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, Aug. 19, 2016
B.J.
Topic: Rules of the game
Discussion: Using screen for pitcher

the problem we found with a batted ball hitting the screen on a 3rd strike out was that once a pitcher got 2 strikes on a batter they purposely were pitching short and outside to try to induce a hit up the middle for an easy out...so we changed it to a dead ball re-pitch
, Aug. 18, 2016
B.J.
Topic: Rules of the game
Discussion: Using screen for pitcher

Downs I sent you an e mail ...I'd like a copy also...just to compare with what we use Thx
, Aug. 17, 2016
B.J.
Topic: Rules of the game
Discussion: Using screen for pitcher

I wrote this rule for our senior league...the screen became very popular before this rule was put in place, because pitchers would try to use it as an extra defender...now in our top 2 divisions about 40 teams...I haven't seen it used in over a year...I hope this helps
PITCHING SCREEN RULE.
A. The screen will directly face home plate within one to three feet in front of the pitching rubber, if a pitcher chooses to use the full depth of the ten foot pitchers box then the screen must be positioned in the one to three foot limits of where he/she chooses to pitch.

B. The screen may be positioned anywhere from the outer left side of the pitching rubber for a right handed pitcher to the outer right side of the pitching rubber for a left handed pitcher.

C. The screen must be placed to the left of a right-handed pitcher, and to the right of a left-handed pitcher to maximize the pitcher’s safety. D. Any batted ball striking any portion of the screen as observed by the umpire will be declared a dead ball foul unless it is the third strike, in which case it is a dead ball re-pitch. All thrown balls are in play.

E. Any pitch delivered with the screen not in a legal position will be declared “no pitch.” If a pitcher refuses to place the screen in the correct position, the umpire will notify the player’s manager and remove the pitcher from the pitching position. F. If a pitcher chooses to use a screen then they “MUST” step behind the screen after every pitch, failure to do so will be called a ball (umpire judgment). A pitcher is ineligible to field any hard driven ball that is hit up the middle. (umpire judgment) Penalty for doing so will be a dead ball single for the batter and all runners will advance one base if forced to do so. Pitcher will be allowed to field a slow rolling grounder with no penalty.(umpire judgment) G. Once the screen is in position it becomes part of the field and may not be tipped over or thrown aside to accommodate a throw from the outfield.
, Aug. 10, 2016
B.J.
Topic: Rules of the game
Discussion: desinated batter

you can bat your whole roster up to 20 7.1(1) • BATTER ELIGIBILITY
A team may bat every player in the dugout and on the team roster. All batters must be listed on the lineup listed on the game card provided to the umpire prior to the start of the game. The number of batters listed cannot be reduced
without recording an out when the vacant position comes to bat. In the case of an injury, an out will be recorded only the first time the vacant position comes to bat. (EXCEPTION: if a player is ejected and a substitute is not available an out will be recorded every time that position comes to bat).switch up any time
, July 26, 2016
B.J.
Topic: Rules of the game
Discussion: Are time-outs allowed after umpire calls "Batter up"?

Turbobob...we have one of the largest senior leagues in the country in The Villages, Florida and this has never really been an issue...umpires need to be trained to keep the games moving...since this is league ball you can make any local rules that you want....if you feel it's necessary... then make a rule that the offense must have a batter ready and a player on deck at all times...along with the rule you must come up with a penalty if a team doesn't comply..that's your call....good luck
, July 25, 2016
B.J.
Topic: Rules of the game
Discussion: Are time-outs allowed after umpire calls "Batter up"?

i'll assume you mean during an inning change...the umpire will allow for the time for both teams to change....if for some reason he thinks the defense is stalling he will either stop the timer (if on is being used) and and also give a verbal warning...if he then thinks the offense is stalling he will call for a batter and then wait a few seconds and if no batter is in the box he will call a strike and continue until either the batter is out or he decides to bat...again once in a while there is a reason for a momentary delay...but not every inning
, July 24, 2016
B.J.
Topic: Bats
Discussion: How Many Knob Cuffs??

bogie, I think they mean the knobs that go on the bats...and yes 2 knob are legal....I wrote to senior softball asking the same question 2 yrs. ago because the double knobs were showing up in our senior leagues....here was the reply I got from Terry Hennessey and also Dave Dowells analysis.... also the difference in ASA and SSUSA knob allowance is that in SSUSA no tape is needed over the knob...
The second knob is legal ... there is no specific prohibition concerning the second knob on the handle so it is legal (see Dave's analysis below) . ... Hi Terry ... I actually took a look at this a couple days ago in Indy when a player showed up with the Baden "Axe-Bat", which has an axe-handle grip instead of the traditional 90° bat knob ... The general area of the ASA Rule book that talks about, and allows, that handle configuration also talks about allowable knobs ... In rather limited research, I haven't been able to find anything that prohibits the use of a second knob ...

What's driving this new-wave phenomenon is the Swing Makeover YouTube series by Ken Van Boagart (Bogie) ... He demos the concept in a recent video and offers a very sound (and seemingly convincing) analysis about how it will make someone a better and more powerful hitter ... He also observes in the video that he uses them and nobody has suggested that configuration to be illegal ...

The ASA also addressed this a couple of years ago in their "Umpires Corner" newsletter, as a small part of an overall commentary as follows ...

Rule 3, Section 1A – H: The Official Bat We have received a lot of questions about the new rules as they pertain to the ASA Official Bat. These questions have centered on what can and cannot be done to the handle area of the bat. In this month’s plays and clarifications we will try to answer some of those questions and hopefully clear up any misconceptions that may be going around the umpire community.


Question: Does the official bat have to have a knob?

Answer: Yes as defined in Rule 3 Section 1B. The knob shall have a minimum diameter of 1.6 inches with no sharp edges. The knob will be permanently attached to the bat and may be taped with Safety tape. This allows for the smallest diameter knob that ASA has always allowed and eliminates the 90 degree rule, knob to handle.

Question: Can you have a buildup of tape forming a cone shape on the handle?

Answer: Yes. Rule 3 Section 1D allows for a cone shaped grip. The cone shape grip must stay above the knob. The new rule allows for the buildup of tape which was previously in violation of the old 90 degree angle of the knob to bat. You can tape the knob however the cone shape needs to be above the knob.

Question: Can you use a choke up device, molded finger grip, flare cone shape grip?

Answer: Yes. Rule 3 Section 1D allows for these devices that at one time were illegal. The rule states they must be attached with safety tape. If they are not attached with safety tape they must be removed.


About the only thing in the ASA analysis that is different from what I saw in the video is the probable failure of players to tape the cone(s) in place ... However, absent any specific language to the contrary, multiple cones appear legal from my viewpoint ... Our rulebook section mentions "..a cone..", but that would be a weak argument to infer that the one letter "a" is a limiting factor ... As strange as that seems! ... DAVE
, June 30, 2016
B.J.
Topic: Rules of the game
Discussion: I've never seen this before

once a pitched ball hits the strike mat or the ground it is a dead ball
, June 30, 2016
B.J.
Topic: Rules of the game
Discussion: I've never seen this before

This isn't a U-Trip web site....it's senior softball
but I used to umpire USSSA about 8 yrs ago...I believe it's a dead ball unless there is stealing....either way once the pitch hits the plate or the ground it can not be hit...
, May 25, 2016
B.J.
Topic: Rules of the game
Discussion: flip flop and one up in league play

Bruce... I don't see flip flop being an issue it's the same rule...if you allow 1 up... then the visitors can hit one HR which also allows the home team to hit 1 to tie them....I also agree that the home team should not be allowed to go 1 up in the final inning
, May 18, 2016
B.J.
Topic: Rules of the game
Discussion: Confusion on coach's interference.

OZ... you keep calling a caught foul ball with 2 strikes on the batter a strike out...I think it is scored a sac. fly if a runner tags and scores from 3rd and a fly out if no runners score...I think it is only scored a strike out if it is a foul ground ball or the fielder does not make a catch on a foul fly ball... STAFF could you please give an answer on how this should be scored??
, May 17, 2016
B.J.
Topic: General and miscellaneous
Discussion: HOME PLATE UMPIRE POSITION

gary, I disagree with you on your positioning... the umpire should stand on the same side as the batter in the slot and a couple feet behind the batter the deeper toward the backstop the harder it is to get a perspective on pitch heighth and see the front edge of the plate... especially for a ball hit down the line...if you stand on the opposite side of the batter you now have to try to see thru the batter and catcher who are always in the way...also as far as the ump blocking your path to a foul pop up...most catchers stand a few feet back and that gives them easy access to any foul pop ups
, May 15, 2016
B.J.
Topic: Rules of the game
Discussion: Confusion on coach's interference.

OZ40....better yet educate your fielders not to catch a foul ball 3rd strike...then runners cannot advance
, May 15, 2016
B.J.
Topic: General and miscellaneous
Discussion: HOME PLATE UMPIRE POSITION

that is definitely one of the worst I've seen....HP umpire should be in the slot and on the same side of the plate as the batter and distance behind the plate is determined by what the batters depth is in the baters box
, May 14, 2016
B.J.
Topic: Rules of the game
Discussion: Confusion on coach's interference.

Screamer5....yes this is a dead ball situation but the umpire does get to make s judgement decision after the play...it happens all the time when interference is called on a runner going into 2nd base and bumping into the fielder to break up a double play
, May 13, 2016
B.J.
Topic: Rules of the game
Discussion: Confusion on coach's interference.

the play as you describe it....and if the fielder made an attempt to catch it with 2 strikes on the batter then the umpire should have called interference on the coach and then called the runner out who had advanced to third since it sounds like you could have appealed he didn't tag up...also it would be the same call regardless of how many strikes were on the batter....If the fielder made no attempt to catch the ball and the coach caught it then I would have no call except batter is out on foul ball 3rd strike
, April 23, 2016
B.J.
Topic: Rules of the game
Discussion: Is the runner out at first?

yes the runner is out on all of the above....the glove is considered an extension of the hand....the only time a runner wouldn't be out is on tag play with ball in hand but tagged the runner with the glove
, April 20, 2016
B.J.
Topic: General and miscellaneous
Discussion: Not the way to end an open inning

k man....Tim probably meant it was the final out for your at bat...and if his description of what happened was right then it was the correct call by the umpire
, April 14, 2016
B.J.
Topic: Rules of the game
Discussion: missing first bse

STAFF great answers especially the 2nd one which is the only one that actually describes the "original scenario" ...and also was my answer to Webbie25 when he asked a "specific question" .. would a runner be out IF THE FIELDER JUST CAUGHT THE BALL AND IS STANDING ON THE BAG after the runner had passed the base...again in that case there should be a verbal appeal while the fielder is on the bag....or as I also said a tag of the runner before he returned to the bag... I wasn't over thinking I was answering the question AS IT WAS ASKED and your 3rd answer that is really stretching the limits ...or as you always like to say...over-thinking
, April 14, 2016
B.J.
Topic: Rules of the game
Discussion: missing first bse

STAFF: I asked this question about your post on 4/10 and I guess you missed it so I will try again....STAFF on my last post I said to do a VERBAL appeal while being on the bag OR tag the runner before he returns to the bag .... You quoted stick8's mechanic...If the first baseman does a live ball appeal before the batter runner gets back to first then i call him out....Per your post on how an appeal can be made how would the fieder communicate to the umpire non-verbaly, implicit, or by assumed—so long as the intent of the fielder is clear to the umpire ..."
...where is it in the rule book or SENIOR SOFTBALL mechanics that an appeal may be non-verbal, implicit, or assumed...so if in your description if a fielder knows the runner misses the bag all he has to do is touch the bag and ASSUME the umpire knows what he is doing? please give some examples... and rule number please...thx
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