Rules and Umpiring 101 #2 (with quiz's ANSWER)

For those thirsty for more and for those who simply don't want to keep debating the Macha signing, I give you the first edition of Rules 101 (as suggested by BobbyCrosbysGirl).

First thing I will mention in this Diary is a little something about umpiring that you probably never thought of.  We all know it's a thankless task, but have you ever imagined having a job where on your BEST day not a single person notices you?  Have you ever thought to yourself when watching a game that there are THREE teams on the field; the home team, the visiting team and the team of umpires?  All are human, all make mistakes.

But probably the worst part about being on the umpire team is that you NEVER HAVE A HOME GAME.  Never.  You never get to sleep in your own bed.  You never have a crowd cheering for you.  You can't wake up in the middle of the night and get a glass of milk from the fridge.  You're not with your wife and kids.

Not only do you not get any home games, you don't even get a homestand.  Whereas a player can be at home for as much as a 12-game homestand, as an umpire you're traveling every three days (four days if you're lucky).  Compound this with fans yelling at you day in and day out, regardless of how well you do, and it's a wonder these guys don't go postal.

Don't get me wrong.  They are paid well and they travel well, and they only work at most eight months of the year.  I don't feel sorry for them, but I do cut them a little slack for all of the reasons mentioned above.

On to this week's Rules Quiz.  I'll post the correct answer on Sunday morning (and I will NOT delete the Diary this time!!)

The bases are loaded with one out.  The batter lines a gapper to deep right centerfield.  The runner on third scores easily.  The runner on second touches third then scores easily.  The runner from first MISSES second base, touches third and scores.  The batter (Ruby maybe?) tries to stretch it into a triple and is thrown out at third base for the second out of the inning.  Before the next pitch, the defensive team properly appeals that the runner from first base had missed second base.  The umpire rules the runner OUT for the third out of the inning.  Question - How many runs are allowed to score?

Please select below, answer to be made available on Sunday morning.

With 93 people having voted at the time I write this, only SIX people out of 93 got the correct answer! The correct answer is ZERO runs are permitted to score.

Again, as with the last quiz where only 17% got it correct, the point here is not to try to make people look bad or not to make me superior in any way (contrary to what Cutthemullet might think). My upcoming series of Baseball Rules 101 is only to make the intelligent fans of AN even more intelligent, and at the same time, help them understand that the next time they?re yelling at an umpire, they might not really know what they?re talking about. Broadcasters don't know either.

My first comment is to 3up3dn who got this answer wrong (I know because after he voted, still no one had selected ZERO) and is probably prepared to tell me I?m off my rocker. All I can say is either try to find this in a case book, or ask one of your umpire buddies with whom you discuss tricky rules.

Commuter hit the nail on the head when he not only voted zero, but also mentioned the ?Merkle Boner.? Yes, it?s the exact same premise. No runs can score when the last out of the inning is a force out, and a force out is only removed when the batter-runner touches first, or when each runner forced to reach the next base does so.

Nick almost had it all figured out, but in saying, ?this isn?t an ordinary force? just hurt you. Agreed, it?s not an ordinary ?play,? but it?s still a force out. And don?t forget, this was the third out. The second out occurred at third base.

AllThingsOakland?.you should have gone with your gut!

Rule 7.12 ? ?Unless two are out, the status of a following runner is not affected by a preceding runner's failure to touch or retouch a base. If, upon appeal, the preceding runner is the third out, no runners following him shall score. If such third out is the result of a force play, neither preceding nor following runners shall score.?

By not touching second base, this appeal play becomes a force out. Had the runner from first missed THIRD base in this scenario, then two runs would have been allowed to score.

Since I'm relatively new to posting, will someone teach me how to edit a Diary and still be able to make it look nice with nice paragraph breaks and stuff? This is what caused me to accidentally delete my last diary, when I didn't like the way the update looked, but I thought I was just deleting the update. D'OH!!

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