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Softball/Mercy Rule


Our age 28 and over Women's League Softball team has a "Mercy" Rule, it is a 15 run rule after the fifth inning (we play seven innings). Does that mean if a team is not up by 15 runs at the completion of the fifth, but is at the completion of the sixth inning that we should play the game to completion or is the game technically over?

Hi Jen,

In your league it means you must play 4 1/2 innings no matter what the score is. If the visitors bat 5 or more times and are behind by 15+ the game is over.  If the home team bats 5 or more times and are behind 15+ the game is over.  So you would not bat the bottom of 5 if the home team is ahead or the bottom of 6 either.  You would if play the complete inning if the home team was behind.

So as long as the losing team has batted at least 5 complete times when the 15 is reached the game is over.



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Dr. Mark R. Ambrose


I can answer all questions about book rules and "case book" rules governing the playing of ASA softball. Have a REAL situation that happened and are not sure the proper rule was applied, ask me.


I am a registered ASA umpire, a MASA "At-Large" umpire since 1996 and a retired District Umpire-In-Chief. I have very extensive experience in MASA State Championship and ASA national qualifying tournament play both as an umpire and an Umpire-In-Chief. I completed 3 ASA National Schools including the ASA national advanced umpire school in Ok City("Bernie" for those who know him was the lead clinician, I survived the week and couldn't let my kids watch the game tapes when I got home. No, I love you Bernie). I was one of 4 "Yankee" umpires selected to umpire the Men's D National East Championship in 2002 in Winter Haven FL

Amateur Softball Association (The authority in softball)

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