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 > Little League Online > Learn More > About Our Organization > Divisions of Play > Girls Softball Divisions

Girls Softball Divisions

Tee Ball
Tee Ball Softball is for girls 4-5 years old (with a local option for 6- and/or 7-year-olds) who want to learn the fundamentals of hitting and fielding. In Tee Ball Softball, players hit a ball off a batting tee. Rules of the game may be varied to accommodate the need for teaching. The primary goals of Tee Ball Softball are to instruct children in the fundamentals of softball and to allow them to experience the value of teamwork. There is no minimum or maximum composition for Tee Ball rosters, but some leagues have found more success with smaller roster sizes to help keep all players engaged. No live pitching is permitted in this division. Generally, the diamond used is a 60-foot diamond, but the league has the option to use a 50-foot diamond.

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Minor League
Minor League Softball is for participants 7-11 years old and can be operated with multiple divisions that are based on age and/or ability. Divisions may include "machine pitch," "coach pitch" and "player pitch." By local option, a player who is league age 6 for the current season and has played a year in Tee Ball is eligible for the coach pitch or machine pitch minor divisions. A local league might organize its 7-8-year-olds in the Coach Pitch Division and its 9-10-year-olds in the Player Pitch division; however, by local option, some of the 9-year-olds could "play down" in the coach pitch division, and some of the 8-year-olds could "play up." This is entirely the choice of the local league board of directors. (League age 12-year-olds may participate in the Minor Division under certain circumstances.) There is no minimum or maximum composition for rosters, but most leagues have rosters in the 8-12 range. Competitive divisions of Minor League Softball may only use nine players on defense. The diamond has 60-foot base paths and a 35 foot pitching distance.

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Photo Courtesy of Michael Winter

Little League (Major Division)
The Little League Softball division (sometimes known as the Major Division) is for players ages 9-12. A local league may choose to limit its Major Division to 10-, 11- and 12-year-olds, or 11-12-year-olds. The field uses a 60-foot diamond and a 40 foot pitching distance. A local league may dual-roster 12-year-olds, assessed capable, to a Major and a Junior division softball teams. The local league has an option to choose a Tournament Team (or "All Stars") of 11-12-year-olds from within this division, and the team may enter the International Tournament. The culmination of the International Tournament is the Girls Little League Softball World Series, featuring teams from around the globe. All expenses for the teams advancing to the World Series (travel, meals and housing) are paid by Little League International.

IMPORTANT: A local league must only have ONE Major Division. For instance, if the local league has all 11-12 year olds in the Majors, and all 9-10s in another division, then the 9-10s MUST be considered a Minor Division.

Junior Division
The Junior League Softball division is a program for players ages 12-14, and uses a conventional 60-foot diamond with a 43 foot pitching distance. A local league may dual-roster 12-year-olds, assessed capable, to a Major and a Junior division softball teams. The local league has an option to choose a Tournament Team (or "All Stars") of 12-14-year-olds from within this division (and/or from within the Girls Senior League Softball Division), and the team may enter the International Tournament. The culmination of the International Tournament is the Junior League Softball World Series, featuring teams from around the globe. All expenses for the teams advancing to the World Series (travel, meals and housing) are paid by Little League International.

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Photo Courtesy of Michael Winter

Senior Division
The Senior League Softball Division is for girls 13-16 years old, using a 60-foot diamond with a pitching distance of 43 feet. The local league has an option to choose a Tournament Team (or "All Stars") of 13-16-year-olds from within this division (and/or from within the Junior League Softball or Big League Softball divisions), and the team may enter the International Tournament. The culmination of the International Tournament is the Senior League Softball World Series, featuring teams from around the globe. All expenses for the teams advancing to the World Series (travel, meals and housing) are paid by Little League International.

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Photo Courtesy of Michael Winter

Big League
The Big League Softball Division is for athletes ages 14-18, and uses a 60-foot diamond with a 43 foot pitching distance. This program may utilize a district boundary and be operated by the district staff or remain under the local league charter. The charter has an option to choose a Tournament Team (or "All Stars") of 14-18-year-olds from within this division (and/or from within the Senior League or Junior League softball divisions), and the team may enter the International Tournament. The culmination of the International Tournament is the Big League Softball World Series, featuring teams from around the globe. All expenses for the teams advancing to the World Series (travel, meals and housing) are paid by Little League International.