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SEMSL Rules 

  • SEMSL follows the SPN rules for all of our general season and league play 

SEMSL House Rules

  • The following is a list of house rules that supersede any contradictory SPN rule listed in the document above. 
  • We will approve the intention of any changes at the AGM, but the specific wording may still be modified for the sake of clarity. The purpose is to approve the spirit of the rules, not their exact wording. 

Summary of Major Changes:

  1. On-deck rule (to speed up pace of play) 
  2. Smoke rule (So teams can choose to play or not in bad smoke) 
  3. In-field respect lines (what you can or cannot do when any player is batting) 
  4. Batting rule (keep a damn foot in the box, please!) 
  5. Running home (Simplifying the obligation of the catcher to put a foot on home base) 
  6. Batting Backwards (it is not in effect at the Year-End Tournament) 

  1. BALL: 
    1. The ball used during the game is to be; 12" HOT DOT - Cor .52/275 Lbs Compression.
    1. Balls will have a minimum arc of 6' with no maximum arc.
    2. Balls should be released no closer than 50 feet from home plate, or no further than 65.
      1. 50 feet is approximately having 1st and 3rd base be parallel at the pitcher’s left and right.
      2. If there is a pitching rubber, pitchers should start their pitching motion with at least one foot touching it. 
    3. Teams are encouraged to allow for one warning per pitcher in the case of a pitch that is not at least 6 feet in height. 
  3. 10 RUN LEAD: 
    1. Once a team is leading by 10 or more runs, all batters for that team must bat on the opposite side of the plate than they normally bat on – until such time as the lead is less than 10 runs.
    2. Backwards is defined as opposite of what your last plate appearance stance was. 
    3. Switch-Hitters are encouraged to bat with their weaker side. 
    4. Batting backwards can come into or out of effect mid-inning. 
    1. An inning is over after a maximum of 5 runs are scored
      1. The last inning of every game is considered an open inning. 
      2. The “last inning” should be agreed upon by each captain before the inning starts. 
    1. Regular season games are intended to be 85 minutes from the first pitch, to the last out. 
    2. In the first game of a double header, teams must not start a new inning if there is less than 10 minutes until the start of the next game. 
    3. In the second game of a double header, teams are encouraged to play full 7-inning games.
      1. However, if it is too dark to safely field the ball during an inning, the game should be stopped and the score should be marked from whatever the last fully complete inning was. 
  6. UMPIRE: 
    1. The batting team provides the umpire who is responsible to make all calls. 
      1. The umpire is obligated to make themselves known to the other team before the inning begins. 
    1. These are exceptions to a perfect field location, and ground rules must be discussed and agreed upon before every game. Do not assume that the same rules apply from a previous game (e.g. obstacles in the outfield). If possible, distant objects should be selected as "markers" for the foul lines and out-of-play lines. These markers and other ground rules must be communicated to all players and, in particular, to any players acting as umpire. 
      1. No matter what diamond you are on, you should always define what is the outermost “limit” for a home run. This is typically a tree or a hill that, if a ball lands at or beyond it, is considered a home run, and if it lands before it but rolls in untouched, would be considered a ground-rule double. 
      2. Teams are encouraged to have as few of these exceptions as possible, and wherever safe, have minimal “automatic” home runs. 
    1. Each week, the Commissioner will communicate via group chat if games are canceled due to rain, smoke, or otherwise. 
    2. If games are canceled due to weather, SEMSL will make an effort to reschedule if possible. 
    3. RAIN:
      1. We are legally required to follow the city of Edmonton’s “diamond” field closure, found online, and updated each day. 
      2. Games are considered “rained out” if by 4:00pm, the city of Edmonton has determined there is too much rain, and the diamonds are “unsafe”.
      3. Teams are not to play, and any games played will not be counted.
    4. SMOKE:
      1. Games are considered “smoked out” if the air quality index (AQI) is at an 8 or higher at 4:00 of a game day.
      2. If both teams wish, they are able to still play a game if the AQI does not bother them.
      3. However, teams are not obligated to play if the government of Canada’s AQI is above 8 at 4:00pm. 
      4. Any games still played do count towards the year’s points totals. 
    5. DURING A GAME: 
      1. If weather of any kind prohibits the reasonably safe use of a diamond, the game is to be ended and the score marked from whatever the last fully completed inning was if at least 4 innings were finished. Games shorter than 4 completed innings are considered incomplete and are omitted from season results. 
        1. If a game is canceled, the teams are to email if they would like the board to attempt to reschedule it.  
      2. Teams are encouraged to come to a consensus on such rulings of the safety of a field, but ultimately a team is not penalized or required to forfeit if there is a weather-related legitimate safety concern that develops. 
      1. If a team for whatever reason cannot play a scheduled game (and/or field at least 6 men and 2 women), they must notify the other team before 5:00pm of the previous day. Sending an email, message, text, phone call, or voicemail is not enough - teams must ensure a response from the other team. Once the canceling team has confirmed with the other team, they must email the season director at to discuss rescheduling. 
      2. If this process is followed, the canceling team is not assessed a loss. 
      1. Any team that cannot produce the minimum number of players for a team (6 men and 2 women), and has not followed the above “With Notice” procedure, will be assessed a 10-0 loss for the missed game. 
      2. Teams who no-show and/or do not follow the “With Notice” procedure, will be subject to a $150 fine. 
    1. The home team is responsible for providing the bases/field equipment, a new ball, and setting up the field prior to the game. The home team for each game is indicated on the schedule.
    2. Teams must set up an “on deck” space for each team’s batters, typically outlined by a simple circle in the shale, or a small cone. 
  11. CO-ED RULES:
    1. LINEUPS: 
      1. A fielding lineup of  7-3  (7) male and  (3) female players will be considered a "normal" fielding lineup.
      2. A minimum of 8 players (6 male, 2 female) are required to play any game. In such a case, you may only play 8 total players, and a space must be left for an automatic out where the third female player would have been. 
      3. If a team has only one woman, they must forfeit. 
      4. If a team has 7 men and 2 women, the “open” women’s space in the batting order is an out. 
      5. Once there are 7 male players and 3 female players, more of either can be added, but there must only be a maximum of one instance in a lineup where there are three men batting in a row. Otherwise, there should always be at least one woman every three batters. 
      6. Exception
        1. Teams with specifically 8 men and 3 women will be permitted. 
        2. This could result in a lineup with two instances of three men batting in a row, and this is permitted. 
      7. Examples of typical batting lineups:
        1. 6M, 2F = 8 players - one auto-out for absent F 
        2. 6M, 3F = 9 players - no auto-out for absent M
        3. 7M, 2F = 9 players - one out for absent F 
        4. 7M, 3F = 10 players - Standard lineup 
        5. 8M, 3F = 11 players - Exception lineup 
        6. After 8M-3F, There must be an equal number of men and women added to the batting order. ie. An 8-3 team may become a 9-4, 10-5 etc. 
        1. In any instance of one team lending players to another team, the two team Captains must agree before the game as to whether the game is to be "official" or whether the short-handed team has forfeited (and the game is therefore being played only for practice and sportsmanship.)
        2. If a team is playing with only 2 women, and/or with less than 10 players, the opposing team is encouraged to have one of their players play catcher and leave plays at home to the pitcher. 
    2. FIELDING:
      1. Teams must have at least 3 women on the field in any position at any time a team is playing defense. 
        1. If a team prefers, they are allowed to play 7-2 defense. 
      1. Outfield: When a woman is up to bat, the outfielders (including the rover) must stay at least 150 feet from home plate until the ball is hit. Markers should be placed in left, center and right field, at a distance of 150 feet from home plate to indicate the arc. In the case a team does not have cones to mark this line, this distance is slightly more than double the distance from 3rd base to home. 
      2. Infield: When any player is up to bat, no players may be on or over the base paths until after the batter has made contact with the ball. The pitcher and catcher are the only exception to this rule. 
        1. A warning is given on the first infraction, subsequent infractions award the batter first base. 
    4. THE WALK RULE: 
      1. If a male batter is walked with no strikes, he will be awarded second base if there is a female player next up to bat. The female player will have the choice to advance to first or bat.  
    1. Teams are required to have the next batter “on deck”, holding a bat, ready to play. Umpires are responsible to ensure their own team is adhering to this rule, and pitchers are not to continue play until a player is “on deck”. 
      1. This helps with pace of play, as well as avoids the need for a team to ask/declare when a female batter is next. 
      2. “On deck” is defined as being the physically closest player to the current batter, while holding a bat, and paying attention to the game. Captains should define these spaces with cones or circles when setting up the field.  Captains should agree on each team’s “on deck” space. 
    1. Base runners do not step on home plate or on the strike mat. A line is drawn from home plate to the backstop along the 1st base line. The fielding (defending) team uses home plate as a “finish line” and the base runner simply crosses the drawn line. 
    2. Catchers must have a foot on any part of the strike mat OR the home plate, while controlling the ball, before a player has crossed the “finish line” for them to be out. 
    1. No player may “lead off” (take their foot off of the bag before a batter has made contact with the ball) when on base. 
    2. A warning will be awarded to the first player who "leads off" for the first time in a game. All subsequent lead offs from any player, shall be called an out.   
    3. **NO WARNINGS shall be awarded in playoffs/year end tournament.**
    1. It is up to both team captains to communicate which players need a courtesy runner from the plate due to an active injury. Captains must do so before the game starts. If a legitimate injury of any sort develops mid-game, teams should allow for additional courtesy runners. 
      1. Courtesy runners must be the last person of the same gender who was called out. 
    1. Teams are allowed to use a pinch runner 3 times in a game, for any reason. These runners can only replace players who have made it to 1st, 2nd, or 3rd base on their own. 
  17. BATTING:
    1. Both feet must be fully within the batter's box when the pitch is made. 
    2. Your back foot (furthest from the pitcher) must still be fully within the batters box during and after swinging.
      1. A player’s back foot partially or fully crossing the front of the batter's box (the imaginary line made by the top of the permanent home plate) results in the batter being called out.  
    3. The batters box is defined as the shale area parallel to the start and end of the strike mat.
    4. If a foul tip is caught at any height, it is considered an out. 
    5. If a ball is hit and it strikes the home base or the strike mat and rolls fair, it is considered a fair ball and is live. 
    1. Unless a game is delayed due to weather, other teams/leagues, or other factors beyond our control, games must start within 5 minutes of their scheduled start times. 
      1. After 5 minutes, games are to be started “as-is” with players, observing all existing player-minimum requirements. 
    2. Captains are allowed to make exceptions to these rules if both parties agree, but teams are encouraged to be punctual.  
    1. The Board reserves the right to make decisions in contravention of any or all of these or SPN rules in the spirit of promoting safe, fair, and fun co-ed slo-pitch. 


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