The Amateur Softball Association (ASA) has taken great strides to protect the integrity of the sport. Each year, the ASA's Equipment Testing and Certification committee examines the current rules and specifications governing various items of equipment.
This committee makes recommendations to the ASA's council comprised of ASA commissioners, select youth and player representatives, umpire-in-chiefs, elite athletes and other affiliated members. The council is the ultimate decision maker of ASA rules and regulations regarding equipment. For a complete updated listing of ASA certified equipment, visit the ASA Certified Equipment page.
Furthermore, the 2015 ASA Equipment Committee Review is now available online. ASA's Equipment Testing and Certification Committee is chaired by NDASA Commissioner Dick Gulmon.
ASA/USA Softball's RegisterASA.com web site provides a wide variety of featrures for everyone involved in ASA softball - players, coaches, managers, umpires, administrators:
Online umpire exam
From ASA press release - The Amateur Softball Association (ASA)/USA Softball, the National Governing Body of Softball in the United States recently announced the 2015 Official Rules of Softball are now available for purchase on the Apple and Android platforms. The user-interactive application contains the complete version of the 2015 Official Rules of ASA Softball and also has a searchable option on the iOS platform only.
The new app is available for all participants of softball including umpires, coaches, parents, players and fans. A great tool to learn the rules of softball, the $15 annual fee app is a new and innovative for accessing the official rules of softball.
January 23, 2016 - Announcement from ASA/USA Softball on January 22, 2016: "The Amateur Softball Association of America (ASA)/USA Softball, the National Governing Body of Softball in the United States, in working with Easton Baseball/Softball Inc. (Easton), announced today that Easton is voluntarily removing the following softball bat models from the ASA/USA list of certified bats: SCN1, SCN11BH, SCN1B, SCN2B, SCN3, SCN4B, SCN5, SCN5B, SCN6B, SCN7, SCN7B, SCN8, SCN8B, SCN9, SCX14, SCX14B, SCX24B, AND SCX3."
A picture list of these bats will be made available as soon as one is available and distributed online as well as directly to local associations and our Deputy UICs. However, it is ultimately the responsibility of the players and managers to ensure that any non-approved bats are not used in sanctioned play. The penalty for the use of a non-approved or altered bat can be as severe as a 5-year suspension.
February 2, 2016 - Congratulations to Terry O'Clair of Bismarck for earning the status of "Elite" Umpire in Slow Pitch Softball, the highest form of recognition for an umpire in ASA. O'Clair joins Michael Wolf (Bismarck), Tom Harty (Jamestown), Elliott Gerhardt (Bismarck), Allan Ziemann (Bismarck), and Gerald Payne (Grand Forks) among those in North Dakota who hold that status in slow pitch. Walt Stack (Bismarck) and Naomi Erdahl represent the state's Fast Pitch "Elite" Umpires". For more information on ASA's Elite Program, check out the Umpires section of the ASA/USA Softball web site.
In 2016, a pair of Bismarck umpires - Tom Hamkens and Ben Birkemeyer - will get the opportunity to earn points towards their "Elite" status this summer. Hamkens will be working the Men's Slow Pitch Class B National Tournament in Oklahoma City OK August 26-28. Birkemeyer has been assigned to the ASA Championship Series, also in Oklahoma City. Meanwhile, due to already having achieved the "Elite" status, Gerald Payne will be working the Women's Armed Forces Tournament at Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio TX September 18-23. Congratulations to these three great representatives of our association and thanks to all of our umpires for the work they do.
November 2015 - ASA’s Equipment Testing and Certification Committee - chaired by NDASA Commissioner Dick Gulmon - released their annual review detailing research on a variety of issues important to the game of softball throughout the nation at all levels. Much of their focus this year was on contrasting and comparing the 52/300 balls with the 47/375 balls, continued study of reaction time for fielders, and ball and bat compliance (including bat tampering). Many studies are conducted in conjunction with Dr Lloyd Smith and the Sports Science Laboratory of Washington State University.
Noember 2015 - We are pleased to announce that North Dakota has once again been honored at the annual ASA/USA Council Meeting for another excpetional effort hosting a national tournament. This year's week-long gathering in Louisville KY saw Fargo being presented with the James Ferrell Award of Excellence for conducting one of the highest rated tournaments of 2015. Fargo made their national tournament debut over Labor Day weekend as the home of this year's Men's Slowpitch Class D Northern National Tournament. ASA also announced that the 2017 Men's Slowpitch Class E/Rec National Touornament has been awarded to Mandan, which has made a habit of collecting their own James Farrell Awards over the years. Congratulations to both local associations.
January 25, 2016 - Congratulations to Amy Anderson of West Fargo for being named the next Women's Slow Pitch Commissioner of North Dakota. Amy will take over for Mary Hager, who will retire at the end of 2016. Amy will take an active role this season during the transition, including establishing the first Women's Slow Pitch Task Force later this year.
February 7, 2016 - National rules (for more detail, check out the ASA Code & Rule changes for 2016).
NDASA rules (more detailwill be forthcoming when the official minutes from the Executive Meeting in January is published).
November 2015 - The North Dakota Amateur Softball Association lost a workhorse. We would like to express our most heartfelt condolences to the family & friends of Junior Olympics Slow Pitch Commissioner Scott Schafer, who passed away on Tuesday, November 10th. In addition to his role as commissioner, Scott provided a wealth of assistance in the State Office. He was also very active within the North Dakota Amateur Hockey Association.
Softball was ingrained in Scott's existence as the son of Duane (a former NDASA Commissioner who passed away in 1996) and Shirley Schafer, both of whom are North Dakota Softball Hall of Famers. That passion for the game was passed down to his children, all of whom are playing at various levels in Jamestown. Please keep his mother and each of his children in your thoughts and prayers as we approach the holiday season.