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Travel/Select Softball

Recreational Softball Select/Travel Softball Umpire Signals Positions and Field Terminology

AGE GROUP  GIRLS 5-18

What is Travel Softball?

Travel  softball teams are designed for girls who want to play at a higher, more challenging level. She must have above average skills and understanding of the game. When a girl plays with a select team, her teammates all can hit and catch. There may be a wide range of skill levels, but they all know the basics. The girls know the rules and how to play the game. In addition, they must be extremely dedicated to becoming a better player and must be willing to commit a great deal of time to the team.

What are the age divisions for travel softball?

Select teams are private organizations. They usually consist of several teams from ages 10 to 18. All age divisions are based on Birth Date and your child must meet the restrictions to play the division. Ideally, the divisions for travel softball are:

  • Under 10
  • Under 12
  • Under 14
  • Under 16
  • Under 18

However, not all leagues have these division; some have no teams in one age group, and more than one in another. It varies from team to team, from year to year. Within each age division teams are broken into two or three levels (A, B or C) with the A team being the best.  Your child's seating during try-outs determines the level that they will play.


How do I Register?

Registration for softball can be from November through January depending on the league .  Forms for registration can be obtained on the organization's web site or at your local sporting good store.  Many organizations give you the option to register on line.   A birth certificate is required at this time to prove the age of your child.

Try-Outs  for travel/select softball will be in January or February.  There is usually a nominal fee for tryouts.   Try-outs will normally be several days. Players make teams based on merit only, so not all players are assured of making a team, as in recreational soccer.

When Is the Travel Season?

Travel season typically begins in early March with practices and the games usually start in Mid April. The travel teams generally play games on Weekday nights, at various locations. which could be a distance from your home.  The regular season typically ends near the end of June and then July is reserved for tournaments and playoffs

 

What are Tournaments?

Most select teams play many tournaments throughout the season. At these weekend tournaments the team will typically play three games on Saturday. Games on Saturday are based on a time limit, as opposed to playing a certain number of innings and are usually played for about an hour and 15 minutes. The teams’ win loss record determines the seeding for the next day. Teams play on Sunday to determine the tournament champion. Games on Sunday are usually played for 1 hour, 30 minutes. Your first loss puts you out of the tournament. You continue playing, (usually two or three games) until there are two teams left who haven’t lost. The championship game is played for seven innings. The first and second-place teams (and sometimes the third-place team) are awarded a trophy at the end of the tournament.

Cost To Participate

Select softball is run by private organizations, so all the expenses are paid for by you, the parent.  Therefore it is much more expensive than recreational softball First there is an annual fee.  The majority of the fee goes toward tournaments, plus field and facility rentals for practices.  The fees vary greatly based on where you live and your access to fields.   The approximate cost for annual fees is from $1000 - $2000. In addition to your registration fees you will need to purchase a full uniform which includes socks, (one for Saturday and one for Sunday) for approximately 100.00. For long distance tournaments you will need to add hotel, possible airfare and meals to the cost.  In addition you will need to purchase your child's equipment (see below for details). Remember you will pay for these fees throughout the year.

Softball Equipment Needed....

Equipment required in select softball includes protective gear, a bat, gloves, a ball, batting helmets, , softball cleats, water bottle and  a uniform

You must provide your child with a fielding glove, made of leather or similar material.  You should check with your coach or local sporting goods store to determine the size and style that your child needs.  There are a variety of gloves based on the position that your child plays. Gloves used in softball are generally larger than the ones used in baseball.

Glove

Leather glove used by players in the field.  Allows the fielder to catch the ball easier. Approximate cost: 30.00 - 300.00.

Catcher's Mitt

Leather mitt worn by catchers.  It is better padded and much wider than a fielders glove.  Approximate cost: 30.00 - 300.00.

 

Batting Glove

Glove worn on one or both hands by the batter. They offer additional grip when batting. A batting glove is not normally required but may be preferred.
Approximate cost 15.00. 
 

Helmet

Helmet worn by batter.  This is a required piece of equipment used for head protection.
 Approximate cost 40.00.
 

Face Mask (optional, highly recommended)

Attaches to helmet for face protection.  Approximate cost 40.00.

Baseball cap

Designed to shade the eyes from the sun.  Baseball cap should be used for practices.
Reebok Vero FL MR9 Low II Baseball/Softball Cleat Kids

Cleats

Softball shoes that increase traction on dirt or grass.  Approximate cost 30.00.

Sliding Shorts

Some players use "sliding shorts" otherwise known as compression short for other sports like soccer, football etc... These shorts help, to protect the upper thigh when sliding towards second, third, or home plate

Equipment bag

Bag used to hold and carry equipment.  Approximate cost 100.00.

Bat

The bat used by the batter is made of metal or composite materials (carbon fiber etc). It may be no more than 34 in (86 cm) long, 2.25 in (6 cm) in diameter, or 38 oz (1.08 kg) in weight.  Approximate cost 250.00.

Catcher's gear

If your daughter is a catcher, in addition to the above, you will need to buy catching gear.  Chest protector, leg protectors, and mask.  Approximate cost 100.00 - 200.00
Sweat Pants and Sweat shirt Team sweats. Approximate cost 50.00.
Uniform Each team wears distinctive uniforms. The uniform includes a cap, a shirt, an undershirt, tight sliding shorts, and shorts or pants; these are the components for which standards are set.

These items can be purchased at any sporting goods store, Wal-Mart, Kmart or Target. 

Did you know....

Softball has a set number of innings, usually seven or nine. An inning is one series of both teams playing offense and defense. At the end of the nine innings the team with the highest score wins.

There are 9 players on a softball team.

The playing field is divided into the infield and outfield

The lines between the bases are 60’ apart and when joined they form a “diamond”, inside the baseline is known as the infield

Outside the baseline but inside the playing field is called the outfield.

Any ball going outside the 1st or 3rd base line is a foul ball.  In this situation the runners can not advance and the batter gets another try unless the ball was caught in the air, which translates to an out.