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Old Mon Jun 30, 2008, 03:05pm
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NFHS Rules Changes 2009 (Sort of)

Sadly not much change:

************************************************** ******

INDIANAPOLIS, IN (June 30, 2008) - The National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) Baseball Rules Committee adjusted four rules at its annual meeting June 8-10 in Indianapolis. The rules changes subsequently were approved by the NFHS Board of Directors.
A revision was made to Rule 6-2-3 regarding infractions by a pitcher. The rule states it is illegal for a pitcher to intentionally pitch close to a batter, replacing the prior phrasing of to "throw"
close to a batter. The change was necessary for clarification and in order to be consistent with other pitching rules.
"This rule is violated while the pitcher is pitching, and not just throwing the ball," said Elliot Hopkins, NFHS director of educational services and liaison to the Baseball Rules Committee.
Infractions by a batter were also addressed. The committee is concerned that batters are still attempting to be hit by pitches and earn an undeserved awarded base by "taking one for the team." Rule 7-3-4 clearly prohibits a batter allowing himself to be hit by a pitch.
In such a situation, the pitched ball is deemed either a strike or a ball and the player who permitted the ball to touch him remains at bat unless the pitch results in a third strike or ball four. The phrase "or ball four" was added to the rule to clarify the pitch needed to be called a strike or ball.
Revisions were also made to Rule 1-2-2 regarding painted field lines. All non-permanent lines on the playing field shall be marked white with a material not injurious to the eyes or skin.
Non-permanent refers to all lines that must be painted on the field. Only permanent lines, such as on artificial turf, may be a color other than white.
Lastly, umpires will be given more flexibility with their uniforms beginning in 2009. An adjustment to Rule 10-1-9 eliminated the need for umpires to specifically wear heather gray pants.
"Equipment dealers are transitioning to charcoal gray slacks,"
Hopkins said. "This rule change will provide umpires the opportunity to purchase any shade of dark gray and be in compliance."
In addition to the four rules changes, the committee identified four points of emphasis: 1) simplifying illegal pitch penalty administration, 2) re-emphasizing that team personnel remain in dugouts,
3) keeping the pace of play steady and 4) having all coaching staff members display professional behavior.
Baseball is the fourth-most popular sport among boys at the high school level with 477,430 participants during the 2006-07 season, according to the High School Athletics Participation Survey conducted by the NFHS. It also ranks third in school sponsorship across the nation with 15,458 participating schools.


# # #

About the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) The NFHS, based in Indianapolis, Indiana, is the national leadership organization for high school sports and fine arts activities. Since 1920, the NFHS has led the development of education-based interscholastic sports and fine arts activities that help students succeed in their lives. The NFHS sets direction for the future by building awareness and support, improving the participation experience, establishing consistent standards and rules for competition, and helping those who oversee high school sports and activities. The NFHS writes playing rules for 17 sports for boys and girls at the high school level.
Through its 50 member state associations and the District of Columbia, the NFHS reaches more than 18,500 high schools and 11 million participants in high school activity programs, including more than 7 million in high school sports. As the recognized national authority on interscholastic activity programs, the NFHS conducts national meetings; sanctions interstate events; produces publications for high school coaches, officials and athletic directors; sponsors professional organizations for high school coaches, officials, spirit coaches, speech and debate coaches and music adjudicators; and serves as a national information resource of interscholastic athletics and activities. For more information, visit the NFHS Web site at www.nfhs.org.
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Old Mon Jun 30, 2008, 05:43pm
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Any rumblings on the horizon about requiring adult base coaches to wear helmets?
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Old Mon Jun 30, 2008, 07:30pm
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I wish this was a joke. Unless you are an idiot, you knew the intention of all 4 rule "clarifications." What ump would not eject a pitcher for "pitching" at a batter? Who would have kept a batter at the plate if calling a ball four when he made no attempt to get out of the way? It seems as though the NFHS is in a race to the bottom. Sad.
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Old Mon Jun 30, 2008, 07:40pm
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I think you missed this one blue... 'remains at bat unless the pitch results in a third strike or ball four'
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Old Tue Jul 01, 2008, 07:46am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Toadman15241
I wish this was a joke. Unless you are an idiot, you knew the intention of all 4 rule "clarifications." What ump would not eject a pitcher for "pitching" at a batter? Who would have kept a batter at the plate if calling a ball four when he made no attempt to get out of the way? It seems as though the NFHS is in a race to the bottom. Sad.
Surprisingly (or perhaps not), there was some discussion on this play on another forum with some members saying that it became a "no-pitch" since the rule didn't specifically say ball four.

Lah me indeed.
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Old Tue Jul 01, 2008, 09:39am
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Just an opportunity to sell new rule books next year - no real change in how the game is played. Just "clarifications".
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Old Tue Jul 01, 2008, 05:27pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TxUmp
Just an opportunity to sell new rule books next year - no real change in how the game is played. Just "clarifications".
Not here, since we receive a rule book and case book with our State registration fee.
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Old Tue Jul 01, 2008, 05:35pm
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I'm going to be the optimist. At least they didn't make any real changes (like helmets for base coaches or something asinine like that.)
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Old Tue Jul 01, 2008, 09:24pm
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Here is my favorite rule change for the 2008-09 school year:

"4) Having all coaching staff members display professional behavior."

Right now I am ROFLMAO!!

MTD, Sr.
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Old Tue Jul 01, 2008, 11:00pm
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Nice.

So instead of actually dealing with issues, NFHS just publishes these "clarifications." How worthless.
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Old Wed Jul 02, 2008, 06:02am
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People, try to remember that the NHFS is comprised mostly of coaches and lay people. Tim C. is one of the very few umpire inputs there.
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Old Wed Jul 02, 2008, 06:51am
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Well, I don't know that Tee will appreciate being called anybody's "input." But they do have a fairly lengthy survey that they invite all their umpires to complete.

And MTD: remember, OH coaches get a $100 parting gift for ejections starting next year. (They're parted from their $100...) Maybe that will help encourage "professionalism."
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Old Wed Jul 02, 2008, 09:32am
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There is a message here

Guys with the exception of Football, who has a constantly rotating rule set, and wrestling, which is a totally different animal, what we are seeing now in HS sports is the reality that there is not much left on the horizon to change in the game rule-wise. Even in hoops, when guys are thinking about the big change in clearing our the 1st lane spaces (what a waste) or moving the 3 point line back, this is not earth shaking.

Ask yourself, "What was the last major change in HS Baseball, or NCAA Baseball, to the playing rules?" To my mind, it is the FPSR, and that was what, 10 years ago? The only closer one in Fedlandia was the pitching rule change about turning shoulders to 1B, but that is not really significant.

So FED is down to "gardening" the rules, and maybe one day, cleaning up the book so it makes sense, until someone comes up with the next big innovation to the game (Like a 2 batter penalty for rules violations where the defense has to play with 8 guys or something ). In a lot of ways, we ought to welcome this, the rules are pretty stable, it easy to teach them, and the rats don't have new things to mess up.

But it will make for a lot of boring rules meetings in the future. In my state you have a mandatory rules meeting every year for your sport, which means I have 6 of them. And most of them can be done in about 10 minutes, so the interpreters have to fill the hour up with noise pollution, and talking to coaches about eligibility.

My impression is the the NCAA clinics are more like rules review and standardization of mechanics and enforcement than anything else, FBoFW.

Let's enjoy it while we have it! Who knows, someday the FED boys might decide to add the DP/Flex rule or some other miserable Softball crap into our rules, and then we will have a mess on our hands.

Last edited by jkumpire; Wed Jul 02, 2008 at 09:34am.
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Old Wed Jul 02, 2008, 10:50am
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[QUOTE]
Quote:
Originally Posted by jkumpire

Ask yourself, "What was the last major change in HS Baseball, or NCAA Baseball, to the playing rules?" To my mind, it is the FPSR, and that was what, 10 years ago? The only closer one in Fedlandia was the pitching rule change about turning shoulders to 1B, but that is not really significant.
Not quite true.

It seems as though there is at least ONE rule change per season.

We had the appeal rule change. Umpires used to call the infraction.

After the first season of the change in appeal rule, FED did away with the accidental appeal and also added the IBB into the mix. When FED first institutued the appeal rule change F1 could issue IBB's and then still appeal. That was "cleaned-up' the next year.

This past year we had a change in the OBS rule and IMO, the rule still needs clarification.

Therefore, I agree that most of the so called changes are interpretations but there is at least 1 or 2 rules that are either added, or modified each year.

Pete Booth
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Old Wed Jul 02, 2008, 11:57am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jkumpire
Guys with the exception of Football, who has a constantly rotating rule set, and wrestling, which is a totally different animal, what we are seeing now in HS sports is the reality that there is not much left on the horizon to change in the game rule-wise. Even in hoops, when guys are thinking about the big change in clearing our the 1st lane spaces (what a waste) or moving the 3 point line back, this is not earth shaking.

Ask yourself, "What was the last major change in HS Baseball, or NCAA Baseball, to the playing rules?" To my mind, it is the FPSR, and that was what, 10 years ago? The only closer one in Fedlandia was the pitching rule change about turning shoulders to 1B, but that is not really significant.
Where have you been for the last ten years? Appeals, obstruction, pitching, FPSR have all seen changes.

But there are rules that still need some attention:

1. Eliminate the practice of umpires inspecting helmets and bats. The coach should be responsible for the condition of his equipment.

2. Eliminate the courtesy runner, if not completely, at least for the pitcher.

3. Replace Fed pitching regulations with the OBR pitching regulatrions, verbatim.

4. Replace the FED FPSR with NCAA's FPSR

Last edited by MrUmpire; Wed Jul 02, 2008 at 11:59am.
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