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VWFL OPERATING RULES

Last updated: June 2021
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Article 1 - Uniforms and Equipment

  1. BC Amateur Softball (Softball BC) Rules and Regulations shall apply, except for dress.
  2. Running shoes and soccer boots are allowed. Metal or hard plastic cleats are not permitted.
  3. Catchers shall always wear full gear. This shall consist of helmet, mask, chest protector, and shin guards. No catcher shall play without full dress.
  4. Catchers are required to wear a mask, at minimum, while warming up a pitcher, per the SBBC regulations.
  5. Helmets shall be mandatory for batters and base runners, as per Softball BC Rules.
  6. As a safety precaution to prevent injury, the VWFL highly advocates that members follow the Softball BC recommendations and remove all jewelry prior to the commencement of a game. If members choose to dismiss this recommendation, then wear at your own risk.
  7. Teams are responsible to carry with them their own set of bases (home plate not needed), a spare pitcher’s mound, rakes and a shovel for any field maintenance that might need to occur at fields where access to these items is not available.
  8. The league ball is the Worth Red Dot 12” Optic Raised seam. However, with supply issues balls and possible alternatives may be changes as needed.

Article 2- Field Etiquette

  1. Teams are responsible for leaving the premises clean. The Executive requests teams report damages or poor conditions immediately to the Vice President of the league.
  2. Absolutely no liquor is permitted on any premises.
  3. Smoking is limited to the parking areas only as requested by the Municipalities.
  4. Minor parks have specific set up/take down requests as many have drop-in bases and well-maintained infields. Please take the time to ask or review these parks guidelines.

Article 3 - Team Responsibilities

  1. The Home Team shall:
    • Put the bases and pitching mound in by 6:00pm,
    • Provide a new game ball, and
    • Input a picture of the score sheet, the game score, MVP for the opposing team, and umpire’s name within 24-hours into the leagues website database. Send information to Statistician when website database not available or working.
  2. The Visiting Team shall:
    • Rake the fields after the game and ensure garbage is cleaned up, and
    • Input a picture of the score sheet, the game score, MVP for the opposing team and umpire’s name within 24-hours into the leagues website database. Send information to Statistician when website database not available or working.

Article 4 - Games

  1. In all games in the VFWL, seven (7) innings shall constitute a legal game. In playoffs, games shall continue until a winner is declared. Games which cannot be completed due to darkness or weather shall be rescheduled, unless five (5) innings have been completed. The team ahead after five (5) full innings shall be declared the winner.
  2. The decision to call the game shall be made by the umpire.
  3. When a team earns seven (7) runs in any one inning, that half of the inning shall be considered complete. Then the other half, or new inning shall begin. This does not apply to the seventh or final inning; the seventh or final inning is open.
  4. If a team is ahead by fifteen (15) runs after four and one-half (4 1/2) innings, or any inning thereafter, the game may be declared over.
  5. Games may be cancelled prior to 6:15 pm on game days, if done so for reason of rainout, by the Lower Island Softball Umpire's Association or allocator by telephone to the VWFL President by 4:00pm that day. Calls will then be made to the Team Representatives as quickly as possible, who will in turn notify their team members.
  6. Teams failing to field a full complement of nine (9) players by 6:30pm shall forfeit the game. The score of a forfeited game shall be 7 - 0 in favour of the team not at fault. If a team is aware that a forfeit will occur, please notify the VWFL President so the umpires and the other team can be notified.
  7. A rained-out game shall be re-scheduled to an evening organized by the Vice President depending on the schedule for the season.
  8. Courtesy runners are a privilege in the VWFL for those who have minor injuries but are still capable to bat but unable to run long distances. Please indicate at the beginning of the game with the coaches, captains, and umpires who the injured player is/are. Out of courtesy the injured runner will go to only first (1st) base and the alternative runner will replace that person. This rule will also apply should a player becomes hurt during the game and unable to run but is still able to bat. The other team and umpire are to be made aware of this before that player bats.
  9. The pitching distance for the VWFL is 43-feet to match the increase that Softball BC made for ‘C’ provincials in 2020. VWFL – Operating Rules
  10. Teams will be allowed to bat all players on their discretion.
    • A team can bat more than nine (9) players at their discretion, but no other league rules would change. This would mean that defensive changes are NOT unlimited and MUST be recorded with the umpire, unless just switching players in defensive positions already in the field.
    • The batter’s line-up does NOT have to have the defensive players listed as the top 9 batters.
    • Should a team decide to play all their players and a player gets hurt or must leave the game, their position in the line-up will become an auto out.
    • All players on the line up MUST be present at the beginning of the game; no one can be added if they arrive late.
    • Teams must declare at the beginning of the game when presenting their line ups to the umpire if they are batting more than 9 players.