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ousafe

Fair/foul and catch/no catch sequence

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I've been taught to first signal fair or foul, then catch or no catch, on fly balls near the foul lines.

First, is that correct?

If it is, does anyone know why?  It seems that the more important mechanic is catch or no catch, so it would seem proper to signal that first.

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27 minutes ago, ousafe said:

I've been taught to first signal fair or foul, then catch or no catch, on fly balls near the foul lines.

First, is that correct?

If it is, does anyone know why?  It seems that the more important mechanic is catch or no catch, so it would seem proper to signal that first.

Yes, it is correct.

When does the batted ball become fair or foul? When is a batted ball “caught”?

The answer to the former is: the moment it is touched by the fielder.  The answer to the latter is: when the fielder shows complete control and voluntary release.  Thus, the ball, when touched in flight, is always fair or foul before it can ever be caught...so why would you not make the calls in the order they occur during the play?

if the batted ball is uncaught, players need to know first and foremost whether the ball is fair so they know whether or not play should continue.

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Often, everyone knows it was a catch. What they don't know is whether it was fair or foul. Signals are tools for communication: we prioritize the more informative signal.

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1 minute ago, maven said:

Often, everyone knows it was a catch. What they don't know is whether it was fair or foul. Signals are tools for communication: we prioritize the more informative signal.

I noted before that MLB umps will not signal catch on a can of corn near the foul line but will  signal fair or foul.

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To add on the these mechanics, we just went over this in a clinic last weekend. We were told, if you're not straddling  the line on a fly ball, do not use the fair/foul signal. Caught or dropped pop fly that takes you towards the fence in foul ground, (off the foul line), no need for a foul mechanic. Just a "safe"  or "out" signal to signify the catch/no catch. 

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13 hours ago, lawump said:

Thus, the ball, when touched in flight, is always fair or foul before it can ever be caught...so why would you not make the calls in the order they occur during the play?

Also, you need to pay attention to the calls in this order.  When a defender is running/sliding/diving near the line, it's critical that you focus first on where the ball is when it is first touched.  From there, the transition into determining whether it's caught is seamless.  But if you focus on the catch, your eyes/brain won't process fair/foul as well; just ask the guy who will tell you that they were 2 strides past the line, that ball was 8 feet foul when you and the catcher both saw him touch it 2 feet fair.  ("Horrible.")

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