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Everything posted by BretMan

  1. BretMan

    foul ball

    Fair enough. My BRD is at home, and I'm not, so we'll go with what you posted. But there seems to be some sort of disconect here. Taking the "official interpretation" you posted at face value, saying that "a batted ball must rise above the batter's head to be caught for an out" is obviously not a true statement in relation to ALL batted balls hit anywhere on the field. Is the interpretation related only to balls fouled back toward the catcher and fielded over foul ground? Unless it is, then this interpretation make no sense. What is the context which the interpretation is being offered? What is your ruling if: 1) Batter swings and ball is barely tipped. The ball goes straight up, only as high as the batter's nose, then straight back down and is gloved by the catcher, over foul ground, before touching anything else. 2) Same scenario, but this time the ball is caught directly over top of home plate.
  2. BretMan

    foul ball

    I agree that it becomes foul when touched (by F2) while over foul territory. I also agree that once the batted ball gets past F2's glove and hits his body, it can no longer be a foul tip. How does any of that entail that it cannot be caught? It sure seems like a batted ball in flight to me. "Caught" in the generic sense of securing something in your hand, sure. But "caught" for an out, as defined in the rule book? No!
  3. BretMan

    foul ball

    Can you provide any written rule, case play, or interpretation that defines "appreciable height" as "higher than the batter's head"? Where exactly are you getting that?
  4. Is there a "delete post" button somewhere? Tried to find one, no luck.
  5. Thanks Rolo. At first glance I don't know what rule this POE references: "PITCHING SUBSTITUTION AND CHANGE Pitching is critical in our game and substituting for the pitcher is a key personnel strategy. By rule, there are some specific time guidelines provided for the execution of substituting the game pitcher. It is becoming more noticeable that the defensive coach is extending his time around the mound while the substitute pitcher completes his warm-up pitches. This delay of the game by lingering around the mound has become problematic. While it provides the coach an opportunity to speak to the rest of the defensive team, but it is also lengthening and delaying the game. The coach should make his substitution known to the umpire-in-chief, scorekeeper, relieve the game pitcher, instruct his players quickly, and leave the diamond area heading back to the dugout/bench area. For the sake of continuity, it is a better game when it is fluid and with minimal interruptions." And who wrote this sentence? "While it provides the coach an opportunity to speak to the rest of the defensive team, but it is also lengthening and delaying the game." FED always manages to come up with some screwy interps and POE's. If the coach is standing there while the new pitcher warms up, how is that delaying the game? If he walks back toward the dugout as soon as the pitcher finishes, he should be hitting the dugout about the time the next batter is hitting the batter's box. This should take all of about ten seconds. If the coach is lingering around and delaying the game after the pitcher's warmed up, then the umpire needs to be telling him to clear out, or else charging him with another conference. This should be pretty much a non-issue. Why waste the time making it a POE?
  6. Just a side note about this question... I participate on a few different baseball or softball related discussion boards that cover rule topics. This year alone, I have seen this same question pop up at about a dozen times. All are grounded in the misperception that throwing the ball to a fielder who's touching a base is automatically a force out (it's not), even when it's an appeal play. And it's not just this year. Every season this same question comes up again and again. So much so that you would think it's something that happens on the field on a regular basis, a common occurrence that gets ruled on often. I've umpired for 15 years and racked up over 1200 ball games. I have NEVER had this happen in one my games and NEVER had to make this ruling. You'd think that if a question comes up more often than, say, ones about a batter being hit on the hands with a pitch, or runners being hit by batted balls, it would mean that it's happening more often. Yet we see batters hit on the hands and runners hit by balls fairly often. So, where exactly is this rash of bad baserunning going on? Is this happening somewhere and are you guys having to rule on it?
  7. BretMan

    is this an out?

    (Ignore that last post. It won't let me edit or delete it.) As I was starting to say...that's an interesting quirk in how that rule is worded. If the status of the batted ball is neither fair, nor foul, how do we apply that rule? Is this truly one of the rare "points not covered by the rules" that forces us to craft our own ruling? My personal interpretation would be that the wording of the rule- "hit the ball fair or foul"- is meant to convey that ANY batted ball satisfies the requirement of the rule. I don't believe that there's any black-and-white printed rule or interpretation that backs me up. But this is how I would call it until something convinced me otherwise!
  8. ....and it's ten-cent beer night.
  9. The correct case play has, of course, been posted. But the answer lies right within the rule itself. In fact, in the very first sentence of the rule! 8-9-1: The team at bat may use a courtesy runner for the pitcher and/or the catcher at any time. "At any time" doesn't mean "before the first pitch is thrown". It means AT ANY TIME.
  10. I watched about half of this last night and didn't even realize who the plate umpire was. But, I did think to myslef, "This guy seems a little bit sharper than some of the usual LL umpires we see on TV"... Question: What is the "intermediate" level of LL baseball and how do they happen to have their own championship game?
  11. Situation #1: There's nothing in ASA rules about "presenting" the ball. There are pitching preliminaries that the pitcher must follow before delivering a pitch, but the word "present" isn't in there. Pitcher needs to start with the hands separated, ball in either bare had or glove. Hands then must be brought together in front of body. Upon separation, the pitching arm may drop down and to the back before going forward and completing the windmill motion. Everything sounds legal here. Besides, since when do you listen to anything a fan in the stands has to say! Situation #2: Special league rules will trump, but the standard ASA rule is that a pitcher may return to pitch an unlimited number of times (of course, standard rules for substitutions and re-entry still apply).
  12. I started in baseball, then gradually transitioned into fastpitch. Got interested in it from having a daughter that played, then played on a men's team for about 10 years. I take it just a seriously as baseball, with respect to rules, mechanics, and professionalism. This year I have been invited to work my second ASA national tournament. Mostly I wear my Platinum for softball. I'd rather be over-protected than under-protected. Besides, it fits great and is comfortable, so I don't mind wearing it. Every once in awhile, I'll rotate with my old Wilson Charcoal or a Diamond soft-shell for the younger age groups. A couple of brave souls I've known have gone without protective gear. One was for 12U girls. He said that he "didn't think that girls could throw that hard" so skipped his shin guards. He caught one right on the knee cap and shattered it into four pieces. The other guy thought the same thing and decided he didn't need a chest protector. He caught one in the collar bone and it snapped like a twig.
  13. I started in 1999, polos were the norm by then. Of course, you also had zip up and dazzle polos, so it wasn't all good! Back a few years ago I found a new, in the wrapper, Elbeco on eBay. Bought it for five bucks and have worn it a couple of times when working solo. My impression is that they don't breathe as well as modern polos and it seemed hot to me.
  14. ASA has a couple of interpretations regarding temporary fences that would apply here. First, a collapsed fence that has bent "outward" and is lying on the ground is considered to be an extension of live ball territory. So the ball lying on the collapsed fence would still be a live ball. Second, if the collapsed fence is lying on the ground, it is treated the same as the ground. That means that this ball was no longer "in-flight" when it popped loose and was lying on the fence. If you put the two together, you have a fair batted ball that has touched the ground before bounding out of play. That sounds like a ground rule double to me.
  15. BretMan

    Force Play

    Safe. Retiring R1 removed the force out for R2. Once the force is removed, R2 is free to remain on second base. If, on the other hand, the sequence had been tag R2, then tag second base, you would of had a double play. Once forced, second base no longer offers R2 any protection from being tagged out.
  16. If you're a Babe Ruth umpire wouldn't you have access to a Babe Ruth rule book? And wouldn't their rule book define when the batter can no longer advance and is out? Maven's answer is pretty thorough, but there's still an assumption being made as to what BR really wants.
  17. What are you doing while all this is going on. Just silently signalling the strike? Yes, the defense is responsible for knowing the situation- knowing that the batter can't advance here and no throw is necessary. I'm not sure what the coach wanted you to "yell at the runner", but there is something you can do as a dose of preventive umpiring. When a retired batter starts running to first following a third strike, when he's not entitled to run, you can step up and LOUDLY and FIRMLY announce, "Batter out, batter out!", while giving a strong out signal. Now, if the defense makes the wrong play...it's on them. You did your job by clearly communicating the situation to all the players.
  18. Glad you like it. Though I can't help but wonder how any product where one element of the product (the pads), that accounts for about half its cost, is described as "junk" still rates out at "A". It just seems like the pads should be an integral part of a new mask, not a throw-away item that never gets used. Essentially, to be satisfied with this product you had to shell out about 50% more than its original cost. I can't think of too many other consumer products where we'd consider that to be a good deal. Too bad you couldn't buy just the frame.
  19. Somebody's always going to be mad at you. I'd rather have them be mad at me because I enforced a rule exactly as it's written, than be mad at me because I was just making stuff up as I went along.
  20. BretMan


    Nope. When the Look Back Rule (LBR) is in effect, the runner may stop ONCE in between bases. The runner then must immediately either advance directly to the next base or retreat directly to the previous one, without stopping or reversing direction a second time. The runner in question *might* have violated the LBR when she "tried to get the pitcher's attention", if doing so caused her to remain stationary in one spot, failing to immediately advance or retreat. I don't know. That part is judgment and I'd have to see it. But she is allowed to make one momentary stop. The runner was *probably* out when, after pausing, she "stepped back toward first, then went toward second". This is a second reversal of direction and that does violate the LBR. If, at any point during this sequence, the pitcher attempted or even faked a play, all bets are off. That suspends the LBR and the runner is free to stop/go/reverse/dance around all she wants to.
  21. BretMan

    Weirdest "Rule"

    Once had a coach argue that, for the purposes of an uncaught third strike, if the catcher's mitt touched the ground in any way it could not be ruled a catch. That was bad. This is worse... With first base occupied, pitcher still on the rubber, stepped toward first but did not throw over. Then he twisted his upper body around and threw to the plate. Offensive coach claimed that since the pitcher committed two balks, his runner should be awarded two bases!
  22. BretMan


    USSSA slow pitch softball has a mandatory one base minimum award for obstruction. Of all the various softball sanctioning bodies, none have anything in their rules about "the runner must try to advance to be awarded the next base". In other words...you was robbed!
  23. BretMan

    Triple play

    Softball ruling is the same.
  24. It's WAY different than baseball. There are lots of differences in both rules and mechanics. Frankly, I think that it does the teams a disservice to give them umpires who aren't familiar with the intricacies of their game. And it's also a disservice to the umpires that they throw into these situations unprepared. I suppose that any umpire is better than no umpire, if that's your only option. But I'm sure you'll muddle through. Just like the baseball guys who aren't too sharp on the baseball field can muddle through game after game without any major blow ups- that is, until something actually blows up and they have to deal with something that they're ill-equipped to handle. Good luck. Act like you've been there before!
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