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Old Mon May 19, 2008, 10:13am
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Missed Home Plate Appeal

This happened as I was coaching (not umping) but I need clarification on a point of appeal.

Runner from 2rd scores on base hit to right center. There was a play at the plate but the throw was late. (catcher gave way to the runner so no obstruction) I didn't notice the runner miss home plate but the PU just stood staring at the ground around home plate as if delaying his call. In kind of a lame voice I told the catcher to step on home and we appealed. (missed home plate) The PU called the runner out for missing the plate. Now the opposing coach came out in a tiff saying the PU should not have tipped the missed base to the defensive team.

It became a discussion (not an argument) and they asked me if the PU kicked it by tipping off the appeal. My answer was "ahhh, yeah I think so." I would not have picked up on it if the PU hadn't stood staring at the plate after the runner apparently scored.

What should the PU have done in this case? (The runner had left the field and was in the dug out prior to us touching home for the appeal.
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Old Mon May 19, 2008, 10:15am
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Not the umpires place to help out one team or another. If no one sees it, the run counts as soon as the next pitch, play, or attempted play.

The PU was correct, however, in not making an initial call. In this case you don't signal anything (which should be enough of a tip) and if no one notices, play continues.
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Old Mon May 19, 2008, 10:17am
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I have always paused for a short time and then give a safe sign but I don't do the long stare. Just my .02 What say you?
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Old Mon May 19, 2008, 10:29am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crewumpires
There was a play at the plate but the throw was late. (catcher gave way to the runner so no obstruction)
I'm not quite sure this qualifies as a "play at the plate" (depending on how late the throw was, and whether there was a tag attempt). If not, then the umpire should act just as he would had the runner touched the plate. That is, signal nothing (no play, no signal), and get ready for the next play / pitch.
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Old Mon May 19, 2008, 10:34am
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From the PBUC:

"On a play at the plate, should the runner miss home plate and the fielder miss the tag on the runner, the umpire shall make no signal on the play."

For what it's worth, ASA softball instructs the umpire to hesitate and then make a safe signal. So there are different opinions on what's best to do.

I have always felt that saying nothing tips off the defense, so I usually make a safe sign and say, "No tag." Frankly, I don't see that making a safe signal announces that the runner has touched the plate, either. If F6 fields a ground ball and misses a swipe tag on a runner advancing to 3B, what's wrong with a safe signal to indicate a missed tag? (Of course, I admit that no signal also means a missed tag.)
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Old Mon May 19, 2008, 10:48am
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Cool

Quote:
Originally Posted by bob jenkins
I'm not quite sure this qualifies as a "play at the plate" (depending on how late the throw was, and whether there was a tag attempt). If not, then the umpire should act just as he would had the runner touched the plate. That is, signal nothing (no play, no signal), and get ready for the next play / pitch.
Another good point. Hard to say. The throw was late by a full step and took the catcher off plate towards 1st base.

Thankfully the coaches were very calm and I think we all just were curious as to who was buying the first round of beers on our next trip to the pub. But it was a good question that none of us had the answer for so I brought it to you guys as I knew you could help us out.

Add on question: If the PU did in fact signal "safe" no tag. Could the defensive team still appeal to have the decision reversed? I would think "yes" but I have coach who swears once the PU rules it becomes gospel. Tell me that's no so.
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Old Mon May 19, 2008, 11:01am
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A safe signal does not prevent appeals. Everybody knows that a runner who beats the throw at 1B but misses the bag is to be called safe. He can still be appealed, though. The same would apply with a force play at the plate.
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Old Mon May 19, 2008, 11:22am
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If F2

puts a tag on the runner albeit late, PU should make a call on the tag period.

Everything that greymule said: "ditto".

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