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Old Sat Mar 25, 2006, 01:56pm
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the last obstruction post ever(just kidding)

I was just reading the Paul L. post about obstruction on a possible steal. Responses were typically good. Two things have to happen, fielder without the ball blocking base or pathway and, and some phrase it, runner must show hesitation or deviation from approach. But what about this. Steal at second (or any advance really), fielder puts foot in front of bag awaiting the ball. Runner comes in, slides normally and does not deviate her path at all. Fielders foot prevents runner from reaching base. Then ball gets to fielder who applies the tag. No hesitation or deviation on the runner but impediment seems clear. Obstruction, right?
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Old Sat Mar 25, 2006, 02:41pm
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Text book obstruction, as far as I can tell.
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Old Sat Mar 25, 2006, 03:07pm
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I would like for someone on the forum to detail the mechanics of an obstruction call.

Sitch: R1 on 1B, B3 hits line drive to LF, moving in to cover 2B F4 obstructs R1 just before she rounds 2B not a crash but some contact is made. F7 pegs the throw to F5 for the out on R1 at 3B. F5 then throws to F4 and the BR is tagged out at 2B.

At what point in the play is obstruction called? Is the play killed as soon as the tag is made at third or does the delayed dead ball signal (which I assume is given at the monent of obstruction) allow the play to conclude with the play at second?

If someone would walk through this play and break it down at each point when the Ump takes action, that would be helpful to me.
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Old Sat Mar 25, 2006, 05:16pm
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You call the obstruction when it occurs by signalling a delayed dead ball and verbally stating "obstruction". As soon as the runner is put out before reaching the base that would have been reached had there been no obstruction, you kill the play. In your sitch, if you believe the runner would have reached third safely had she not been obstructed, you kill the play and award bases. If you believe she would have been out at third regardless, let the play go.
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Old Sun Mar 26, 2006, 09:41am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tcblue13
I would like for someone on the forum to detail the mechanics of an obstruction call.

Sitch: R1 on 1B, B3 hits line drive to LF, moving in to cover 2B F4 obstructs R1 just before she rounds 2B not a crash but some contact is made. F7 pegs the throw to F5 for the out on R1 at 3B. F5 then throws to F4 and the BR is tagged out at 2B.

At what point in the play is obstruction called? Is the play killed as soon as the tag is made at third or does the delayed dead ball signal (which I assume is given at the monent of obstruction) allow the play to conclude with the play at second?

If someone would walk through this play and break it down at each point when the Ump takes action, that would be helpful to me.
Speaking ASA

Obstruction is called when you see it. Only give the DDB signal. No reason to run around with your wing flapping in the air, but hold the signal for a few seconds to give the coachs a chance to see it. ASA does not call for a pronouncement of "obstruction".

However, there are some who will suggest giving a verbal and there is nothing stating an umpire cannot. I stopped giving a verbal when I was working a HS game, ruled DDB and said "obstruction" and every player on the infield stopped playing an looked to me for a call. A simple non-required call caused the game to come to a halt. That shouldn't happen, so I no longer open my mouth.

If the runner is put out, or all play is obviously over prior to the obstructed runner reaching the base to which you provided protection, you rule the ball dead and award the appropriate base to that runner and any other runner affected by the OBS.

If the runner passes the base to which they were protected, the OBS call is negated and the runner is now in jeopardy even if put out returning to the base to which she was protected. If the runner safely attains the base to which they were protected, even if it was the base on the back end of the OBS and leaves that base during a subsequent play on another runner, s/he is now in jeopardy to be retired even if that takes place between the bases where the runner was obstructed.

In your play, only you can determine whether R1 is protected to 3B. If no, then R1 is out and play continues. If yes, the ball is dead the moment R1 is tagged out. R1 is awarded 3B and R2 is safe at 2B as long as that runner was more than half way to 2B at the time of the tag on R1. If not, that R2 is returned to 1B.
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Old Mon Mar 27, 2006, 09:36am
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The defensive player impeded--obstructed-- the offensivie player from reaching the base by blocking the bag with her foot without secured possession of the ball. Delayed dead-ball signal, and wait for the play to end before penalizing.
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Old Mon Mar 27, 2006, 10:41am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Little Jimmy
I was just reading the Paul L. post about obstruction on a possible steal. Responses were typically good. Two things have to happen, fielder without the ball blocking base or pathway and, and some phrase it, runner must show hesitation or deviation from approach. But what about this. Steal at second (or any advance really), fielder puts foot in front of bag awaiting the ball. Runner comes in, slides normally and does not deviate her path at all. Fielders foot prevents runner from reaching base. Then ball gets to fielder who applies the tag. No hesitation or deviation on the runner but impediment seems clear. Obstruction, right?
Jimmy - the fact that she was stopped by the fielder's foot IS a deviation (or extreme hesitation!) from her path. The "hesitation or deviation" does not have to be a willing one on the part of the runner.
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Old Mon Mar 27, 2006, 11:00am
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The NFHS rule says
"a runner is entitled to advance without liability to be put out when:
b. A fielder not in possession of the ball, not in the act of fielding a bated ball, or not about to receive a thrown ball impedes the progress of a runner or batter-runner who is leagally running the bases." 8-4-3b

I think it depends on how close the fielder is to receiving the ball. If the ball is still in the hands of the catcher OBS clearly

If the ball is reaching F4's glove in any close proximity to the actuial play no OBS since the she is about to receive a thrown ball. It appears that by NFHS rule she is entitled to block the base.

I would have to say it is a judgment call depending on how close the fielder is to catching the ball.

My question then becomes: What if the fielder about to receive the thrown ball blocks the base but then misses the catch preventing R1 from either advancing further or F4 can pick up the loose ball and apply the tag. Bang bang before R1 can react to the missed catch.
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Old Mon Mar 27, 2006, 11:11am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tcblue13
The NFHS rule says
"a runner is entitled to advance without liability to be put out when:
b. A fielder not in possession of the ball, not in the act of fielding a bated ball, or not about to receive a thrown ball impedes the progress of a runner or batter-runner who is leagally running the bases." 8-4-3b

I think it depends on how close the fielder is to receiving the ball. If the ball is still in the hands of the catcher OBS clearly

If the ball is reaching F4's glove in any close proximity to the actuial play no OBS since the she is about to receive a thrown ball. It appears that by NFHS rule she is entitled to block the base.

I would have to say it is a judgment call depending on how close the fielder is to catching the ball.

My question then becomes: What if the fielder about to receive the thrown ball blocks the base but then misses the catch preventing R1 from either advancing further or F4 can pick up the loose ball and apply the tag. Bang bang before R1 can react to the missed catch.
Get a new book, TCBlue; that hasn't been the rule for two years. The rule now states "b. A fielder not in possession of the ball or not in the act of fielding a batted ball impedes the progress of a runner or batter-runner who is legally running the bases." 8-4-3b "About to receive" is not part of the rule, and is obstruction. No judgment about how close; obstruction. Your play; obstruction. No possession, not fielding a batted ball.
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Old Mon Mar 27, 2006, 11:15am
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[QUOTE=IRISHMAFIA]Speaking ASA

Obstruction is called when you see it. Only give the DDB signal. No reason to run around with your wing flapping in the air, but hold the signal for a few seconds to give the coachs a chance to see it. ASA does not call for a pronouncement of "obstruction".

Mike,

I have always had a problem with the DDB signal for obstruction, i.e., how does the runner and/or coach know to what base we are protecting the runner? We may not think it is important, but I believe savy runners/coaches will use the protection to take at least that base, where inexperienced runners will not contiune to the protected base.

I have always felt it was incumbant upon us as officials to communicate with the participants any rulings we make that can affect their decision making. If they don't know to where they are protected, we are forcing them to read our minds, possibly limiting their choices.
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Old Mon Mar 27, 2006, 11:16am
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Sorry Steve,
I have the new rules book
I just quoted the 2006 rules book.
It is in there on page 64.

"Put on your glasses , Blue"
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Old Mon Mar 27, 2006, 12:07pm
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This was an error in the 2006 Book. See http://www.nfhs.org/scriptcontent/va...Footer=SB_FOOT
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Old Mon Mar 27, 2006, 01:58pm
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[QUOTE=MNBlue]
Quote:
Originally Posted by IRISHMAFIA
Speaking ASA

Obstruction is called when you see it. Only give the DDB signal. No reason to run around with your wing flapping in the air, but hold the signal for a few seconds to give the coachs a chance to see it. ASA does not call for a pronouncement of "obstruction".

Mike,

I have always had a problem with the DDB signal for obstruction, i.e., how does the runner and/or coach know to what base we are protecting the runner? We may not think it is important, but I believe savy runners/coaches will use the protection to take at least that base, where inexperienced runners will not contiune to the protected base.

I have always felt it was incumbant upon us as officials to communicate with the participants any rulings we make that can affect their decision making. If they don't know to where they are protected, we are forcing them to read our minds, possibly limiting their choices.
We cannot inform people during a play what the award is going to be, and while it's important to US, it should not be important to savy runners/coaches. Why does it matter AT ALL if the inexperienced or experienced runner continues to the awarded base? Our ruling should NOT affect their decision making, and I can't think of a case where it would.
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Old Mon Mar 27, 2006, 02:26pm
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I misspoke in the prior post. I was initially thinking of runners continuing past protected base when I typed not continuing to the protected base. Obviously, we would award the base if the runner stopped short.

This is one scenario. BR hits what I think is a double, gets obstructed rounding first, and continues to third. I have the BR protected to second, she goes to third and gets thrown out. I call her out at third, and the coach tells me of the obstruction and how she can't be out and now I get to explain to the coach that she put herself in jeopardy because I only protected her to second. How was the BR or the coach to know that I only protected the BR to second? Do they need to know?
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Old Mon Mar 27, 2006, 03:03pm
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They don't need to know that you might be awarding 3rd base. If you were, and she stopped at 2nd, you would award 3rd. If you weren't, and she stopped at 2nd, you wouldn't. All that the coach should be doing at this point is telling her to run if she will be safe. The umpire will award if necessary afterward. A coach trying to get a player to advance an extra base on the chance that that base might be awarded anyway is a stupid coach. It's all risk, no reward.
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