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D- Money

Obstruction by F3

Question

B1 hits a deep ball past F9. While rounding 1st base, he gets momentarily tangled up with F1. Continuing to 2nd, he is held up by the 3rd base coach a few strides after touching the 2nd base bag. The coach at third wants a base award based on obstruction, moving the runner to third.

If the runner passes 2nd base, is he "attempting to reach 3rd"? Or does he have to continue to the 3rd base bag? 

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We'll rule on this with all available info. We call the OBS when it happens and let play unfold.

If it's a classic "triple ball" into the RF corner, then I'm likely to award 3B.

But if F9 gets to it in a hurry and gets it back in, I might award only 2B (leave him there). Any benefit of the doubt will go to the obstructed runner.

The penalty for OBS is to award bases in order to nullify the act of OBS. I don't much care what he was "attempting to reach," which is not really a criterion for the penalty.

In some slight cases of OBS, the runner is mostly redirected around a fielder without contact, and he might continue on and try for 3B (or even make it).

In others, a huge collision might see the runner tagged out while lying on the ground near 1B. An award of 3B is possible in both cases, depending on the situation.

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At the completion of the play the umpire will place the runner on the base the umpire feels the runner would have reached if there was no obstruction.  In your case that could be second or third, umpire's judgement.

Obstruction is not a license to have the runner go too far.  For example, in your case if it was just a slight bump and the runner tried for third and was thrown out "by a mile" the umpire could rule the runner out since he most likely would have been out even If not obstructed.  Now, if the runner tried for third and was out on a bang-hang play the ump would probably rule him safe because the obstruction most likely caused the out.

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If the third base coach held him up at second, the third base coach agreed that second is where he should be.  :insertevillaughhere:

If the third base coach really felt he should have gotten third, the third base coach knew the obstruction happened and should have been coaching him to third.

Not saying your award has anything to do with that ... just observing coaching behavior.

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11 hours ago, The Man in Blue said:

If the third base coach held him up at second, the third base coach agreed that second is where he should be.  :insertevillaughhere:
 

Not necessarily.  Not worth risking the call perhaps.

And why the evil laugh?  You're neutral - remember?

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13 hours ago, The Man in Blue said:

If the third base coach held him up at second, the third base coach agreed that second is where he should be.  :insertevillaughhere:

If the third base coach really felt he should have gotten third, the third base coach knew the obstruction happened and should have been coaching him to third.

Not saying your award has anything to do with that ... just observing coaching behavior.

Depends on the coach.

Some coaches will send him to third, or even home, thinking that OBS gives him license to do anything he wants, only to learn the hard way that he's wrong.  They typically only make that mistake once.

More reasonable coaches will trust the process and just coach the runner on the merit of the play itself, and trust the umpires to handle the OBS appropriately.   OR, on the other side, NOT trust the umpire to handle it appropriately, so won't take the risk of sending the runner to the next base....not being sure if the ump saw OBS or will judge it appropriately....or judge it the same way he would.

Assuming the third base coach saw the OBS at all.

In short, even if I see my batter and F3 end up on the ground in a tangled mess, and after he gets up again and as he's approaching second base the ball is coming in from F9, I'm not sending him to third simply because I believe that's where he should have ended up.   If I'm going to have an argument with the umpire that my player should be on third, I'm going to make sure my worst case scenario is he's on second, rather than out.   I'm only sending him to third if I think he can make it on the play itself, not on what I hope an umpire will rule.

 

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A lot of assumptions on our parts ... as is the norm on these forums.

My assumption: if the runner stopped a few steps after second, the coach was already stopping him before he got to second.  

I guess I am different in my coaching thinking though — if I thought my runner should be on third and it could be close, I am coaching him to third and forcing the play to give the umpire something to work with when making his decision.  I’m not walking him into a tag out 10 feet from the bag though — that gives the umpire the wrong thing to work with.  My experience is most umpires are conservative in awards.  If Blue sees him stop at second, the vast majority of umpires (at the youth level anyway) are not going to give him a freebie.

Just to clarify, I personally am not using that for my decision.  I am saying this based on my observations of many umpires.

And just because I like evil laughs.  :insertevillaughhere:

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I find these types of things the hardest to judge the proper award, in practice. I think because i umpire at many age and skill levels, i have a hard time judging if the BR can actually make two more bases or not on the hit. Many times I will see a ball gap the LF and CF, and roll slowly all the way back to the wall: I will come in from A, watch the touch, make sure there is no OBS, and notice the kid motoring on his horse towards second, look back at the play and still see the ball bouncing around, and get on my horse in preparation to be taking the BR into 3rd, only to have the kid running like he is in loose sand and only getting to second.  Many times I'm thinking to myself "geez, if he was OBS at first, i probably would have given him third with that shot".

Two weeks ago i had a BR hit a gapper that when it hit the fence, bounced back over the Cf and LF heads and rolled into LF, with them chasing the ball. The BR missed touching first running full out, and a DEF Coach in the dugout noticed and starts yelling. I'm thinking to myself that now i'm going to have to punch this kid out if they properly appeal because he will definitely be standing up into third... AND I was wrong... One slow motion trip around the bases and he gets gunned down at third...

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1 hour ago, BobUmp said:

I find these types of things the hardest to judge the proper award, in practice.

As I say, take all info into account: where the ball goes, what the fielders do with it, how well the BR runs, how good the throw in is.

The good news is: the "proper" award is determined by your judgment. Within limits, you can't be wrong! 

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In Little League, especially the lower levels, when the ball is hit, all the infielders instinctively go to a "spot"--just like PeeWee basketball.  Most of the time, they stand on the bag anticipating a throw for a play there.  And the batter-runner is obstructed many times.  I had one game where the OM was constantly on my case when his runners were (or were NOT) obstructed near a base.  He dutifully asked for time and then came out at adjutant's pace to me to get into face!  "My runner was interfered with [OBSTRUCTED] at that base!  Why doesn't he get another base?  Why didn't you call it?  Didn't you see it?"

I told him (calmly) that I DID see the OBSTRUCTION, I signaled it, and I ruled on it.  This clown didn't know the difference between Type A and Type B which all of these were.  I told him that in my judgement the runner was protected to 2B (to only 1B on one occasion) and that's where he would have ended up absent the OBS.  He insisted (loudly!) that the runners were entitled to another base.  Since no play was being made on said runner(s), it was Type B and no automatic award was warranted.  Her got loud again, and I suggested that he get educated him the rules.  The OBS was called!  And the award/non-award was made in accordance with the rules.

When an umpire calls Type B OBS, he immediately must judge to which base in the runner/BR is entitled had the OBS not occurred.  Should the runner reach that protected base and proceeds the least bit further, his protection under OBS is no longer in force, and he is in jeopardy.  If the OBS legitimately thwarts the runner from successfully advancing, you MAY award that base.  100% judgement.  Note that OBS can also occur when a runner is attempting to RETURN to a base. 

Nothing about Type B is automatic most of the time.

Mike

Las Vegas

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33 minutes ago, Vegas_Ump said:

When an umpire calls Type B OBS, he immediately must judge to which base in the runner/BR is entitled had the OBS not occurred.

Neither true nor, in many cases, possible. Subsequent events can affect the award.

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Hey guys, thanks for the replys and the discussion. I had believed that the decision was based on judgment of the variables associated with the play. I was doing a one man 14u fall ball game and unfortunately missed the contact while attempting to get into position on the third base side of the mound ,( my bad ). My initial move was to expect a close play if the runner tried for third. Since no bodies went flying I couldn't be sure that the contact was enough to award the base. Thanks again

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5 hours ago, D- Money said:

Hey guys, thanks for the replys and the discussion. I had believed that the decision was based on judgment of the variables associated with the play. I was doing a one man 14u fall ball game and unfortunately missed the contact while attempting to get into position on the third base side of the mound ,( my bad ). My initial move was to expect a close play if the runner tried for third. Since no bodies went flying I couldn't be sure that the contact was enough to award the base. Thanks again

Why were you trying to get to the third base side of the mound?  Assuming 2 man and nobody on you would come in and pivot or triple A pivot and take the runner to whatever base he was going to. You read the ball while doing this until you need to watch 1B for the touch and any obstruction right after. 

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5 hours ago, Jimurray said:

Why were you trying to get to the third base side of the mound?  Assuming 2 man and nobody on you would come in and pivot or triple A pivot and take the runner to whatever base he was going to. You read the ball while doing this until you need to watch 1B for the touch and any obstruction right after. 

 

5 hours ago, Jimurray said:

I was doing a one man 14u fall ball game

 

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From the 2016 BRD (section 36, p. 43): 

OBR Authoritative Opinion:  Evans:  When Type 2 obstruction occurs, the umpire must make an initial decision to which base he will protect the runner. That is determined by the position of the runner, the speed of the runner, the position of the fielder, and the location of the ball at the very instant the obstruction occurs. That initial decision may change based on subsequent events; i.e., ball eludes a fielder or ball is dropped by a fielder. (This is called post-obstruction evidence.)

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14 hours ago, maven said:

Neither true nor, in many cases, possible. Subsequent events can affect the award.

Tomayto Tomahto.  The umpire is indeed making an immediate assessment (or should be) about how far the runner is protected...as the play progresses they can change that assessment.

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8 hours ago, Jimurray said:

I didn’t RTWFT. 

:HS

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