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Discussion: Unusual play

Posted Discussion
May 19, 2014
528 posts
Unusual play
Two runners end up about 10 feet apart trying to score after rounding 3B. The throw gets away from the catcher but he picks the ball up and touches the mat. The 1st guy scored the second was called out.

Now, if the catcher had caught the throw both would have been out.

Question: Had he caught the relay, would he have gotten both by leaving his foot on the mat or would he have had to touch the mat to get the 1st and lift his foot and retouch the mat to get the second?? I asked the ump who is very experienced and he was stumped.
May 19, 2014
Men's 60
104 posts
I believe both runners would have been out with the catcher leaving his foot on the mat providing the 2nd runner had crossed the commit line. If the 2nd runner had not crossed the commit line, he could try and retreat back to 3rd base.
May 20, 2014
Men's 65
2238 posts
We actually had that play happen in an SSUSA tournament. If the catcher has the ball, in contact with the plate, as soon as a runner crosses the commit line he is out. In our play, it was an attempt at an inside the park home run and the hitter was one step behind the runner. The ball got to the catcher and the front runner was out by less than a step and the hitter was already across the commit line. The ump admittedly had a smile on his face when he pumped both of them out. That is the kind of play that really leaves one team stunned and the other team euphoric!
May 20, 2014
255 posts
All plays at home are considered a force play. Any runner that touches (or crosses) the commitment line while the catcher has control of the ball and is in contact with the mat would be called out.

There is no requirement for the catcher to step off of the mat and re-touch the mat to record the 2nd out on the play.

May 20, 2014
Omar Khayyam
1243 posts
Webbie, how right you are. You are cheering the bomb that no doubt your teammate rolled to the fence, you're expecting two more runs, and suddenly—two outs and maybe the end of the inning! Part of the excitement of senior softball and why I look forward to every game.
May 20, 2014
Nancy Allen
Men's 55
834 posts
Saw it once in league play at Metro. A really good team was playing a much weaker team. Batter bangs one to the outfield fence. He and his buddy ahead of him laughed and carried on as they went around the bases for the in the park homerun. The weak team did not give up and kept relaying the ball in. About 10 feet from the runners making it to the scoring line, the catcher gets the ball for the force, double play. The looks on the runners' faces were priceless.
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