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Old Tue Aug 29, 2000, 07:52pm
rex rex is offline
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I'm still having trouble getting this through my noodle.

Sometimes on an appeal for a missed just touching the bag is enough for the out. Other times the runner has to be tagged. There has been talk of relaxed and unrelaxed which is Greek to me.

In my limited rules library I can't come up with the where's and when's. Perhaps the correct interpretation book is my answer.


I'll give two examples

#1 This last POD where the catcher just has to touch the plate and say hay blue looky here.


#2 The batter runner missed first and over runs, then the ball arrives and is caught by first baseman while F3 is in contact with the bag. As I understand it now the B/R must be tagged OR does F3 just have to say looky here also.

rex
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Old Tue Aug 29, 2000, 08:44pm
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quote:
Originally posted by rex:
Sometimes on an appeal for a missed just touching the bag is enough for the out. Other times the runner has to be tagged. There has been talk of relaxed and unrelaxed which is Greek to me.

I'll give two examples

#1 This last POD where the catcher just has to touch the plate and say hay blue looky here.

#2 The batter runner missed first and over runs, then the ball arrives and is caught by first baseman while F3 is in contact with the bag. As I understand it now the B/R must be tagged OR does F3 just have to say looky here also.

rex



Rex:

Let me give you some principles. Write them down. (There'll be a quiz later.)

1. "Relaxed action": All runners have stopped moving. The ball has been returned to the infield. Nothing is happening since everybody has "relaxed."

2. "Unrelaxed action": The ball is zipping around. Runners are moving forward, or trying to retreat legally. Bases can be gained, outs can be made. Nobody is cool because everybody is "unrelaxed."

3. Appeals of a base where the runner left too soon can occur whether the action is relaxed or unrelaxed (as long as what the defense does constitutes an unmistakable act of appeal).

Play 1: R3 tags on B1's fly to right. The ball is caught, and he crosses the plate. The ball is returned to the infield, and the defense properly appeals that R3 left too soon. That's an appeal made during unrelaxed action, and it is always legal to do so.

Unrelaxed action is a horse of a different color.

Play 2: R1, R3. R3 tags on B1's fly to right, but R1 goes half way. The ball is caught, R3 scores, but the defense throws to first base. That is an obvious appeal during unrelaxed action. R1 will try to get back, the defense will try to get the ball to the base first. Throwing to a base where a runner has obviously left early is an unmistakable act of appeal.

Play 3: R3 does not tag at third on a little popup behind first. He moves three or four steps away from the bag. F3 catches the ball and fires it to third, where it beats R3 back to the base, but the third baseman does not tag him. That is not an unmistakable act of appeal because R3 hasn't obviously left the base to soon. Everyone will assume the defense is trying to tag him off the base, so the umpire will not call him out for being illegally off the base following a caught fly ball -- even though he was.

The next play is the paradigm for unrealxed action for a missed base.

Play 4 (and then I'll cover your plays): R1, R3, two outs. B1 hits deep to short. His only play is at second, but his throw pulls F4 away from the bag. R1 slides around second without touching it and he is several feet from the base on the third-base side of second. F4 with the ball dives for him, and R1 tries to scramble back. That is unrelaxed action. The umpire will not accept an appeal that R1 missed that base. Professional umpires apply 7.10(d) to all bases, not just home.

When R1 beat the play at second and rounded the bag, he removed the force under current official interpretations. If he makes an out trying for third, he may be appealed at second. If they umpire upholds that appeal, that will cancel R3's run. If R1 makes an out trying to return to second, that is a time play, and R3's run will count.

That is the professional interpretation that just drives untrained, untutored, and unknowledgeable umpries to drink. "That's not what the book says," they holler. So what? They don't always change the rules in the OBR. They just tell their umpires what to do.

With that as background, let's look at your two plays, which have been much discussed recently all around the net.

#1 This last POD where the catcher just has to touch the plate and say hay blue looky here.

This one's easy. Read carefully 7.10(d). The idea is: If the runner misses home and tries to return, he must be tagged. If he leaves the vicinity of the plate, the catcher with a live ball may simply stand on the plate and appeal that the runner missed it. The point: The rules committee wants to protect the catcher from having to chase a runner to tag him while other runners might be advancing on the bases. In the POTEOD, the catcher did chase the runner and he was safe when he beat the throw back to the base. In my opinion, based on the principle of unrelaxed action of a missed base, the defense would not be allowed to appeal the out at home since both the ball and the runner were headed for the missed base. It's the same situation as Play 5 above.

#2 The batter runner missed first and over runs, then the ball arrives and is caught by first baseman while F3 is in contact with the bag. As I understand it now the B/R must be tagged OR does F3 just have to say looky here also.

This one is more difficult. B1 beat the play, but he missed the base. (The plays I use here are adapted from J/R, p. 43, '95 ed.)

#2a: If B1 continues past the base and does not turn around to try to return, the first baseman may touch the base and show the umpire the ball, telling him he is appealing. That's a relaxed action appeal, and B1 is out.

#2b: If B1 and F3 collide and B1 overruns the base, when he tries to return, that's unrelaxed action. The first baseman now must tag him, but since the batter-runner did not touch the base, it is an appeal of the missed base, and the runner is out.

A point that J/R does not make here is important: The "appeal" in #2b may only take place at first, where the runner is entitled to over-run the base.

Summary:

(1) The defense may appeal a runner left too soon during relaxed or unrelaxed action.

(2) The defense may appeal a runner missed a base during relaxed action.

(3) The defense must tag a runner who missed a base when he tries to return.

(4) Appeals during unrelaxed action of a missed base are allowed only at first.

It ain't easy, but it can be mastered with study.

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Papa C
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[This message has been edited by Carl Childress (edited August 29, 2000).]

[This message has been edited by Carl Childress (edited August 29, 2000).]

[This message has been edited by Carl Childress (edited August 29, 2000).]

[This message has been edited by Carl Childress (edited August 29, 2000).]
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Old Wed Aug 30, 2000, 01:07pm
rex rex is offline
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Thanx Carl

As you said it's gonna be a little hard to get that to soak in, but at least I know now what everybody is talking about. I think I better break down and get me one of those J/R's. It might be a little early, as I'm still not done studying with the NAPBL . But to have it on had won't be a bad idea.

Again thanks. I owe you a beer.


Rex McDonald

Ps. I do appreciate the time you spent typing that up for me. It's already on hard copy and in my rule binder.
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Old Wed Aug 30, 2000, 05:13pm
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quote:
Originally posted by rex:
Thanx Carl

As you said it's gonna be a little hard to get that to soak in, but at least I know now what everybody is talking about. I think I better break down and get me one of those J/R's. It might be a little early, as I'm still not done studying with the NAPBL . But to have it on had won't be a bad idea.

Again thanks. I owe you a beer.


Rex McDonald

Ps. I do appreciate the time you spent typing that up for me. It's already on hard copy and in my rule binder.



Rex:

There's a point I forgot to make concerning appeals at first during unrelaxed action. I said that J/R doesn't make it clear that the fielder is appealing the base (effect of a force out) by tagging the runner who missed first and is trying to return.

That's probably because OBR 7.10(c) makes that very clear: The fielder may tag the base or the runner.



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