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  #1 (permalink)  
Old Mon May 13, 2013, 09:46am
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Illegal pitch or no pitch.

I was working a JV game a couple years ago and had this situation. I am the plate umpire.

The pitcher begins her pitching motion, and as she steps forward she stumbles, as a result of the stumble, she never releases the pitch.

At the same time she is in her pitching motion and would have normally released the pitch, the runner at second is called out by my BU for leaving base before the pitch is released.

We come together and try to determine when she left the base and how it compared with the time the pitch would have been released, had the pitch been released.

We really could not come to a decision so we ruled it no pitch, but did not declare the runner out.

What should the call be.

1) Illegal pitch, because she never released the pitch.

2) No pitch, the runner is out for leaving the base early.

3) The way we handled it. Basically a simultaneous violation by the pitcher and by the runner.
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Old Mon May 13, 2013, 09:48am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chapmaja View Post
I was working a JV game a couple years ago and had this situation. I am the plate umpire.

The pitcher begins her pitching motion, and as she steps forward she stumbles, as a result of the stumble, she never releases the pitch.

At the same time she is in her pitching motion and would have normally released the pitch, the runner at second is called out by my BU for leaving base before the pitch is released.

We come together and try to determine when she left the base and how it compared with the time the pitch would have been released, had the pitch been released.

We really could not come to a decision so we ruled it no pitch, but did not declare the runner out.

What should the call be.

1) Illegal pitch, because she never released the pitch.

2) No pitch, the runner is out for leaving the base early.

3) The way we handled it. Basically a simultaneous violation by the pitcher and by the runner.
Yuck.

Illegal pitch. Easy. Every day and twice on Sunday.
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Old Mon May 13, 2013, 11:24am
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Originally Posted by MD Longhorn View Post
Yuck.

Illegal pitch. Easy. Every day and twice on Sunday.
You get two-fers on Sunday? Damn!!!
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Old Mon May 13, 2013, 11:28am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chapmaja View Post
The pitcher begins her pitching motion, and as she steps forward she stumbles, as a result of the stumble, she never releases the pitch.

At the same time she is in her pitching motion and would have normally released the pitch, the runner at second is called out by my BU for leaving base before the pitch is released.

We come together and try to determine when she left the base and how it compared with the time the pitch would have been released, had the pitch been released.

What should the call be.

1) Illegal pitch, because she never released the pitch.

2) No pitch, the runner is out for leaving the base early.

3) The way we handled it. Basically a simultaneous violation by the pitcher and by the runner.
As I read the OP (see bold), the runner left while the pitcher was in her motion,
therefore before release and before the stumble,
therefore before the pitching violation.

If so, why wouldn't the "leave early" take precedence?
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Old Mon May 13, 2013, 12:21pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CecilOne View Post
As I read the OP (see bold), the runner left while the pitcher was in her motion,
therefore before release and before the stumble,
therefore before the pitching violation.

If so, why wouldn't the "leave early" take precedence?
Perhaps you're reading it differently than me... You only bolded part of it ... the unbolded is where I got what I got...

"At the same time she is in her pitching motion and would have normally released the pitch, the runner at second is called out by my BU for leaving base before the pitch is released. "

I took this to mean that at the time the pitcher would have normally released the pitch, the runner ran. IOW, had the pitch been made when it was supposed to, the runner would have been legal.
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Old Mon May 13, 2013, 12:21pm
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I'll take a crack at this...

For the same reason the pitcher cannot retouch hands after separating. The runners base their timing on the pitcher's actions.

Granted, no matter what the pitchers do (legally) in their mechanics (and there are some strange variations), the runner can't break until release; however, we have to judge that whatever caused the pitcher to stumble was enough to screw up the runner's timing.

Last edited by jmkupka; Mon May 13, 2013 at 12:25pm.
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Old Mon May 13, 2013, 02:21pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chapmaja View Post
We come together and try to determine when she left the base and how it compared with the time the pitch would have been released, had the pitch been released.

We really could not come to a decision...
JMO, but unless it's blatantly obvious that the runner left her base well before the pitcher aborted her delivery, I'm giving the runner the benefit of the doubt here. Since the two of you couldn't figure out what came first, then the IP violation should prevail.
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Old Mon May 13, 2013, 03:13pm
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Originally Posted by Manny A View Post
JMO, but unless it's blatantly obvious that the runner left her base well before the pitcher aborted her delivery, I'm giving the runner the benefit of the doubt here. Since the two of you couldn't figure out what came first, then the IP violation should prevail.
Absolutely - I agree completely.

That said ... it's one or the other. The ruling of NOTHING that the OP went with is the only possible wrong answer here.
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Old Mon May 13, 2013, 05:13pm
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Illegal pitch = delayed dead ball.

Runner leaving early = dead ball.

Illegal pitch occurred first. Offense gets the choice of the result of the play or enforcement of the illegal pitch penalty (because not all runners safely advanced).

I assume the offense will take the penalty (ball on batter and runner gets a base).

I don't know why people keep trying to complicate these plays.
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Old Mon May 13, 2013, 05:21pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EsqUmp View Post
Illegal pitch = delayed dead ball.

Runner leaving early = dead ball.

Illegal pitch occurred first. Offense gets the choice of the result of the play or enforcement of the illegal pitch penalty (because not all runners safely advanced).

I assume the offense will take the penalty (ball on batter and runner gets a base).

I don't know why people keep trying to complicate these plays.
At the risk of being one of those "people"

The IP being discussed here is F1 failing to deliver the ball after separating the hands. If R1 leaves early, say after the hands separate but clearly before F1 falls to the ground without releasing the ball then didn't the offensive infraction come first? And since leaving early is immediate dead ball the IP never happens....
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Old Mon May 13, 2013, 06:06pm
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I believe both ASA and FED have rules clarifications or case plays which state if you have both an illegal pitch such as a pitcher double touching and a runner leaving early, you enforce both infractions.

But, agree with other posts, if the illegal pitch is what caused the runner to leave early because the pitcher never released the ball, I would not call the leaving early and only enforce the illegal pitch.
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Old Mon May 13, 2013, 08:07pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RKBUmp View Post
I believe both ASA and FED have rules clarifications or case plays which state if you have both an illegal pitch such as a pitcher double touching and a runner leaving early, you enforce both infractions.

But, agree with other posts, if the illegal pitch is what caused the runner to leave early because the pitcher never released the ball, I would not call the leaving early and only enforce the illegal pitch.
Ding, ding, ding!!!
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Old Wed May 15, 2013, 10:02am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by UmpireErnie View Post
At the risk of being one of those "people"

The IP being discussed here is F1 failing to deliver the ball after separating the hands. If R1 leaves early, say after the hands separate but clearly before F1 falls to the ground without releasing the ball then didn't the offensive infraction come first? And since leaving early is immediate dead ball the IP never happens....
Yes. But that's not what happened as described in the OP. The umpires couldn't figure out when the runner left the bag in relation to the failed pitch.
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Old Wed May 15, 2013, 10:05am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Manny A View Post
The umpires couldn't figure out when the runner left the bag in relation to the failed pitch.
True... but that's the umpire's job. I think it's clear the majority here are saying that if in doubt - it's an IP. It's definitely not both or neither, and the solution the umpires on the field actually came up with is the only possible wrong solution here.

Saying they couldn't figure out what happened first is the equivalent of trying to call a tie on a play at first base. It's their JOB to decide which happened first. Sometimes you just have to umpire.
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Old Wed May 15, 2013, 11:24pm
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One thing to consider on this issue. This was my first game back umpiring in about 8 years, after only working a few games before.

I was just wondering how it should be handled. Now, I would have called the IP and would not be as timid as to let the BU dictate what happened. I have worked several sports with that person, and I can't say it has been much fun in any sport.
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