Roster/Player Issues

Roster & Player Issues

Primary and Secondary Roster Rules & Guidelines

In 2020 our league implemented a primary/secondary rule change allowing players to be placed on two different rosters (primary roster and secondary roster) in an effort to increase player participation, to assist teams that have trouble finding players on a given night, and to facilitate growth within the league.  

Official Team Roster

Teams will complete an Official Team Roster prior to the start of the season and prior to placement within the divisions.  A turn-in date will be announced by the first league association meeting.  Teams can have both Primary and Secondary players on this roster.  Once this roster is submitted, it will be used to evaluate to which division each team will be placed in.  Any roster changes, additions, or releases need to be done through notifying the league and gaining approval.

Picking Up and Releasing Players

After submitting a Official Team Roster Form, teams may add or release players from their Official Team Roster.  Teams will need to request an addition to their roster 24 hours before their next scheduled game whenever possible.  The request will need to be submitted to a league official and then approved by at least two league officials.  Following approval, the team's official roster online will be updated.  Team managers will need to remember to have their new addition sign their Official Team Roster/Waiver, stored in the league binder at the fields, as a final step allowing them to play.  If requests to add primary or secondary players are made with less than 24 hour notice, they are subject to the league's and officers' availability to get everything approved and documented prior to the start of their game.  In the event the player/roster request is made and no action has been taken (meaning the online database cannot be updated) then that request can not move forward and that player cannot play in the associated game.  League officers will make decisions on approval or disapproval of player requests based on an evaluation of how inter-division competitiveness will be impacted, safety concerns, and according to player classifications.

Player Classification

Players will carry a general league classification, in addition to any state and/or national ratings they may carry.  The player's classification will generally be determined by where their primary teams plays within the league.  A player who moves from a higher classified team to a lower classified team across seasons may retain their higher classification if The League determines it is necessary and accurate to do so.

Players will only be allowed to play two divisions down from their classification.  Teams will only be allowed to have 2 secondary roster players from two divisions above the division they play in.  (i.e., a D Division team can only have two B-classified players as secondary players on their roster).  As always, no one rule covers every possibility, so final determinations are made on a case by case basis, with this being the general framework.

"+" Players

A small collection of players have been, or will be, identified as limited to where they may move within the divisions.  Those players will be identified with a "+" sign on the teams online Official Roster and are limited to only playing in the division that matches their league classification or higher.  A committee of League Officers, USA Softball representatives, and umpires were used to evaluate and identify these players.

Game Day Activity

Official Roster data for each team will be stored online at under the "Player and Rosters" heading.  Managers will be able to look up their opponents roster and compare it to the lineup card presented prior to the start of the game if they wish.  This allows any protests over the roster to be made prior to the start of the game.  If a protest is to be made, the manager shall notify the umpire who will communicate with league officials or make a final determination on the availability of the player in questions.  If a player is found to be playing illegally, they will be ejected from the game.  The player and the participating manager may be referred for further discipline action if deemed necessary.

When filling out the lineup card, managers should take care to put the full name of each player and their jersey number (where applicable) so that any comparisons against the official roster data can be made quickly and easily.

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Players under 18 years of age

Players in the league under 18 years of age must have a parent/guardian signature on the team's Official Waiver form before they can take the field.  There is no limit to what age a player can play, but consideration should be made to the level of play they are entering into along with potential safety concerns and ability level.

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Player conduct

General Rules

Player conduct issues are taken seriously by The League.  They are detrimental to the safety of the players, spectators, and others in and around the diamond, to the continuity of the game, and to the image of The League as a whole.  Sportsmanlike behavior and adherence to the rules are of primary importance.  Infractions of any sort will be taken seriously and mandate an equal response.  Arguing, swearing, yelling at, or even long, drawn-out arguments are not acceptable behavior.  Players, managers, and umpires are required to maintain their personal space.  Arguing, swearing at, and (hopefully not) threatening an umpire in any shape or form (don't say it was sarcastic or joking later) will result in suspension, potentially up to the remainder of the year, and could can be forwarded to USA Softball of South Dakota for further sanction at that level.  

USA Softball Rules and Regulations Apply

In addition to the rules developed and enforced by The League, USA Softball of South Dakota's rules and regulations also apply if and when they do not appear under The League's rules.  Further clarification of these rules can be found at

It should be noted, according to USA Softball of South Dakota (and The League agrees)...

Consequences & Suspensions

In 2021, The League voted to impose stricter guidelines to addressing concerns with player conduct.  If any player is ejected from a game for conduct (see above) an automatic three-game suspension will be imposed.  In the event a player is ejected and then suspended, that player may only count games towards their suspension at which they are in attendance but unable to play.  A suspended player may not participate on the field for any activities (i.e., base coaching, ect.).  The League will put suspended player information on the weekly game cards and will track the games suspended and when the player is allowed back onto a roster of play.  

League Officials will follow up incidents of player conduct with interviews of the players, managers, and umpires involved where warranted.  In these instances, The League and its Officers reserve the ability to impose further penalties to those involved, in the form of additional suspensions, or extending an already imposed suspension.  If further action is determined necessary, those involved will be notified and an opportunity for appeal allowed.  In extreme circumstances, a review team of experienced managers from the league will be put together to review the incident and formalize a final verdict and penalty.

In the event a team loses a player from their lineup during a game due to conduct (ejection), a substitute player must be available.  In the event the team has no substitute player and that roster spot can not be filled, the game is forfeited by the team with the offending player.  Please note, this is different than a situation where a player in the lineup is lost due to injury.

Bat Throwing

Players are expected to control their equipment on the field in the interest of safety and sportsmanship.  The League believes there are no situations where a bat should become a projectile on the field.  The concept can be broken into gray areas (i.e., how high did it go, how fast was it going, what was the player's intention, etc.), but the easy solution is to ensure that the bat does not fly through the air.

In situations where a player has thrown their bat and the umpire has determined that the action put the safety of others in jeopardy, the offending player will be ejected from the game.  A report to The League will be made and a determination made on the need for further sanctions will proceed.  The player that threw the bat is likely a candidate for suspension under the general player conduct rules (see above) and could incur further penalties (i.e., suspension).

Note, that these rules and sanctions do not include situations where the player has accidentally lost control of their bat during a swing.  


Umpires will be enforcing the profanity rules that have existed for several years and are supported by USA Softball of South Dakota.  Players and managers will be warned at the start of competition.  Any use of profanity on the field will result in the offending team incurring an out for their next at-bat.  If a player uses profanity, their team will start their next at-bat with one out recorded.  When a player uses profanity while their team is at-bat, the team will incur an out immediately.  If a team that is on defense, and no longer has an at-bat opportunity coming breaks the profanity rule, the opposing team will be given an additional out in that remaining half-inning.  Bottom line... don't use profanity.

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