• a modified form of baseball played on a smaller
field with a larger ball, seven rather than nine
innings, and underarm pitching. The game
evolved during the late 19th century from a
form of indoor baseball.
• Softball is a variant of baseball played with a
larger ball on a smaller field.
3. History of Softball
• The earliest known softball game was played in Chicago,
Illinois on Thanksgiving Day, 1887. It took place at the Farragut Boat
Club at a gathering to hear the outcome of the Yale University and
Harvard University football game. When the score was announced and
bets were settled, a Yale alumnus threw a boxing glove at a Harvard
supporter. The other person grabbed a stick and swung at it.
• George Hancock called out "Play ball!" and the game began,
with the boxing glove tightened into a ball, a broom handle serving as a
• George Hancock is credited as the game's inventor for his
development of ball and an undersized bat in the next week.
4. • The Farragut Club soon set rules for the
game, which spread quickly to outsiders.
Envisioned as a way for baseball players to
maintain their skills during the winter, the sport
was called "Indoor Baseball".
• Under the name of "Indoor-Outdoor", the
game moved outside in the next year, and the first
rules were published in 1889.
• 1895 - Lewis Rober, Sr. of Minneapolis
organized outdoor games as exercise for
firefighters; this game was known as kitten ball.
5. • 1926 - The name “softball” was coined by
Walter Hakanson of the YMCA.
• 1930 - The name softball had spread across
the United States.
• 1934 - The formation of the Joint Rules
Committee on Softball standardized the rules and
naming throughout the United States.
• Sixteen-inch softball, also sometimes
referred to as "mushball" or "super-slow pitch", is a
direct descendant of Hancock's original game.
6. • 1933 - World's Fair, the main course of
action taken was to lengthen the pitching distance.
• 1953 - Slow pitch achieved formal
• 1991 - women's fast-pitch softball was
selected to debut at the 1996 Summer Olympics.
• 1996 Olympics - introduction of technology in
softball. The IOC funded a landmark bio-
mechanical study on pitching during the games.
7. Equipment & Dimensions
• The playing field is divided into 'fair territory'
and 'foul territory'. Fair territory is further divided
into the 'infield', and the 'outfield', and the territory
beyond the outfield fence.
• The field is defined by 'foul lines' that meet at
a right angle at 'home plate'. A fence running
between the baselines defines the limits of the
field; distance from home plate to the fence varies
8. • Behind home plate is a 'backstop'. It
must be between 25 and 30 feet behind
home plate depending on the type of
division that is playing.
• 'Home Plate' is one corner of a
diamond with 'bases' at each corner. The
bases other than home plate are 15 inch
square, of canvas or a similar material, and
not more than 5 inch thick.
9. Fast Pitch Baselines Slow Pitch Baselines Wheelchair
60 feet 70 feet or 65 feet or
more depending on
the association and
level of play
Official baseline dimensions
- Permitted circumferences in international
play are 12±0.125 in; mass between 178 g and
198.4 g in fast pitch, 11±0.125 in circumference,
166.5 g and 173.6 g in slow pitch.
- Under the current rules of Major League
Baseball: mass between 142 and 149 g, and is
229–235 mm in circumference and 73–76 mm in
- A 12-inch circumference ball is generally
used in slow pitch.
11. - The ball is most often covered in white or
yellow leather in two pieces roughly the shape of a
figure-8 and sewn together with red thread,
although other coverings are permitted. The core
of the ball may be made of long fiber kapok, or a
mixture of cork and rubber, or a polyurethane
mixture, or another approved material.
-The bat used by the batter can be made of wood,
aluminum, or composite materials such as carbon
-Sizes may vary but they may be no more than 34
inches long, 6 inches in diameter, or 1.2 kilograms
-The standard bat barrel diameter for both slow
pitch and fast pitch softball is 21⁄4 inches.
- All defensive players wear fielding gloves,
made of leather or similar material. Gloves have
webbing between the thumb and forefinger, known
as the "pocket".
- . Gloves used in softball are usually larger
than the ones used in baseball. No glove larger
- The uniform may include a cap or visor, a
shirt, tight sliding undershorts (optional), socks,
and pants; these are the components for which
standards are set.
- All players are required to wear shoes. They
may have cleats or spikes. The spikes must
extend less than 0.75 inch away from the sole.
Rounded metal spikes are illegal, as are ones
made from hard plastic or other synthetic
15. Protective equipment
- A helmet must have two ear flaps, one on
each side. Helmets and cages that are damaged
or altered are forbidden. Helmets must be worn by
batters and runners in fast pitch. Helmets are
optional in slow pitch.
- In male fast pitch masks are generally only
used for medical reasons. In fast pitch, the catcher
must wear a protective helmet with a face-mask
and throat protector, shin guards and body
protector. Shin guards also protect the kneecap.
16. - In slow pitch, the catcher must wear a helmet
and mask at youth levels. At adult levels, there
is no formal requirement for the catcher to wear
a mask, although the official rules recommend it.
A female catcher may optionally wear a body
protector in slow pitch.
• A softball game can last anywhere from 3 to 7
innings, depending on the league, rules, and
type of softball; however 7 innings is the most
common. In each inning, each team bats until
three batters have been put out. The teams take
turns batting. Officially, which team bats first is
decided by a coin toss, although a league may
decide otherwise at its discretion.
• The most common rule is that the home team
bats second. Batting second is also called "last
19. • Many softball players prefer to bat second
because they feel they have more control in the
last inning, since they have the last at-bat.
• In the event of a tie, extra innings are usually
played until the tie is broken except in certain
tournaments and championships. If the home
team is leading and the road team has just
finished its half of the seventh inning, the game
ends because it is not necessary for the home
team to bat again. In all forms of softball, the
defensive team is the fielding team; the
offensive team is at bat or batting and is trying to
- Play begins with the umpire saying "Play
- After the batter is ready and all fielders
(except the catcher) are in fair territory, the pitcher
stands at the pitching plate and attempts to throw
the ball past the batter to the catcher behind home
plate. The throw, or pitch, must be made with an
underarm motion: the ball must be released below
the hip when the hand is no farther from the hip
than the elbow to get it in the strike zone.
21. - For fast pitch softball, the traditional
pitching style is a "windmill" motion,
extending the throwing hand around the
body and releasing the ball at about hip
level at maximum speeds.
- The pitcher tries to throw the ball so
that it passes through the "strike zone". A
pitch that passes through that zone is a
22. - A pitch which is not a strike and which the
batter does not swing at is known as a "ball". The
number of balls and strikes is called the "count".
The number of balls is always given first, as 2 and
1, 2 and 2, and so on. A count of 3 and 2 is a "full
count", since the next ball or strike will end the
batter's turn at the plate, unless the ball goes foul.
- Crow-hopping- an illegal pitch which occurs
when the pitcher pushes with the pivot foot from
somewhere other than the pitching plate.
- "the well" – consider as perfect pitch.
23. Types of pitches in fast pitch softball:
- The offensive team sends one "batter"
at a time to home plate to use the bat to try
to hit the pitch forward into fair territory. The
order the players bat in, known as the
"batting order", must stay the same
throughout the game.
- The batter stands facing the pitcher
inside a "batter's box".
25. • fly ball - A batted ball hit high in the air
• pop fly - A fly ball hit upward at an angle
greater than 45 degrees
• line drive - A batted ball driven in the air
through the infield at a height at which an
infielder could play it if in the right position
• ground ball - A batted ball which hits the
ground within the diamond
26. The batter is out if:
• three strikes are called (a "strikeout"); a ball
hit by the batter is caught before touching the
ground (a "flyout");
• the batter goes to a base that is already
tagged ("tagged" or "tag play")
• a fielder holding the ball touches a base
which is the only base towards which the batter
may run before the batter arrives there (a "force
out" or "force play")
27. Run - is scored when a player has touched
all four bases in order, proceeding
counterclockwise around them. A run is not
scored if the last out is a force out or occurs
during the same play that the runner
crosses home plate.
There are nine players out on the field at one time
in fast-pitch softball and 10 players in slow-pitch
•Pitcher - The pitcher is the individual who throws
the ball from the middle of the diamond.
•Catcher - The catcher is normally behind home
plate in a squatted position (some plays may
require the catcher to stand at an angle for
29. • First baseman - The first baseman is the
position to the right side of the diamond when
facing the field. The major role of the first
baseman is to receive throws from other
defensive players in order to get a force play at
• Second baseman - The second baseman plays
in between the first baseman and the gap at
30. • Shortstop - The shortstop fields all balls hit to the
infield between the second and third bases.
• Third baseman - The third baseman is the
position on the left side of the diamond when
you are looking at the field.
• Outfielders - The outfielders are players that
cover the grassy area behind the infield.
Outfielders are named for their positions in the
field relative to home plate.
32. Rules & Regulations
• Field, Players, and Equipment
• The Field - The baselines will be 65
feet. The distance from pitcher's mound to
home plate will be 50 feet.
• The Players - A team must have 9
players to start or to continue a game with
the maximum of 10 players
33. • Substitutes - A player is officially in the game
when his/her name has been entered on the
official score sheet. Once a player leaves the line-
up, he/she may re-enter the game. FREE
SUBSTITUTION/All teams must turn in batting
order. No pinch runners...only in case of injury and
that player cannot return to the game.
• The captain is the only player who may
address the officials during the game, but only on
matters of rules interpretation.
34. • Equipment - No metal screws or screw-in
cleats are allowed. Rings, earrings, necklaces, and
bracelets are advised not to be worn. Bats must be
official softball bats.
• The pitcher must take a position with both
feet firmly on the ground and with one or both feet
in contact with the pitcher's plate.
• The pitcher shall not deliberately stop, roll, or
bounce the ball while in the pitching position in
order to prevent the batter from striking it.
35. • Intentional walks may be made by
informing the plate umpire, no pitches are
• The batter shall not hinder the catcher
from fielding or throwing the ball by stepping
out of the batter's box, or intentionally
hindering the catcher while standing within
the batter's box.
36. • 4 balls constitute a walk.
• 3 strikes constitutes an out (strike out).
• If the batter has a foul after receiving
the second strike, the batter is out.
• Each batter will start with a 1 ball/1
• Games consist of 7 innings.
• Catching and Fielding- above waist
and below waist- ground balls and fly balls
• Throwing- Over arm or underarm
• Pitching- basic offensive skill includes
grip, stance, stride, and swing
• Base on balls- batter to advance to first
base by the umpire calling four pitches
outside the strike zone
• Defense team- team on the field
• Double- two base hit
• Double play- defensive play results in
two outs as a result of continuous action
39. • Error- mishandling of the ball by the
• Fair ball- ball hit within the area
boundaries of the field first, second, third
• Fly ball- any ball batted into the air
• Foul tip- foul ball which goes directly
from the bat, not higher than the batter’s
head, to the catcher’s hand and is legally
40. • Force Out- runner is forced to move- may tag
runner or touch base
• Home run- ball batted into fair territory which
enable the batter to all four bases in one play
• Infield- portion of the field which is included
within the diamond made by the baseline
• Infield Fly- fair fly ball which can be caught
with ordinary effort when first and second or first,
second, and third bases are occupied before two
41. • offensive team- team at bat
• Foul Ball- ball hit outside of the
baseline. determined by:
• infield- where it rests
• outfield- where it first hits