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Guest Ben G

DH in effect: pinch hitting the pitcher for the 2nd baseman

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Guest Ben G

Senior league, mlb rules with DH in effect, DH batting in the 3rd slot. Coach wants to pinch hit his pitcher for his 2nd baseman in the 8th slot. (The pitcher is a strong hitter and the team needs a run badly.)

The rule is clear, it says the pitcher may only pinch hit for the DH.

>5.11(a)(10) ...  The game pitcher may pinch-hit or pinch-run only for the Designated Hitter

Which is what I informed the coach. The coach indicated that his DH would play 2nd base, thus his pitcher hits for the second baseman, which I did not allow.

Now here is the rub:

>5.11(a) (5) The Designated Hitter may be used on defense, continuing to bat in the same position in the batting order, but the pitcher must then bat in the place of the substituted defensive player, unless more than one substitution is made, and the manager then must designate their spots in the batting order.

So with this pseudo-double-switch, the pitcher can seemingly pinch-hit anywhere in the lineup, as long as the DH takes the substituted player's spot on defense.

So, does this defensive change need to be made while on defense? Or can the coach do this? If so, it seems the first quoted rule is not actually true.

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I think the rules are for different purposes. 

The first rule would be if the coach simply wanted his SP to pinch-hit for some other player without removing his DH.  This is what is not allowed.  It's illegal because then you would have allowed the offense an unfair advantage.  Some pitchers are better hitters than position players and you can't keep a DH and allow the P to bat or it is unfair to the defense.

From what you described, the coach wanted to do a double-switch and have his DH enter the game to play defense.  This is legal and the SP would then take over the starting 2B's spot in the order and the DH (now 2B) would continue to hit in the DH spot since he was a starter and already has an established spot in the order.   This is an allowable move at any point in the game.  The coach/manager can even do multiple subs and then choose where he wants people batting depending on their respective locations in the order.

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11 minutes ago, wolfe_man said:

I think the rules are for different purposes. 

The first rule would be if the coach simply wanted his SP to pinch-hit for some other player without removing his DH.  This is what is not allowed.  It's illegal because then you would have allowed the offense an unfair advantage.  Some pitchers are better hitters than position players and you can't keep a DH and allow the P to bat or it is unfair to the defense.

From what you described, the coach wanted to do a double-switch and have his DH enter the game to play defense.  This is legal and the SP would then take over the starting 2B's spot in the order and the DH (now 2B) would continue to hit in the DH spot since he was a starter and already has an established spot in the order.   This is an allowable move at any point in the game.  The coach/manager can even do multiple subs and then choose where he wants people batting depending on their respective locations in the order.

 

Is there something else stating the DH must actually play Defense too?  x amount of outs at least or am I dreaming that one up. 

I thought there was some caveat that forced them to actually play the DH in the field so they could not just sub him out of the game for another better defensive player,,,  

sigh I might be thinking of something else..

 

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Guest Ben G

 

5.11(a) (5) The Designated Hitter may be used on defense, continuing to bat in the same position in the batting order, but the pitcher must then bat 

In this phrasing, there is "must then bat" which implies that this takes effect after the DH has played defense, which makes it difficult to rule with 100% confidence.

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15 minutes ago, ArchAngel72 said:

 

Is there something else stating the DH must actually play Defense too?  x amount of outs at least or am I dreaming that one up. 

I thought there was some caveat that forced them to actually play the DH in the field so they could not just sub him out of the game for another better defensive player,,,  

sigh I might be thinking of something else..

 

I honestly do not know, that doesn't sound familiar to me, but then I normally work FED not OBR.

If the DH moves to a fielding position though, I'm not sure it matters after that.  A sub is still a sub at that level.

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18 minutes ago, Guest Ben G said:

 

5.11(a) (5) The Designated Hitter may be used on defense, continuing to bat in the same position in the batting order, but the pitcher must then bat 

In this phrasing, there is "must then bat" which implies that this takes effect after the DH has played defense, which makes it difficult to rule with 100% confidence.

 

Let's break this rule into more digestible sections....

 

Section One

">5.11(a) (5) The Designated Hitter may be used on defense, continuing to bat in the same position in the batting order, but the pitcher must then bat in the place of the substituted defensive player, "

This part is what we discussed.  The DH goes to 2B, the SP then hits in the 2B batting position while the DH already has an assigned batting spot in the order.  To @ArchAngel72's question, the wording says the DH 'may be used on defense' which leads me to think he doesn't have to be and can be subbed also for a better defensive player.  Any player subbed for a DH (no matter as PH or PR) takes the place of the DH in the batting order.  If the DH moves to the field, then the P now has to hit for whatever player the DH is replacing in the field. In our case, with only one change (DH to 2B) the only place the SP can hit is the 2B's position in the order.

Section Two

"unless more than one substitution is made, and the manager then must designate their spots in the batting order. "

Now, this part is saying if more than a double-switch is made, then the manager has the option to choose who is batting where.   Let's say he moves the DH to 2B, which opens up the 2B batting order position.  But then he also subs the 3B with a new player off the bench.  Now you can choose to have the P bat in the 2B or 3B spot since there were multiple subs.  The more subs a manager makes at one time, the more options he would have to re-work his batting order. 

This second part is used to happen frequently in late innings in the National League when you'd see multiple defensive subs come into a game and they'd sub the P to the furthest spot opened in the batting order in hopes that he wouldn't need to hit the next inning (or they'd just do a PH for the P the next time around).

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Guest Ben G

Just to provide the counterpoint: Of course you can announce defensive changes whenever you want, but those changes are only effective when that team is on defense - therefore (in this scenario) the pitcher is pinch-hitting for the second baseman and not batting in his place due to the DH taking the 2nd baseman's position.

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1 hour ago, Guest Ben G said:

Senior league, mlb rules with DH in effect, DH batting in the 3rd slot. Coach wants to pinch hit his pitcher for his 2nd baseman in the 8th slot. (The pitcher is a strong hitter and the team needs a run badly.)

The rule is clear, it says the pitcher may only pinch hit for the DH.

>5.11(a)(10) ...  The game pitcher may pinch-hit or pinch-run only for the Designated Hitter

Which is what I informed the coach. The coach indicated that his DH would play 2nd base, thus his pitcher hits for the second baseman, which I did not allow.

Now here is the rub:

>5.11(a) (5) The Designated Hitter may be used on defense, continuing to bat in the same position in the batting order, but the pitcher must then bat in the place of the substituted defensive player, unless more than one substitution is made, and the manager then must designate their spots in the batting order.

So with this pseudo-double-switch, the pitcher can seemingly pinch-hit anywhere in the lineup, as long as the DH takes the substituted player's spot on defense.

So, does this defensive change need to be made while on defense? Or can the coach do this? If so, it seems the first quoted rule is not actually true.

The pitcher can only pinch hit for the DH if a change is made on offense. If a change is made on defense the pitcher can then bat in the replaced player's spot.

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1 hour ago, Guest Ben G said:

 

5.11(a) (5) The Designated Hitter may be used on defense, continuing to bat in the same position in the batting order, but the pitcher must then bat 

In this phrasing, there is "must then bat" which implies that this takes effect after the DH has played defense, which makes it difficult to rule with 100% confidence.

I think you're taking it too literally...the DH going in to defense simply means there is no more DH spot in the lineup (this happened to the Red Sox last week when their one catcher was DH'ing, and their other catcher got hurt - DH went to F2, F1 into F2's batting spot, no more DH for the game)...the pitcher must go into the batting lineup - it doesn't mean he has to bat - he only has to bat if he wants to pitch the next inning...another pitcher can bat, or there can be a pinch hitter, and then sub in the pitcher...many options...but no more DH.

1 hour ago, wolfe_man said:

I honestly do not know, that doesn't sound familiar to me, but then I normally work FED not OBR.

If the DH moves to a fielding position though, I'm not sure it matters after that.  A sub is still a sub at that level.

 

 

1 hour ago, ArchAngel72 said:

 

Is there something else stating the DH must actually play Defense too?  x amount of outs at least or am I dreaming that one up. 

I thought there was some caveat that forced them to actually play the DH in the field so they could not just sub him out of the game for another better defensive player,,,  

sigh I might be thinking of something else..

 

Implied here is (in this example) F4 leaves the game at the time F1 goes in to pinch hit for him (not really pinch hitting - he's subbing in), and you lose the DH spot in the order - DH becomes F4 and stays in same batting spot, previous F4 is out of the lineup (and frankly, at this point, your new F4 can now swap any defensive position with other fielders - but remains in his spot in the batting lineup)...so, if DH doesn't play defense the next half inning, and someone else off the bench does, then DH is subbed out of the game.   He's not required to play defense...unless you want to keep him in the game.

 

The swap can be made on offense or defense - at that point a defensive player is leaving the game, and the DH is removed...after that, it's a pretty normal batting lineup with standard rules for subs.

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3 minutes ago, beerguy55 said:

I think you're taking it too literally...the DH going in to defense simply means there is no more DH spot in the lineup (this happened to the Red Sox last week when their one catcher was DH'ing, and their other catcher got hurt - DH went to F2, F1 into F2's batting spot, no more DH for the game)...the pitcher must go into the batting lineup - it doesn't mean he has to bat - he only has to bat if he wants to pitch the next inning...another pitcher can bat, or there can be a pinch hitter, and then sub in the pitcher...many options...but no more DH.

 

 

Implied here is (in this example) F4 leaves the game at the time F1 goes in to pinch hit for him , and you lose the DH spot in the order - DH becomes F4 and stays in same batting spot, previous F4 is out of the lineup (and frankly, at this point, your new F4 can now swap any defensive position with other fielders - but remains in his spot in the batting lineup)...so, if DH doesn't play defense the next half inning, and someone else off the bench does, then DH is subbed out of the game.   He's not required to play defense...unless you want to keep him in the game.

 

The swap can be made on offense or defense - at that point a defensive player is leaving the game, and the DH is removed...after that, it's a pretty normal batting lineup with standard rules for subs.

F1 can not PINCH HIT for F4. He can only pinch hit for the DH. Per PBUC/MLBUM; "The only person the game pitcher can pinch hit for is the designated hitter." The pitcher can end up in a lineup spot other than the DH if defensive changes are made and although you can say they can be made on offense I don't believe that would allow the pitcher to bat in any other spot than the DH if the pitcher hasn't played in the field yet.

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26 minutes ago, Guest Ben G said:

Just to provide the counterpoint: Of course you can announce defensive changes whenever you want, but those changes are only effective when that team is on defense - therefore (in this scenario) the pitcher is pinch-hitting for the second baseman and not batting in his place due to the DH taking the 2nd baseman's position.

If you didn't catch this there would be a penalty if batting out or order was appealed. An old Fitzpatrick ruling would have F4, the proper batter out and removed from the game. F1 would continue batting in F4s spot. The role of the DH would be terminated and and he or the replacement for F4 would bat in the DH spot.   

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2 minutes ago, Jimurray said:

F1 can not PINCH HIT for F4. He can only pinch hit for the DH. Per PBUC/MLBUM; "The only person the game pitcher can pinch hit for is the designated hitter." The pitcher can end up in a lineup spot other than the DH if defensive changes are made and although you can say they can be made on offense I don't believe that would allow the pitcher to bat in any other spot than the DH if the pitcher hasn't played in the field yet.

The pitcher has played on the field...he's the pitcher....or did you mean the DH?   I'm not sure if it requires the DH to play defense "first"...in short, that would require the coach to make the defensive change sometime before the third out, in anticipation of his batting requirements the next half inning.

How I read it is if no other subs are made the pitcher can only bat/run for the DH - and that terminates the DH role.

Unless something says that the DH must play defense first, I see no reason why a pitcher can't bat for some other player, provided all the other subs are correctly made including the removal of the original batter from the game, and of the DH role (it's more a sub than "pinch-hitting) - even if the change happens on offense...take for example, an end of inning injury...F3 gets hurt stretching on the last out...he goes to the bench...and some point just before his at bat it becomes apparent he can't play.   Are you saying the team can only sub him with someone off the bench?  That they can't put in the pitcher in his batting spot and remove the DH role?  (which is what would happen if F3 got hurt on the 2nd out - DH plays F3 - or somewhere on the field and someone else goes to F3 - then F1 goes into F3's batting slot, and no more DH).

In either scenario, the end result is the termination of the DH role, and a player coming out of the lineup.

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1 minute ago, beerguy55 said:

The pitcher has played on the field...he's the pitcher....or did you mean the DH?   I'm not sure if it requires the DH to play defense "first"...in short, that would require the coach to make the defensive change sometime before the third out, in anticipation of his batting requirements the next half inning.

How I read it is if no other subs are made the pitcher can only bat/run for the DH - and that terminates the DH role.

Unless something says that the DH must play defense first, I see no reason why a pitcher can't bat for some other player, provided all the other subs are correctly made including the removal of the original batter from the game, and of the DH role (it's more a sub than "pinch-hitting) - even if the change happens on offense...take for example, an end of inning injury...F3 gets hurt stretching on the last out...he goes to the bench...and some point just before his at bat it becomes apparent he can't play.   Are you saying the team can only sub him with someone off the bench?  That they can't put in the pitcher in his batting spot and remove the DH role?  (which is what would happen if F3 got hurt on the 2nd out - DH plays F3 - or somewhere on the field and someone else goes to F3 - then F1 goes into F3's batting slot, and no more DH).

In either scenario, the end result is the termination of the DH role, and a player coming out of the lineup.

My “Fitzpatrick” ruling comes from a 2011 BRD. The penalty is quoted if the umpire does not catch the improper sub/batter. The umpire should not allow it. 

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