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We can put this in the file "Never seen before"...

No one on.  Batter hits a routine popup to the shortstop, out of frustration he jogs down 1st base line carrying the bat.  The shortstop ends up dropping the ball and now the batter runner drops the bat halfway up the line and takes off sprinting to 1st.  He reaches 1st base safely with no play.  The next part is just crazy.  The batter runner now who is standing on 1st decides to come off the base and starts running down 1st base line to pick up his bat, he didn't ask for time and of course the umpires didn't call time.  The pitcher now sees this and throws to the 1st baseman and he tags the BAG ONLY.  The base umpire calls the runner out.  Is this correct?  or does he have to tag the runner or does the umpire call runner out for abandoning his effort?

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Abandonment would be a stretch...I can see the argument but wouldn't agree with it.  

I see no reason why touching the bag would not be enough to get the batter out.

We know that a runner forced to second who touches second, then returns towards first, while batter/runner is still live, is then forced again.  And we know a batter/runner can retreat all the way to home plate, just not beyond it.    (in softball the B/R can retreat to home as long as it is not to avoid a tag)

I think the ump got it right, though first base is treated a little differently.

I'd love to see if there's a case play though - I've never seen it, but it wouldn't surprise me if someone here has come across it.

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From the 2017 Jaksa/Roder manual (p. 47):  A batter-runner who advances to first base and then retreats to the home plate side of first base can be tagged out while off the base.

E.G.:  A shortstop’s bad throw is gloved along the home plate side of first base and the batter-runner dives to first and is safe. The batter-runner stands up to dust himself off and is standing a couple feet to the home plate side of first base: such batter-runner is out if tagged off base.

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51 minutes ago, Senor Azul said:

From the 2017 Jaksa/Roder manual (p. 47):  A batter-runner who advances to first base and then retreats to the home plate side of first base can be tagged out while off the base.

E.G.:  A shortstop’s bad throw is gloved along the home plate side of first base and the batter-runner dives to first and is safe. The batter-runner stands up to dust himself off and is standing a couple feet to the home plate side of first base: such batter-runner is out if tagged off base.

Would you say this implies the runner must be tagged?  Or would you say "tagged out" can mean either the base or the runner?

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1 hour ago, beerguy55 said:

Would you say this implies the runner must be tagged?  Or would you say "tagged out" can mean either the base or the runner?

I think the retreat-reinstates concept should apply.

Don't know if there is an official interp.

J-R has been wrong more than others.

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Technically, retiring a batter-runner at first base is not a force out—it does not meet the definition of a force.

2018 OBR Definitions--A FORCE PLAY is a play in which a runner legally loses his right to occupy a base by reason of the batter becoming a runner.

So, I ask you how do you re-instate a force if there was never a force to begin with?

In the OP, the batter became a batter-runner, then a runner when he acquired title to first base. He then on his own volition left the base and thus put himself in jeopardy of being tagged out (see rule 5.09b).

2018 OBR rule 5.09(b) Any runner is out when…:  (4) He is tagged, when the ball is alive, while off his base. EXCEPTION: A batter-runner cannot be tagged out after overrunning or oversliding first base if he returns immediately to the base;

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I seem to recall WUM having a new-ish interp that F3 can retire a BR who fails to return immediately by tagging the base, not only the BR.

However, depending on level, heat of the game, etc., for game management I might treat this as a standard "BR dealing with equipment after acquiring 1B" and kill it before the festivities begin.

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From the 2013 Wendelstedt (section 8.4.3.c, p. 168):

After overrunning or oversliding first base, and without making an attempt to advance to second base, he does not return to first base within a reasonable time in the umpire’s judgment, and he or first base is tagged before he returns to first base...

In returning to first after overrunning or oversliding it, a base runner may begin removing batting gloves or other hitting equipment. As long as he does so in a timely manner, he is not in violation of not returning “immediately.”

R3, one out, 3-1 count. The batter hits a ground ball to the shortstop. He looks back R3 and then throws to first base. The speedy BR beats out the throw and continues down the line after overrunning the bag. Instead of returning, the BR remains out in right field attempting to draw a throw. The first baseman steps on first base and appeals that the BR did not return immediately.

Ruling:  The BR is out.

Essentially it is an appeal play which prevents the BR from doing the “skunk in the outfield” play and so the defense doesn’t have to chase the BR to get an out.

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Mr. maven, your “seem to recall” does not trump the rules. If you, as Mr. Rich Ives does, refuse to believe anything the Jaksa/Roder manual says then please try to refute the 2018 Minor League Baseball Umpire Manual (paragraph 5.43, p. 59):

"The exception to rule 5.09(b)(4) prohibits the batter-runner from being tagged out for overrunning or oversliding first base if he immediately returns to the base. However, once the batter-runner returns to first base safely after overrunning/oversliding the base, he is no longer protected from being tagged out if he subsequently loses contact with the base." (emphasis added)

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From the 2017 Jaksa/Roder manual (Chapter 6, p. 46):

Overrunning a base:  To overrun a base is to run or slide by a base. A player who overruns first base (and, of course, home plate) is not to be considered attempting to advance to the next base. A batter-runner overrunning first who is safe must return and touch the base in a reasonable amount of time and is subject to being tagged out if he subsequently forfeits contact with the base. (MLB Rule Interpretation 32)

To Mr. Jimurray, I believe you said that this kind of reference in the J/R refers to the MLBUM interpretations. My most recent copy is 2015 and I think you said you have a 2018 version. Could you check please to see if you can find this definition.

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1 hour ago, Senor Azul said:

Mr. maven, your “seem to recall” does not trump the rules.

Huh? You posted exactly what I recalled.

1 hour ago, Senor Azul said:

From the 2013 Wendelstedt (section 8.4.3.c, p. 168):

After overrunning or oversliding first base, and without making an attempt to advance to second base, he does not return to first base within a reasonable time in the umpire’s judgment, and he or first base is tagged before he returns to first base

My point was simply that if the BR does not immediately return, F3 can tag the base and need not chase the runner around.

The rest is umpire judgment: if I judge that action is "relaxed" (to use J/R), then I might kill it to allow a player to retrieve his equipment without penalty. If not, then I won't.

None of this is about trumping rules. And as far as I've been paying attention in this thread, I haven't disagreed with you, so I'm not sure why you're picking a fight.

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The original post asked about whether a runner who left the base and returned to the home plate side of first base has to be tagged or could be called out simply by stepping on the bag.

“The batter runner now who is standing on 1st decides to come off the base and starts running down 1st base line to pick up his bat, he didn't ask for time and of course the umpires didn't call time. The pitcher now sees this and throws to the 1st baseman and he tags the BAG ONLY.  The base umpire calls the runner out.  Is this correct?  or does he have to tag the runner or does the umpire call runner out for abandoning his effort?”

I answered that by using the Jaksa/Roder manual as the resource. It was the correct answer but nobody accepted it. When you replied with a vague memory of something that was totally different from the OP I did not understand that to mean that you were agreeing with me.

“I seem to recall WUM having a new-ish interp that F3 can retire a BR who fails to return immediately by tagging the base, not only the BR.”

I knew exactly what you were referring to and exactly where to find it. But that interpretation refers to a runner who remains on the outfield side of first base, not to one who returns to first and then decides on his own volition to walk off the base. And then for you to advocate ignoring the rules and just call time was something else I did not perceive as agreeing with me. Why would you deny the defense an opportunity to get an out?

“However, depending on level, heat of the game, etc., for game management I might treat this as a standard "BR dealing with equipment after acquiring 1B" and kill it before the festivities begin. My point was simply that if the BR does not immediately return, F3 can tag the base and need not chase the runner around.

The rest is umpire judgment: if I judge that action is "relaxed" (to use J/R), then I might kill it to allow a player to retrieve his equipment without penalty. If not, then I won't.”

If, indeed, you were agreeing with me I admit that I did not take it that way. And to be honest, I still do not see it even after your explanation. But I will grant you perhaps I should have softened my reply a bit—I was not trying to pick a fight.

 

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2 hours ago, Senor Azul said:

Mr. maven, your “seem to recall” does not trump the rules. If you, as Mr. Rich Ives does, refuse to believe anything the Jaksa/Roder manual says then please try to refute the 2018 Minor League Baseball Umpire Manual (paragraph 5.43, p. 59):

"The exception to rule 5.09(b)(4) prohibits the batter-runner from being tagged out for overrunning or oversliding first base if he immediately returns to the base. However, once the batter-runner returns to first base safely after overrunning/oversliding the base, he is no longer protected from being tagged out if he subsequently loses contact with the base." (emphasis added)

This isn't an overrun. Stop quoting overrun rules.  There is no rule covering it. The B-R went back toward home plate.  8.01(c ) it and use the retreat-reinstate rule as the basis.

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1 hour ago, Rich Ives said:

This isn't an overrun. Stop quoting overrun rules.  There is no rule covering it. The B-R went back toward home plate.  8.01(c ) it and use the retreat-reinstate rule as the basis.

Personally, I would not use the force reinstatement rule because this is not a force out.  I would require the runner to be tagged unless I called him out for abandonment.

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38 minutes ago, grayhawk said:

Personally, I would not use the force reinstatement rule because this is not a force out.  I would require the runner to be tagged unless I called him out for abandonment.

FED does actually call this a force in one of their case plays so you might allow a tag of 1B in that case. But, if the umpire did not call the batter runner out, would you, as the umpire then call him out when and if tagged returning to 1B, absentclearly relaxed action and  @maven 's  or your time call. Or for purposes of making this a realistic play, what if there were other runners and you now had a pickle between 1B and HP? The OP is a benign exploration of the rules but lets extend it to with runners on. I'm calling the batter-runner out when the base is tagged,

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5 hours ago, Senor Azul said:

Mr. maven, your “seem to recall” does not trump the rules. If you, as Mr. Rich Ives does, refuse to believe anything the Jaksa/Roder manual says then please try to refute the 2018 Minor League Baseball Umpire Manual (paragraph 5.43, p. 59):

"The exception to rule 5.09(b)(4) prohibits the batter-runner from being tagged out for overrunning or oversliding first base if he immediately returns to the base. However, once the batter-runner returns to first base safely after overrunning/oversliding the base, he is no longer protected from being tagged out if he subsequently loses contact with the base." (emphasis added)

BTW - where did I ever say I refuse to believe anything in the J/R?  

 

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8 minutes ago, Jimurray said:

FED does actually call this a force in one of their case plays so you might allow a tag of 1B in that case. But, if the umpire did not call the batter runner out, would you, as the umpire then call him out when and if tagged returning to 1B, absentclearly relaxed action and  @maven 's  or your time call. Or for purposes of making this a realistic play, what if there were other runners and you now had a pickle between 1B and HP? The OP is a benign exploration of the rules but lets extend it to with runners on. I'm calling the batter-runner out when the base is tagged,

As Ives explains, this is not an overrun.  The BR achieved first base, and left the base.  He needs to be tagged to be put out, unless called out for abandonment.

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So how do the force-reinstaters rule on this play?

R1. B2 hits a slow roller down the third base line.  F5 throws too late to first and BR is safe.  Meanwhile, R1 loses his hat running to second.  After R1 safely slides into second, he moves toward first to retrieve his hat (not intending to return to first). Seeing this, F3 throws ball to F4, and R1 again slides into second.  F4 tags second base, but not R1, before R1 retouches the base.

In other words, is it the mere moving towards the forced-from base that reinstates the force, or is it the intent to return to the forced-from base.  I'm thinking of the model force-reinstatement play where R1 has obtained second, then mistakenly believes that a short-hop was caught and attempts to return to first.  Versus a runner brushing himself off who stupidly loses contact with his base in the direction of his forced-from base.

I would distinguish between baserunning and being off the base, and require a tag of the runner off base, absent an intent to return to a forced-from base. 

But then again, I don't understand why Mr. Wendelstedt does not require a tag of a BR who has attained first base and employs the morally-reprehensible but legal skunk-in-the-outfield tactic just like Mr. W would for a runner from any other base.  Could BR not attempt to advance to second when the tag of first is attempted?  With less than two outs, a BR rounding first with a runner on third and trying to draw a throw is common is lower level baseball.  At what point does that BR become a skunk in the outfield?

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Here’s how the Jaksa/Roder manual describes when the force can be re-instated:  During continuous action, and only during continuous action, the force can be removed and also re-instated.

A force is re-instated if a consecutive (lead) runner who had acquired his advance base returns past such base in retreat toward his time-of-pitch base (assuming the force has not yet been removed).

Continuous action is defined by the same manual as: 

An uninterrupted progression of play starting with the pitch and ending typically when the runners have ceased trying to advance, and the defense has relaxed and is returning (or has returned) the ball to the pitcher or the pitcher’s mound. Continuous action is defined as such to distinguish it from a play, which can disallow an appeal.

And in the OP, there was no play on the batter-runner at first on the batted ball. According to the description given us by the original poster, the pitcher had the ball (presumably on the mound). “The batter runner now who is standing on 1st decides to come off the base and starts running down 1st base line to pick up his bat, he didn't ask for time and of course the umpires didn't call time.  The pitcher now sees this and throws to the 1st baseman and he tags the BAG ONLY.”

As for the skunk in the outfield play, the batter-runner is allowed to overrun first base but is required by rule to return immediately. That’s why the batter-runner cannot choose to stay in the outfield. “The intent of the rule is to prevent a batter-runner who has run through first base to remain in short right field to attempt to draw a fielder away from a play on another runner." So, if in the umpire’s judgment the BR does not return in a reasonable time, the defense can get the out by tagging the base and/or the runner.

 

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21 hours ago, Senor Azul said:

From the 2017 Jaksa/Roder manual (Chapter 6, p. 46):

Overrunning a base:  To overrun a base is to run or slide by a base. A player who overruns first base (and, of course, home plate) is not to be considered attempting to advance to the next base. A batter-runner overrunning first who is safe must return and touch the base in a reasonable amount of time and is subject to being tagged out if he subsequently forfeits contact with the base. (MLB Rule Interpretation 32)

To Mr. Jimurray, I believe you said that this kind of reference in the J/R refers to the MLBUM interpretations. My most recent copy is 2015 and I think you said you have a 2018 version. Could you check please to see if you can find this definition.

That is the gist of my 2017 MLBUM Interp #32. Wording is slightly different.

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1 hour ago, MooseLoop said:

So how do the force-reinstaters rule on this play?

R1. B2 hits a slow roller down the third base line.  F5 throws too late to first and BR is safe.  Meanwhile, R1 loses his hat running to second.  After R1 safely slides into second, he moves toward first to retrieve his hat (not intending to return to first). Seeing this, F3 throws ball to F4, and R1 again slides into second.  F4 tags second base, but not R1, before R1 retouches the base.

In other words, is it the mere moving towards the forced-from base that reinstates the force, or is it the intent to return to the forced-from base.  I'm thinking of the model force-reinstatement play where R1 has obtained second, then mistakenly believes that a short-hop was caught and attempts to return to first.  Versus a runner brushing himself off who stupidly loses contact with his base in the direction of his forced-from base.

I would distinguish between baserunning and being off the base, and require a tag of the runner off base, absent an intent to return to a forced-from base. 

 

Extend it to this.  Your player who has stepped of the base to brush himself off, towards first, then decides to run to third - perhaps because the defense is sleeping, or perhaps because the defense throws the ball away trying to get him out.

Would you not require R1 to touch second before proceeding to third?   If so, I think you have to apply the "force reinstatement" in your original scenario, to be consistent.

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