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2011 NFHS Baseball Rules Interpretations

Publisher’s Note: The National Federation of State High School Associations is the only source of official high school interpretations. They do not set aside nor modify any rule. They are made and published by the NFHS in response to situations presented.
Robert B. Gardner, Publisher, NFHS Publications © 2011

 

SITUATION 1: With R1 on first base and no outs, the scoreboard shows one out. B2 hits a ground ball that the shortstop turns into a 6-4-3 double play. The first baseman rolls the ball to the mound and all the defensive players go to their dugout. The team that was on offense comes on the field, taking their defensive positions. The umpires go to their respective positions between innings. RULING: The official scorer should inform the officials of the error. Both teams will retake their respective positions with the bases empty and two outs. (9-2-2)

SITUATION 2: In the bottom of the fourth inning, Jones comes to the plate to pinch-hit for Smith. The plate umpire checks the lineup card and finds that Jones was not listed as a possible substitute. The opposing coach argues that since Jones was not listed as a substitute at the start of the game, he cannot pinch-hit. RULING: The plate umpire shall accept the substitution, make the appropriate change on the lineup card and notify the opposing team and official scorer. Jones may pinch-hit for Smith. There is no penalty. (1-1-2)

SITUATION 3: The plate umpire is reviewing the submitted lineup cards at the pre-game conference. He asks both head coaches if they have listed all known substitutes on their respective lineup card. Team A’s head coach states he will not list any substitutes on his lineup. RULING: The umpire shall not accept the lineup card until all substitutes are listed. The game cannot begin until the umpire has received lineup cards from both teams. (1-1-2, 4-1-3)

SITUATION 4: With R2 on first base and one out, B3 swings and misses on a 1-2 fastball for strike three. R2 was stealing on the pitch and B3’s follow-through interferes with the catcher’s ability to throw to second base. At the time of the interference, R2 was just over half way to second from first. RULING: In the umpire’s judgment, B3’s interference prevented the catcher from possibly throwing out R2 at second base. B3 is out for strike three and R2 is declared out because of B3’s interference. The half-inning is over. (7-3-5c Penalty)

SITUATION 5: With one out, R2 gets a great jump at first base and is just a couple of feet from second base when B3 strikes out. B3’s follow-through interferes with the catcher, who drops the ball and cannot throw to second base. RULING: The ball is declared dead when play is no longer possible. B3 is out on strikes for out No. 2. Since the catcher had no possible play on R2 (being so close to second base at the time of the interference), R2 is returned to first base. (7-3-5c Penalty)

SITUATION 6: Smith enters the batter’s box with a BESR aluminum bat. The opposing coach protests that since the handle of the bat is not round and that the taper is not smooth, it is an illegal bat. RULING: There are no restrictions on the shape of the handle, and the taper of the bat is not required to be smooth or round. Only the barrel of the bat shall be round, cylindrically symmetric and smooth. The bat is legal for play. (1-3-2b)

SITUATION 7: The batter enters the batter’s box with a BBCOR composite bat. The opposing coach wants him declared out for having an illegal bat. RULING: All BBCOR bats, aluminum or composite, are legal for play in 2011. The batter will be allowed to use the bat. (1-3-2e, f)

SITUATION 8: B3 enters the batter’s box with a bamboo bat and hits a bases-clearing triple. The opposing coach protests stating that a bamboo bat is not legal for play. RULING: The plate umpire will inspect the bat. If it has a BESR or BBCOR certification mark, it is legal for play in 2011. In the 2012 high school season, only non-wood bats that meet the BBCOR performance standard are legal for use. (1-3-2d, e, f)

SITUATION 9: During the pre-game inspection of the team’s bats, the umpires notice a hollow, composite BESR bat in the bat rack. RULING: If the hollow composite BESR bat has been granted a waiver and is listed on the “Approved Bats List,” it is legal for play. If the bat has not been granted a waiver, the umpires shall inform the coach that the bat is illegal and must be removed. (1-3-2g)

SITUATION 10: With the bases loaded and no outs, B4 hits a ground ball to the shortstop. The defense is able to get the out at third base on R2 and at second base on R3, but R1 scores and B4 is safe at first. The plate umpire picks up the bat used by B4 and notices that it is a hollow composite bat that is not on the approved waiver list. RULING: B4 is guilty of using an illegal bat. The defense has the option of taking the play or the penalty for using an illegal bat. The play will result in two outs, a runner at first and one run scored. The penalty will have B4 declared out and all runners will be returned to their respective bases at the time of the pitch – bases loaded, one out, no run scored. (7-4-1a)

SITUATION 11: The pitcher has a hard cast on his non-pitching forearm. The coach asks what must be done for him to pitch in the game. RULING: The cast must be padded with a closed-cell, slow-recovery foam pad-ding no less than ½-inch thick. Since the player is to pitch, the padding cannot be white, gray or deemed to be a color distracting to the batter by the plate umpire. (1-4-2, 1-5-8)

SITUATION 12: The short stop is wearing an unpadded ankle brace and his coach asks if it is legal for play. RULING: If the ankle brace is unaltered from the manufacturer’s original design and production, it does not require any additional padding. (1-5-8)

SITUATION 13: With a runner on first stealing on the pitch, B2 hits a ball directly to the catcher’s hands which rebounds high in the air and is caught by the pitcher. The pitcher turns and throws the runner out at second base. RULING: The ball is dead and treated as a foul ball since it was not caught by the catcher. Had the catcher caught the batted ball, it would be a foul tip and would have remained in play. (2-16-2)

SITUATION 14: Jones, the center fielder, and Brown, the right fielder, collide going after a fly ball. Brown never loses consciousness and tells his coach he is OK. Brown finishes the half-inning. As Brown heads for the dugout, he has some balance problems and stops running, complaining of dizziness. RULING: Brown shall be immediately removed from the game and shall not return to play until he is cleared by an appropriate health-care professional. (3-1-5)

SITUATION 15: R1 misses second base as he advances to third, but touches it as he safely returns to first base. The defense appeals his missing second as he advanced. RULING: The appeal is denied. The last time R1 went by second base, he properly touched the base and thus corrected the previous baserunning error. (8-2-6l)
SITUATION 16: As R1 attempts to score from second base, he misses third base by cutting well inside the infield. With the fly ball being caught, Brown attempts to return, touching third as he goes back to second base. RULING: Brown will be declared out on the appeal because a runner who misses a base in a manner to gain an unfair advantage is still vulnerable to appeal. (8-2-6l)

SITUATION 17: R1 is moving on the pitch as the batter hits a fly ball to left center field. R1 touches second base and heads for third when the ball is caught. R1 stops and returns to first base, missing second base. The ball is thrown into the dugout and R1 is awarded third. He touched first, second and third base on the award. The defense appeals his miss of second base as he attempted to return to first. RULING: R1’s actions are legal and the defensive appeal will be denied. R1 satisfied his baserunning obligations when he touched second on his last time by the base. (8-2-6l)

SITUATION 18: R1 leaves first base too soon on a caught fly ball. He touches second and nears third when his coach instructs him to return. R1 does so by running directly across the diamond toward first base. The ball gets by the first baseman, and R1 retouches first and makes it safely to second base. RULING: R1 would be declared out upon proper appeal by the defense as the principle of “Last Time By” would not apply. (8-2-6l)

SITUATION 19: Bases loaded with one out. B5 hits a fly ball into the gap between center field and right field. He is thrown out trying for second base. R2, advancing from second base, misses third base and scores. The defense properly appeals R2’s miss of third. RULING: R2’s out is the third out and the half-inning is over. No runs score since R2 was forced when he missed third base. (9-1-1b)

SITUATION 20: With R1 on third base, the pitcher is in the windup position. At the top of his motion, he pauses for two or three seconds and then delivers. RULING: The umpire shall declare a balk and score R1 from third base. After a pitcher starts his motion to pitch, he must continue the motion without interruption or alteration. (6-1-2)
 

 

See Also: Baseball;
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