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My best exercise in putting away rabbit ears...


ErichKeane

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So this Saturday I worked 60/90 on a field that typically does softball.  Except instead of moving the bases out into the grass, this field moves the plate back about 20 feet (moving both foul lines of course), and moves the bases to the side of the grass.  It goes... alright.  They paint both foul lines correctly, though fans frequently get confused about fair/foul because of it.

The REAL gotcha is the area behind home plate is TINY.  I typically had to move to allow the next batter to go behind me to get up to bat (for those who didn't want to go between F1 and F2, which is an unwritten rule).  So there was maybe 5 feet behind the ump to the fence.  Of course, there are parents sitting back there.  Because of it, I was overhearing every word of every conversation from the dads behind the plate.

"Good eye!   Wait, strike?  Wasn't that at his shoulders?  Looked like it was at his shoulders."

"That looked outside from here, didn't it?  Yeah, I thought that was outside."

and so on :D

Nothing directed at me at all, and everyone was pleasant/etc, but I definitely spent much of the games reminding myself, "None of this is meant for you!".

 

Overall, the 5 games Saturday went really nicely.  All coaches/players were great, and I had a fantastic partner.  We ended up getting to the 'time limit' in all but our 1st game (no-new-inning-after-2), so there wasn't much in the way of breaks. 

 

<side story>

The worst was the last game.  Before I tell you, I have to point out 1 other 'oddity' of the field.  Behind home plate they have a hole in the fence about 12" square, where the scoreboard controller is for softball. We don't have it, so it is just a hole in the fence.  We joked about it at plate meetings a few times about how the ball would have to do fancy things to get around the catcher and ump standing there, haha, we jinxed it...

Anyway, back to the game: Mercy rule is 12 after 3, 10 after 4, 8 after 5.  14U in the losers bracket.  top 1 goes just about 1-2-3, bottom 1 takes AAAAGES.  Top 2 goes really quick, bottom 2 takes AAAAGES.  We get to the top-3rd, score is 14-0, about 1:10 into the game.  Pitcher loses his ability to hit the backstop more than 50% of the time, but finally gets 2 outs, bases loaded, 2 runs in.  SO "continue the game" run on 3rd.  Swinging strike-3 in the dirt, ball pops under the catcher and ump, and bounces right through the hole, scoring the run.   Top of 3rd ends, 14-5, HT scores 1 more to make it 15-5 after 3, so 10 run rule after 4 is now in play...

We go into the top of the 4th, VT puts up 1 more in a looong inning again, 15-6.  HT only needs 1 run in the bottom to end it, or needs it to take a bit longer, but loads the bases with ZERO OUTS and gets no more.  4th inning ends with 3 minutes left on the clock, so we have to play the 5th. 

VT ends up being able to put up a few more, making it 15-10, but at least we didn't have to play the home-half thanks to the time limit.  Not a great quality game to end the day, and one I kept thinking we were going to get out of!  I was bases, and my partner teased me I should have made up a balk or two along the way, I told him he should expanded the strike zone a foot or three along the way.

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