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Old Tue Jul 09, 2002, 12:42pm
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Question

R1 and R2. BU in Position C; I'm the PU. A line shot (literally; 90 mph maybe) back to the mound, hits the rubber and caroms foul midway between Home and 1st. I cannot see (from my angle) whether the "screamer" touched F1 or not (either before or after striking the rubber). BR is at 1st and R1 and R2 all advanced before F2 fields the ball in foul territory. No further action is occuring. As F2 touched the ball in foul territory, I called "Time", still not indicating whether the ball is fair or foul. I confer with my partner. "Did you see the ball touch the pitcher at all?" "No". "Foul Ball", I say.

Now my question for y'all. Should I have pointed "Fair" and then rule "Foul" after the conference with my partner? I had enough presence of mind not to yell "Foul" immediately, knowing that my call would have been much more difficult to change later.

I think I handled it okay, but am wondering if I could have handled it better.

Jerry
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Old Tue Jul 09, 2002, 02:14pm
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The best thing that can happen is that you immediately scream, "Foul!" and yell, "Off the rubber, didn't pass a base, no contact with a fielder." That would show everyone in the park that you saw the play clearly, that your mind processed everything instantly, and that you are on top of everything going on.

However, while those instant calls are great, they can be trouble, especially if you're not correct and the remedy is hard to apply.

I made an immediate call of "out" recently when the pitcher appeared to tag a runner going to first on a bunt to move a runner to third. I figured a fast call was needed in that situation, but in the next instant I saw that the pitcher's hands had come apart on the tag, so the "tag" wasn't a tag at all, just a slap with an empty glove. So I screamed, "No!" and made the safe sign immediately. The pitcher quickly threw to first for the out, so the erroneous quick call made no difference. However, it left an opening for the offense to claim that my call made the runner slow down, etc. In retrospect, I would have been better off waiting to make the call.
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Old Tue Jul 09, 2002, 02:25pm
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Let the play run..............

It's much easier to undo a play that occurred if later convinced the ball was, indeed, untouched. Changing this to a foul ball after play has finished, if that's your decision, is easily accomplished.

If this was a screamer as indicated, it's quite likely that F1 would provide you some evidence if he has been struck.
You can also discuss it with your partner(s) who may have information to add but correctly did not come in to poach your call of fair/foul. They don't know of your doubt until you ask. Don't expect them to chime in during play.
Would you like one of them to call it foul, if indeed, you were certain it had struck the pitcher?


Just my opinion,

Freix

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Old Fri Jul 12, 2002, 10:30am
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You have to make a call one way or the other. While it is true that if you make the wrong call, you might hurt one team, if you make no call, you hurt everybody. Let's say you conference with your partner after calling time and decide that the ball did hit F1 after all and should have been fair, how do you fix that one?

My take is, call what you see. If you want to be conservative, call it fair and then reverse the call after a conference, but you have to make a call one way or the other.
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Old Fri Jul 12, 2002, 11:11am
Rog Rog is offline
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Wink

re: "A line shot (literally; 90 mph maybe) back to the mound, hits the rubber and caroms foul midway between Home and 1st. I cannot see (from my angle) whether the "screamer" touched F1 or not (either before or after striking the rubber)."

If this shot had hit the pitcher, I think you would have known right away - as F1 goes dancing around, or hits the ground in agony!!!!!
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Old Fri Jul 12, 2002, 01:40pm
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Thanks Rog. The Pitcher's reaction was part of the equation in the call. He did not go "dancing" after the play. My ONLY hesitation was whether my partner saw a "hit". I'm inclined to go with "greymule". Yell out all the specifics and call "Foul" immediately. I really believe I got this call properly; but could I have done it even MORE emphatically? There were no big arguments whatsoevever, except those that didn't know that if the ball hit the rubber and went foul.
Jerry
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Old Fri Jul 12, 2002, 02:34pm
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Using good timing and knowing that a "foul!" call or fair-ball signal can be delayed a split second, PU should glance at BU before making call. Had BU seen ball touch F1, BU would have signaled the touch to aid PU in the same manner that BU calls foul if he alone sees batted ball strike batter in the batter's box. And had BU seen ball strike rubber only without touching F1, BU has concurrent jurisdiction to rule foul. Lastly, had BU not gotten good look at play and signaled nothing, PU calls what he sees after glancing at BU.

Good work, Jerry.
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Old Fri Jul 12, 2002, 02:46pm
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Originally posted by Jerry

A line shot (literally; 90 mph maybe) back to the mound, hits the rubber and caroms foul midway between Home and 1st. I cannot see (from my angle) whether the "screamer" touched F1 or not (either before or after striking the rubber).

This is where the reactions of players can aid you. Since the ball was a screamer (90 mph) if it did hit F1 I think you would know it.

If the players can't aid you, you can always point Fair and then undo afterwards. It's like a ball in the outfield that goes under a fence or gets stuck in shrubbery, we instruct runners to keep on running and the BU goes out and checks to make certain the ball indeed went through the fence or got stuck. You can always put runner's back.

Pete Booth
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