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johnnyg08

Infield Fly with a hint of Intentional Drop

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Ball stays live on an intentionally dropped infield fly. Batter is out.  All codes. 

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I posted a similar play on FB yesterday from the Angels game.  Heads up call by U1 on the IFF.  These plays happen so quickly and you have so little time to judge if it's a fly ball that can be caught with ordinary effort.  I was assured by many on the play that I posted that it wasn't "high enough" to be considered a fly ball (it wasn't called an IFF in that case).  The ball hit in the OP was lower than the one I posted.

The bottom line.  It was neither a bunt nor a line drive.  It could have been caught with ordinary effort but the fielder chose instead to drop the ball.  BR out on the IFF and R2 out on the tag.

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8 minutes ago, grayhawk said:

I posted a similar play on FB yesterday from the Angels game.  Heads up call by U1 on the IFF.  These plays happen so quickly and you have so little time to judge if it's a fly ball that can be caught with ordinary effort.  I was assured by many on the play that I posted that it wasn't "high enough" to be considered a fly ball (it wasn't called an IFF in that case).  The ball hit in the OP was lower than the one I posted.

The bottom line.  It was neither a bunt nor a line drive.  It could have been caught with ordinary effort but the fielder chose instead to drop the ball.  BR out on the IFF and R2 out on the tag.

I can't tell if the 2b touched the ball while it was in the air or after it had hit the ground first?  Regardless, I saw U1, U2 and PU all call infield fly.  Camera didn't show if U3 called it.  R1 obviously heard it being called as he went back to first base.

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And of course if intentionally/unintentionally dropped on IFFR runner does not have to worry about tagging up at all, if he wants to (gamble the fielder will drop the ball) start running right away. And don't fool for the double up on a throw to second if he is off the bag confused and runs back to second, even if he does not beat the throw, but is not tagged off the base.

Do you get bonus points if you found out Whits father played in the Pirates organization as a shortstop.

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8 hours ago, grayhawk said:

 It was neither a bunt nor a line drive.

Completely agree. People overthink this. No bunt, no line drive. IFF. Keep it simple. 

 

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Good job by U3 to stay with that tag on R2. It was closer than you'd think, given F5's lackadaisical tag.

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I don't think it met the definition of an IFF, but I do think it met the definition of an intentionally dropped fly ball.

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3 hours ago, catsbackr said:

I don't think it met the definition of an IFF, but I do think it met the definition of an intentionally dropped fly ball.

Would you classify it as a line drive? That's the only thing I can think of. Definitely not a dropped fly as Whit never touched the ball until after it bounced.

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14 hours ago, Biscuit said:

Would you classify it as a line drive? That's the only thing I can think of. Definitely not a dropped fly as Whit never touched the ball until after it bounced.

No he most definitely did touch it before it hit the ground.  You can't see this in the OP, but there is a more closeup view in another video that shows it.

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On 5/6/2019 at 6:17 AM, johnnyg08 said:

Completely agree. People overthink this. No bunt, no line drive. IFF. Keep it simple. 

 

Are we talking factually, or based on the ump's judgment?

I suppose technically it was not "sharp and direct", but this is your textbook example of a "humpback liner" (you can see in the video at about 0:26 it never gets over ~15 feet off the ground) and it is a play that MLB umpires have ruled on the "line drive" side of the equation in the past....ie. no IFF.

It is indeed an example of the difficulty umps have in judging this in real time.   For all intents and purposes, and to the spirit of the rule, it should be an IFF.

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The 2017 Jaksa/Roder manual (p. 53) is the only source I have found so far that gives any kind of additional help on defining an infield fly. It says that to be an infield fly it “must be a fly, or pop, or must possess some degree of arc, but cannot be a line drive or bunt…

I would say that the fly ball in the video had a degree of arc, thus the on-field call of infield fly was correct.

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On 5/28/2019 at 6:29 PM, Senor Azul said:

The 2017 Jaksa/Roder manual (p. 53) is the only source I have found so far that gives any kind of additional help on defining an infield fly. It says that to be an infield fly it “must be a fly, or pop, or must possess some degree of arc, but cannot be a line drive or bunt…

I would say that the fly ball in the video had a degree of arc, thus the on-field call of infield fly was correct.

This is problematic, though, because physics tells us that even line drives have "some degree of arc."

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I think that it's important to be clear on two points:

First, the rule: among fly balls, line drives and bunts can never be IFF's, but any other fly ball can be (it must still meet other criteria).

Second, the rationale: protect the offense, so when in doubt, err on the side of IFF. The extent of this protection properly varies inversely with the level of play.

Beyond that, it's just umpire judgment.

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On 6/1/2019 at 1:30 PM, MikeSafari said:

This is problematic, though, because physics tells us that even line drives have "some degree of arc."

True - but you still have two other considerations.  One, "caught with ordinary effort".  And two, the rule book definition of a line drive says "sharp and direct".  I think those three put together can make it reasonable to call an IFF (or not) in most scenarios, to protect the offense.   If the batted ball creates a situation that A) puts R1 and R2 in no man's land with no idea what they need to do and B) allows the defense to take time to consider their actions and make a decision, there's a good chance IFF should be called.

Plus - typically on a "sharp" line drive the fielder is almost certainly going to have to touch the ball in order to intentionally "drop" it...thereby qualifying it for a different rule that protects the offense.

And if the infielder has the presence of mind to intentionally short hop a line drive to get a DP...good for him...frankly, catching a sharp line drive gives him just as good a chance to get a double or triple play.

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21 hours ago, beerguy55 said:

True - but you still have two other considerations.  One, "caught with ordinary effort".  And two, the rule book definition of a line drive says "sharp and direct".  I think those three put together can make it reasonable to call an IFF (or not) in most scenarios, to protect the offense.   If the batted ball creates a situation that A) puts R1 and R2 in no man's land with no idea what they need to do and B) allows the defense to take time to consider their actions and make a decision, there's a good chance IFF should be called.

Plus - typically on a "sharp" line drive the fielder is almost certainly going to have to touch the ball in order to intentionally "drop" it...thereby qualifying it for a different rule that protects the offense.

And if the infielder has the presence of mind to intentionally short hop a line drive to get a DP...good for him...frankly, catching a sharp line drive gives him just as good a chance to get a double or triple play.

Yep. Your advancement will slow down significantly if you start to be surgical with the thought that even line drives have some arc

 

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