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Scratching my head-Touching Bases

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First guys, let me start off by saying this is not from me, someone posted this on a Facebook page.  I'm the one scratching my head wondering what "rule set" this guy is referring to;

Virtually every rule set in both softball and baseball endorses the concept that a runner who passes a base is considered to have reached it.  That means if he/she passes the base without touching it, the defense must appeal to record the out. So, what exactly is meant when we talk of a runner "passing" a base?  Must he/she be completely beyond it? Or is it sufficient for the runner to have a part of his/her body on the other side of the base?

 

For example, a BR is straddling first base (lead foot beyond it, trail foot still short of it) as F3 catches the ball while on the bag. Is the BR safe or out at that point?  Another example, R1 slides to the back side of second on the front end of a potential DP, and his/her legs are beyond the bag when F4 catches the ball, and then R1 touches the back side of the bag with his/her left hand. Did the runner "pass" the bag?

 

I want to know what Rulebook says a runner is safe when they "pass" a base??  Cause I sure would love to read it.

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18 minutes ago, Thawk751 said:

I want to know what Rulebook says a runner is safe when they "pass" a base??  Cause I sure would love to read it.

All of them have that as a general principle, even if it's not stated -- a runner who passes a base is assumed to have touched it unless and until there's an appeal.

 

I think (but I am not sure) that "pass" generally means the entire body, with no chance to still touch the base without "going backwards"

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All of them have that as a general principle, even if it's not stated -- a runner who passes a base is assumed to have touched it unless and until there's an appeal.
 
I think (but I am not sure) that "pass" generally means the entire body, with no chance to still touch the base without "going backwards"

That's definitely the interpretation for plays at 1B on the BR. I would venture to say it's the same for other bases as well.

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So in the discussions I had with the author and other members of the group, I learned that at the Wendlestadt school, the scenario they are teaching for this one is "if a runner beats out the throw to the 1B, but misses the base, the umpire should not signal out or safe to indicate to the offense & defense that batter-runner missed the base.".  Before I learned that I would have called the BR out as soon as the ball made it into F3's glove, but they have to appeal that the runner missed the base.  That's why there is no signal.  Interesting. 

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27 minutes ago, Thawk751 said:

So in the discussions I had with the author and other members of the group, I learned that at the Wendlestadt school, the scenario they are teaching for this one is "if a runner beats out the throw to the 1B, but misses the base, the umpire should not signal out or safe to indicate to the offense & defense that batter-runner missed the base.".  Before I learned that I would have called the BR out as soon as the ball made it into F3's glove, but they have to appeal that the runner missed the base.  That's why there is no signal.  Interesting. 

If so, that's new (and I think I might have read about it here a few months ago).  Before, we would signal "safe" until the appeal -- with the same mechanic / voice inflection / selling as we would on the same play had the runner touched the base.

 

I still prefer that.

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Just now, noumpere said:

If so, that's new (and I think I might have read about it here a few months ago).  Before, we would signal "safe" until the appeal -- with the same mechanic / voice inflection / selling as we would on the same play had the runner touched the base.

 

I still prefer that.

@noumpere, apparently they started this year.  I can understand both schools of thought.  Mine personally is "he's not safe until he tags the bag before he or the bag is tagged by the ball.".  So for me, I prefer the no signal.  Doesn't confuse people with a safe, then out call.

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So the BR CLEARLY beats the throw, but misses the bag, and the only person in the stadium that realizes the BR is out, is you. Is there a mechanic to be used to sell WHY he is out in order to avoid a crap storm. Something similar to when the fielder is off the bag... OR, is that why they're advocating NO signal until the appeal? 

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[mention=599]noumpere[/mention], apparently they started this year.  I can understand both schools of thought.  Mine personally is "he's not safe until he tags the bag before he or the bag is tagged by the ball.".  So for me, I prefer the no signal.  Doesn't confuse people with a safe, then out call.

I prefer the 'Safe' signal since the BR has technically beaten the throw and reached the base by rule, albeit not legally. The non-signal at 1B tips off the defense.


So if the BR overruns 1B, doesn't touch it, and returns without being tagged or appealed, will you signal 'Safe' at the point when he safely returns to the bag?

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16 minutes ago, ALStripes17 said:

So if the BR overruns 1B, doesn't touch it, and returns without being tagged or appealed, will you signal 'Safe' at the point when he safely returns to the bag?

No. We signal to rule on a play (ball beat runner, runner beat ball) or on an appeal. The BR touching the base is neither.

The rationale for not signaling is to make the mechanic consistent with what is done at other bases, especially HP.

But I'd prefer to adjust the mechanic at HP for a force play to be like the mechanic at 1B: we need a ruling on the play (runner beat ball), and that's what we signal.

[For a tag play at HP, it still makes sense to signal nothing when there's no touch & no tag, as the runner is neither safe nor out yet.]

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No. We signal to rule on a play (ball beat runner, runner beat ball) or on an appeal. The BR touching the base is neither.

The rationale for not signaling is to make the mechanic consistent with what is done at other bases, especially HP.

But I'd prefer to adjust the mechanic at HP for a force play to be like the mechanic at 1B: we need a ruling on the play (runner beat ball), and that's what we signal.

[For a tag play at HP, it still makes sense to signal nothing when there's no touch & no tag, as the runner is neither safe nor out yet.]

Agreed. My question was more for inciting this sort of thought on ruling on a play that has occured where we don't signal bc of the non-touch. The new OBR mechanic seems to make it where we could have an exciting play at 1B and never even have to make a signal.

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To add question to the mechanics, in FED verbal appeals are allowed. In this particular situation, if BR overruns first base as normal and the DC yells from the dugout that the BR missed first base as F3 is attempting a throw on R1 who is rounding second heading towards third, are we accepting the DC's verbal appeal and awarding an out upon completion of the play, or is this a situation where F3 would have had to actually tag the BR in an expression of appealing of his missing of first? Complex much?

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4 minutes ago, JamesC said:

To add question to the mechanics, in FED verbal appeals are allowed. In this particular situation, if BR overruns first base as normal and the DC yells from the dugout that the BR missed first base as F3 is attempting a throw on R1 who is rounding second heading towards third, are we accepting the DC's verbal appeal and awarding an out upon completion of the play, or is this a situation where F3 would have had to actually tag the BR in an expression of appealing of his missing of first? Complex much?

No. Verbal appeals are dead ball appeals. We would allow all runners to complete their requirements before calling time to rule on a verbal appeal which at that point would have R1 standing on 1st base.

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59 minutes ago, JamesC said:

In this particular situation, if BR overruns first base as normal and the DC yells from the dugout that the BR missed first base as F3 is attempting a throw on R1 who is rounding second heading towards third, are we accepting the DC's verbal appeal and awarding an out upon completion of the play, or is this a situation where F3 would have had to actually tag the BR in an expression of appealing of his missing of first?

Neither.

We won't do this, because as Mud points out, a verbal appeal is a dead-ball appeal, and we won't kill it until all base runners have completed their responsibilities (as much as they intend to do anyway). And once the ball is dead, the BR will be on 1B, so we would deny the appeal that he missed it.

But we won't do this either. A live-ball appeal can be accomplished by tagging the runner or the missed base. So assuming that F3 was making an unmistakable appeal, he need only tag 1B to appeal the BR's miss.

F3 would need to make an unmistakable appeal, and in this situation merely stepping on the base wouldn't be it. I'd probably need to hear "he missed the base" or some such, or else have the action be evidently a response to his coach yelling about the missed base.

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The way I read the scenario that was passed along to me, and what the rulebook says @JamesC, only F3(or the fielder covering 1B) can appeal the BR missing the base at that moment.  He has to maintain contact with the base when he appeals to BU.  If he throws the ball to another fielder, then the defense loses the right of immediate appeal ONLY, and they have to do a dead ball appeal like @Mudisfun described. @maven that's the way I read it, fielder has to be in contact with the bag in order to make the appeal.  Didn't say anything about tagging the runner. @ALStripes17 I think that is their desire, to let the defense know he missed, because this seems to only encompass the runner missing the base while there is a play being made at 1B.  Maybe you call it unfair, but the runner should know if they missed the base, so they should be trying to get back as quick as they can already.  So in that case, the runner has the advantage.  Kind of feels like we're evening the odds.

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5 hours ago, noumpere said:

If so, that's new (and I think I might have read about it here a few months ago).  Before, we would signal "safe" until the appeal -- with the same mechanic / voice inflection / selling as we would on the same play had the runner touched the base.

 

I still prefer that.

So, don't know if this is related or not, as it pertains to home plate, instead of first base.

When I played baseball under the Little League umbrella (Big League - age 16-18 bracket - we didn't have high school baseball in our neck of the woods), we were taught by our coaches that at a play at the plate, the umpire would only give a safe signal if he saw the runner hit the plate.  (eg. runner slides, catcher is unable to handle the throw, and the ball drops to the ground).   And this is exactly how the umpires behaved  (I can't recall how it was at first but I THINK it was the same).  So, if you were on the ball, you knew if you had to subtly wait for the catcher to get away from the plate before you went back and touched it, or knew when you had to touch the runner.

Now this was 30 years ago (OK - giving away my age).

Is this something that may have been practiced in the past, went away, and is back again?

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He has to maintain contact with the base when he appeals to BU.  If he throws the ball to another fielder, then the defense loses the right of immediate appeal ONLY, and they have to do a dead ball appeal like [mention=2859]Mudisfun[/mention] described.

They don't lose a right to appeal just by throwing to another fielder. However, the way the rule is written in FED, I would be more inclined to call the BR out even without an appeal here.


8-4-1f does use the phrase 'touches first base' in reference to the fielder with possession of the ball, as well as the batter-runner. That does make me question FEDs definitions of acquired, reached, passed, touched, etc.

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4 minutes ago, beerguy55 said:

So, don't know if this is related or not, as it pertains to home plate, instead of first base.

When I played baseball under the Little League umbrella (Big League - age 16-18 bracket - we didn't have high school baseball in our neck of the woods), we were taught by our coaches that at a play at the plate, the umpire would only give a safe signal if he saw the runner hit the plate.  (eg. runner slides, catcher is unable to handle the throw, and the ball drops to the ground).   And this is exactly how the umpires behaved  (I can't recall how it was at first but I THINK it was the same).  So, if you were on the ball, you knew if you had to subtly wait for the catcher to get away from the plate before you went back and touched it, or knew when you had to touch the runner.

Now this was 30 years ago (OK - giving away my age).

Is this something that may have been practiced in the past, went away, and is back again?

I've still been seeing that mechanic during MLB games, and at a few of the MiLB games I've seen-I live in a city with a AAA team.  Umpires still do that mechanic of waiting for a touch of the base, or a tag on the runner  Here is an example;

 

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2 minutes ago, ALStripes17 said:


They don't lose a right to appeal just by throwing to another fielder. However, the way the rule is written in FED, I would be more inclined to call the BR out even without an appeal here.

Here's the scenario that was sent to me.  Told that it came from the Wendelstadt School Manual.  Maybe I'm reading it wrong.

 

FB_IMG_1488487609331.jpg

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Here's the scenario that was sent to me.  Told that it came from the Wendelstadt School Manual.  Maybe I'm reading it wrong.

 

FB_IMG_1488487609331.jpg

The point driven home there is that the appeal must be unmistakeable. An F3 just remaining in contact with the base with possession after a BR has passed it (without touching it) doesn't constitute an appeal. He needs to verbalize the intent.

The F3 throwing the ball back to the pitcher has no bearing on the defense losing its right to appeal. The a) scenario doesn't have an appeal involved at all.

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10 minutes ago, Thawk751 said:

Here's the scenario that was sent to me.  Told that it came from the Wendelstadt School Manual.  Maybe I'm reading it wrong.

 

FB_IMG_1488487609331.jpg

So, let's say scenario A occurs, and after he throws the ball back to the pitcher (or starts throwing it around the horn), but before BR returns to the base, upon seeing the umpire signal safe (or make no signal) F3 says "but he missed the base, Blue", that, I assume, would NOT be good enough to apply an intent to appeal (retroactively) to when he was actually touching the base?  He would have to get the ball thrown back to him and touch the base before BR gets back?

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So, let's say scenario A occurs, and after he throws the ball back to the pitcher (or starts throwing it around the horn), but before BR returns to the base, upon seeing the umpire signal safe (or make no signal) F3 says "but he missed the base, Blue", that, I assume, would NOT be good enough to apply an intent to appeal (retroactively) to when he was actually touching the base?  He would have to get the ball thrown back to him and touch the base before BR gets back?

Correct. The appeal has to be known before the tag/touch of base/runner.

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2 hours ago, beerguy55 said:

So, let's say scenario A occurs, and after he throws the ball back to the pitcher (or starts throwing it around the horn), but before BR returns to the base, upon seeing the umpire signal safe (or make no signal) F3 says "but he missed the base, Blue", that, I assume, would NOT be good enough to apply an intent to appeal (retroactively) to when he was actually touching the base?  He would have to get the ball thrown back to him and touch the base before BR gets back?

That makes sense.

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17 hours ago, beerguy55 said:

 

Is this something that may have been practiced in the past, went away, and is back again?

No.  It's been the standard for as long as I was umpiring (a lot longer than 30 years ago) and remains the same.

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On 3/2/2017 at 2:50 PM, Thawk751 said:

Here's the scenario that was sent to me.  Told that it came from the Wendelstadt School Manual. 

FB_IMG_1488487609331.jpg

Nothing about this written situation indicates that the way we officiate (mechanically) this play has changed (for W school attendees). In the past, we have indicated safe if BR passed 1B before the ball arrives (not not signal anything, as suggested by the OP).

On 3/2/2017 at 8:05 AM, Thawk751 said:

So in the discussions I had with the author and other members of the group, I learned that at the Wendlestadt school, the scenario they are teaching for this one is "if a runner beats out the throw to the 1B, but misses the base, the umpire should not signal out or safe to indicate to the offense & defense that batter-runner missed the base.".  Before I learned that I would have called the BR out as soon as the ball made it into F3's glove, but they have to appeal that the runner missed the base.  That's why there is no signal.  Interesting. 

Has anyone been able to confirm/refute that this has changed for pro school?

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1 hour ago, ricka56 said:

Nothing about this written situation indicates that the way we officiate (mechanically) this play has changed (for W school attendees). In the past, we have indicated safe if BR passed 1B before the ball arrives (not not signal anything, as suggested by the OP).

Has anyone been able to confirm/refute that this has changed for pro school?

Paging @HuskerUmp22

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