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Young_Ump

3rd out at 1st base - timing play??

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This wasn't a situation that happened in a game I did, just something another umpire told me that sounded kinda funny.

R3, 2 outs, ground ball to the infield. Throw to F3 takes him off the bag and he has to put a tag on the batter-runner for the 3rd out of the inning. R3 touches home plate before the tag occurs. But the umpire said that any play at first base counts as a "force" so its not a timing play and the run does not score, even though R3 touched home before the tag. Thoughts?

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The third out was on the batter-runner prior to him reaching first base.

No run.

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As stated above, no run may score on a play when the third out is made by the batter/runner prior to reaching first base safely

The batter/runner being put out at first is not a force out.  A force out is a put out of a runner who is "forced" to the next base due to the action of the batter.

That said, no run may score on a play where the third out is a force play.

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1 hour ago, yawetag said:

The third out was on the batter-runner prior to him reaching first base.

No run.

This is a universal truth.

22 minutes ago, Lou B said:

As stated above, no run may score on a play when the third out is made by the batter/runner prior to reaching first base. 

The batter/runner being put out at first is not a force out.  A force out is a put out of a runner who is "forced" to the next base due to the action of the batter.

That said, no run may score on a play where the third out is a force play.

And when a runner Is forced to advance, it's a force out whether the base or the runner is tagged before the runner reaches the base he is forced to.  This is important to understand based on your question @Young_Ump.

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5 hours ago, grayhawk said:

And when a runner Is forced to advance, it's a force out whether the base or the runner is tagged before the runner reaches the base he is forced to.  This is important to understand based on your question @Young_Ump.

Okay wow I definitely did not know that (which is awkward to admit :huh:). Thank you!

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8 hours ago, Young_Ump said:

Okay wow I definitely did not know that (which is awkward to admit :huh:). Thank you!

Don't be afraid to admit anything .... you can't learn if you don't ask questions.  This stuff if important to what we do, because simple /fundamental things should be called correctly all of the time,  and this is one of those times! :nod:     That's what we're all here for is to learn and get better, right?!

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4 hours ago, Thunderheads said:

Don't be afraid to admit anything .... you can't learn if you don't ask questions.  This stuff if important to what we do, because simple /fundamental things should be called correctly all of the time,  and this is one of those times! :nod:     That's what we're all here for is to learn and get better, right?!

Thanks @Thunderheads. Definitely always trying to learn and get better. I lurked on this site a long time before I made an account, and I have learned a ton!

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2 minutes ago, Young_Ump said:

Thanks @Thunderheads. Definitely always trying to learn and get better. I lurked on this site a long time before I made an account, and I have learned a ton!

my / our pleasure!

I've been on here since 2009 and I learn something every day ......STILL!

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On 12/9/2019 at 1:42 PM, Young_Ump said:

This wasn't a situation that happened in a game I did, just something another umpire told me that sounded kinda funny.

R3, 2 outs, ground ball to the infield. Throw to F3 takes him off the bag and he has to put a tag on the batter-runner for the 3rd out of the inning. R3 touches home plate before the tag occurs. But the umpire said that any play at first base counts as a "force" so its not a timing play and the run does not score, even though R3 touched home before the tag. Thoughts?

I am going to ask a question that's going to sound dick-ish.  Please understand that is not my intent - I truly want to learn too, and I ask this question to help me understand, and to help me set my expectations.  And know this, in my experience you are not alone in asking this type of question, or not knowing this off the top of your head.    You are further ahead than a very high number of umpires who won't bother trying to find out, and I commend you for asking the question.

This is from the perspective of a coach.

As a coach, I expect a "paid" "trained" "certified" umpire to know this type of thing, but I continue to be surprised by the number of umpires (even ones with many years under their belts) who don't.   I had always thought any umpire would/should know more than me, a non-umpire.

Don't get me wrong, I don't expect an umpire to know the entire rule book, especially an amateur...there are too many rules that apply to situations you may only see one every 1000 games, if you ever see them at all.  I am talking about what I consider the basics...common scenarios that could/should happen several times in a season, if not almost every game.  I think this is one of those scenarios.

As such, I figured I would only see "protestable" errors maybe once or twice over an entire season...call it 80-100 games.  In my experience, it's more like once every five to ten games...and the vast vast majority of the time protests never get made because it's not worth the time and effort..or the coach doesn't' realize the ump screwed up...so they don't come to light.

So, I guess I'm asking...how are you trained, or what kind of orientation did you get before you get your first assignment?   Does most of your knowledge come from sites like this?  (if so, what did umpires do pre 1995?) I fully expect that a lot of umpiring is "on the job" training, but I would think there would be certain things covered before the first shift, so to speak.  Am I being naive?  Is my expectation unreasonable?

 

IMO - the rules is the easy part of the job.  Game management is where umpires really differentiate themselves and shine...and the number one reason why I know I would suck as an umpire.

 

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@beerguy55, I agree with you. This situation seems so basic that I wouldn't expect anyone to question it, much less an umpire on the field.

Maybe 5.08 should become 1.01.

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2 hours ago, beerguy55 said:

I am going to ask a question that's going to sound dick-ish.  Please understand that is not my intent - I truly want to learn too, and I ask this question to help me understand, and to help me set my expectations.  And know this, in my experience you are not alone in asking this type of question, or not knowing this off the top of your head.    You are further ahead than a very high number of umpires who won't bother trying to find out, and I commend you for asking the question.

This is from the perspective of a coach.

As a coach, I expect a "paid" "trained" "certified" umpire to know this type of thing, but I continue to be surprised by the number of umpires (even ones with many years under their belts) who don't.   I had always thought any umpire would/should know more than me, a non-umpire.

Don't get me wrong, I don't expect an umpire to know the entire rule book, especially an amateur...there are too many rules that apply to situations you may only see one every 1000 games, if you ever see them at all.  I am talking about what I consider the basics...common scenarios that could/should happen several times in a season, if not almost every game.  I think this is one of those scenarios.

As such, I figured I would only see "protestable" errors maybe once or twice over an entire season...call it 80-100 games.  In my experience, it's more like once every five to ten games...and the vast vast majority of the time protests never get made because it's not worth the time and effort..or the coach doesn't' realize the ump screwed up...so they don't come to light.

So, I guess I'm asking...how are you trained, or what kind of orientation did you get before you get your first assignment?   Does most of your knowledge come from sites like this?  (if so, what did umpires do pre 1995?) I fully expect that a lot of umpiring is "on the job" training, but I would think there would be certain things covered before the first shift, so to speak.  Am I being naive?  Is my expectation unreasonable?

 

IMO - the rules is the easy part of the job.  Game management is where umpires really differentiate themselves and shine...and the number one reason why I know I would suck as an umpire.

 

I'll tell you what my training was before the first time I stepped on a field was. 

One 2 hour session taught by someone who didn't know what they were talking about, and a couple hours spent googling. Seriously. I don't think I actually picked up a rule book until just before year 3. That led to finding this site and starting to grasp how little I knew and how to improve. I still don't claim to be an expert (well, actually, in non umpiring groups I do), but I actually know the rules to the point that I can work out thorny rules issues or remember a relatively obscure rule and apply it correctly live*.

Granted, I started doing this for a relatively small and wholly noncompetitive rec league at age 14, but leagues are so desperate for umpires that they'll put any warm body on the field that vaguely knows the rules. I look back in horror that I'd be allowed to adjudicate a game I knew so little about.

@Young_Ump I agree with @beerguy55, this is something you should know. But you certainly shouldn't feel bad about not knowing it. Just use this as an experience to push yourself to learn something new and go find something else you don't know. Personally, my recommendation would be to

A) Read every non equipment post on this site from here on out. This is the way I found out how much I didn't (and still don't) know. There are a ton of plays and rulings that come from interpretations and collective experience you can't find in the rule book. With that said,

B) Read the rule book of the code(s) you call front to back. If you work a code(s) that has a case book, dive into that after or simultaneously with the rule book. As you come across rules you don't understand how too apply, google them. I will often have my first search specifically look for this site, like "thrown equipment umpire empire".

If you apply yourself, you can make huge advances, especially at the start, by soaking up all the information you can. I'm going through the process of learning basketball as an official and the amount I'm learning is crazy.

Good luck!

 

*Nailing an intentionally dropped ball in the highest level game I've worked with a college umpire behind the plate is still the highlight of my umpiring career. That one felt good.

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6 minutes ago, Biscuit said:

I'll tell you what my training was before the first time I stepped on a field was. 

One 2 hour session taught by someone who didn't know what they were talking about, and a couple hours spent googling. Seriously. I don't think I actually picked up a rule book until just before year 3. That led to finding this site and starting to grasp how little I knew and how to improve. I still don't claim to be an expert (well, actually, in non umpiring groups I do), but I actually know the rules to the point that I can work out thorny rules issues or remember a relatively obscure rule and apply it correctly live*.

Granted, I started doing this for a relatively small and wholly noncompetitive rec league at age 14, but leagues are so desperate for umpires that they'll put any warm body on the field that vaguely knows the rules. I look back in horror that I'd be allowed to adjudicate a game I knew so little about.

@Young_Ump I agree with @beerguy55, this is something you should know. But you certainly shouldn't feel bad about not knowing it. Just use this as an experience to push yourself to learn something new and go find something else you don't know. Personally, my recommendation would be to

A) Read every non equipment post on this site from here on out. This is the way I found out how much I didn't (and still don't) know. There are a ton of plays and rulings that come from interpretations and collective experience you can't find in the rule book. With that said,

B) Read the rule book of the code(s) you call front to back. If you work a code(s) that has a case book, dive into that after or simultaneously with the rule book. As you come across rules you don't understand how too apply, google them. I will often have my first search specifically look for this site, like "thrown equipment umpire empire".

If you apply yourself, you can make huge advances, especially at the start, by soaking up all the information you can. I'm going through the process of learning basketball as an official and the amount I'm learning is crazy.

Good luck!

 

*Nailing an intentionally dropped ball in the highest level game I've worked with a college umpire behind the plate is still the highlight of my umpiring career. That one felt good.

I've been chided before when I advise this: 3 pages every BM. Whether you've had extensive training or no training you should continue to review the actual rules.  

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2 hours ago, Biscuit said:

I don't think I actually picked up a rule book until just before year 3.

There's only one person to blame for this.

Before I stepped on a field, I had read the book at least twice, found several online tests, and downloaded PDFs of different mechanics from various organizations. No one told me to do it, but I felt it was my duty as an arbiter of the game.

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1 hour ago, yawetag said:

There's only one person to blame for this.

Before I stepped on a field, I had read the book at least twice, found several online tests, and downloaded PDFs of different mechanics from various organizations. No one told me to do it, but I felt it was my duty as an arbiter of the game.


I agree with you that it is our duty, but I don’t agree with “only one person to blame”, @yawetag.  Maybe it is my work experience, but I have this unusual philosophy:

A worker can fail on his or her own, however it takes the whole organization to allow the individual to do it.

A waiter/waitress can provide terrible service, but somewhere there is a supervisor, manager, trainer, etc. that allows that to happen.

A salesperson can lie and cheat or just screw things up from ignorance.  Somewhere there were the people above who trained that, encouraged that, or just looked away with a blind eye.

An umpire can jump on a field after paying his fee with absolutely NO actual knowledge.  Whether you are talking about sanctioning bodies or local associations, those organization allow it and do nothing to prevent it.

Yes, there are guys and gals who will put in the extra effort like you, but they are few and far between.  Hell, I’d wager money most of the senior/experienced officials (around me at least) have rarely, if ever, opened a rule book.

 

 

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I wanted to separate these posts to allow for responses ...

My experience before my first “real” game ...

When I was 13-15 years old I worked softball games for the community league that I played baseball in.  No training.

When I was much older and running the community league my kids played in, I slowly was drafted into covering games that my usual (unlicensed) guys couldn’t cover.  They both had been umpiring in the league since before my time (20+ years).  I always joked that they were there before the fields.   From there I started doing it more regularly.  Again, no training, but I started reading PONY rule books as an administrator (not an umpire) so I could deal with coaches.

Fast forward another few years and I paid my $60 to get my Fed (IHSA) license.  I worked my first game before taking my test or attending any kind of a clinic.  Hell, IHSA doesn’t even provide us rule books every year anymore!

As for what is required in the codes I work ... the ONLY requirement before you work a game is to pay your fee.

IHSA — each year: pay your fee, take a test in the spring; every other year: attend a clinic (loosely defined)

USA — each year: pay your fee, attend a local meeting

USSSA — each year: pay your fee

Anything beyond that is up to the individual umpire to find opportunities to continue to learn.  Some of us do.  Some of us don’t.

Yes, it is virtually ALL learning on the job.  When my son and one of my daughters started umpiring, I told them “There is no practice.  You work games and you learn.”  When I get discouraged with volleyball as it is not “natural” to me, my wife tells me “There is no practice.  You work games and you learn.  That’s what you told the kids.”  I can only smile and nod.  

 

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1 hour ago, yawetag said:

There's only one person to blame for this.

Before I stepped on a field, I had read the book at least twice, found several online tests, and downloaded PDFs of different mechanics from various organizations. No one told me to do it, but I felt it was my duty as an arbiter of the game.

I absolutely agree. It would have been better for everyone involved if I had at an earlier point, but I was never given any direction in how to improve, or even how too start. That's my point. I was thrown into the deep end with no direction, no training, and very little to no supervision. I probably should have thought too open the book, but I was stumbling around blind, as I believe many new umpires are.

For the record, when my little brother started officiating this year, the first thing I made him do was sit down and read the rule book. We'll be doing it again here pretty soon for baseball.

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7 hours ago, beerguy55 said:

So, I guess I'm asking...how are you trained, or what kind of orientation did you get before you get your first assignment?   Does most of your knowledge come from sites like this?  (if so, what did umpires do pre 1995?) I fully expect that a lot of umpiring is "on the job" training, but I would think there would be certain things covered before the first shift, so to speak.  Am I being naive?  Is my expectation unreasonable?

No you're definitely not being naive and your expectation isn't unreasonable.

Before I ever started umpiring I was a baseball nerd and I had actually read the rulebook through. I got into umpiring a little over 2 years ago when I was 15. I primarily do LL games, but not as a volunteer for LL. Pretty much all of the local Little League's here use our association to cover their games. Before I got put on any games I went to 5 class room sessions, a field session, and 2 supervised scrimmage games. Then my first season I did mostly low level minors games, with experienced umpires. I feel that I had a pretty thorough training. Since then I've read and watched a ton of helpful resources online, and I make it a point when I work with veteran umpires to ask them for feedback and any advice they have. Yes my question was rather ignorant and I willingly admit that I should have already known it. I'll learn from it, which is what I always try to do whenever something happens in a game.

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2 hours ago, Biscuit said:

I absolutely agree. It would have been better for everyone involved if I had at an earlier point, but I was never given any direction in how to improve, or even how too start. That's my point. I was thrown into the deep end with no direction, no training, and very little to no supervision. I probably should have thought too open the book, but I was stumbling around blind, as I believe many new umpires are.

For the record, when my little brother started officiating this year, the first thing I made him do was sit down and read the rule book. We'll be doing it again here pretty soon for baseball.

That is where you needed to take a step back and open a rule book and start reading cover to cover, not a MLB book, but a LL rule book.  I know what you went thru and hope you have made good strides to get better and gain a better knowledge of the game's rules.  I always thought that playing the game was a good starting pointing, but quickly learned that this was only the playing part of the rules.  I thought that since I played D1 baseball, I knew all there was to know about the game.  I was grossly mistaking.  That was only the tip of the knowledge.  So to make my suggestion to all the newbies, read, read, read and never stop reading the rule books, online sessions, online sites like this one.  It will only make you better and you will feel better for it.     

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10 hours ago, MRG9999 said:

That is where you needed to take a step back and open a rule book and start reading cover to cover, not a MLB book, but a LL rule book.  I know what you went thru and hope you have made good strides to get better and gain a better knowledge of the game's rules.  I always thought that playing the game was a good starting pointing, but quickly learned that this was only the playing part of the rules.  I thought that since I played D1 baseball, I knew all there was to know about the game.  I was grossly mistaking.  That was only the tip of the knowledge.  So to make my suggestion to all the newbies, read, read, read and never stop reading the rule books, online sessions, online sites like this one.  It will only make you better and you will feel better for it.     

Never called little league, not sure I ever will. This year I'll start calling FED, but prior to that I've always done modified OBR. Agree with you in principle though.

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17 hours ago, yawetag said:

There's only one person to blame for this.

Before I stepped on a field, I had read the book at least twice, found several online tests, and downloaded PDFs of different mechanics from various organizations. No one told me to do it, but I felt it was my duty as an arbiter of the game.

Personally, I would relate this to something I find that most of the younger generation has troubles with..............Work Ethic.

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2 hours ago, Biscuit said:

Never called little league, not sure I ever will. This year I'll start calling FED, but prior to that I've always done modified OBR. Agree with you in principle though.

At least you have done for yourself.  Some don't.  Last year, we had a new umpire in our HS chapter. NEVER umpired before.  Took the test, bought the gear, and jumped in. After his 1st game, a friend of mine was on the bases (and got thrown under the bus repeatedly by Nick the New Guy) and made sure to have a thorough post game with him.  Now this friend of mine is one of the calmest and most level headed people I've worked with.  I feel comfortable in saying that there was no name calling, raising of voices or anything other than, this is what you need to work on. The next day, a group email was sent out and Nick the New Guy was selling all of his equipment. MOST........cannot just jump right into HS ball. Any and all training that you can get will benefit you greatly, before making that leap.

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16 hours ago, The Man in Blue said:

I agree with you that it is our duty, but I don’t agree with “only one person to blame”, @yawetag.  Maybe it is my work experience, but I have this unusual philosophy:

A worker can fail on his or her own, however it takes the whole organization to allow the individual to do it.

I'll agree that anything past the rule book has shared responsibility. Every group has their own quirks to mechanics and expected norms. I'll also agree that my approach to learning is different than others, so I don't expect the same level of desire from others that I showed my first years of umpiring baseball (and my first year of refereeing volleyball).

But to not even open a rule book until two full years after starting? That's baffling and absolutely falls on the individual. The rule books are available for free online and less than $10 for the book itself. There is no excuse for someone working the craft for two years and to not even once think "Ya know, I should probably read the rules."

I can't even imagine someone working even one season's worth of games without thinking "I really don't know what to call here" or "Wow, maybe that coach is right." Never a deer-in-the-headlights as they watch a player run into another? Never a ball thrown out of play and the concern of whether they awarded it correctly? A weirdly caught(?) ball? Nothing where the crowd is yelling after you guessed at what the correct call should be in the situation?

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1 hour ago, Aging_Arbiter said:

Personally, I would relate this to something I find that most of the younger generation has troubles with..............Work Ethic.

Maybe you should get out more often.

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14 hours ago, MRG9999 said:

That is where you needed to take a step back and open a rule book and start reading cover to cover, not a MLB book, but a LL rule book.  I know what you went thru and hope you have made good strides to get better and gain a better knowledge of the game's rules.  I always thought that playing the game was a good starting pointing, but quickly learned that this was only the playing part of the rules.  I thought that since I played D1 baseball, I knew all there was to know about the game.  I was grossly mistaking.  That was only the tip of the knowledge.  So to make my suggestion to all the newbies, read, read, read and never stop reading the rule books, online sessions, online sites like this one.  It will only make you better and you will feel better for it.     

I too played to a high level of baseball, to a semi-pro circuit back in the day (though, frankly, I would have made more money bagging groceries) - having experience playing the game at a competitive level adds an invaluable perspective and should allow a new ump have a running start.   It may give some insight into the rules, but more importantly it would give insight into the game itself...why coaches and players do what they do, when they do it...and should assist in judgment around what a player can and can't do with intent.  It doesn't replace the need to read the rule book and work on mechanics and positioning and communication and everything else...but it certainly gives you a head start.   You still need to run the race, jump the hurdles and cross the finish line (which continuously moves away from you).

With very few exceptions, the best umpires I have run across, from a game management and common sense perspective, have been umpires who played the game, or still play the game - especially those who did so at a competitive level  They just seem better at managing balls and strikes and working with batter/catcher/pitcher in those areas, calling banger plays, and most importantly, anticipating the action and knowing where the play is going, and having a general awareness of what the players need from a communication perspective.   As long as they have the self-awareness to realize they still need to review the rules.   

One example - had a game a few years back with an umpire doing his first game...ever.  He's in the field.  R1, ground ball to F6.  F6 to F4 to F3...but he didn't have the awareness that the team would continue the DP, so he stopped after he called the first out, never turned to watch the play at first.  A newbie ump who had played the game is much less likely to make that mistake.  Even something as simple as verbalizing for foul, pointing for fair.  A newbie ump who has played doesn't need to be told this...first, they've seen enough umpires behave this way...and, more importantly, they know that as a fielder, the ump yelling "fair" or "foul" both sound like the same thing in real time.

If you have two umpires starting their first day of umpiring, all other things being equal, the umpire who never played the game will likely need hundreds of games of experience to be on par with the umpire who did play.   That's not to say people who never played shouldn't be umps...it's a simple acknowledgement that they're going to need to work harder to get to the next level.

I have seen this to be true in football and hockey as well...especially hockey.  I can't see why it wouldn't be true in any sport.

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1 hour ago, Matt said:

Maybe you should get out more often.

I'm not going to get into a character debate.  That's why I said "most" in my post.  I feel confident that those on this site put forward some effort, or they wouldn't be here. I guess you could say this is one of those "If the (plate) shoe fits, wear it" situations.

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