Excessive or Inappropriate Force

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sixofdiamonds
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Excessive or Inappropriate Force

Post by sixofdiamonds » Sat Feb 17, 2018 8:01 am

From a league member:
During one of our games last year, a male runner from first base intentionally slid and took out the legs of our male shortstop to prevent an easy double-play. A slight altercation ensued, which then began to involve both teams until cooler heads prevailed. (Honestly, I was surprised that no one was ejected.) However, in my opinion, our shortstop had every right to be angry. With the first-base-side and right-field-side of second base completely clear, this runner intentionally took a late sliding path on the third-base-side of second base that directed him right into the legs of our shortstop, knocking him over and preventing the double-play.

Since Major League Baseball has cracked down on this dangerous type of play, there is definitely NO place for it in any recreational league, especially with our large variety of ages, skill sets, and physical fitness levels. Concerned about this event, I looked through the Slide/Surrender rules and saw no mention of this issue. What is SBA's league policy on Chase-Utley-Type Takeout Slides?
Our league rules state the following:
CONTACT: A player who intentionally makes contact with a player from another team and, in the umpire’s judgment, uses excessive or inappropriate force, that player may, at the umpire’s discretion, be called out and/or ejected from the game.
In the play mentioned above, the runner should have been ejected from the game.

purplemonkey
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Re: Excessive or Inappropriate Force

Post by purplemonkey » Tue Feb 20, 2018 3:37 pm

What if it were the playoffs and a T-shirt and/or sweatshirt were on the line?

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sixofdiamonds
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Re: Excessive or Inappropriate Force

Post by sixofdiamonds » Wed Feb 21, 2018 8:42 am

If a runner slides in the direction of a fielder in an area away from the base, that runner should be immediately ejected from the game without warning. Whether a prize is on the line or not should have no bearing on this call.

My guess, Matt, is your question was in jest - maybe to stir the proverbial pot. ;) If in jest, that's cool, but some will take it seriously. I addressed it just to set the record straight.

purplemonkey
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Re: Excessive or Inappropriate Force

Post by purplemonkey » Wed Feb 21, 2018 10:52 am

It was certainly in jest.

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blouderback
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Re: Excessive or Inappropriate Force

Post by blouderback » Wed Feb 21, 2018 4:25 pm

Let's toss out the slide or surrender rule at home plate and just go with the excessive or inappropriate force rule there as well. Why have a special rule just for 1 base?

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sixofdiamonds
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Re: Excessive or Inappropriate Force

Post by sixofdiamonds » Thu Feb 22, 2018 7:20 am

In order to hold a base (2nd or 3rd) a runner naturally slows down. Any incidental contact between the runner and fielder is minor. In contrast, runners can run through home plate without slowing down. A catcher waiting to receive a throw and a runner coming full speed to the plate is a recipe for disaster. Hence the slide, surrender, or hold the plate rule. It took Major League Baseball way too long to adopt a rule to protect the catcher.

One of the most exciting plays in softball is the slide/tag play at the plate with the game on the line. I don't ever want to see that eliminated so a 2nd home plate and a commit line is not in our future. The slide, surrender, or hold the plate rule creates a safer environment for the often times defenseless catcher.

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blouderback
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Re: Excessive or Inappropriate Force

Post by blouderback » Thu Feb 22, 2018 12:46 pm

Yeah, yeah, yeah. :)

Toss a few runners out of a game for making contact with a catcher, and see how quickly contact at the plate will stop. This determining if there was a "play at the plate" thing is not working, IMHO. When I think the runner should be called out, he/she isn't and when I think there is no play at the plate, there is. I can't figure it out, and neither can the umpires. It's not even consistent in a game, much less between other umpires on different nights/leagues.

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sixofdiamonds
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Re: Excessive or Inappropriate Force

Post by sixofdiamonds » Thu Feb 22, 2018 12:56 pm

It is what it is. If it saves one person from serious injury, it's worth it IMHO. If nothing else it brings attention to the play which in and of itself creates a safer situation IMHO.

Abolishing such a rule would make my life a lot easier, that is if I didn't give a damn. But I do give a damn so the rule stays intact.

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