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  #1 (permalink)  
Old Sun Sep 07, 2014, 03:51pm
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Obstruction, or let them play?

Two situations came up yesterday where I was doubting myself after the play if I should have had a "nothing" instead of calling obstruction. The runner did not advance beyond the protected base. NCAA ruleset, if it matters.

1: R1 on 1B steals. Both F4 and F6 go to 2B to take the throw and due to the miscommunication, the ball splits the defenders and sails into center field. F4 runs into R1, who is coming into 2B standing up.

2: R1 on 2B, R2 on 1B. A sharp grounder is hit to F6, who dives and misses the ball and it goes into left-center. As she is sliding on the ground, R1 steps on her and stumbles.

I had obstruction both times, even though it had no effect on the result. Correct call?
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Old Sun Sep 07, 2014, 05:51pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by teebob21 View Post
Two situations came up yesterday where I was doubting myself after the play if I should have had a "nothing" instead of calling obstruction. The runner did not advance beyond the protected base. NCAA ruleset, if it matters.

1: R1 on 1B steals. Both F4 and F6 go to 2B to take the throw and due to the miscommunication, the ball splits the defenders and sails into center field. F4 runs into R1, who is coming into 2B standing up.


2: R1 on 2B, R2 on 1B. A sharp grounder is hit to F6, who dives and misses the ball and it goes into left-center. As she is sliding on the ground, R1 steps on her and stumbles.

I had obstruction both times, even though it had no effect on the result. Correct call?
OBS

The coach will want to argue on #1 that the fielder has the right to go for the ball, maybe even ATR, but from the OP it seems that ball is long gone.
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Old Mon Sep 08, 2014, 06:16am
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I guess the defenders should have pressed the "disappear immediately" button on the remote.
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Old Mon Sep 08, 2014, 06:57am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EsqUmp View Post
I guess the defenders should have pressed the "disappear immediately" button on the remote.
Maybe they should just make OBS a rule only enforced when intentional.
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Old Mon Sep 08, 2014, 10:03am
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Easy and clear OBS on both.
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Old Mon Sep 08, 2014, 11:38am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EsqUmp View Post
I guess the defenders should have pressed the "disappear immediately" button on the remote.
Ok, I have a philosophical difference here. The whole issue about players not being able to go "poof", disappear immediately", or wanting to excuse them because they were "doing what is expected" just doesn't work for me.

I relate the delicate balance between offense and defense as regarding obstruction and interference to the "right of way" taught in driver's ed. Just like the cop/judge/jury will ultimately decide in any traffic incident, SOMEONE has the right of way. Just ONE, not both, in any situation.

The rules are pretty clear. The runners get to choose how/when/where they run in the vast majority of cases; they usually have the right of way to run legally. The exceptions when fielders have the right of way are clearly stated; 1) they have possession of the ball, or 2) in the act of fielding (making an initial play on) a batted ball. The rules also make it clear that intent to interfere or obstruct, as well as trying NOT to interfere or obstruct simply DO NOT MATTER; if an offensive team member interferes, or a defensive team member obstructs, the rule is the rule is the rule.

It is a great effort when a fielder ATTEMPTS to field a batted ball she cannot reach, or pursues an errant throw to try to make a play. But, if she doesn't actually field the batted ball or possess the thrown ball, and the result of her effort is she hinders, impedes or otherwise affects the opportunity (nay, the RIGHT) of the runner, that is text book obstruction. Just like the runner that TRIES to avoid the fielder fielding the batted ball, but makes contact anyway, that is text book interference. Just like the batter out of the box, an already retired runner, the scored runner, the base coach, the on-deck batter; yes, they can legally be on the field, but they simply must NOT interfere, regardless not disappearing, going poof, or TRYING not to interfere.

We need to stop making excuses for what the players do with good or bad intentions, and rule on the effect of their actions according to the RULES.
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Old Mon Sep 08, 2014, 07:21pm
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Originally Posted by AtlUmpSteve View Post
Ok, I have a philosophical difference here. The whole issue about players not being able to go "poof", disappear immediately", or wanting to excuse them because they were "doing what is expected" just doesn't work for me.
Would you apply that philosophy equally to the offense? For example, when R1 gets thrown out going to 2nd by 30 feet, just stands there and F6 drills her in the chest because she is in a direct line between the throw and 1st base, do you require her to go "poof?"
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Old Mon Sep 08, 2014, 09:51pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EsqUmp View Post
Would you apply that philosophy equally to the offense? For example, when R1 gets thrown out going to 2nd by 30 feet, just stands there and F6 drills her in the chest because she is in a direct line between the throw and 1st base, do you require her to go "poof?"
Just standing there is not an act of INT and I believe that is what Steve was stating. "Doing what they are supposed to do" or "cannot go poof" are reasons why it is not an act of INT, not why it wasn't INT.
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Old Tue Sep 09, 2014, 05:54am
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Originally Posted by IRISHMAFIA View Post
Just standing there is not an act of INT and I believe that is what Steve was stating. "Doing what they are supposed to do" or "cannot go poof" are reasons why it is not an act of INT, not why it wasn't INT.
So a runner who just "stands" there is not committing an act but a defender who just "lays" there is committing an act? Do I have your analysis correct?
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Old Tue Sep 09, 2014, 09:06am
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This is really easy to understand. You've been around for quite a while. I'm having trouble grasping why you're arguing with this.
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Old Tue Sep 09, 2014, 09:11am
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Never saw a runner just "standing" in a baseline, after having been put out by 20' at 2B.
BUT, said runner, running in that direct path from 1B to 2B, getting hit by the thrown ball after being put out at 2B (by any distance), won't be called for INT by me unless she performs an act of INT (i.e. steps into the thrown ball after running wide of the line between 1B & 2B, or falls down then stands up into the throw)
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Old Tue Sep 09, 2014, 11:18am
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Steve had the best "explanation" of the situation with his right-of-way analogy. I understood it before but I'll use this analogy to explain to newbies or folks who ask the question. Great!!
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Old Tue Sep 09, 2014, 12:01pm
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Originally Posted by jmkupka View Post
Never saw a runner just "standing" in a baseline, after having been put out by 20' at 2B.
No, but the point is if they move from that position, there is little doubt that could be an act of INT. Much like the RHB is told by the coach to NOT move if the runner is attempting to steal as that could be an act of INT.

This is as much for the defense as it is the offense. If the runner/batter remains in place, the defense knows where they can go to make the play as opposed to either having to guess which way the other will move.
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Old Tue Sep 09, 2014, 04:32pm
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Originally Posted by MD Longhorn View Post
This is really easy to understand. You've been around for quite a while. I'm having trouble grasping why you're arguing with this.
Yep.......
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Old Tue Sep 09, 2014, 05:58pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jmkupka View Post
Never saw a runner just "standing" in a baseline, after having been put out by 20' at 2B.
BUT, said runner, running in that direct path from 1B to 2B, getting hit by the thrown ball after being put out at 2B (by any distance), won't be called for INT by me unless she performs an act of INT (i.e. steps into the thrown ball after running wide of the line between 1B & 2B, or falls down then stands up into the throw)
Okay. So rather than "standing" let's say she continues to "run." Why is running not an "act" but "laying" on the ground after just missing a ball is not an "act?" Are they both not continuing to do what they were legally permitted to do a moment earlier?
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