PlayFPN FAQ

About PlayFPN

What is PlayFPN?

  • PlayFPN is a creation of Fastpitch Nation. PlayFPN is a network of quality independent tournaments run by experienced and long-time tournament directors around the region, that supplement the significant number of events provided at Fastpitch Nation Park and Fastpitch Nation Indoor. This collection of tournaments offer customers more variety of quality events to play throughout the season.

Why did Fastpitch Nation create PlayFPN?

  • PlayFPN was created in response to both FPN’s and teams’ dissatisfaction with the heavily burdensome paperwork requirements and associated fees to simply register a team to be eligible to play in a tournament that was part of a sanctioning body such as USSSA, USA Softball and NSA. We felt there simply was a better way.

What organizations make up PlayFPN?

  • “FPN Events” are hosted by Fastpitch Nation Park and Fastpitch Nation Indoors.
  • “Friends of FPN Events” are hosted currently by these organizations: Shoreline Sting, CT Tigers, Watertown Rapids, CT Bombers, Valley Fusion and The Nutmeg State Games. Other organizations will join next season.

How is PlayFPN different from USSSA or any other sanctioning body?

  • PlayFPN is not a sanctioning body. Fastpitch Nation Inc. is a fastpitch softball event company and facility owner. To offer our customers expanded playing opportunities, we invited other quality tournament hosts, we respect, to be included in the PlayFPN network based on their history and ability to deliver the highest amount of value to customers.
  • Fastpitch Nation provides promotion of their events and a common technology platform for registration, rosters, schedules, brackets and results.

What does it cost to join PlayFPN and how and when do I register?

  • It’s FREE! There is never a fee to register a team with PlayFPN.
  • Go to playfpn.com/events to see all the events.

What are the requirements to play a PlayFPN event?

  • The team manager or administrator creates a FREE  account on the PlayFPN website, creates their teams and selects the events they wish to play.
  • When a team enters an event, they can pay at the point of entry or simply reserve a spot to pay later.
  • Prior to being able to play, the team must set up their roster in the PlayFPN website.

Are any coaching certifications, training classes, special IDs or background checks required of coaches to enter a tournament?

  • None. We believe the team organizations, themselves, should be training and background checking their coaches as a matter normal operating procedure and not the event host.
  • As an event provider we are simply providing the opportunity for teams to play. Just as the movie theater does not require a background check or training for customers to attend a movie, we do not require it to attend a PlayFPN event.

Playing in a PlayFPN Event

How many and what kind of events does PlayFPN provide?

  • PlayFPN is the largest tournament provider in CT, offering more than 45 events, far more than any other provider including sanctioning bodies.
  • See all the PlayFPN events.
  • We offer single and double elimination events.
  • We offer, 3, 4, 5, 6 and 7 game guarantee events.
  • We offer events of 2-days, 3-days, 4-days and up to nearly a week long Nationals events.
  • We offer College Showcases in the Summer and Fall.
  • We have events tailored for the Elite teams, the majority of Travel softball teams and for the novice teams as well.
  • Many teams used to attend the USSSA Nationals at Fastpitch Nation Park. PlayFPN offers the PlayFPN Summer Nationals in their place and it will be even more exciting.
  • Many of our events are aligned with the new Northeast Fastpitch League so league members can earn league points in our events. When searching events, search for NEFL to see which events are aligned with the league.

What are the PlayFPN playing rules?

  • The base rulebook for PlayFPN tournaments is the NFHS (National Federation of High Schools) rule book. This is the same rulebook used to govern high school softball across the country.
  • The NFHS rule book is available for download for $7 or in hard copy for $10. See the NFHS website.
  • More information about rules can be found at playfpn.com/rules.

Does PlayFPN have team strength classifications and tournaments or divisions for those classifications?

  • We offer team strength classifications.
  • Some events are listed as a particular strength classification and more often event divisions will be created on the fly when making a schedule based on what teams have entered. In open events, we will use the classifications to assist in scheduling pool play.
  • Teams self-select a classification upon registering and we monitor a team's progress as they play in the season to determine if re-classification is required.
  • These are the strength classifications we will use:
    • E - Elite, any team considered to be a top-level team or National level team that can compete at the top level of the game wherever they play. A very small percentage of teams qualify for E.
    • A - Any team considered to be the highest-level competitive travel team regionally. If your team is normally in or should be in contention to win each tournament you enter and you beat the "better" teams in your state, and you have multiple front-line pitchers, then you should consider yourself an "A" team. A small percentage of teams qualify for A.
    • B - Any team considered to be a solid but average to above average travel team. If your team is occasionally in or should be in contention to win a tournament you enter and you are competitive with most teams like you in your state, and you have good but not overwhelming pitching, then you should consider yourself a "B" team. The majority of teams qualify for B.
    • C - Any team that typically plays in a local league or town league or a team that might only play in one or two tournaments a year.  A "C" team is also any team considered to be an entry level or novice travel team with kids new to travel softball and lacks the experience and number of skilled players and pitchers to compete with “A” and “B” teams.  A small percentage of teams qualify for C.
    • PlayFPN reserves the right to adjust your strength based on your results in our events and/or external events.

Does the PlayFPN website track results and statistics from events and can we research teams we play against?

  • This functionality is currently being implemented and will be ready for the spring season.
  • The website will be able to show all the results of all teams' games in all PlayFPN events.
  • Teams will be able to research the other teams' events and see teams' rosters.
  • Teams will also earn points for each win with a formula based on the pool, bracket, class and tournament type.
  • PlayFPN will hold the PlayFPN Points Championship, Aug. 7-8, 2020. The points leader in each division will get a free berth to the championship.

What are the PlayFPN roster rules?

  • PlayFPN keeps rostering simple and easy.
  • Teams are free to roster as many players as they wish.
  • Teams are free to add and remove players as they wish.
  • Rosters are never locked or frozen to prevent removal or adding players.
  • Players can be on more than one roster, hence a guest player process is not required.
  • The players on a team's roster prior to the start of an event, is their official roster for that event. However, a player cannot play for more than one team in a tournament other than in exhibition games.
  • Once a tournament has begun, a player cannot be added to a team’s roster unless injury forces the team to have less than 9 players. Then players can be added to the roster to bring the roster up to no more than 9 players.

What is the season and playing age determination dates?

  • The season runs from 9/1 to 8/31. Each fall, teams will be required to make a new team for the new season (9/1 to 8/31). However, Jan. 1 of the season will be used to determine playing age for the full season. So, whatever the actual age of the player is on Jan. 1 will be that player’s playing age for the entire season.
  • For example, a player is 13 as of Jan. 1, 2020 and plays 13U during the 2020 season. That season ended on 8/31/20.
  • On 9/1/20 the 2021 season started. The player will be physically 14 as of Jan. 1, 2021. So, her playing age for the full 2021 season (9/1/20 to 8/31/21) is 14U.

What are the PlayFPN bat rules?

  • Bats with either a valid USA/ASA or USSSA stamp will be allowed.

What insurance is required and can I purchase insurance through PlayFPN?

  • PlayFPN does sell insurance directly and therefore cannot mark up the cost of insurance as the do in a sanctioning body.
  • As a value add to our teams, PlayFPN works with New England’s top sports insurance agency, Fairway Underwriters Inc., to offer team insurance. More information about purchasing insurance can be found at playfpn.com/insurance.
  • Team insurance is required to play in any PlayFPN event. When a team registers on the PlayFPN website, there is a place to upload the team’s insurance certificate. The certificate must name Fastpitch Nation Inc. as an additional insured. Details regarding the additional insured certificate is available in the team manager’s account.
  • Each tournament host will let teams know directly about any other particular needs for the insurance certificates.
  • Teams can use any team insurance providers’ coverage (USA, USSSA, Private, etc.) to play in a PlayFPN event.
  • Teams must have a minimum of $1,000,000 of liability coverage per occurrence and a minimum aggregate of $1,000,000.