The Ole Ball Game

catchers position



Anonymous asked: Third times a charm!!

My son said I worded my question wrong. So here it goes in his words.

I hit a single over second base,they bobbled the ball several times so I stole second,third and home.

Coming into home the catcher was standing on home plate without the ball.

I slid into home about the same time the catcher got the ball.

Is it considered obstruction because the catcher was standing on home plate without the ball?

Rick answered:Thank you for your question.

Section 22 Obstruction And Fake Tag

Art 1...Obstruction is an act (intentional or unintentional, as well as physical or verbal) by a fielder, any member of the defensive team or its team personnel that hinders a runner or changes the pattern of play.

When obstruction occurs, the ball becomes dead at the end of playing action and the umpire has authority to determine which base or bases shall be awarded the runners according to the rule violated.

Obstruction becomes a determination of the umpire as to whether the action observed hinders the runner, or changes the pattern of play.

If, in the umpire's opinion, the catcher's position prior to receiving the ball caused you to change direction or slow down he could call obstruction.

If the timing of your slide, in conjunction with the catcher's receiving the throw were pretty much simultaneous, he made the tag and the umpire called you out, his determination must have been that it all played out in real time, with no obstruction.

By calling you out, the umpire is saying that he felt you had a clear path and opportunity to the base.

Had the catcher been up the line, in the base path, causing you to go around him to get to the base, he may have called it the other way.

Was there a ensuing discussion by the coaches and umpire at the time? What were the positions taken by the umpire for his decision? I would be interested to know what they said.

Yours in baseball,


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