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Umpire to Umpire Signals

Jun 22, 2008
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When the lookback rule is in effect, the runner may stop one time and then choose a direction. So, yes they can reverse direction as long as they only do it one time while the rule is in effect.

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Jun 7, 2019
142
28
if

If the BR is really saavy and decently quick, they will get themselves in a rundown deliberately, and make certain to extend it enough to score the run.
I agree with what you say, but remember, we're talking about this situation when there are 2 outs. This situation you've described is totally dependent on the BR getting into that rundown. For all the years I coached, I always had a "thing" about rundowns. I spent a good amount of time working with my defense on rundowns. My kids knew that, done properly, every rundown should be successfully done in one throw, and one throw only. Anything more than one throw was the beginning of a clown show, with the runner in control. And I hated those 4, 5, 6 throws, back and forth, with fielders coming in as backups in the rundown as others peeled off. Hogwash! (I didn't think I should say B***S***).

So, assuming I am right (in MY mind I am 😁), with a runner on 3rd, 2 out and a BR who walks and wants to keep moving on to 2B, my defense is IN TOTAL CONTROL! Batter runner HAS TO continue moving toward 2nd (assuming she doesn't stop and go back), runner on 3rd HAS TO stay on that bag until my pitcher decides she can go by making (we don't fake in that situation) a throw, and all I need from my pitcher is one short, accurate throw to my fielder (SS, CF, or sometimes LF) who is on the run directly at the BR. It's not that the D can't screw up the play, but really, it's SO much easier than trying some I'll fated run down.

So, I still can't think of one good reason why runner on 3rd with 2 outs should be considered a time play.
 
May 6, 2015
1,237
83
testandor, you may be right, but the BR in that case is simply trying to draw a throw. if they are saavy, they are not running full speed, so they can reverse direction easily. they are not necessarily trying to get to 2B (although if no play is made, you have eliminated a force at 2B, so still a positive). they are simply trying to stay alive long enough to score the run. would probably only be used to get tying or go ahead run home, but still a timing play.
 
Jun 7, 2019
142
28
the BR in that case is simply trying to draw a throw.
I know. This play has been discussed in other threads here. It is my experienced opinion that this is a "bully play" by the offense, used almost exclusively by teams who know - or have reason to suspect - that the defense they're facing can not defend the play. They count on the defense doing something stupid, like getting in a rundown and allowing the runner on 3rd to score.

Let's turn it around and look at the offense. Assuming you respect the defense you're facing, why would you allow that pitcher to have to make just one 25'-30' throw for the out, rather than have that same pitcher pitch the ball roughly 45' to the catcher, have the catcher transition the ball from her glove to her throwing hand, and then throw that ball accurately another 85' down to 2B? It's such a huge difference in the time needed to make those two plays that, if you respect the defense, you let that batter take her BB, stop at first, and take off for the steal of 2nd on the next pitch.

if they are saavy, they are not running full speed, so they can reverse direction easily.
With all due respect, it doesn't matter. The slower the BR moves toward 2nd, the closer the defensive player let's her get to 2nd. A fielder running full speed straight at an oncoming runner will - short of making a mistake - always get to tag that runner before the runner can stop, change direction, and start back the other way. Always.

Try it at practice next spring, or, if you're lucky enough to have a gym during the winter, try it there. All you need is a pitcher who can make an accurate 30' dart throw to a fielder running in front of her from her left to her right. I promise it won't take long to get that tag on the BR almost every time.
 
May 6, 2015
1,237
83
With all due respect, it doesn't matter. The slower the BR moves toward 2nd, the closer the defensive player let's her get to 2nd. A fielder running full speed straight at an oncoming runner will - short of making a mistake - always get to tag that runner before the runner can stop, change direction, and start back the other way. Always.

If they see fielder running full speed at them close enough they will not be able to change direction, seeing P make a throw, saavy base runner does not try to change direction / retreat. they floor it straight ahead to run past/around before catch and tag can be made. seen that work a couple of times. or if you have fielder shadowing BR at same speed, once throw is made, they just run away from throw. remember, objective is not necessarily to advance, simply to get throw made and stay alive until run crosses plate. yes, throwing out stealing runner is hard, which is why many teams will not make throw period, especially late game if runner on 3rd is tying or go ahead run.
 

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