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CAIRO AMERICAN SOFTBALL LEAGUE
Last updated: 2009 SPRING SEASON
Revised March 2009
Table of Contents
The Cairo American Softball League (CASL) began in the spring of 1976 when four groups formed an informal association to play softball. The initial teams were the CAC Teachers, the CAC Varsity, the American Embassy, and the Marines. During the first seven years, the league played one game a week, on weekends, at CAC school soccer field. The group gradually expanded to eight teams and, due to increased interest by the participants, a spring and fall season format was adopted.
From the beginning, the
League has traditionally been composed of teams from the American diplomatic community, the private sector, CAC, and the U.S.
Military. At that time the league was very informal and had free use of school facilities.
It was financed by income from the snack bar, which was operated by a different team each Saturday, and team fees,
which were a staggering $40 per team each season. The home team was responsible for providing the game
ball and the teams who had played the previous game umpired games.
In 1983, CAC entered into an agreement
with Victory College to improve the college grounds in return for the use of the facility for CAC school athletics.
The contract was for a period of five years. Subsequently CAC sodded, seeded, watered, and generally
transformed virtual desert into a playing field where athletic play was possible. The initial cost to the
school was approximately $100,000. Due to the kindness of the CAC administration, other athletic organizations
were granted access to the playing fields; i.e., CASL, Maadi Little League, Cairo Rugby, and various soccer associations.
In the spring of 1984 CASL installed lights for night play and began an expanded schedule that included thirteen-team league playing on Fridays and one night during the week. The light poles and fixtures were purchased by the CAC Booster Club in 1979 and donated to CAC for future use. Improvements to the facility made by CASL included a snack bar, storage containers, picnic benches, fencing, scoreboard, barbecue pit, a wall surround, landscaping, graveled car park, maintenance equipment, and a permanent maintenance staff. By 1989, the League had expanded to sixteen men's teams and six ladies teams, playing three nights a week and all day on Fridays. In order to continue to improve the expanding facility and to cover the increased operating expenses necessitated by a new lease agreement the team fees were raised. It is intended that improvements will continue to be made with surplus income (should there be any) and fees be adjusted with as required.
During 1995 corporate donations, contributions from
CAC, and league funding enabled CASL to make major improvements and renovations at Victory College. These
included new fences, a scoreboard, lighting for the second field, and a new building to house concession, meeting, storage,
restrooms and a playground.
The purpose of the League is to provide a well-managed Softball League in a cordial atmosphere of friendship
and camaraderie. As CASL operates under established By-Laws and a Contractual Agreement with Cairo American
College, the League's purpose is further defined under those agreements.
League: All teams (men and women) together make up the Cairo American Softball League
Divisions: The league is composed of a men’s and a women’s division
The men’s division is split up into groups as voted each season by the men’s team reps at the league meeting. The groups are often called A, B, C or East West denoting the assessed strength of teams or an aleatoric split of the men’s division.
Members of the Board of Directors are selected when a position becomes open. The Board is the governing body, which conducts the business of the League under the direction of the Chairman. Board vacancies are filled by appointment of the remaining Board members, decided by majority vote, which shall prevail for the remainder of the respective season; however, the Board is responsible for informing the League Teams of the decision. Any three teams that protest, in writing to the Board, the individual appointed, may remove said individual from office. At any time, any Board Member may be removed from office with a two-thirds majority vote of the League Teams.
The Board consists of the following:
Men's Commissioner Men’s Division Play
Women's Commissioner Women’s Division Play
Secretary Records, Communication
Umpire-In-Chief Umpire Management
Facility Superintendent Development and Maintenance
Head Scorekeeper Scorekeeping and Payment of Umpires and Scorekeepers
Ways and Means Fundraising and Special Events
Security Setting up and running the security system at the ballpark
Each CASL Team is allowed one vote for the following purposes:
1. Election of CASL Board Members as defined in 2-A, above.
2. Changes to prevailing Amateur Softball Association (ASA) Rules.
3. Any issue or deadlocked motion vote the Board may have in the course of their business.
Voting must occur at scheduled League (Coaches’) meetings, for which there must be at least one team representative, and a quorum (i.e., majority of the respective Men's League and Ladies League teams, separately) must be present. No absentee voting is allowed. In the event of a tie vote, the respective Men's or Women's League Commissioner may cast a deciding vote. Board members may also represent a Team and thus be eligible to vote at League (Coaches’) meetings. If deemed necessary by the League Chairman and/or Commissioners, votes over the internet are allowed. This measure should be restricted to emergency decisions only.
The CASL Board of Directors shall have the power to conduct an emergency vote on matters of safety in the league without the presence of the team representatives. The CASL Board shall inform the team representatives of such votes, the vote outcome and schedule a league meeting to discuss the emergency vote.
Traditionally the Chairman has an interest in the overall running and improvement of the facility itself, working with the facility superintendent, as well as League supervision. The holder of this position needs many contacts throughout the expatriate community in order to expedite the purchase and importation of the supplies and equipment necessary for the improvement and day to day running of the League. S/he also works closely with the Treasurer to ensure that suitable budgets are prepared and fees collected.
The League is composed of two separate and distinct divisions. The Men’s and Women's Commissioners each set and manage their own program based on numbers of teams.
The League Treasurer, working with the Chairman, is responsible for preparing budgets, preparing financial statements, collection of fees, concession payments, and banking.
The League Secretary is responsible for taking minutes of the meetings, record updating, and general communication. He or she is responsible for updating this document after rule changes each season and distribution of amended document to each team.
The Head Umpire is responsible for recruiting, training, and scheduling of umpires.
The Head Scorekeeper is responsible for recruiting, training, and scheduling of all scorekeepers, as well as updating of team standings. Traditionally this officer has also been responsible for the payment of all umpires and scorekeepers.
The Facility Superintendent is responsible for working with the Chairman for future improvement, day-to-day maintenance of the grounds, and coordinating the use of the playing fields.
Ways and means is responsible for fund raising, special events, and the sales container.
The Head of Security is responsible for the setting up of a carded security system in coordination with CAC. The system will be supported by a fence to be built around the fields perimeter (separating the rugby pitch from the softball fields) and hired guards on a rotation schedule. This Board member will liaise between CAC and CASL regarding all security issues.
Website: the maintenance of the website is not a Board position. If no volunteer is found in the community, then the League will pay a small monthly fee for the site to be maintained.
There are no restrictions regarding the size of the roster. When a player plays in a season game (tournaments do not apply to this rule) s/he automatically becomes a member of the team s/he plays with and is on that team roster for the season. To change teams during that season, a player must notify his/her coach and the Division Commissioner, in writing, of his/her intentions. If the player is moving from a lower level to a higher level within their division then the player may begin playing on that team immediately. If the player is moving from a higher level to a lower level or within their own level, then the player must sit out (not play) for the next scheduled one game for his/her new team. This applies to both the women’s and men’s leagues. The player may not move to a third team meaning that a player may change teams only once during the season. Any change must occur before the ¾-point of the season (see “B” following). New players may be added at any time during the season (even after the ¾-point). In order to be eligible for tournament play, s/he must have played in at least one regular season game prior to the season's completion.
Two players may be allowed to play on two teams simultaneously given special circumstances. The player and both coaches must make an official request in writing to the Board of Directors, which will decide on a case-by-case basis if the exemption should be granted. If so, the Division Commissioner will inform all team representatives of the corresponding League(s) as well as the Head Score Keeper and the Umpire-in-Chief, giving details of the teams/players involved.
The respective Commissioners will determine the specific date on which the ¾-point occurs each season. Teams may receive written notice from them at least 14 days prior to the determined date. This date is also noted on the schedule.
BOTH DIVISIONS: No player under high school age (9th through 12th grade) may participate in league-sanctioned play, unless approved by the League’s Chairman, the appropriate Commissioner, and the parent(s) of the perspective player. The CASL Consent Form for Underage Players must be signed by all 3 parties. The UIC and Head Scorekeeper will be notified of such exceptions.
New teams are considered for admission to the League between seasons, based on a majority vote from the returning teams of the past season. All teams are expected to abide by all covenants and rules of the League. Failure to do so will result in a fine for the first offense and expulsion from the League for a second offense without a refund of their fees for that season. NO WARNING LETTERS WILL BE ISSUED.
Each season a team must pay a League Fee. Sponsorship is encouraged but not required as long as a team can meet its financial obligations.
To cover League operating expenses and the cost of renting the land, each team is currently assessed as follows:
Men's Division $ 2,000
Women's Division $1,500
This has been adjusted a number of times and it is intended that League fees will continue to be adjusted to meet current demands.
League fees are due no later than mid-season. Any extension beyond that date requires a formal request to the CASL Board presented in person and in writing. The CASL Board will then decide whether or not an extension is warranted based on the merits and belief in ability to pay. In any case where an extension has been granted, all fees in arrears must be paid within the time period agreed upon. If an extension is not requested, or not granted, any team that hasn’t paid in full by mid-season will forfeit their right to play during the remainder of the season.
The League plays its games based on the 2009 Official ASA Rule Book with the exception of the approved By-Laws noted in this section.
The ASA standardization rules are waived however, it is at the umpires’ discretion when related to safety to disallow specific garments. The League voted in spring 2008, to make visible numbers on the uniforms mandatory. The measure was applied starting with the spring season 2009 in order to give teams time to adjust. Duplicate numbers are accepted only for the spring 2009 season. Beyond that date all numbers must be unique. This issue is further governed by ASA rules.
Once a runner crosses, or touches, a line 20' from home plate, he cannot return to 3rd base. EFFECT: Once the 20’ line is touched or crossed by the runner, the play becomes an automatic force out at home plate. Should the runner cross back over the line towards third base they will not automatically be called out but the force at home will remain in effect. Should the runner return all the way and touch third base, the runner will be called out and the ball remains live.
Chains, bracelets, watches, rings (with the exception of plain wedding bands - without stones) and earrings (with the exception of small studs) are not permitted. Coaches will be told at umpire's conference to have players remove all jewelry. If a player is caught with jewelry on s/he will be asked to remove it. Second infraction by any player will be ejection from the game by the umpire.
Teams may start with one less than required without penalty (9). Should an eligible substitute arrive, they must be inserted in the vacant position in the line-up immediately (10th position). If the player refuses for any reason, they become an ineligible player for the remainder of the game and the shorthanded penalty applies.
Teams may finish with a minimum of 9 players, provided that any decrease is not through EJECTION. An ejected player must be replaced with an eligible substitute. If a substitute is not available the game is forfeited. If the decrease is through injury or DISQUALIFIED PLAYER, the shorthanded rule will apply.
BOTH DIVISIONS: Teams may increase the number of players on the starting line-up to a maximum of 12 after the umpire's pre-game conference.
BOTH DIVISIONS: If a team starts or increases the number to 10, 11 or 12 batters and one of those batters should have to leave the game without being legally substituted for, an out will be called when that position in the batting order comes up.
A team with only 7 or 8 starting players may pick 1 or 2 extra players to complete their team and play short-handed (no more than 9 players). No out will be recorded for the 10th spot in the batting line-up. Should an original team player(s) arrive subsequently, s/he (they) must immediately replace the pick-up(s). The opposing coach has a right of veto during the coaches’ meeting. This rule is no longer applicable after the line-ups have been declared official by the plate umpire. Should a team playing short-handed lose a player during the game, it will have to forfeit.
Protests must be submitted, in writing, to the appropriate League Commissioner within 72 hours of the end of the game being protested. Protests will be ruled on by the consensus of a committee consisting of the CASL Chairman, League Commissioner, and Umpire-in-Chief. A person involved in the protest shall not participate in the protest ruling. The person(s) replacing the disqualified committee member(s) will be a member of the CASL Board in descending order. The decision of the committee will be returned, in writing, to the protesting team’s coach.
MEN'S DIVISION: The ball must be delivered with perceptible
Division: ASA rule of 6 feet minimum and 12 foot maximum
WOMEN’S DIVITION: PITCHING RELIEF / BULLPEN RULE
During a game with a 10 run differential which is primarily due to multiple walks by a pitcher, the 2 team coaches can confer and if both agree, a 'bullpen' or non-fielding pitcher can replace the team's pitcher on the mound. The bullpen pitcher can be a coach or other designee as chosen by the team coach and can be female or male. Once the run differential is less than 10, the team will remove the bullpen pitcher and return the team's roster pitcher to the mound. While the bullpen pitcher is on the mound, the team pitcher stays in the infield (to field any balls) and remains on the batting order. The bullpen pitcher only pitches.
The bullpen pitcher will pitch and only catch the ball as a protective measure if the ball is hit directly at her/him. If the ball is caught by the bullpen pitcher, it will remain in play (not be counted as an out) and the pitcher will drop the ball for an active team member to field. The bullpen pitcher should pitch in a manner that allows the hitter to strike the ball with a fair pitch and not pitch to intentionally strike out players with high arches, excessive spinning or curves, etc. The bullpen pitcher is not considered to be a member of the team and will not hit or be put on the team's roster.
The offensive team may use both home plate and the orange extension of home plate. However, the offensive team must aim for the orange extension to avoid collision. The defensive team must use the white (home plate) portion only. Tag plays are permitted at home plate.
MEN’S DIVISION: A legally pitched ball striking an orange or black mat, measuring 19” wide x 34” long, will be called a strike, including a legally pitched ball that strikes both the black mat and the white portion of the plate simultaneously.
WOMEN’S DIVISION: A legally pitched ball striking a black mat measuring 21” wide X 36” long, cut to follow the contour of the triangle portion of home plate, will be called a strike. Additionally, a black line measuring 1” wide will be painted across the plate 8-½ inches from the front edge of the plate. A legally pitched ball striking the black line and/or any portion of home plate in back of the line (i.e., towards the rear point of home plate) and/or the black mat will be called a strike. (See Diagram)
A team may use one courtesy runner per inning. The courtesy runner will be the last out or, if the first inning with no outs, the last batter. If the batter using the courtesy runner bats more than once in the same inning, s/he will be able to use a courtesy runner each time. The courtesy runner will be the last out. If the courtesy runner is on base at his turn to bat, s/he will be replaced by the last runner to cross home plate and will not be an out.
Games will be officiated by umpires acceptable to the CASL UMPIRE-IN-CHIEF. Two umpires will officiate each regular game where possible. All umpires will be paid $10.00 until they pass the ASA umpire test. Umpires, after passing the test, will then be paid $15 for each game with two umpires and $22.50 for each game with only one umpire. Those umpires having passed a test with 85% or more correct answers and after review of their mechanics in the field will receive $20 per game $30 for solo games). New umpires will be paid $4.50 per game (max. 3 games) when shadowing an experienced umpire.
Umpires will be paid in US Dollars at the end of each season.
If there are not enough volunteers to fill the Scorekeeper/Umpire pool, each team will be required to provide one person towards the Scorekeeper/Umpire pool.
No base stealing. The runner(s) must be in contact with the base until the pitched ball is batted or reaches home plate.
There are no home run limitation rules in this League.
When illegal or altered bats are discovered they will be removed from the game and subsequently reviewed in a reasonable time period (not during the game) by the Umpire-in-Chief and two umpires to determine if the bat is indeed illegal. If the bat is deemed illegal, the bat will be marked by CASL and returned to the team. If the bat is deemed legal, the bat will be returned to the team. Once a bat has been marked illegal, it cannot be used again in league play. Should an identified illegal or altered bat be brought into the batter’s box, the ASA rule for illegal bats will apply.
For Men’s and Women’s Division play, the pitching rubber distance remains 50-feet from the center of the rubber to the back tip of home plate.
Rescheduling of games is discouraged, except for teams involved in Security (includes teams unable to field teams due to ‘employer issued lock-down’) or in the event of National Defense alerts.
To reschedule a game, a written request must be made at least one week prior to the original game date and presented to the appropriate League Commissioner. It shall be his/her sole decision whether the reasons for request are legitimate. The reschedule limit is 2 requests per team per season.
If a reschedule is allowed, the League Commissioner shall endeavor to reschedule the game when the Snack Bar will be open, and inform the Umpire-in-Chief and Head Scorekeeper immediately of the new scheduled date. In addition, the League Commissioner shall notify the opposing team of the cancellation as soon as is reasonably possible and shall provide both teams with a minimum 7 days notice as to the rescheduled date and time. The 7-day notice provides both teams time to communicate with the League Commissioner should either or both teams not be available to play on the rescheduled date. All rescheduled games will be made up prior to the last scheduled game of the season. Forfeit rules (ASA Rule 5-4-B) apply if a team does not show or is late for a game.
A 15 run mercy rule will be in effect in the 5th inning.
All games have a 70-minute time limit that takes precedence over the number of innings played. Games must start within ten minutes of scheduled game time or in the case of a previous game running overtime, ten minutes after the end of the previous game. End of season tournament finals games to include the “if” game will not have a time limit and will be played the full seven innings unless the mercy rule comes into affect.
No rule changes will be made after the first game of the season without a ¾ majority of the teams in a special League (Coaches’) meeting called expressly for this purpose.
Approved schedules will be posted on the notice board and/or e-mailed to the coaches. All changes will be posted there and the Commissioners will endeavor to notify teams of any changes by e-mail, but IT IS THE TEAMS’ RESPONSIBILITY TO CHECK POSTED SCHEDULES AND THEIR E-MAIL.
A batter comes to bat with a 1 Ball and 1 Strike count. A batter will be called out on "Strikes" when he/she hits a second foul ball after he/she has two strikes.
No children under high school age will be allowed on the playing field during warm-ups or game times; i.e., bat boys/girls, catching partners, etc.
Warm up will not be allowed in the area bordered by the backstops and foul territory, the concession stand, the main gate, the children's sandpit, the toilets and field maintenance containers. Warm up will be allowed on B field only when no games or practices are scheduled at that time.
The League uses official scorekeepers who will be considered as officials of the League. They will keep an official score book for both teams. They will have full responsibility for the scoring of the game and shall represent themselves competent to do so. They will be paid $12.50 per game in US Dollars at the end of each season. Lineup and team scorebooks will be issued to each team at the beginning of a new season.
Only scorekeepers and other League Officials are allowed access to the score box. Requests for information from the scorekeeper during the game must be made by the manager/coach through the umpires. Physical or verbal abuse of the scorekeepers is strictly prohibited and will be cause for action by the Board as outlined in Section 7 CODE OF CONDUCT.
If there is a tie for any place in the standings, the tie will be settled IN THE ORDER AS WRITTEN, by the following:
1. Win-Loss Percentage - Applies only when three or more teams are tied and there have been an odd number of games played between those teams, such that head-to-head tiebreakers cannot be fairly applied.
2. Head-to-head wins versus losses between tied teams
3. Fewest total runs allowed in head-to-head games between tied teams
4. Most total runs scored in head-to-head games between tied teams
5. Fewest total runs allowed in all games (Comparative record within the division)
6. Most runs scored in all games
7. Coin flip
MEN’S: A two or three division, 15 - 18-game, format is used, where teams will play within their own division. Teams playing each other an odd number of times will play on a home/away basis, with a coin-flip determining home team for any odd number games.
WOMEN’S: A single division, 12 to16-game, format is used where teams play each other as necessary to provide a balanced, 15-game season. Teams playing each other an odd number of times will play on a home/away basis, with a coin-flip determining home team for any odd number games.
September Men’s league meeting, the teams represented voted that while a meeting could take place, no vote could occur without a “quorum” of 2/3.
According to the terms of our lease, the following are a few points that are a constant source of misunderstanding between people using the grounds and the staff at the facility.
1. No dogs allowed at any time – even in the car park.
2. Use of the facility is restricted to:
Sunday through Wednesday 3 pm – 10 pm
Thursday 3 pm – 10 pm
Friday and Saturday 8 am – 10 pm
Our security and maintenance staff will enforce this timetable so please be polite and cooperative.
Teams may not use either A or B Field for warm-up practices once the infield has been marked for a game.
Teams may not use either A or B Field for practice once the normal playing season has begun, unless a team has forfeited a game, in which case it may be used during that time slot by the teams involved in the forfeit.
All members of the League are the guests of Cairo American College, and in turn, CAC is the guest of Victory College. Although the facilities are heavily used and maintained by the League and CAC, the facilities do not belong to us. Therefore, we are in a tenuous position and must make every reasonable effort to police our League and guests.
Persons conducting themselves in a manner that would be considered destructive, disorderly, or unsportsman-like will not be tolerated. Public displays of fighting, cursing (foul language), or drunkenness will be dealt with quickly and firmly.
Those who exceed the boundaries of gentlemanly or ladylike behavior are not welcome at League games or events. Please remember, according to the terms of the contract that CAC has with Victory College,
CASL MEMBERS (PLAYERS, COACHES, MANAGERS) AND GUESTS
NO MEMBER OR GUEST SHALL:
1. At any time lay a hand on, push, shove, strike, or threaten to strike an umpire. Refuse to abide by the umpire's decision.
2. Act with objectionable demonstrations by throwing of gloves, bats or balls, or any other forceful action. The umpire shall be responsible for determining the penalty at that time.
3. Use personal verbal abuse upon any umpire, player, or spectator for any reason.
4. Use unnecessarily rough tactics in the play of the game against any opposing player.
5. Physically attack as an aggressor any player, umpire, or spectator. Use profane, vulgar or obscene language in any manner at any time.
6. Appear on the field of play at any time in an intoxicated condition. The consumption of alcohol by any team member or coach during a scheduled game is prohibited. Alcoholic beverages are not permitted in the dugout at any time. The penalty is immediate ejection from the game.
Umpires are required to immediately suspend the member from further play or participation and report the member and incident to the League Chairman.
Any Umpire or any Official of the Softball League should immediately ask a guest to remove himself from the premises and should report the guest and incident to the League Chairman.
The Board will review such incidents and, based on the degree of infraction, action will be taken accordingly. The range of action to be taken will be minimum penalty of a warning letter and maximum of disbarment from the League (member) or Facility (guest) for 2 (two) games except as noted above.
The Board's decision will be final.
Guests, who conduct themselves poorly, will be put on notice, in writing, regarding their behavior. If necessary, in the judgment of a League Official, that person(s) will be barred from attendance. Persons observing poor conduct should notify a League officer, as soon as possible, for prompt action.
THE GOVERNING BODY OF THE LEAGUE SHALL MAKE EVERY EFFORT TO UPHOLD THE BY-LAWS, AND UTILIZE ANY MEANS AT THEIR DISPOSAL TO ENSURE THAT THE PARTICIPATING COMMUNITY UPHOLDS THEM.
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