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Discussion: Errant Throw to 1B

Posted Discussion
Nov. 7, 2018
SCUBA
71 posts
Errant Throw to 1B
In league play, ground ball to shortstop, throw to 1B pulls first baseman "way off" the base (and, when I say "way off", I mean far enough such that the umpire, batter-runner, and the rest of the world knows that the batter-runner was not out on the throw). The batter-runner, however, then steps on the inside base of the double base. Safe or out?

By the way, I know the answer. But the umpire, who reads the message board, may not. I would appreciate as many responses/opinions/explanations as possible.
Nov. 7, 2018
stick8
1784 posts
Scuba, that would depend if the batter runner is avoiding a collision at first.
If in the umpires judgement he is avoiding a collision then he would be safe. If he isnít then by rule he would be out.
Nov. 7, 2018
DaveDowell
Men's 65
2862 posts
SCUBA ... We completely concur with stick8's analysis ... This is solely a judgment call (not subject to appeal or protest) on the "avoiding a collision" circumstance ... Thanks for asking ...
Nov. 7, 2018
Gavin5
Men's 70
26 posts
Is it true that the batter-runner need only to step on the orange bag if there is a play at first? So if the errant throw described takes the first baseman way into right field or and overthrow, can't he round inside just like a clean extra base hit?
Nov. 7, 2018
SCUBA
71 posts
I say, yes to Gavin5. His analysis makes sense to me. I can't see where a throw that takes the first baseman way into right field or is overthrown and where the first baseman is nowhere near 1B when the batter-runner steps on the inside bag can result in an out.

If the umpire feels that the batter-runner did not attempt to avoid a collision under the above scenario, it's time to change umpires.

And, if the defense benefits from a wild throw with the first baseman nowhere near the bag when the batter-runner steps on 1B, then it's time to clarify the rule.

A bang-bang play at 1B is a judgment call. The above scenario is not. If the batter-runner is called out, it's the umpire's misinterpretation of the intent of the rule --- to avoid the potential possibility of a collision.
Nov. 7, 2018
B.J.
713 posts
scuba.. first of all why did the B/R step on only the white bag?
senior moment?..

if he was rounding the bag because the throw sent the 1B way into RF as you say then I would not have an out.. but if he was just racing to the bag to try to beat a bad throw and ran thru the bag and down the RF line then I would have an out.. also remember the league rule may be written differently .. with no wiggle room ..

below is the rule.. it says the B/R has to hit some part of the safety bag when there is a play being made at 1st base.. (which there was) it doesn't say unless there is a bad throw..

8.4(1) ē BATTER-RUNNER REACHING FIRST BASE
Each batter must reach first base without the aid of a courtesy runner. A double bag shall be used at first base, the double portion of the bag being in foul territory abutting first base. If there is a play on a batter-runner going to first base, the batter-runner must touch some portion of the double bag extending into foul territory. He will be called out if he fails to do so, except if, in the umpire's judgment, the batter-runner is avoiding a collision. The batter-runner simultaneously touching both portions of the double bag is permitted.
Nov. 7, 2018
maurice
9 posts
Could in be interpreted as the throw was so far off
the bag that it negated the part of the rule "if there is a play on the batter-runner"necessary to make the call. In other words no play no requirement to hit orange bag.
Nov. 7, 2018
SCUBA
71 posts
B.J., my scenario was hypothetical and assumes we are talking about an SSUSA qualifier. I'm good with 8.4(1). But, let's forget that rule for the moment.

Under the scenario where the shortstop makes a bad throw, the batter-runner arrives at 1B after the ball gets by the first baseman, and the batter-runner couldn't collide with the first baseman even if he tried to because the first baseman was nowhere near the bag, would you really call the batter-runner out for stepping on the inside bag?
Nov. 7, 2018
DaveDowell
Men's 65
2862 posts
Wayyyy back at the North end of this thread, stick8 accurately and concisely stated the proper ruling, which B.J. documented by quoting an excerpt from Rule Book ß8.4(1) ... Although it's nice to play "stump the ump" by tweaking the facts, or even introducing new facts to fit it into a pre-desired end result, this one is really simple ... If, in the umpire's judgment (not subject to appeal or protest), the batter-runner went "all white" or even missed first base entirely to avoid a collision during a play at first base, the call is "safe" ...
Nov. 7, 2018
SCUBA
71 posts
So, you're saying the answer to my question is OUT? May be true, but I hope the umpire has a good life insurance policy when the offense storms the field.
Nov. 7, 2018
B.J.
713 posts
scuba.. as Dave said you keep "tweaking" the scenario.. if a bad throw from the SS was already past the 1B and he was chasing it down and then the B/R hit the white bag only it would be "MY JUDGEMENT" that the defense had the opportunity to make a play but failed to do so.. therefore " I " would not call the B/R out.. again that would be my judgement of the play you described
Nov. 7, 2018
DaveDowell
Men's 65
2862 posts
SCUBA ... I didn't make a call, since your fact pattern lacked sufficient information to do so ... stick8 was correct on the two available options, based upon a play at first which requires an umpire's judgment as to whether or not "collision avoidance" was present, as follows: [1] If yes, the call is SAFE; and [2] If not, AND the batter-runner fails to touch "at least some portion" of the orange bag, the call is OUT ...
Nov. 7, 2018
stick8
1784 posts
Scuba this scenario happened to us in Las Vegas a little over a month ago. We had runners on second and third, 1 out. Grounder to short. Throw to first short hops the first baseman and gets by him. Runner at third scores, runner at second goes to third. First baseman vacates the bag chasing down the ball before the batter-runner arrives at the bag. Batter runner steps on the white bag, turns and takes a couple steps toward second. Then he thinks better of it and returns safely to first. If Iím umpiring I have nothing.
Keep in mind the major intent of the rule under discussion. In layman terms, itís to hopefully prevent the batter runner from pulling a Manny Machado.
Nov. 8, 2018
SCUBA
71 posts
First of all, I'd like to thank stick8, B.J., DaveDowell and the others for discussing this issue with me. I do appreciate your input. I also apologize for not making myself clear enough on what I really wanted to ask. Sometimes expressing one's thoughts in print is not as easy as actually expressing them verbally.

That said, I'm going to ask the question in the way I should have in the first place. If I botch it again, I do appreciate your responses and we'll call it a day. Anyway, here goes:
IF IN THE UMPIRE'S JUDGMENT, there was no chance of a collision because of the errant throw (not because the B/R was trying to avoid running into the first baseman), yet he calls the B/R out anyway for touching the white base. Safe or out?

On a side note, Machado should have been ejected... and, I'm a Dodger fan.
Nov. 8, 2018
B.J.
713 posts
scuba.. my ruling as an umpire and a UIC would be if the errant throw beat the B/R by a LARGE MARGIN and the 1B had already vacated the bag to chase down the throw WELL BEFORE the B/R had reached the bag then in my judgement the defense was given the opportunity to make a play and failed to do so.. therefore I would not call the runner out.. AGAIN that would be my judgement of the play described.. not all umpires see a play the same way or interpret the rules the same
Nov. 8, 2018
stick8
1784 posts
Scuba Iím siding with BJ on the scenario he described.
Conversely if you have a real close play at first where the b/r beats the throw but steps on the inside bag I have an out.
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