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Guest Fatcity

FED:  If F2  has left foot left of plate and right foot on right side of plate (w/o ball) does this qualify as 

giving the runner access to the plate?  Does not feel quite right to me but is it legal?  Thanks.

 

 

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Think of it this way... if the runner has to do something other than run normally in order to get to the base... the defender is in an obstructive position. 

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2019 FED Case Book Play 8.3.2 Situation G:  F1 attempts to pick off R1 at first base. As F3 is about to receive the throw, he drops his knee and (a) blocks the entire base prior to possessing the ball or (b) blocks part of the base prior to possessing the ball or (c) blocks the entire base while being in possession of the ball. RULING:  Obstruction in (a); legal in (b) and (c).

2019 FED Case Book Play 8.3.2 Situation L:  R1 is advancing on the pitch and F6 drops to a knee while taking the throw, partially blocking the inside edge of the base. R1 slides to the inside edge of the base, contacts F6’s knee, and is then tagged out. The head coach of Team A argues this should be called obstruction. RULING:  This is not obstruction as F6 did provide access to part of second base, even though it was not the part of the base that R1 wanted or believed was most advantageous.

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2008 NFHS Baseball Rules Interpretations SITUATION 12: As the pitcher moves to attempt a pickoff at first base, the first baseman drops his knee and entirely blocks the runner from getting back to first base. RULING: This is obstruction. A fielder who is not in possession of the ball must provide the runner access to the base he is attempting to reach. The runner will be awarded second base for the obstruction. (2-22-3, 8-3-2)

2008 NFHS Baseball Rules Interpretations SITUATION 13: Without the ball in possession, the catcher sets up in the base path, but does allow access to part of home plate. As the ball and the runner converge at home simultaneously, the runner contacts the catcher. RULING: As long as the umpire judges that the catcher provided access to the plate for the runner, this is not obstruction. With the play in motion and the timing such that it is about to occur, a fielder may be in the base path without the ball, provided he allows the runner access to the base or home plate. (2-22-3)

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14 hours ago, Guest Fatcity said:

FED:  If F2  has left foot left of plate and right foot on right side of plate (w/o ball) does this qualify as 

giving the runner access to the plate?  Does not feel quite right to me but is it legal?  Thanks.

As the case plays indicate, the ruling turns on whether the fielder w/out the ball provides access to the base. It does NOT have to be the runner's preferred access, or the easiest route to the base from wherever he happens to be. Any access is sufficient to mitigate OBS.

Some umpires confuse this part of the OBS rule with plays farther from the base. When a fielder is up the line or away from a base and a runner must deviate around him—even if the fielder has to move there to field a throw—that's OBS in FED. 

The different criteria are triggered by proximity to the base: it's not possible to deny access to a base without being right next to it. Farther away, and we'd be looking at other criteria for OBS.

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18 hours ago, Guest Fatcity said:

FED:  If F2  has left foot left of plate and right foot on right side of plate (w/o ball) does this qualify as 

giving the runner access to the plate?  Does not feel quite right to me but is it legal?  Thanks.

 

 

The runner must be given access TO the base, not past it, or through it.   People seem to think that since they runner can't run or slide through the base at full speed they're being obstructed...no they are not.  I've heard people argue that standing directly behind the base (at first or home) is obstruction because you're not allowing the runner to go through the base full speed - this is nonsense...and straddling the base is no different.

If F2 is straddling the base, meaning there is absolutely nothing  between the runner and the base, there is no OBS.

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On 3/9/2020 at 7:41 AM, maven said:

Some umpires confuse this part of the OBS rule with plays farther from the base. When a fielder is up the line or away from a base and a runner must deviate around him—even if the fielder has to move there to field a throw—that's OBS in FED. 

The different criteria are triggered by proximity to the base: it's not possible to deny access to a base without being right next to it. Farther away, and we'd be looking at other criteria for OBS.

Oh so true. There’s a thread on FB right now where F2 is up the line and people are using these case plays to say “ no OBS”. 

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On 3/9/2020 at 11:46 AM, beerguy55 said:

The runner must be given access TO the base, not past it, or through it.   People seem to think that since they runner can't run or slide through the base at full speed they're being obstructed...no they are not.  I've heard people argue that standing directly behind the base (at first or home) is obstruction because you're not allowing the runner to go through the base full speed - this is nonsense...and straddling the base is no different.

If F2 is straddling the base, meaning there is absolutely nothing  between the runner and the base, there is no OBS.

Careful here.  R1, a shot

in the gap, 

R1 rounding 2nd on his way to 3rd, F6 straddling 2B is indeed OBS. 

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A fielder absolutely can be providing “access” and still be hindering or impeding the runner, hence my previous comment.

If the runner is forced to change path, alter his approach, etc. it is obstruction.  In my example, a fielder is providing “access” but not allowing the runner to come into the bag standing up.  The fielder does not get to dictate what the runner can do.

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8 hours ago, The Man in Blue said:

A fielder absolutely can be providing “access” and still be hindering or impeding the runner, hence my previous comment.

If the runner is forced to change path, alter his approach, etc. it is obstruction.  In my example, a fielder is providing “access” but not allowing the runner to come into the bag standing up.  The fielder does not get to dictate what the runner can do.

Again. Be careful with the wording.... This is not obstruction as F6 did provide access to part of second base, even though it was not the part of the base that R1 wanted or believed was most advantageous.

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2 hours ago, Richvee said:

Again. Be careful with the wording.... This is not obstruction as F6 did provide access to part of second base, even though it was not the part of the base that R1 wanted or believed was most advantageous.


I fully agree that we have to be careful; most of the time it is going to be a “had to be there” call.  So, it is possible I am not being selective enough with my words.  I went back to my original post and added the word “solely” to clarify my statement.

My point is simply “providing access” is not an absolution — the fielder still cannot alter the runner’s action.  A fielder most definitely can provide access and still obstruct.

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13 hours ago, Richvee said:

Careful here.  R1, a shot

in the gap, 

R1 rounding 2nd on his way to 3rd, F6 straddling 2B is indeed OBS. 

Yes, but not to second base...he's obstructing access to third base and home.

That's why I specifically mentioned the two bases where you are allowed to overrun/overshoot....especially home...once you touch/pass home there's nowhere else you need to be.

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1 hour ago, beerguy55 said:

Yes, but not to second base...he's obstructing access to third base and home.

That's why I specifically mentioned the two bases where you are allowed to overrun/overshoot....especially home...once you touch/pass home there's nowhere else you need to be.


Unless the runner is hustling to second base for a stand up double and the fielder standing on the bag causes the runner to check up or slow down to avoid a collision since he cannot get to where he is running to without altering his action.  Again, “access” is not a “get out of jail free card” for the rest of what the fielder is doing.  You have to judge the whole picture.

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Obstruction is not determined by “access”.  EDIT: I should have said “Obstruction is not determined solely by “access”.

Just had a softball clinic today and we had a similar discussion ... this would work for baseball too.  F3 stands astride 1B to receive a snap pickoff throw from F2.  F3 is at the “front” of the bag (in relation to the runner coming back) with one foot on each side.  The runner (a) dives back to the bag OR (b) attempts to get back standing up.  What do you have?

Answer: in (a) you have nothing, in (b) you have obstruction for impeding the runner coming back to the bag.

Hinder, Impede, Confuse ... those are the buzzwords.  Don’t be a HIC and you won’t cause obstruction.  (Personally, I don’t like including “confuse” ... too easy to confuse lots of people!)

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