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BigVic69

When is a check swing a strike?

Question

In Little League, when would a check swing be considered a strike?

1) A bat passes completely over the plate

2) A bat passes over any part of the rear of the plate

3) If the batter makes a motion considered to be the beginning of a swing.

Or something else.

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1 hour ago, BigVic69 said:

So, how do I judge a swing that did not fully go around.

Do you think he was trying to hit it? That's the answer.

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2 hours ago, BigVic69 said:

So, how do I judge a swing that did not fully go around.

There's no magic bullet or definition here, so you have to use your judgment.

 

Good judgment comes from experience.  Experience comes from bad judgment.

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Judgement call all the way.

If in doubt, call it a strike!  Strikes are umpires friends.  :)

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Just curious (because I don't have LL around here and I am not familiar with the LL rule book) ... what does your book say on the subject?

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16 minutes ago, The Man in Blue said:

Just curious (because I don't have LL around here and I am not familiar with the LL rule book) ... what does your book say on the subject?

From their "Rules Instruction Manual": "Comment:    (2)    a    strike    call    on    half    swing    may    not    be    appealed.    A    good    rule    of    thumb    to    use    on    a    half    swing;    Right    Handed    Batter:    If    the    barrel    of    the    bat    is    pointed    at    or    past    the    first    base    line,    it    has    gone    far    enough....Call    it    a    strike!    Left    Handed    Batter:    If    the    barrel    of    the    bat    is    pointed    at    or    past    the    third    base    line,    it    has    gone    far    enough....Call    it    a    strike! "
"

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The comment quoted by Mr. Jimurray can be found in the 2018 LL RIM rule 9.02(a) Instructor Comments. A word of caution though, that text no longer exists there. For whatever reason the 2019 Little League RIM does not have that text (at least not at 9.02).

Little League defines a strike as “a pitch that is struck at by the batter and is missed.” It’s up to the umpire’s judgment as to whether the batter “struck at” the pitch. Breaking the wrists or the bat moving beyond the front of the plate or the batter’s body are considerations that the umpire may use to make the judgment. They are simply considerations, not definitions or hard and fast guidelines.

High school rules offer the following case book play--

2019 NFHS Case Book Play 7.2.1 Situation B:  B1 starts to swing at the pitch but attempts to hold back on it or it appears as though he attempts to bunt the ball. In either case, B1 misses the ball. How does umpire determine what to call the pitch? RULING:  A call of that nature is based entirely upon the umpire’s judgment. Therefore, the umpire must, in order to be consistent, have criteria to guide him in making the decision. The rule that most umpires follow is that if the bat is swung so it is in front of the batter’s body or ahead of it, it is a strike. In bunting, any movement of the bat toward the ball when the ball is over or near the plate area is a strike. The mere holding of the bat in the strike zone is not an attempt to bunt. (10-1-4a)

And the 2019-2020 NCAA has in its definitions rule 2-39—

Half Swing

SECTION 39. An attempt by the batter to stop the forward motion of the bat while swinging, which puts the batter in jeopardy of a strike being called. The half swing shall be called a strike if the barrel head of the bat passes the batter’s front hip. This does not apply to a bunt attempt when the batter pulls the bat back.

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Yep, LL says it's your judgement.

And it should be.  I do think about barrel of the bat with respect to the baseline, but that's not magic--what if the pitch is up and in, and the batter turns forward ducking out of the way?  That's not an attempt to strike the ball, and thus not a swing. 

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I've always wondered why it should not be judged if the ball went past the barrel of the bat which would conflict with some of the strike rule wording but actually not with the 'half swing" verbiage. I f you make a "half swing" and the ball goes past your bat that should be a strike.

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34 minutes ago, Jimurray said:

I've always wondered why it should not be judged if the ball went past the barrel of the bat which would conflict with some of the strike rule wording but actually not with the 'half swing" verbiage. I f you make a "half swing" and the ball goes past your bat that should be a strike.

Wouldn't the ball go past the bat on any half-swing?

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2 hours ago, Matt said:

Wouldn't the ball go past the bat on any half-swing?

Maybe the criteria should be a bat that is not being pulled back. If the PU sees the ball go past the bat that was not being pulled back, other than a bunt, the batter was offering at the pitch. No need to check unless that was not discernible which could still be the case in many “half swings”. There are half swings judged as a no he didn’t that if the ball hit the bat it would be a batted ball. At the MLB level they can’t win for loosing. Check if a ball, don’t check if you got a strike you are gonna get some grief although those guys have no problem dealing with it. But to me if the PU sees a ball go past a bat that is not being pulled back other than a bunt he should own the strike. 

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15 minutes ago, Jimurray said:

Maybe the criteria should be a bat that is not being pulled back. If the PU sees the ball go past the bat that was not being pulled back, other than a bunt, the batter was offering at the pitch. No need to check unless that was not discernible which could still be the case in many “half swings”. There are half swings judged as a no he didn’t that if the ball hit the bat it would be a batted ball. At the MLB level they can’t win for loosing. Check if a ball, don’t check if you got a strike you are gonna get some grief although those guys have no problem dealing with it. But to me if the PU sees a ball go past a bat that is not being pulled back other than a bunt he should own the strike. 

I think that makes it harder than it needs to be.

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I'm pretty sure he went. 

Call more strikes.

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On 4/25/2020 at 1:44 PM, Matt said:

Do you think he was trying to hit it? That's the answer.

No it is not...because on ANY check swing the batter is definitely NOT trying to hit it.

The ump's judgment is whether or not the batter changed his mind too late.

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37 minutes ago, beerguy55 said:

No it is not...because on ANY check swing the batter is definitely NOT trying to hit it.

The ump's judgment is whether or not the batter changed his mind too late.

.....one bucket of popcorn coming up... :)

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On 4/25/2020 at 11:35 AM, BigVic69 said:

In Little League, when would a check swing be considered a strike?

1) A bat passes completely over the plate

2) A bat passes over any part of the rear of the plate

3) If the batter makes a motion considered to be the beginning of a swing.

Or something else.

To paraphrase Potter Stewart - I may not be able to define a swing, but I know it when I see it.

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2 hours ago, beerguy55 said:

No it is not...because on ANY check swing the batter is definitely NOT trying to hit it.

The ump's judgment is whether or not the batter changed his mind too late.

I see your point. 

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2 hours ago, beerguy55 said:

...because on ANY check swing the batter is definitely NOT trying to hit it.

............or his/her commitment issues are developing at a young age.

 

 

 

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On 4/27/2020 at 10:56 AM, beerguy55 said:

To paraphrase Potter Stewart - I may not be able to define a swing, but I know it when I see it.

Nice Supreme Court reference my friend! 

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On 4/26/2020 at 8:46 AM, maven said:

I'm pretty sure he went. 

Call more strikes.

Best answer!

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Everybody has basically answered:  "It 100% a judgement call!"  And that should be sufficient.

Speaking Little League, I want to to add some commentary in the case of a bunt.  For baseball, the batter can square and "take" the pitch.  The umpire should rule on the merits of the pitch and NOT rule that batter offered.  The batter does NOT have to bring the bat back for the motion to be ruled a "take".  But if the batter moves the bat towards the trajectory of the pitch, the umpire may judge that IS an offer, and it should be ruled a strike EVEN IF he brings the bat back.  Often, the OM will complain that since the batter brought the bat back, it's not an offer.  That's only half of it!  If--in the umpire's judgement--the batter moved the bat towards the pitch in a serious attempt to make contact, that's an offer!  Strike! And that's regardless if he brought the bat back!

Now the punch line:  In Little League SOFTBALL, the batter MUST bring the bat back to assert that no offer was made!  If the bat is down in the zone and remains motionless, that IS an offer in LL Softball.

Mike

Las Vegas

PS:  We might open up for LL baseball on 11 May!  The Nevada Governor is supposed to make a statement on Thursday.

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As for is it a swing..

Point to 1st "Did he go?"

or 3rd for a lefty..  Don't forget to step out from behind the catcher.

 

 

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51 minutes ago, ArchAngel72 said:

As for is it a swing..

Point to 1st "Did he go?"

or 3rd for a lefty..  Don't forget to step out from behind the catcher.

 

 

Or point at the batter "Yes he did!"

 

On 4/26/2020 at 8:46 AM, maven said:

Call more strikes.

^^^ this!

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