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Old Sat Jul 10, 2004, 06:12pm
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This question arises from a situation earlier today. I was assisting my sister-in-law's 16U girls fastpitch team with 1 hour time limit games. We were down 2 runs, with 2 out in the bottom half of the inning (we are home), and nobody on. We had our 9 hitter up, and the coach decides that with only 1+ on the game clock that she should get a quick out so we could start the next inning and have 3 fresh outs to use hopefully still down only 2 runs.

Anyway, mysis-in-law is the batter and I tell her to take the quick out by hitting a pitch while out of the box, which was the fastest thing I could think of at the time (by the time everybody got set to pitch and hit, etc. there was only a minute on the clock and the pitcher wasn't pitching fast enough for her to get 3 quick swinging strikes). Unfortunatly she misunderstood me and thought she could take the out through abandonment (she swung, no contact, and ran immediatly to the bench) which didn't work.

I know getting a quick out isn't exactly in the spirit of the game, but I don't think softball, or baseball for that matter, was intended to be played with a time limit, so here is my question...can anyone think of a legal way to get a quick out in this situation to prolong the game another inning.

Please do not knock my ethics if you feel this is unethical. I am actually quite undecided myself as to whether something like this is something that should even be done.

In its defense though, I will point out teams foul in basketball to stop the clock and as I stated above I don't know of any code of rules that requires a time limit of softball games.
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Old Sun Jul 11, 2004, 12:06am
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Quote:
Originally posted by BoomerSooner
I know getting a quick out isn't exactly in the spirit of the game, but I don't think softball, or baseball for that matter, was intended to be played with a time limit, so here is my question...can anyone think of a legal way to get a quick out in this situation to prolong the game another inning.

Please do not knock my ethics if you feel this is unethical. I am actually quite undecided myself as to whether something like this is something that should even be done.

In its defense though, I will point out teams foul in basketball to stop the clock and as I stated above I don't know of any code of rules that requires a time limit of softball games.
Son, you are lost. There is no doubt you are on the wrong board.

BTW, the purpose for the time limit stems from the teams wasting time and not enough hours in the day to provide the teams with the amount of games they demand to play in certain tournaments.

If you have a problem with the system, take a look at yourself for a definition of why the system (rules and code) are presently set up they way they are.

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Old Sun Jul 11, 2004, 12:27am
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This Mike Rowe guy is SHARP..He has a future ahead of him..... I have to echo what he said..YOU are the reason for the question..
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Old Sun Jul 11, 2004, 08:05am
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Hey guys, I asked for this not to become a personal attack. I'm not the coach (just helping out) and do actually umpire. I've never been faced as an ump with a situation like that from any team that I have ever worked. I did feel kinda guilty lending advice to try to take advantage of the rules in this situation, but honestly, in a world where coaches continue to go to the mound or have conferences with runners to run the clock what's so horrible about wanting the kids to play more (and we've all seen it and tried to stop it, but we can only do so much because quite frankly its in the rules that coaches can talk to their players).

More than anything it was a curiosity question...to see if anybody else could think of anything, and not to start a personal battle. I think if this is my first encounter with a situation like this in 6 years of playing or umping softball, I don't think this situation will come up so often that just discussing it in a cordial manner is going to upset the softball world too much.
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Old Sun Jul 11, 2004, 04:15pm
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Hitting the ball while out of the batter's box might be a good way to make an out.... but that would only be if the umpired judged that the batter was out of the box. Having a runner leave the base before the ball reached the plate might be another way... again, that would only be if the umpired judged that the runner left early.

Remember also that most rule books have a provision that states an umpire can rule a forfeit if a team applies tactics designed to delay or hasten a game.

As for me, if I was a umpire, I'm sure I would make sure I brushed the plate, inspected the ball and double checked my line-up just to insure that your team did not employ such tactics that would cause me to have to call a forfeit and thus have to take the extra time out of my schedule to fill out the required incident report.

As to your statement that you are still questioning yourself as to the ethical nature of this tactic, I am not so sure I have the opinion that it is unethical, but I definitely consider it outside the spirit of fair play and sportsmanship to the others in your league. In my opinion, this is not an equal comparison to basketball because in basketball the remaining time is only delayed while the foul penalty is imposed.

In the situation you discribed you are unfairly trying to take advantage of a local rule which is in place to insure others have sufficient time on the field. If you have the 9:30 game and if the 6:30, 7:30 and 8:30 games all have teams that apply such tactics, I hope you don't mind if your team doesn't even get to start because the park has an 11:00 curfew.

That's not a personal attack. It would be a personal attack if I told you that I thought you should re-examine your value system that first made you consider doing this and then made you go to a public forum to seek justification. Or if I told you that you are perhaps not thinking clearly if you thought you could ask umpires how you could take advantage of their services in which they are already underpaid. However, since you asked for no such personal attack, I will make sure I don't say anything like this to you.

P.S. If you "do actually umpire", I hope your skin gets a little thicker. :-)
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Old Sun Jul 11, 2004, 05:40pm
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Here is an idea - have your players hustle more in the game. When people complain about the time limit, I always think of the minutes they wasted between innings and so on.
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Old Mon Jul 12, 2004, 01:27pm
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I think you should use your knowledge of the rules to win the game . Time management and use of the clock are all part of the game . The quickest out is when the pitcher toes the rubber you make an obvious walk to the other side of the plate and if the umpire is paying attention you will be called out . Very simple and very good ball playing to win the game . Thanks
that means step across the plate .
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Old Mon Jul 12, 2004, 02:13pm
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Quote:
Originally posted by Texas
I think you should use your knowledge of the rules to win the game . Time management and use of the clock are all part of the game . The quickest out is when the pitcher toes the rubber you make an obvious walk to the other side of the plate and if the umpire is paying attention you will be called out . Very simple and very good ball playing to win the game . Thanks
that means step across the plate .
That may work once, but the team stands to lose the game if they don't watch their steps (pun intended)
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