What is Softball?
Softball is a game resembling baseball that is played on a smaller
diamond, with a larger ball, and it is pitched underhand. It is popular as an amateur sport in the U.S., and has grown in
popularity outside of North America over the last 50 years. In U.S. high
schools and colleges it is a popular women's sport.
Who plays Softball?
Softball is primarily for girls with boys playing baseball.
The goal of softball leagues is to teach fundamentals and skills in a fun, instructive and supportive environment. Your daughter will
learn to hit, throw, scoop a grounder and catch a pop fly.
will learn sportsmanship, friendly competition and the value of
The Divisions in
Softball has two
distinct levels of play the recreational league and the travel or select
Recreational softball leagues have
divisions for girls ages 5 to 18.
You will find that division breakdowns vary based on the league.
A common age division breakdown is as follows: T-Ball, 8U, 10U, 12U, 14U and
is based on skill
level and ability rather than just age. If
your child is in a t-ball or an instructional division he or she will be
assigned to a team in late March. If your child is in a competitive
league (any league with an umpire) he or she will go through a draft
which is normally held in March. Once your child is drafted to a team he
or she will receive a phone call from the the team's coach.
T-ball is for players 5 and 6 years old (6 and Under).
The emphasis in this division is fun.
The girls will learn the fundamentals of the game: throwing, catching
and safety when handling a bat. Games will be
shorter in innings, and coaches will be on the field to assist with
safety and game play. All girls will bat every inning regardless of outs,
every girl gets to play in the field.
Scores will not be recorded nor will wins and losses.
This allows the girls to get as much playing time as possible.
Coach pitch is for players 7 and 8 years old
(8 and under). Instruction
and fun are the focus at this level. Throwing, catching, hitting, base
running and sliding will be taught to your daughter. Focus is
usually on teaching the girls how to play all positions.
In this instructional division the coach pitches to his players..
Each batter is allowed three strikes or five pitches, whichever comes
first. Every girl will bat once an inning and every girl gets to play in
Games will be a little
longer than 6U games, three to five outs per inning. Scoring may be
kept, but wins and losses are not recorded.
10U age group allows the girls to
pitch against other girls. The instruction
levels and game strategies are increased. The girls still have the
opportunity to play various positions.
The Competitive Divisions...
Instruction and game strategies are emphasized at this level. Skills
such as bunting and defense against base runners are more prevalent.
Stealing bases is only permitted in 12U
divisions and up.
14U – This division
offers a higher level of play and this age group plays using the ASA
(American Softball Association) rules with very minor modifications.
18U – The 18U division plays straight ASA
All Star Division...
Local leagues have the
option to select an All Star team from their division
to enter into state and regional tournaments. This team is
established to give the kids the opportunity to experience competition.
is a chance for
selected league players to compete at a higher level through area
Starting at nine years old, girls are eligible to play on an All Star
league for the first time. Players submit their name to their coach if
they’re interested in being considered for the All Star team. Prior to
the end of the season, try-outs will be held for each leagues respective
All Star team(s). If your daughter plays All Stars, you’ll need to buy
the all star uniform!
The first round of playoffs is against the teams in your district, and
the team that wins moves on to the state championship. That is as far as
it goes at this age level. Once the girls are 11 and 12 years old, they
can go to state and regional championships. The ultimate goal is to
reach the World Series. For each age group, one city will host the
playoff games for several years.