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Old Sun Mar 25, 2018, 09:29am
RKBUmp RKBUmp is offline
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This thread kind of revived some points on obstruction from a post last year about when exactly is obstruction over. As to the original play in this thread, the lookback rule is not an exception to the obstruction rule, so the runner cannot be called out for committing a lookback violation. However, there was a comment about when the runner returned to 1st base, the obstruction was cancelled. That is not the case.

The obstruction rule has 2 elements that must be met to cancel the obstruction. 1, the obstructed runner must reach the base the umpire judges they would have absent the obstruction, AND 2, there must be a subsequent play on a different runner. Unless both of those elements are met, the obstruction is still in place and the runner cannot be put out between the 2 bases where obstructed.

There was a long draw out thread last year on a FB NFHS softball forum about a play involving a pick off at 2nd base and the runner thrown at attempting to advance to 3rd. The umpires ruled the obstruction was cancelled when the runner returned to 2nd and the out at 3rd stood. There was even a UIC on site that confirmed the ruling. In response I posted a play I had where a batter/runner was obstructed rounding 1st on a bad throw, F9 was backing up the play and after initially starting toward 2nd, the runner thought better of it and returned to 1st base. The ball was thrown to the pitcher who was not in the circle when suddenly the 1st base coach tells the runner, he called obstruction, you get 2nd base and the runner just started trotting toward 2nd. The pitcher ran over and tagged the runner. Again, the vast majority of responses where the out stands because the runner returned to 1st base cancelling the obstruction. Many even claimed the exception did not apply because there were no other runners on base. Someone managed to get the play sent to NFHS national and they just replied this week with their answer.

RULING: When the runner is tagged by F1 the umpire should call time and kill the play. The runner is then returned to 1B (the base she would have gotten to had there been no obstruction) as the hit was a routine single.

An obstructed runner may not be called out between the two bases where obstructed. EXCEPTION: When an obstructed runner, after being obstructed, safely obtains the base they would have been awarded had there been no obstruction AND there is a subsequent play on a different runner.

"AND there is a subsequent play on a different runner". <<<<

Last edited by RKBUmp; Sun Mar 25, 2018 at 09:32am.
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