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Thread: ground ruke dbl or not

  1. #1
    Softball Junkie humpty's Avatar
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    Default ground ruke dbl or not

    Batter hits ball down the line. The gates were left open in OF corner. Ball rolls outside of the field. OF retrieves ball and throws towards IF the OF did not hold her arms up signaling the ball was out of play. Ball clearly out of play by 20 ft. Ground rule dbl or not.

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    Certified softball maniac Comp's Avatar
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    If the umpire saw the ball leave the boundaries of the field it should have been ruled a ground rule double, if not live ball play on.

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    Softball Junkie BretMan's Avatar
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    A fielder raising her hands, or not, really doesn't have any bearing on the actual playing rules. It doesn't kill the ball or stop the play. All it does is tell the umpire that the fielder thinks the ball has become unplayable or entered a dead ball area. It let's him know that there might be a situation where he needs to take a closer look before making a ruling. The play isn't dead, and base awards aren't made, until the umpire evaluates the situation and makes his final ruling.

    If the fielder grabs the ball before the umpire has a chance to check it's location, then he's just going to have to make his call on what he was able to see. As Comp said, if the umpire judged that the ball left the field, then the ball will be dead and the appropriate bases will be awarded. If he doesn't, then they won't be.

    I had this happen in one of my games a couple of years ago...Ball was hit to the outfield fence. The outfielder gave chase and as the ball reached the fence she raised her hands. From my spot, I can see the ball at the base of the fence, but it's kind of "right on the line"- could be inside or outside the fence. So, I run toward the outfield to get a better look.

    Before I can get there, the fielder reaches down, grabs the ball and throws it toward the infield. The batter never stopped running and, with the delay by the fielder in picking up the ball, she circled the bases, crossing the plate just about as the ball got back into the infield.

    The defensive coach wants me to rule it a two-base award, claiming that the ball left the field of play. I explained to him that his player retreived the ball before I had a chance to see exactly where it was. I never saw it go out of play, so I can't rule that it did.

    His next argument was, "But the fielder raised her hands!". Yeah...she did. But that means nothing with respect to how an umpire rules this. If it really was on the other side of the fence, then the fielder should have kept her mitts off of it! Let the umpire see the ball and make his ruling. If she grabs it before the umpire has a chance to see it, he doesn't really have any choice other than to leave the play live and let the runners get what they get.
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