Softball Rules Summary 
Last Updated for Summer 2015

The Complete FSU IM Softball Rulebook is Available Online here​
No Pets, No Alcohol, & No Tobacco Products are permitted at the Rec SportsPlex. Violators will be ejected. 


Players MUST be valid, fee-paying FSU students, faculty or full-time staff. FAMU and TCC students are NOT eligible for FSU IM sports and events. All players MUST show their current FSUCard prior to each game in order to participate. Check-in takes place at the Rec SportsPlex West Field House.

Line-ups include up to 11 players in men’s and women’s games. 10 players play in the field, the 11th player is considered an extra hitter (EH). The use of the EH must be determined prior to the start of the game and may not be added once the game has started. Team rosters may include an unlimited number of players. If players have to leave with no available substitute, play will continue as long as 8 legal players are available to play. An out will be recorded when a player who has left the game is scheduled to bat.

Limited free substitution is permitted for all players in the line-up. Once a substitute has entered the line-up, he/she must play 6 consecutive outs (a full inning). Once a player has been replaced in the batting order, he/she may bat again only if he/she returns to the position in the order which he/she vacated. This rule allows for re-entry of both the starter and any subsequent substitutes. 

Team rosters may include an unlimited number of players. Limited substitution is available to all players in the line-up. Once a substitute has entered the line-up, he/she must play for a full inning (team's offensive and defensive halves of an inning). This rule allows for re-entry of both the starter and any subsequent substitutes. In the event of an injury, a substitute may enter the game prior to the full inning period. If players have to leave, with no available substitute, play will continue as long as 6 legal players are available to play. Ejected players may not be replaced in the line-up or in the field. An out will be recorded when an ejected player’s turn occurs in the line-up.


Wrist and hand jewelry is NOT allowed to be worn by any participant during intramural softball. This jewelry consists of any visible rings (including wedding bands), watches, bracelets, and any other such similar jewelry. Only medical alert bracelets are permitted and must be taped to the wrist. Exposed jewelry which is deemed dangerous by the umpire or other IM staff must be removed and may not be worn for the remainder of the game. A player is subject to ejection for failure to remove any jewelry after the first warning.

All players must wear shoes. Tennis shoes, soft-soled shoes, and one-piece softball shoes are legal. Metal spikes or cleats with metal exposed are not allowed. Any player caught wearing metal spikes will be ejected from the game.

For men’s D-I, men’s D-II, women’s, co-rec D-I, fraternity and sorority leagues, only regulation softball bats, as determined by ASA, are legal. Softball bats must be stamped with one an ASA certifying mark and not appear on the illegal bat list as published at Any standard baseball bat is illegal.

For men’s D-II, men’s D-III, men's Rec, co-rec D-II, and co-rec Rec, all batters must use bats that are supplied by FSU Intramural Sports. A variety of sizes will be available to each team.

On first use of an illegal bat, the batter is called out and all runs scored by the offending team prior to the point of discovery are vacated. The mercy rule applies immediately, as appropriate. The bat is removed from the game, although the player is not ejected and play continues. On the second use of an illegal bat by the same time, the player is ejected and the game is forfeited to the opponent.

A 12” size softball will be used for all men’s, fraternity, and co-rec games. An 11” size softball will be used in women’s and sorority games. A first baseman's mitt may only be used by the player actively playing at the first base position. All other fielders must use regular gloves. Balls, bats, gloves, catcher’s masks and additional helmets are available for checkout at the RSP West Field House. 


At the Rec SportsPlex, pre-game warm-up will be limited to designated areas only. Otherwise, warm-up may only occur in the field of play.

All offensive players – except the batter, any baserunners, an on-deck batter, a first base coach & a third base coach – must remain behind the chain-link fencing while in the dugout area. Spectators must watch from behind the chainlink fencing.

Balls hit over the fence in fair territory are home runs. There is no homerun limit. Balls that bounce over or roll under a fence will result in a ground-rule double. The distance from home plate to the fence is 315 feet in all areas. 


Game time is forfeit time. Each game has a 50-minute or 7-inning limit. Any inning that is started before the 50-minute time limit will be completed. A new inning begins when the 3rd out of the previous inning is recorded. No inning will begin after 50 minutes. Regular season games can end in a tie. Extra innings will be played only if they start before the 50-minute time limit. All playoff games will continue until a winner is determined.

10-Run Rule: If one team is ahead by 10 or more runs after 4 complete innings (3½ if the home team is ahead), the game will be called.


FSU IM Softball is played following NIRSA softball rules with few exceptions.

FSU IM Softball is played following NIRSA (National Intramural-Recreational Sports Association) Softball rules with few exceptions.

Each batter will begin the at-bat with a count of 1 ball and 1 strike. A foul ball on strike three will result in an out.

If a player unintentionally throws the bat, the team will be given a warning. Each subsequent offense will result in the batter being called out and all runners returning to the base they occupied at the beginning of the at-bat. Any player intentionally throwing the bat will be called out and ejected from the game.

A courtesy runner may be used in the event of injury only AND upon agreement with the opposing team’s captain. The courtesy runner must be the player who recorded the last out. In co-rec games, the courtesy runner must be a player of the same gender.

Overthrows that land out of play result in the following awards: On an initial overthrow by an infielder, the award is 2 bases from the time of the throw; i.e., batter gets second base, any baserunners are awarded 2 bases from where they were at the time of the throw. On an overthrow by the outfielder, the award is 2 bases from the time the fielder releases the ball, not when it goes out of play; i.e., if a man is one step away from second when the outfielder released the ball, the runner is awarded second and third. 


A co-rec line-up consists of 8, 9, 10, or 12 players. 10 players play in the field with 2 extra hitters (EH), one male and one female. Teams must have 8 players to begin a game. The following combinations are the only acceptable combinations: 4M / 4F, 5M / 4F, 4M / 5F, 5M / 5F, or 6M / 6F.

In the event that a team has nine players, that team may select to use all 9 players and take an out in the 10th position in the batting order. Thus all 9 players may play defense. Or, the team may play with 8 players, taking NO outs in the batting order, but using only 8 players in the field.

The batting order shall alternate male and female batters.

If a male batter is walked with 0 or 1 out, he will be awarded 2nd base and the next female MUST bat. If a male batter is walked with 2 outs, he will be awarded 2nd base and the female has the option of batting or taking a walk. Runners on base when a male is walked must be forced to the next base to advance (not all runners receive 2 bases).

Co-rec defensive positioning shall include 2 males and 2 females in the outfield and 2 males and 2 females in the infield. Males and females may be distributed on either side of the field in any way (males at 3B and SS OR males at SS and 1B, etc). Either the pitcher or catcher must be a female, the other a male. 


Sportsmanship is an essential part of intramural sports. Players and spectators shall show respect towards opponents and game officials at all times. Teams receive a sportsmanship rating at the conclusion of each game on a scale of 0 to 4. Teams must maintain a 3.0 average to continue participating in the league or tournament. Misconduct of players or team spectators may result in ejection and/or forfeiture of the game.

All teams, regardless of record, with a 3.0 or better sportsmanship average advance to the playoffs. Playoff draw meetings are held and schedules are posted online during the final week of the regular season.