Rules/Situation Discussion Forum
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Runner toward dugout
Runner on first, ground ball to the first baseman. The first baseman doesn't tag the runner as he goes by, but he touches first. The umpire (me) gives the out sign and says "he's out"(but I don't say "batter is out"). The runner thinks he's been called out and starts walking to the dugout. The batter stands on first as if he is safe. Is the runner out for giving up any attempt to advance? If so, when -- crossing the baseline toward the dugout? Entering the dugout? On a play like that, is it the umpire's task to yell "batter is out" to make crystal clear who has been called out. (This was AAA level so the players aren't quite as alert to subtleties).
What is your Strike Zone?
This will be the start of my seventh year in LL. During this time, I've been a coach and umpire. For you umpire purists, I've ump'ed more games than I have coached. Please do not hold the coaching job against me. However, all during this time I've been troubled
with strike zone definition in Rule 2.00 and its application.
Now there has been tons written on the subject within this e-group as well as other lists.
I'm not trying to rehash what has already been said (though that may indeed happen).
I have learned first hand that the zone must be wider at the lower levels of play or the game will be full of walks and last forever. I understand that baseball rules are to be interpreted.
What troubles me is that we as umpires must aways interpret the stike zone definition.
I really wish the rule makers would recognize what everyone knows, that the zone is different for each level of play. I really wish that the rules would reflect that.
If it's going to be belt high, then say belt high.
Don't say arm pits or the numbers.
If it's going to be one or two ball widths outside of the plate, then say it.
This year I'm an assistant UIC for my league at the Jr/Sr level (82 teams, 1100+ players, Peanuts thru Seniors) and will participate in district wide umpire training. I will repeat the strike zone mantra during the plate training sessions, as the mantra was given
to me. But you know guys, I don't like it. The rule is the rule and this one is not the type that can be broken.
I can't begin to tell you the crap I get from the more experienced Jr/Sr level coaches, men that I respect, about calling the book definition of the zone. I'm consistent, but I'm thinking of dropping my high end and widening the outside this year.
So should I use a book definition for Majors? How about dropping the high end and widening it a bit for Juniors? And drop it even more for Seniors because that's what they see in high school?
I'm curious how others face this problem or am I the only one worrying
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