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Old Thu Jul 16, 2009, 09:16pm
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Balk, Protest, Balk, EJ

What a nightmare I had tonight. I'm BU.

R1, R3, 2 out. RHP steps directly towards 3rd but does not "fake" towards third with his arm. He then, all in one motion, turns and has R1 picked off. I yell "BALK", point at the pitcher, then put both hands up indicating TIME! PU doesn't realize this, with all the yelling going on. R3 breaks for home and is called out, I then yell at my partner that I had a balk.

DC comes out, wants an explanation. I give it - the pitcher never faked to third and all in one motion turned to make the play on R1. The "argument" is calm and civil, after 30 seconds or so I walk away and say "let's play". All the while assistant coach is standing behind DC not saying much, just listening. PU never came and steered him away.

Then, both of them get close to the dugout, then manager yells "get help." After piping him up, he goes to PU, to which they were talking for a good 90 seconds. Next thing I know, PU calls me in, says they are protesting the game. I am a bit annoyed that this situation is still going on, but keep my mouth shut.

A few innings later, R2 and R3. RHP decides to go from "windup" for an IBB (why, I have no idea). He has both hands just at his sides, ball in his right hand. His body was not directly facing the plate, so I am thinking that he is going from the set. His set position all night was extremely open, and then he would bring his hands together and close it up. But here, he just started to pitch. I balked it. Here comes DC again. Now, I'm annoyed.

DC was one of these passive aggressive coaches. He gets run a fair amount, but always makes it look like its never his fault. I told him it was a balk, always will be a balk. I did a bit of explaining, short phrases. After 30 seconds or so, I simply turned and walked away. When I got to 5 or 10 feet, I turned back around. He was not satisfied with my explanation, as he turned away to go back to dugout he said "you're terrible."

All things considered, the prolonged argument before, the attitude, and the personal comment, I dumped him.

PU started the game back up before he got out of the dugout .

Irritating - I just hope the league doesn't listen to this guys garbage on this protest, but I guess I shouldn't care.
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Old Thu Jul 16, 2009, 09:22pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TussAgee11 View Post
What a nightmare I had tonight. I'm BU.

R1, R3, 2 out. RHP steps directly towards 3rd but does not "fake" towards third with his arm. He then, all in one motion, turns and has R1 picked off. I yell "BALK", point at the pitcher, then put both hands up indicating TIME! PU doesn't realize this, with all the yelling going on. R3 breaks for home and is called out, I then yell at my partner that I had a balk.

DC comes out, wants an explanation. I give it - the pitcher never faked to third and all in one motion turned to make the play on R1. The "argument" is calm and civil, after 30 seconds or so I walk away and say "let's play". All the while assistant coach is standing behind DC not saying much, just listening. PU never came and steered him away.

Then, both of them get close to the dugout, then manager yells "get help." After piping him up, he goes to PU, to which they were talking for a good 90 seconds. Next thing I know, PU calls me in, says they are protesting the game. I am a bit annoyed that this situation is still going on, but keep my mouth shut.

A few innings later, R2 and R3. RHP decides to go from "windup" for an IBB (why, I have no idea). He has both hands just at his sides, ball in his right hand. His body was not directly facing the plate, so I am thinking that he is going from the set. His set position all night was extremely open, and then he would bring his hands together and close it up. But here, he just started to pitch. I balked it. Here comes DC again. Now, I'm annoyed.

DC was one of these passive aggressive coaches. He gets run a fair amount, but always makes it look like its never his fault. I told him it was a balk, always will be a balk. I did a bit of explaining, short phrases. After 30 seconds or so, I simply turned and walked away. When I got to 5 or 10 feet, I turned back around. He was not satisfied with my explanation, as he turned away to go back to dugout he said "you're terrible."

All things considered, the prolonged argument before, the attitude, and the personal comment, I dumped him.

PU started the game back up before he got out of the dugout .

Irritating - I just hope the league doesn't listen to this guys garbage on this protest, but I guess I shouldn't care.
Sorry to hear about the long night. It doesn't sound like your partner did you any favors. Doesn't sound like grounds for a protest if you are playing FED dead ball balks.
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Old Thu Jul 16, 2009, 09:27pm
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Originally Posted by njdevs00cup View Post
Sorry to hear about the long night. It doesn't sound like your partner did you any favors. Doesn't sound like grounds for a protest if you are playing FED dead ball balks.
OBR...

The protest came because they thought I was wrong about the pitcher having to make that full feint towards third before wheeling to first. For some reason, they felt my explanation wasn't backed by rules, which I believe it is.
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Old Thu Jul 16, 2009, 09:33pm
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A step is a legal fake. Arm motion is not required.
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Old Thu Jul 16, 2009, 09:40pm
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Sounds like you blew both balk calls.
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Old Thu Jul 16, 2009, 09:45pm
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Cool

Tuss,

I wasn't there, but from your description, I believe you "kicked" both of these calls and the coaches had just cause to be upset with your rulings.

As JR12 astutely points out, on an "in contact" feint to 3B, a "step" IS required, but a "throwing motion" is not.

Quote:
...His body was not directly facing the plate, so I am thinking that he is going from the set. ...
Whether the pitcher's body is "....directly facing the plate..." is not a material question. His starting foot position IS.

JM
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Old Thu Jul 16, 2009, 09:47pm
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Thanks, JM
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Old Thu Jul 16, 2009, 10:01pm
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Originally Posted by njdevs00cup View Post
Sorry to hear about the long night. It doesn't sound like your partner did you any favors. Doesn't sound like grounds for a protest if you are playing FED dead ball balks.
I agree that they may not have been balks, but this does not sound like grounds for a protest.
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Old Thu Jul 16, 2009, 10:12pm
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Originally Posted by TussAgee11 View Post
I told him it was a balk, always will be a balk. I did a bit of explaining, short phrases. After 30 seconds or so, I simply turned and walked away. When I got to 5 or 10 feet, I turned back around. He was not satisfied with my explanation, as he turned away to go back to dugout he said "you're terrible."

All things considered, the prolonged argument before, the attitude, and the personal comment, I dumped him.
Did you just walk away because the discussion had gone on for around 30 seconds? Was the coach repeating himself or doing anything to warrant you ending the conversation? I'm a bit confused as to why you would just abruptly walk away during that. If he had already been ejected I could see it.

However, once you turn and walk away in any situation like that, keep walking. Turning around after you get a few feet away, then engaging him again, or having him engage you, then following it up with an ejection...that doesn't look too good.
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Old Thu Jul 16, 2009, 10:40pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by njdevs00cup View Post
I agree that they may not have been balks, but this does not sound like grounds for a protest.
Misapplication of the rules is normally grounds for a protest.
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Old Thu Jul 16, 2009, 10:52pm
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Alright, let me do some cleaning up of the story.

@BC - I turned because I was back to C, where I needed to be for the next play. The coach was repeating himself. I didn't just walk away, I said something to the effect of "ok coach, you've had your say and gotten your answer, let's play."

@JM et al - On the first balk, the pitcher's movements were all in one motion. 8.05c comment - "However, if, with runners on first and third, the pitcher, while in contact with the rubber, steps toward third and then immediately and in practically the same motion “wheels” and throws to first base, it is obviously an attempt to deceive the runner at first base, and in such a move it is practically impossible to step directly toward first base before the throw to first base, and such a move shall be called a balk."

This is exactly what happened. The pitcher stepped directly towards third and then all in one motion wheeled and threw to first. I thought this was what I described in the OP... and I believe this comment covers it, does it not? I described the lack of arm motion to simply paint a picture of how quickly the all-in-one motion occurred...

On the 2nd balk... as stated in my earlier post, the pitchers hands were by his each side. 8.01 (a) When a pitcher holds the ball with both hands in front of his body, with his pivot foot in contact with the pitcher’s plate and his other foot free, he will be considered in the Windup Position. Since this is not what happened, I did not consider him in the windup, and figured the set was more appropriate.

I agree that the body position I indicated is not of importance, 8.01(b) does indeed indicate it is the free foot's position that indicates the set is being used. To be honest, I couldn't tell you where his free foot was, the hole on the mound was pretty deep. So I would agree that I was wrong to assume that he was legally, although not intentionally, using the set position.

However, by rule, he wasn't using the wind-up position either. I judged his actions to be deceitful to the base runners since it was not clear what position he was using, and therefore, whether or not base runners and the batter should expect a delivery or his hands to come together for a stop (particularly since his regular set position was preceded by his free foot being wide open and his hands at his sides before going into the stretch). His windup during the game was for his hands to come in front of his body while taking the signs.

Lastly, some might say since I wasn't sure where the free foot was I should have passed. But 8.01 comment: "Rule 8.01(a) Comment: In the Windup Position, a pitcher is permitted to have his “free” foot on the rubber, in front of the rubber, behind the rubber or off the side of the rubber." And of course, in the set, his free foot should be in front of the rubber. So I don't see how the free foot is the be all end all in determining set vs windup, just based off reading the rules. Which leaves the question, what is?

I'm not trying to be stubborn, in fact I am open to criticism of all kinds and will admit if I was wrong I'm just not so sure why the rules I cited above should not be applied in these two situations.

Last edited by TussAgee11; Thu Jul 16, 2009 at 10:57pm.
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Old Thu Jul 16, 2009, 11:01pm
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I think you're solid on the first one and the second one's picking one. I can picture the first one, but the second one's a reach.
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Old Thu Jul 16, 2009, 11:08pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kevin Finnerty View Post
I think you're solid on the first one and the second one's picking one. I can picture the first one, but the second one's a reach.
I think I'd agree its a reach because 8.05 does not list not following 8.01 as a provision for a balk, and 8.01a doesn't say not following 8.01a is a balk, so on that one, we don't have much to work with. All that's left is pitcher's intent to deceive which is always going to be in the gray.
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Old Fri Jul 17, 2009, 12:23am
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The "wheel' in the first sit means the pitcher did not break contact with the rubber in the step to 3B. No arm motion is required but if he did "wheel" and did not break contact from the rubber with the pivot foot it would be a balk. Usually the pitcher breaks contact in the step to 3B and there is no balk to 1B.
Since in OBR you can pick from the windup or set and since OBR loosened its requirements for the foot position in both cases I think you are going to have to review a PBUC or MLBUM which have a chapter about what exactly the pitcher can do from the windup. I think you were wrong in both calls. Time to start reading other material besides the rulebook.

If you watched the 2008 World Series you would have seen Tampa Bay pitcher JP Howell pitch the windup and set from the same foot position. I agree that FED's a different story.
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Old Fri Jul 17, 2009, 07:02am
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Balk 1: Tuss, I think that you might win the protest over the first balk, provided you convince the protest committee that the situation described in 8.05(c) is exactly what happened on the field.

I think, however, that this provision of 8.05 is virtually unenforceable. The problem lies with the expression "practically the same motion." If F1 is legitimately going one way and then turns 180, that can't really be the same motion in my book.

I'm sure there exist situations in which I would enforce that balk, but yours doesn't sound like one of them.

Balk 2: Tuss, I agree with JM that this is not a balk. You've actually cited the correct part of 8.05 on which to rule: when in doubt (and only then), judge whether the pitcher's intent is to deceive.

He can't possibly be trying to deceive anyone on an intentional walk with R2 & R3. No balk.

And if you're going to quibble about his wind-up positioning, you have to do it on his first pitch of the game. Again, that's a booger I decline to pick.
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