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No Crying in Softball Ejection


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12u fastpitch playoff game.  I'm BU.

Top of first, runners on 1st and 2nd, 2 outs, 2 strikes.  Shortstop says to catcher "if she goes get her at third".  3rd base coach (also HC) says to F6 "yeah you just go ahead and try to throw her out" before pitch is thrown in a taunting tone.  I'm in C and here it clearly.  Strike 3 inning over.  As he's starts walking back to 1st base dugout I tell coach, in a quiet but direct tone, not to speak to the other team's players.  He starts to respond and I say "coach, that's enough, we're not discussing this".

Bottom of 3, PU calls time and walks out to P for a 10 second conversation.  I'm in A and can't make out what's being said.  HTHC comes out of dugout as PU is walking back to plate asking what that was about.  He was instructing pitcher to not lick fingers and then grab the ball for a pitch.  HTHC as he's walking back yells for the entire neighborhood to hear "oh we're playing by those rules today!".  PU issues a warning telling him to knock it off and "this is your warning".

Start of bottom of 4, I'm in shallow right and HT is slowly taking the field as HTHC gives them individual fielding positions.  One of the girls is bawling profusely, tears streaming down her face.  :crybaby2:About what, I don't know...  PU tells HTHC she can't take the field in that condition for her own safety.  He gets in PU face yelling "you can't tell me who I can play and can't".  PU tosses HC.  PU says "you have 5 minutes to leave the field".  Ugh, I know.  HTHC says "if I have 5 minutes I'm going to make them count".  I play rodeo clown telling him he has to leave and explain to AC he is now the HC.  

HTHC leaves, but then in the 5th inning comes back and is back in sight.  Technically he is off the property, but the fields are in a basin and he's basically on the street curb.  Equivalent to the upper deck area above his team's dugout.  I didn't notice at first, but I'm in C and VTHC (3BC at the time) points out that he's back and asks for a forfeit.  I said no, we're not calling a forfeit, pause the game, tell new HTHC that he needs to be out of sight and sound.  He argues that he is off the property line.  Again coach, he needs to be gone now.  He calls him and finally makes his way to parking lot.  HT wins 8-7.  

Feedback welcomed as I've learned so much from this forum.  My real question in all of this is "does PU have the authority within the rules to prevent a player from taking the field for crying?".  In PU's view, she couldn't see creating a safety issue.  Does the warning/conversation in top of 1 seem appropriate?

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Informing the coach to only address his players: appropriate and within the rules. 

Telling pitcher not to lick fingers and go direct to the ball: appropriate and within the rules.

Warning the coach for his response to the finger licking: appropriate response.

Telling the coach he cannot play someone who is crying? Depends on the situation... kid is BALLING, where she is not in control of herself, well, the coach just looks like a jerk to everyone and I might get involved there. Kid is just sniveling? Unless it is F2 (my safety!), then I am not grabbing then end of the stick.


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  • 2 weeks later...

State 12u semi-final and I had just that^.  I noticed the catcher crying during her at bat.  She ended up walking and I asked the first base coach to check on her.  He blew me off.  I asked him again.  “She’s fine” he said.  Catcher gave me a thumbs up, so we went on.

When she came back on defense I could now tell she was in obvious pain.  She was barely tossing the ball back to the pitcher and did not take a throw down to second.  This is a catcher I’ve had a number of times during the year and am always happy to work behind her.  She has a laser throw to second ... normally.  I don’t know what she did, but it was her throwing arm and it had her in serious physical distress.

I typically will not throw a ball to the pitcher to put it in play.  That day I did though.

I asked the coaches to check on her.  That was all I could do.  What irked me was they had two players sitting on the bench (one was the DP and the other was being used as a courtesy runner for the pitcher) and wouldn’t pull her.


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