion.
In case of expected late arrivals the team will put the names of the late arrivals into the lineup in any position. If late arrival is not there for their 1st at bat then bypass. If late arrival is not there for 2nd at bat they cannot play in the game.
If a team has only 8 players and a 9th player shows up during the inning being played, they are able to enter mid inning. If they are the 10th player, then the inning is played out as is.
2021 total fees for each team will be $1,300 - ($1,200 League Fee + $100 Penalty Fees)
- Penalty Fee (Remaining funds owed back to teams will go towards league fees for 2022 season)
The league shall provide:
(1) One umpire for all regular season and playoff games.
(2) 3 Bases and 1 board to the games, Home team for the 9:30 games will be responsible for the removal of the bases and cones.
(3) All game balls for both regular season and playoffs.
(4) Liability insurance to cover the league officials and teams.
Last session the lower ranked team will have home field advantage.
The points obtained by a team during the regular season will determine their standing for the playoffs. Two points (2) is awarded for each win, one point (1) for each tie and zero points (0) for each loss.
In case of a tie, final regular season standings shall be determined firstly on the record of all tied teams in games against each other; secondly, on the run differential of all tied teams in games amongst themselves; and lastly on a coin flip.
Will not be enforced in 2021.
An inning shall consist of three outs or five runs (5 runs maximum per inning). The last inning will be an open inning.
7 run max differential in standings stays the same.
Game will be over if:
15 run mercy after 5 innings or 4 ½ innings if home team is winning or if home gets ahead by 15 runs during the 5th inning OR 7 innings have been completed. If the home team is leading in the bottom of the last inning, that half inning will not be played.
OUT PLAY AT HOME
If the play is overthrown, the catcher can run down the overthrow to home plate and throw it to a covering player who can stand on home plate for the out. Only in an overthrow can someone else cover the play at home.
The pitched ball must have a discernible arc of at least 6 feet from the ground before it passes any part of home plate and shall not reach a height of more than 12 feet at its highest point from the ground.
An illegally pitched ball shall be called immediately when it occurs and a ball will be awarded to the batter. The umpire, base or plate, will call the illegal pitch loud enough for the batter to hear. However, if the batter swings at any illegally pitched ball, the pitch will immediately become legal. The ball is alive and in play if hit by the batter. Foul tip caught by the catcher is an out, regardless of height of the ball.
Will not be enforced in 2021.
1. Higher ranked team will be home team.
2. Regular season rules apply with the following additions
3. Players MUST meet Playoff Eligibility in order to play
4. No ties allowed. There must be a winner for every game.
5. All innings once started MUST be completed even if the home team is winning unless home team is already winning by 7 runs or they reach the 7 run differential during the last at bat, at which time the game is ended.
6. International tie break will be used immediately after the regular game is ended should there be a tie. *Courtesy Runner Rules apply*
(“International Tie-Breaker Rule”. Under this rule, each team starts the inning with 1 out and the player who completed the last official turn at bat, as a base runner on 2nd base. Each subsequent inning will start the same until a winner has been determined)
7. In case of a 3-way tie for 1st place (more than 2 teams with the identical playoff record) then the following tie break(s) will be used. For 2nd and 3rd place tie break will be head to head record.
· Head to head
· Greatest run differential
· Least number of runs allowed over the playoff games
· Most number of runs scored over the playoff games
· 3 way coin toss (odd coin out)
PROTECTIVE EQUIPMENT / HELMETS
Any player who has a concern about an injury occurring from being struck with a ball during SPN / SSSL sanctioned play should address that concern by the use of protective equipment which is available and is allowed in Slo-Pitch National sanctioned play.
For safety reasons, SPN / SSSL strongly recommends that all players wear protective equipment while playing both defensive and offensive positions. Protective equipment including masks, headwear, catchers’ equipment and soccer style shin guards may be used by all players in any SPN / SSSL sanctioned event.
A rainout will be called by the league executive on a game by game basis 1-2 hours before game time, unless the City of Toronto has revoked game permits due to inclement weather. All captains will be notified by email and text only.
To Check City Permits à https://www.toronto.ca/data/parks/alerts/fields/index.html
If a game is cancelled because of weather it does not mean the later games are also cancelled. Each game is unique to the weather at the time of the game. Rainouts will be called no later than (1 or 2) hours before game time. Unless otherwise advised, players are expected to be at the park and ready to play at their scheduled game time.
Make-up of Rained Out Games:
RAINOUTS WILL NOT BE MADE UP IN 2021.
A safe base shall be used in all games. On any force play at first base, the white half of the base is the fielder's base and the coloured half of the base is the base runner’s base. Consequently, on force plays at first base, the runner must touch a portion of the coloured base to be safe. If the runner touches only the white portion of the base, they will be called out. The opposite is true for the defensive player who must touch a portion of the white base to get an out. If the fielder only touches the coloured base, the base runner will be called safe.
All regular season games will be 7 innings per game, For playoff games if tied, will continue until won by either team (time restrictions & International tie break apply). 4 innings (for losing team) constitutes an official game if halted in progress by rain or darkness by judgment of the umpire. Final inning as declared by the umpire will be completed.
No inning shall start after 1 hour and ten minutes of the regularly scheduled starting time. Any inning started prior to the time limit shall be completed in its entirety. All playoff games are time restricted as above.
Sliding will be allowed at 2nd and 3rd base only. The slide should be used with discretion to maintain the safety of the players. DO NOT use a slide to break up a double play. If umpire deems a slide as intent to injure or unsafe the base runner will be called out. Remember, we are a recreational league.
SUBMITTING GAME RESULTS
Umpires are to sign each team’s score sheets. BOTH TEAMS are responsible for submitting the game results. Scores can be submitted by email, by website result submission or by text message.
If no score is reported before the start of the next game, the unreported game will be considered a draw and both teams will be awarded 1 point.
A team may have substitute players on the bench who do not bat until they are substituted into the game. Once a player has been substituted out of the game they can be resubmitted back into the game but only in the same position in the batting order. A player can only replace a player or re-enter a game once.
TEAM ROSTERS AND INSURANCE COVERAGE
Team rosters will consist of a maximum of 16 players. Each roster will have at least 4 female players. No new players can be added after the deadline of September 1st. NO EXCEPTIONS.
All players are to be insured by opening day, failure for captain to do so will result in a $25.00 Penalty Fee
If an uninsured player is found to have played in SSSL, a $100.00 Penalty Fee applies. NO Exceptions
THROWS / FORCE OUT
No outfielder, including rover may make a “force out” throw to 1st base. If a throw to 1st base by an outfielder has been made the umpire will immediately call time and award all base runners, including the batter runner 2 bases.
Please note that once the batter/runner has safely reached 1st base and has made an intentional move to advance then any infielder may throw to 1st base for a tag out. As well an outfielder may make a relay throw to any infielder who may then relay the ball for a force out at 1st.
Trapper gloves are permitted for use at any position.
The SSSL Executive will be responsible for the engaging and paying of all umpires. Umpires will have complete control of the diamond 15 minutes before the scheduled starting time until the completion of the game. SSSL provides umpires for all its league games during the regular and playoff seasons. There are circumstances however when an umpire does not show up to work a game. When no umpire appears at the game, it is both teams' responsibilities to select an umpire to work the game. Both teams will select a responsible player from their teams to work home plate while their team is at bat.
The umpire fee to be split between the number of team umpires.
- No players will be scheduled to umpire, only in emergency situations
All team players must wear similar jerseys (tops). They must have the team name on the jersey. In inclement weather, a player may wear clothing over their jersey if desired. If a jersey is covered, it is the player's responsibility to show the umpire that they have a jersey. Subs are not required to wear a formal jersey, but should be in similar colour to the team and identified to the umpire as a sub.
PLAYERS’ AND COACHES’ AND SPECTATOR CONDUCT
(1) Umpires are providing an important service to those participating in softball. Under no
circumstances should they be hassled, threatened, or physically abused.
(2) Teams and players have a further responsibility to prevent their fans from abusing the officials and to help control their spectators so that the game is not disrupted.
(3) Any player/spectator ejected from a game must leave the grounds (includes parking lot). Failure to leave the grounds immediately will result in a default for the team that the player/spectator is associated with.
(4) When a player/spectator gets ejected from a game, a review will be made by the league executive to see if further suspensions are required.