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20 Second Pitch Clock

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So it appears that NCAA is expanding their pitch clock to 20 seconds on all pitches.  I've always carried a stopwatch on the bases for timing between innings but have never kept track between pitches.  For those that have, what are some tips?  I guess what I'm getting at is I don't want to be peeking at my stopwatch when the pitcher balks or makes a quick pickoff attempt.  

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I’m sure we’ll get instruction at the regional clinics and our associations. 

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2 minutes ago, agdz59 said:

Use your phone! 

I'll see myself out now.

 

It takes me more than 20 seconds to unlock my phone.  That’s what happens when you give smart technology to dumb people.  :P

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On 8/17/2019 at 9:39 PM, Richvee said:

I’m sure we’ll get instruction at the regional clinics and our associations. 

It's an off year of a new rule book  Regional Clinics are just online videos to cut costs

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4 minutes ago, GPblue said:

It's an off year of a new rule book  Regional Clinics are just online videos to cut costs

Good point. :Facepalm:

I do hope we get some guidance somewhere.  I know I have questions.

Pitcher is on the rubber, batter steps in at the 5 second mark. Pitcher looking in for a sign, batter requests time 10 seconds in.  Pitcher steps off, batter takes 5 seconds or so steps back in, pitcher steps back on the mound....... bang ......20 seconds. Who delayed?  The batter asks no for time, or the pitcher stepping off when time was granted. Is it a delay at all?  

Does stepping off the rubber with a runner dancing off 3b reset  the clock?  

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1 hour ago, Kevin_K said:

IIRC, the 20 second clock is not in effect with runners on base.

The new language makes it sound like that is not the case now .

From NCAA.com:  

The NCAA Playing Rules Oversight Panel approved a 20-second action rule in baseball that will be enforced before all pitches in the 2019-20 academic year.

It will be optional for a school to have visible clocks to keep the time between pitches. If no visible clock is used, one of the base umpires will keep the 20-second time limit on the field.

If the pitcher is at fault for violating the 20-second action rule, a ball will be awarded in the count. If the hitter violates the 20-second action rule, a strike will be awarded in the count.

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On 8/20/2019 at 4:15 PM, Richvee said:

Good point. :Facepalm:

I do hope we get some guidance somewhere.  I know I have questions.

Pitcher is on the rubber, batter steps in at the 5 second mark. Pitcher looking in for a sign, batter requests time 10 seconds in.  Pitcher steps off, batter takes 5 seconds or so steps back in, pitcher steps back on the mound....... bang ......20 seconds. Who delayed?  The batter asks no for time, or the pitcher stepping off when time was granted. Is it a delay at all?  

Does stepping off the rubber with a runner dancing off 3b reset  the clock?  

Off setting penalties, replay the down.

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Have your crew's second base umpire act like an NBA referee during an in-bounds play:  have him move his right arm, parallel to the ground (almost like a safe call with one arm) as he counts off the seconds.  LOL

What a joke.  

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32 minutes ago, lawump said:

Have your crew's second base umpire act like an NBA referee during an in-bounds play:  have him move his right arm, parallel to the ground (almost like a safe call with one arm) as he counts off the seconds.  LOL

What a joke.  

Could be be Atlantic League balk rule.

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7 hours ago, lawump said:

Have your crew's second base umpire act like an NBA referee during an in-bounds play:  have him move his right arm, parallel to the ground (almost like a safe call with one arm) as he counts off the seconds.  LOL

What a joke.  

 

Sadly, I have done this ... not my full arm, and I wasn’t actually counting ... but it worked.  Coach saw me waving my hand like I was counting and started getting his signals in quicker.  :shrug:

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On 9/6/2019 at 10:05 AM, lawump said:

What a joke.

One has to wonder why they (the NCAA) are implementing this? Surely the NCAA doesn’t have a game length problem, do they?

Or, is this something that has a whiff of influence by Major League Baseball, gauging to see how it goes over with players? I can see this being very difficult to implement in the Show because the Players Union would have a gripefest. The NCAA doesn’t suffer that resistance from players.

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Dumb question — I’m not familiar with NCAA rules.

Has there never been a “clock” on pitchers (and hitters) before?  Or was it there and just not enforced/emphasized?

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1 hour ago, The Man in Blue said:

Dumb question — I’m not familiar with NCAA rules.

Has there never been a “clock” on pitchers (and hitters) before?  Or was it there and just not enforced/emphasized?

There is a between innings clock for maybe 5 years now, and the specifics have changed a couple times. In the same amount of time there has been a 20-second pitch clock with no runners on base. If there was no visual clock displayed then base umpire (varies on # of BU) kept it.  

 

Was not strictly enforced.  Needed egregious violations to be called. 

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Many probably know already,

One recommendation made by Tom Hiler is to purchase the Ready Ref / Ref Smart vibrating timers that football officials have been using.

They have some programmed for 20 and 120 seconds. It's a pita, but it's what was recommended, to avoid having to look at it.

 

Screenshot_20200124-022835.png

Screenshot_20200124-022937.png

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Think I'll pass on a $70 timer.  Kinda stinks for a northern guy, I can't really work weekdays with my real job so even if I work every weekend that the weather allows I'm lucky to get 6 doubleheaders.  $175 for cbua registration, $75 for association dues, buying hats the conference wants, put in all the time to learn the little NCAA rules/test, blocking weekends that end up getting cancelled at the last minute with no compensation, kinda makes a guy wonder...

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Is the point to start the clock after a dead ball going be considered as ball live or the second point with the pitcher on the rubber still needed. 

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31 minutes ago, Jimurray said:

Is the point to start the clock after a dead ball going be considered as ball live or the second point with the pitcher on the rubber still needed. 

Putting the ball in play starts the clock. It's explicit in the rule.

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2 hours ago, Matt said:

Putting the ball in play starts the clock. It's explicit in the rule.

Yes, I think this would clear up any confusion about when to point after a dead ball. I had seen some other verbiage that said otherwise but this makes it clear:

"• Following an umpire’s call of “time” or if the ball becomes dead (for example, after a foul ball or a pick-off that goes out of play), the timer shall stop, reset, and start again when the plate umpire signals “play” after the pitcher engages the pitcher’s rubber with possession of the ball, the catcher is in the catcher’s box, and the batter is in the batter’s box. (See Rule 6-6.) "

edited to add:

This is how that bullet point read in early October which confused a bunch of us:

"• Following an umpire’s call of “time” or if the ball becomes dead (for example, after a foul ball or a pick-off that goes out of play), the timer shall stop and start again when the plate umpire signals “play” after the pitcher has possession of the ball in the circle surrounding the pitcher’s rubber, the catcher is in the catcher’s box, and the batter is in the batter’s box. "

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I have deleted my earlier post because I do not want to contribute to or cause any confusion about the current NCAA pitch clock rules. The funny thing is I used the current rule book and the current study guide for my answer and it turns out those are already out-of-date when it comes to this question.

Thanks to Mr. Jimurray for explaining to me what the up-to-date info is. I do not have access to Arbiter so could you post the current ruling please.

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4 hours ago, Senor Azul said:

NCAA baseball clock protocol is covered extensively in Appendix F of the 2019-2020 rule book. It clearly states that (emphasis added)—

“The 20-second time limit (or clock) starts when the pitcher receives the ball on the mound and stops when the pitcher begins his pitching motion. (For the first pitch each half-inning, the 20-second clock begins when the umpire puts the ball into play.) The time limit (or clock) is used only when the bases are unoccupied…”

From the 2019-2020 College Baseball Rules Study Guide

Play 6-16   B1 hits a foul ball that (a) goes immediately to the backstop, or (b) hits his foot causing him to hop around in pain. Ruling:  The 20-second clock begins (a) when F1 receives a new ball, and (b) as soon as B1 regains his composure and is ready to step back into the batter’s box. In either case, the clock should not start if there is a delay in retrieving the foul ball. Also, the clock should start before the plate umpire puts the ball back into play.

Play 6-17  B1 hits a foul ball that (a) goes sharply over the fence, or (b) rolls slowly near the foul line. Ruling:  The 20-second count begins (a) when F1 receives a new ball; it’s unlikely B1 ran or took more than a couple of steps and (b) as soon as B1 returns to the vicinity of the batter’s box, retrieves his bat and is ready to step back into the box. B1 almost certainly ran down to first base. In (b) the clock should not start if there is a delay in retrieving the foul ball. Also, the clock should start before the plate umpire puts the ball back into play.

There are case plays which show that when the umpire grants the pitcher time the clock will resume (not start anew) after the umpire puts the ball back into play.

The rule has been expanded to include runners on and become an "action" rule by an NCAA post in October 2019. The bullet point I reference is in that notice and thankfully was corrected sometime after they first published it. The 2019 - 2020 study guide would be out of date regarding the action rule.

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12 hours ago, Senor Azul said:

I have deleted my earlier post because I do not want to contribute to or cause any confusion about the current NCAA pitch clock rules. The funny thing is I used the current rule book and the current study guide for my answer and it turns out those are already out-of-date when it comes to this question.

Thanks to Mr. Jimurray for explaining to me what the up-to-date info is. I do not have access to Arbiter so could you post the current ruling please.

A little long but here it is:

NCAA BASEBALL
OCTOBER 2019
20-SECOND ACTION RULE LIMITS
The existing NCAA rule (Appendix F) that sets a 20-second time limit for a pitcher to begin his motion to deliver a pitch when the bases are unoccupied has been expanded for the 2020 season to include situations when there are baserunners. A similar rule has been used successfully at the AA and AAA levels of professional baseball for the past several seasons. The updated rule will be administered using the following guidelines:
• A visible clock may be used but is not required. If a visible clock is not available for use, the time limit will be kept on the field by a base umpire.
• A pitcher shall be allowed twenty (20) seconds to begin the activity preceding each pitch. The pitcher does not necessarily have to release the ball within 20 seconds; however, the pitcher must begin his windup motion or otherwise begin the motion to come set in order to comply with the 20-second rule.
• For the first pitch of an at-bat the timer shall start when the plate umpire signals “play”. The umpire should signal when the pitcher has possession of the ball in the circle surrounding the pitcher’s rubber, the catcher is in the catcher’s box, and the batter is in the batter’s box.
• After each pitch of an at-bat in which the ball remains alive and in play and the batter remains at bat, the timer shall start when the pitcher has possession of the ball in the circle surrounding the pitcher’s rubber and the catcher is in the catcher’s box.
• Following an umpire’s call of “time” or if the ball becomes dead (for example, after a foul ball or a pick-off that goes out of play), the timer shall stop, reset, and start again when the plate umpire signals “play” after the pitcher engages the pitcher’s rubber with possession of the ball, the catcher is in the catcher’s box, and the batter is in the batter’s box. (See Rule 6-6.)
• The timer shall stop and reset under the following circumstances:
▪ The pitcher begins his windup motion or begins the motion to come set;
▪ The pitcher makes a pickoff attempt at any base;
▪ The pitcher feints a pickoff attempt or steps off the rubber with runners on base (in which case the timer shall reset and start again immediately);
▪ The catcher leaves the catcher’s box to give defensive signals or to confer with the pitcher (in which case the timer shall stop, reset, and start again after the catcher returns to the catcher’s box);
▪ The umpire calls “time”. If a visible clock is being used and the operator does not start the timer at the appropriate time, the umpire shall call “time” and signal to the operator to reset the timer and start again immediately.
• Batters are expected to enter the batter’s box promptly prior to the first pitch of an at-bat and should remain in the batter’s box in accordance with the Batter’s Box Rule (Rule 7.1.d). Batters should not delay entry to gain an undue advantage. If the batter does not enter the box and become alert to the pitcher with 5 or more seconds remaining, the batter
will be adjudged to have violated the rule and the umpire shall award a strike without the pitcher having to deliver the pitch. The ball is dead, and no runners may advance.
• Pitchers are expected to begin the motion to deliver the pitch as soon as the batter enters the box and becomes alert to the pitcher. If the pitcher does not begin his motion to deliver the pitch (or become set) prior to the timer reaching “0”, the pitcher will be adjudged to have violated the rule and shall be warned by the umpire. There is one warning per pitcher.
• After a pitcher is warned, if he continues to violate the rule, the umpire shall award a ball without the pitcher having to deliver the pitch. The ball is dead, and no runners may advance, unless the ball awarded by the umpire is the batter’s fourth ball in which case the batter is entitled to advance to first.
• If the catcher or other defensive player intentionally delays getting the ball to the pitcher on the mound so that the time limit doesn’t start, or if the pitcher delays taking his position on the mound, the plate umpire may point to have the 20-second time limit started.

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