Is there a written rule on how long a pitcher can take to pitch?

Discussion in 'The Umpires Life and Rulings' started by Rerun, Aug 1, 2020.

  1. Rerun

    Rerun Super Moderator Staff Member

    I was wondering is there a written rule in any sanctioning body that requires a pitcher to pitch within a certain amount of time?
  2. BretMan2

    BretMan2 TSZ/OFC Umpire in Chief

    Yes. I think that all rule sets have a time limit. For USA softball and high school ball, the rule is that the pitcher has 20 seconds to release the next pitch, either after receiving the ball or after the umpire declares “play ball”.

    20 seconds can seem like an eternity when you’re just standing there watching a pitcher standing there! I know that when a pitcher is taking forever, and I start counting in my head, rarely do I ever get past 15 seconds before the pitch is thrown. And yet, I’ve had coaches complain that such a pitcher is taking too long. I think that I’ve only called a pitcher for a 20 second violation once in all my years.
  3. flygirlsdad

    flygirlsdad Active Member

    NCAA the pitcher has to be on the pitchers plate in 10 seconds. Then has 10 seconds to bring hands together to pitch.
  4. Denver Roach

    Denver Roach Member

    No time limit until the release?
    What’s to prevent holding hands together for an extended period of time?
  5. daboss

    daboss Well-Known Member

    BretMan2 can correct me if I'm wrong but to my knowledge in most sanctions the pitcher has 10 seconds to deliver the ball after her hands come together and a total of 20 seconds overall from having received the ball. While I've never seen it be an issue, I have witnessed pitchers using some of the time to throw the batter off by holding the ball and remain motionless when bringing the hands together. To my knowledge, once the hands separate and the motion of the pitch begins the pitcher cannot purposely stop the motion. She needs to complete the pitch. No "do overs" is my point.

    What I really would like to know from BretMan2 is; if a pitcher brings her hands together and stands there like a statue, can the batter call for and be granted "time out"????
  6. flygirlsdad

    flygirlsdad Active Member

    NCAA has 5 seconds to release once hands come together. I believe ASA has 10 seconds once on the pitchers plate.

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