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Pitching Distance For 10u Baseball And Softball

By Ayush Khadka / 12 September 2023 08:22 AM

Baseball and Softball leagues for youngsters have their own gaps for pitchers and batters.
Source : twitter

Pitching distance for 10u Baseball is 46 feet. The pitching distance for 10u softball is just 35 feet and 12u is 40 feet.

A pitching mound is elevated dirt in the center of the infield, where the pitchers throw the ball to the batters who are standing on their home plate. It is mandatory for them to touch the ground with their pivoted foot while making a pitch.

The elevation has not been constant throughout baseball history, though. Before the 1893 season, the mound was level-headed with the batter's home plate. However, beginning in 1893, the mound was elevated and set to no more than 15 inches in 1903.

With the pitchers getting a huge advantage with the elevated mound, MLB teams decided to cut down the level in 1969 to 10 inches. As of 2023, the mound is present at the 10" elevation. 

The mound contains a pitcher's plate just 18 inches off the center, where the pitchers always pitch their balls.

Pitching Distance: 10u Baseball and Softball

Pitching distance for 10u softball is 35 feet from the mound to the home plate. 

Softball practices underhand pitches.
Source : twitter

The mound is also not elevated at the 10u level because the young players could develop bad performance due to their height and not provide an unfair advantage against the little batters. 

With the base paths at 60 feet, the pitcher has 3 innings to throw his balls and create a striking performance without the infield fly rule. The 10u players can perform the Windmill pitches, but no slingshots are allowed. Face masks are also essential to protect the players from hitters. 

It should be noted that the 35 feet gap is also applied for the fast-pitch softball leagues. The slow-pitch league utilizes a slight variation. 

Slow Pitch Softball Pitching Distance

The slow-pitch softball leagues feature a distance of 40 feet, per the ASA rules.  

This distance is increased for the purpose of making the athletes have more fun with greater safety. This league acts as an instructional platform for many young girls. 

There are a maximum of seven innings in the slow-pitch league match, and the defensive side must wear face masks for protection. Some 10u leagues will provide the benefit of choosing the pitching distance, i.e., whether they desire the 35 or the 40 one. 

Furthermore, the pitcher can return to the same game when the batter's turn is over, or a new one can take his place on the mound. Softball pitchers should also note that pitches will be only valid if they have 6 to 12 feet of arc. 

Some popular 10u softball leagues are Moon Area Softball League, Girls C-League, Little League Softball, and Babe Ruth League. 

10u Baseball Distance

10u baseball pitching distance is 46 feet from the mound to the home plate. 

Baseball has multiple divisions for their age groups.
Source : twitter

The Little League also utilizes this distance, while the Major League has 60 feet and 6 inches. The gap has been lowered to accommodate the young athlete's height and performance levels. 

With the distance between bases being 60" from first and second and so on, the pitchers have 6 innings to throw the balls, and the maximum pitch allowed is 75. If a pitcher throws 66+ balls in a day, then it is required for him to rest for 4 days before playing another match. 

For the defensive side, it is essential to understand that the infield rule will not be applied, and there are no dropped third strikes and intentional walks. Moreover, Stealing is unavailable unless the player seeks to do only base at a time.

The typical game length of 10u baseball will generally be from one hour 30 minutes to 2 hours. Moreover, the pitchers cannot make a re-entry in the same match if the team has already removed them prior.

Some popular 10u baseball leagues are Babe Ruth League, Southwest Baseball League, and Wisconsin's Youth Baseball League. 

Pitching Distance: 11u Baseball

Pitching distance for 11u baseball is 50 feet from the home plate to the mound.

11 and under baseball leagues are present throughout the USA.
Source : twitter

The pitchers have a maximum number of 85 pitches available per match, and the higher the pitch by one player, the more he needs to rest before he can play again. For example, if a pitcher throws 21 balls in a single game, he needs 1 day of rest. However, if one pitcher throws more than 66 balls, he will require 4 days for resting.  

The distance between the bases is 70 feet, and the game length varies from one hour and thirty minutes to two hours at max. Moreover, the average velocity of this league's hurler is 50 to 60 miles per hour. 

The pitchers can pitch for six innings and will not be available to get re-entry if they get removed during the game. The mercy rule is in effect for 10 runs, and the batters should at least play for 3 innings before going to the bullpen. Stealing is allowed, and the infiled rule will apply. 

Some popular 11u baseball leagues in the United States are Babe Ruth League, NKCA Baseball League, Fargo Youth Baseball, and Metro Baseball League. 

Why Does Pitching Mound Distance Change By Age Group?

Pitching Mound distance by age increases because it provides better training and prevents player injuries. 

Pitching and batting have their own set of dimensions in the little leagues.
Source : twitter

With the 10u leagues having a lesser pitching distance than the 11u counterparts, one might wonder why the gap is gradually increasing. Moreover, the MLB has a whopping 60 feet of space.

The primary reason is to adapt the youngsters to get used to baseball bit by bit. Other sports like soccer uses smaller balls and goalposts, while there is a lesser distance in the hoops for young basketball players. Similarly, baseball also uses this same tradition. 

The youngsters and regular MLB players have sheer differences in physicality, metabolism, and mentality. If the MLB and youth leagues offered the same field, the youngsters would have difficulty adopting the game's beauty. They would be prone to injury, which is the second reason. 

So, to provide a balance between healthy training and pushing the youth skills as they grow, the youngsters have a lesser distance in pitching and bases. The distance increases as they grow, which will accommodate their physical and mental growth. 

Pitching Distance: 11u Baseball And Softball

Pitching distance for 12u baseball is 50 feet from the mound to the home plate. 

12 and under leagues will feature a 50
Source : twitter

Pitching distance for 12u softball is 40 feet measured from the home plate to the mound. Softball and baseball feature variable gaps in the same age group. 

Regarding the 12 and under baseball, the players follow a 50" pitching gap alongside 70 feet of base distances. The average pitcher's velocity in this league is found to be 55 to 65 miles per hour. Likewise, the game length does not go past two hours and twenty minutes.

The pitchers can throw a maximum of 85 balls per match, featuring six max innings. They will require 3 days of rest if a singular pitcher makes at least 51 pitches per game. 

Great 12U baseball leagues in the USA are Southwest Baseball League, Babe Ruth, and Wisconsin's Youth Baseball League.

12U Softball Distance

The 12u softball league has a pitching distance of 40 feet. 

With the distance between bases 60", stealing is allowed alongside bunting. Players must wear face masks to protect themselves, and the infield rule is applied in this age category. 

With six innings to pitch, a pitcher can only be available for three of them. Every inning will have a 5-run limit, and the game will not run for more than two hours. 

Some great 12U softball leagues are SWS Fastpitch, Little League Softball, and Huguenot Little League. 

Other Age Group Leagues And Their Pitching Gap

The pitching distance will be set at 43 feet from the 14U division. 

Softball has two types of playstyles: fast and slow pitch.
Source : twitter

A softball player with years of training and games in little leagues will have minimum difficulty adjusting to an increase in a 3-foot gap. If you find it harder, then you can practice for a few hours from farther back, like 50 feet away, first. 

With the national softball level being 43", it is important for aspiring young athletes to get used to this level. However, the Summer Olympics in 1996 employed the 40-foot gap in their fastpitch competition. 

In baseball, the Pony League for 13-14 years old uses a 54 feet gap. Meanwhile, the 14U divisions and over have been using the 60 feet space. The college, senior, and major leagues all have a defined 60 feet and 6 inches pitching gap. 

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