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  #1 (permalink)  
Old Mon Apr 30, 2012, 09:30pm
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Catcher's Mitt vs. Fielder's Glove

In OBR rules, is a catcher required to wear a catcher's mitt or can he catch with a fielder's glove? I want to hear everyone's thoughts before telling mine.
Thanks.
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Old Mon Apr 30, 2012, 10:21pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tankmjg24 View Post
I want to hear everyone's thoughts before telling mine.
Thanks.
Why? Someone else's thoughts shouldn't matter. Just the rules.
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Old Mon Apr 30, 2012, 10:32pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tankmjg24 View Post
In OBR rules, is a catcher required to wear a catcher's mitt or can he catch with a fielder's glove? I want to hear everyone's thoughts before telling mine.
Thanks.
As I read it they must wear a catcher's mitt.

MLBUM: 2.11 CATCHER'S MITT
The catcher may not substitute a fielder's glove or a first baseman's mitt for a catcher's mitt during the progress of the game or on any individual play.


The LL version of the rule specifically says the catcher must use a catcher's mitt.

So why would some fool want to wear a fielder's glove or 1B mitt? They a fan of broken fingers?
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Old Mon Apr 30, 2012, 10:43pm
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I guess the word "thoughts" should have been interpretation. This situation occurred within a youth league that does not follow any national body. When the rule is not covered by the local rules OBR rules are used. The catcher walked out with a fielders glove and when instructed by myself that he needed a catcher's mitt the coaching staff went crazy. This ended up causing a big situation that is a different story. One big problem within this league is that the majority of the umpires are there to collect a paycheck and half enforce rules so when you do so you look like a bad guy. The coaches are also used to doing as they please and do not know the meaning of the word no. Some might think this is getting picky, however just a few games ago there was a second baseman with a first baseman's mitt and the opposing team questioned it. These coaches want to be able to do what they want to, but then if a rule benefits them they want it strictly enforced. The joys of youth ball I would rather enforce the rulebook entirely then pick and choose which rules to play by and which ones not to and have to deal with a situation down the road because of doing so.
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Old Mon Apr 30, 2012, 10:47pm
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Gotta disagree here, Rich.

I think that a catcher may wear no glove/mitt at all, or if he wears a mitt, it must be within the size specs for catcher's gloves--and note that any other type of glove fits those size requirements.

But if he starts the game with a catcher's mitt, he needs to keep using that type while he is playing the catcher position.

One obvious time that he might want to switch is during an intentional base on balls.
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Old Mon Apr 30, 2012, 11:25pm
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My interpretation of the rule is that either no mitt (who in their right mind would do this) or a catcher's mitt or first baseman's mitt has to be used. The strict reading of the rule says "may" and "mitt". OBR Rule 1.12 states:

The catcher may wear a leather mitt not more than thirty-eight inches in circumference, nor more than fifteen and one-half inches from top to bottom. Such limits shall include all lacing and any leather band or facing attached to the outer edge of the mitt. The space between the thumb section and the finger section of the mitt shall not exceed six inches at the top of the mitt and four inches at the base of the thumb crotch. The web shall measure not more than seven inches across the top or more than six inches from its top to the base of the thumb crotch. The web may be either a lacing or lacing through leather tunnels, or a center piece of leather which may be an extension of the palm, connected to the mitt with lacing and constructed so that it will not exceed any of the above mentioned measurements.
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Old Mon Apr 30, 2012, 11:45pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tankmjg24 View Post
My interpretation of the rule is that either no mitt (who in their right mind would do this) or a catcher's mitt or first baseman's mitt has to be used. The strict reading of the rule says "may" and "mitt". OBR Rule 1.12 states:

The catcher may wear a leather mitt...
And that wording is important, given that 1.13 states that a first baseman may wear a glove or mitt......

If the rulesmakers wanted to allow catchers to wear a mitt when they changed the rule in 1965, they would have used appropriate wording.
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Old Mon Apr 30, 2012, 11:47pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave Reed View Post
Gotta disagree here, Rich.

I think that a catcher may wear no glove/mitt at all, or if he wears a mitt, it must be within the size specs for catcher's gloves--and note that any other type of glove fits those size requirements.

But if he starts the game with a catcher's mitt, he needs to keep using that type while he is playing the catcher position.

One obvious time that he might want to switch is during an intentional base on balls.
I agree he may go bare handed.

Yes, the basic 1.12 rule says mitt so that means it can't be a fielder's glove. That would still allow a first baseman's mitt.

Then the MLBUM - which is the official interpretation - says it has to be a catcher's mitt, not a glove ot 1B mitt. I didn't make it up, I did a copy/paste.

So therefore it's a catcher's mitt if you don't go bare-handed.
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Last edited by Rich Ives; Mon Apr 30, 2012 at 11:49pm.
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Old Tue May 01, 2012, 12:37am
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Quote:
Then the MLBUM - which is the official interpretation - says it has to be a catcher's mitt, not a glove ot 1B mitt. I didn't make it up, I did a copy/paste.
But the MLBUM says nothing about what a catcher may use when he starts the game--only that he can't substitute part way through the game.

Again, I suppose the reason for this interp is to keep catchers from using a regular glove during intentional walks. A paragraph requiring a MLB catcher to use a catcher's mitt while receiving ordinary pitches would seem to me to be a waste of ink.
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Old Tue May 01, 2012, 12:53am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave Reed View Post
But the MLBUM says nothing about what a catcher may use when he starts the game--only that he can't substitute part way through the game.

Again, I suppose the reason for this interp is to keep catchers from using a regular glove during intentional walks. A paragraph requiring a MLB catcher to use a catcher's mitt while receiving ordinary pitches would seem to me to be a waste of ink.
OBR 1.12 limits the options to barehanded or a mitt.

OBR 1.13 allows the firstbaseman to use a glove or mitt.

Don't you think if they wanted the catcher to have the same option they would have mentioned it?
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Old Tue May 01, 2012, 10:33am
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Originally Posted by MrUmpire View Post
Don't you think if they wanted the catcher to have the same option they would have mentioned it?
Well, if 1.12 limits the catcher to using a catcher's mitt, then the MLBUM entry would be either redundant or insufficently proscriptive. And if "they" had wanted to restrict a catcher to a catcher's "mitt" and to not allow him to use a glove or 1st baseman's mitt, wouldn't they bother to explain the difference between the three types?

Other than the dimensions, how would you go about differentiating between a mitt intended for catchers and one intended for F3? What rule would you use?
I don't really expect an answer to these questions--they are mostly rhetorical.

However, I will offer my opinion based on direct observation of the mitts being sold in this era that the difference (besides size) between mitts intended for F2 and F3 is just the amount of padding in the glove. And the amount of padding is up to the discretion of the player.
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Old Tue May 01, 2012, 02:48pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave Reed View Post
Well, if 1.12 limits the catcher to using a catcher's mitt, then the MLBUM entry would be either redundant or insufficently proscriptive. And if "they" had wanted to restrict a catcher to a catcher's "mitt" and to not allow him to use a glove or 1st baseman's mitt, wouldn't they bother to explain the difference between the three types?

Other than the dimensions, how would you go about differentiating between a mitt intended for catchers and one intended for F3? What rule would you use?
I don't really expect an answer to these questions--they are mostly rhetorical.

However, I will offer my opinion based on direct observation of the mitts being sold in this era that the difference (besides size) between mitts intended for F2 and F3 is just the amount of padding in the glove. And the amount of padding is up to the discretion of the player.
Slow day?

Your kid wants to wear a fielder's glove?

Youi don't care it the catcher's hand is protected sufficiently?

You own a sporting goods store that only sells fielders gloves and first base mitts?
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Last edited by Rich Ives; Tue May 01, 2012 at 02:51pm.
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Old Tue May 01, 2012, 05:21pm
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None of the above. I am however trying to help answer the OP original question: [Is a] "catcher required to wear a catcher's mitt or can he catch with a fielder's glove?"

My answer is that in OBR, including the interpretation of the MLBUM, is that he may catch with a fielder's glove-- provided that he starts the game with it.

I also think he would be crazy to do so.
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Old Tue May 01, 2012, 06:58pm
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Knuckle ball mitt?

Phil Niekros catcher was reported to have used the largest catcher's mitt in MLB.

Martinez Uses First Baseman's Mitt to Catch Knuckleballer - NYTimes.com

R.A. Dickey provides communal knuckle mitt for his catchers - Big League Stew - MLBBlog - Yahoo! Sports
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Old Tue May 01, 2012, 10:44pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave Reed View Post
My answer is that in OBR, including the interpretation of the MLBUM, is that he may catch with a fielder's glove-- provided that he starts the game with it.
I'm glad you qualified that as your answer. It isn't the rule, nor is it what is taught at proschools, nor is it the answer professional umpires give.
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