USA Softball News July 2018 Rule Plays...

July 2018 Rule Plays and Clarifications

July 03, 2018, 10:06 a.m. (ET)

July 2018 Plays and Clarifications

Plays and Clarifications

Play:  With R1 on 2B and no outs a pitch to B2 gets away from F2 and R1 attempts to steal 3B.  F2 throws their helmet and stops the ball so they can retrieve it more quickly.  The umpire calls a dead ball and awards R1 home as the award for a blocked ball is two bases.

Ruling: Incorrect ruling.  When a fielder intentionally contacts a fair batted ball, thrown or pitched ball with their detached equipment the effect is a delayed dead ball.  R1 is awarded three bases from the time of the pitch on a batted ball, two bases from the time of the pitch on a thrown ball and only one base from the time of the pitch on a pitched ball.  Rule 8, Section 5, Article F. 

Play:The bottom of the 2nd inning, the F1 winces in pain after a pitch.  The coach requests and is granted time.  After a short discussion with F1 it is determined that they cannot continue due to the injury and is replaced by a new pitcher.  The Plate Umpire allows five (5) warm up pitches. What's the ruling?

Ruling:The umpire should delay the start of play and allow the substitute for F1 the number of pitches it takes for them to properly warm-up. (Rule 6A & 6B, Section 9 Effect. Rule 6C & 6D, Section 8 Effect).

Play: R1 on second base, no outs. B2 at bat with a 3 ball no strike count. The pitch to B2 is in the dirt and F2 did not field it cleanly. The Plate Umpire gave a verbal ball four. The ball rolls out in front of the batter's box about four feet.  The batter steps out of the box and turns to discard their bat, and then turns to go to 1B. F2 now has the ball and is positioning herself to throw (arm is up) to F5 in an attempt to retire R1 stealing third when B2 runs into F2. No throw was made. Is this interference? 


Ruling: Yes, even though the B2 was awarded first base on the walk, B2 is out for interference for hindering F3’s attempt to throw the ball. (Rule 1 Interference, Rule 8, Section 2F2)


Play: (Fast Pitch) Teams are playing on a field with a temporary fence.  B1 hits a long fly ball which F7 catches and makes contact with the temporary fence that falls flat to the ground.  At contact with the fence the ball pops loose from F7 and lands on the fallen fence.  What is the ruling?

Ruling:If the umpire judged F7 did not have control of the ball prior to hitting the fence then we have no catch. Since the ball is still lying on the fence it is a live ball and runners can advance at their own risk. (Rule 1 Definitions: Catch/No Catch). (Rule 8, Section 5I) R/S 20. 


PlayWith one out, R1 on 2B and R2 on 1B, B4 hits a high fly ball that remains in the infield.

While moving to make the catch both F1 and F3 call for the ball. The PU declares "Infield Fly". 

The fielders hearing the other defender call for the ball both F1 and F3 abandon their attempt to catch the ball which falls to the ground untouched and settles in fair ground. Meanwhile R1 advances to 3B, R2 advances to 2B, and B4 advances to 1B safely.  The Defensive Team appeals to the PU that B4 should be called out and the runners returned to 2B and 1B respectfully.  After a discussion by the umpire crew, the PU declares B4 out and allows R1 to remain at 3B and R2 to remain at 2B as their advance was legal.  


Ruling: The umpires arecorrect. B4 is out because of the infield fly rule. The runners are allowed to advance with liability to be put out like any other fly ball. Rule 1 Definition, Rule 8, Section 2I, Rule 8, Section 4L 


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