Softball is a fun game. Explore this article for know-how on how to play softball.

How To Play Softball

 While every other person goes gaga over football, basketball and cricket, there is another game that lies practically overlooked in the underbelly of the sporting world. This game goes by the name ‘softball’. Shockingly, although the game is called ‘softball’, the ball used in an official game of softball is hardly soft; in fact, it is harder than a baseball. None the less, softball is a game that is just as exciting as baseball. Most people make the mistake of assuming that softball is a game for ‘the ladies’ only. This is hardly close to the truth, which only makes it obvious that softball can be played by both men and women. Living under a cloud of thoughts that make you think you get less masculine or more feminine when you play softball is just biased. Make that move, get yourself out there and play a great game of softball. Read on to discover for yourself softball rules that can help familiarize you with the game. 

Learning To Play Softball
The Game And Boundaries 
Unlike cricket, which is a distant relative of softball, a team in a game of softball will have only nine players. A team in a game of cricket, on the other hand, has eleven players. The field, as such, is divided into the infield and the outfield. The demarcation between the infield and the outfield are made with the assistance of lines. The lines between the bases are separated from each other by a distance of 60 inches. When these lines are joined they lead to the formation of a diamond that lies inside the baseline. This makes for the infield. The outfield, on the other hand, lies outside the baseline, but totally inside the playing field. 

Innings And The Rule Of Thumb
An official game of softball comprises of seven innings. An inning is complete when each and every player of either team gets the chance to bat. One of the most basic rules of softball involves the ball and the first and third base. According to this rule, any ball that lands outside the first base or the third base will be considered a foul ball. Here, runners are not allowed to advance and the batter will get another shot, unless of course the ball was caught in the air, which only means that the batter is out. 

In softball when the pitcher pitches the ball, it must be thrown underhand and both hands of the pitcher must be placed on the ball at the start of the pitch. Placing either one of the hands on the ball is not allowed. The pitcher must also have both his feet on the pitcher’s rubber and will be allowed to take only one step forward while pitching. Taking more than a step forward is not allowed.
As far as batting goes, there are three very prominent rules. The first rules states that a batter is out when three strikes are called. The second rule states that a batter has to give up the bat when a ball struck by him or her is caught in the air. Lastly, the third rule states that the batter can be declared out if found not standing in the batter’s box.

Running From Base To Base
When runners run from base to base, they have to do so in order. Runners, however, are allowed to overrun only the first base. As for all of the other bases, runners may be tagged and called out if it is found that they are off the base. After a ball in flight has been caught, runners must tag the occupied base, before they actually move on to the next base. Stealing or pinching bases is strictly not allowed. It is also important to mention here that one base runner cannot run past another base runner who is ahead of the former. Runners are not allowed to leave their bases until the pitcher pitches the ball. As for how runners can be declared out, they can be declared out when they are tagged with the ball before they actually reach a base. They can also be declared out if the ball arrives at the first base before a runner does or if the runners are found to be standing more than three feet out of the base line, just to avoid being tagged. 

Now that you know how to play softball, get your friends together and ‘have yourself an exhilarating game of softball’.

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