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LL: Runner does not return to 1B

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Guest Ronn Earl White

Little League question -- bases loaded and runners on 1B came off the bag after the pitch and remained halfway between 1B and 2B. Defensive coach told pitcher to take the mound and that in so doing, the runner was "forced" to return to 1B. Offensive coach complained that ball was live and runner did not have to go anywhere.

I was watching, not umpiring, but was not sure how I would rule if I had been on the field.

 

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If the runner is still off the base when the next pitch is delivered, the he would be guilty of a 7.13 (leaving early) violation.  If the bases are loaded, R1 can't really advance anywhere.  If I were the DC, I would probably just have my pitcher deliver a pitch and not worry about R1 being off the base.

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Little League question -- bases loaded and runners on 1B came off the bag after the pitch and remained halfway between 1B and 2B. Defensive coach told pitcher to take the mound and that in so doing, the runner was "forced" to return to 1B. Offensive coach complained that ball was live and runner did not have to go anywhere.

I was watching, not umpiring, but was not sure how I would rule if I had been on the field.

 

​The runner is never forced to return. There may be a penalty if he doesn't depending on the circumstances. There are some circumstances where he can "get away with" not going back.

By the way - the "freeze" rule requires that the pitcher be on the rubber with the ball AND the catcher has to be in the catcher's box ready to receive the ball (gear on, facing the pitcher, no need to squat). This gets misapplied a lot - I mean A LOT.

 

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By the way - the "freeze" rule requires that the pitcher be on the rubber with the ball AND the catcher has to be in the catcher's box ready to receive the ball (gear on, facing the pitcher, no need to squat). This gets misapplied a lot - I mean A LOT.

 

​I have personally witnessed this... no runners on base & pitch is delivered for Ball 4.  F2 misplays the ball and BR trots to first in no big hurry.  F2 gets the ball back to F1, who sprints to the rubber. F2 is lollygagging getting his mask on to the 1B side of home plate (ditched the mask going after the passed ball).  R1 sees this, and starts running to 2B, then 3B, then to home. F1 is standing on the pitchers plate the entire time, and F2 is still off to the side messing with his mask. No play at all was made.  DC is screaming "My pitcher was on the rubber!!  The runner can't go!!"  My response was "Yes, he was on the rubber. But your catcher was not in position to receive the ball."  I think I made reference to the rubber not being a "magic stop button" as well. 

Good times

Edited by clawdad

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Why doesn't the pitcher throw the ball to 2nd, or just run to 3rd to intercept the runner?  I know that all throws are risky at some leveles, but should we really be teaching players to be using the "freeze rule" instead of baseball to stop/slow down runners?   I mean the mound is only, what, 45 feet from 2nd base in LL? 

 

 

Edited by MPLSMatt

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Why doesn't the pitcher throw the ball to 2nd, or just run to 3rd to intercept the runner?  I know that all throws are risky at some leveles, but should we really be teaching players to be using the "freeze rule" instead of baseball to stop/slow down runners?   I mean the mound is only, what, 45 feet from 2nd base in LL? 

 

 

​Depends on the situation. In the current one the bases are loaded so F1 isn't going to turn his back on R3 and chase after R1. R1 is trying to get him to do that but he shouldn't fall for it.

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