Tuesday, May 14, 2013
Toledo News-Bee, May 14, 1913:
ST. LOUIS, May 14.—(Special.)—During a ball game here a fly ball dropped within a few feet of a cow. Bossie beat the fielder to the sphere and gulped it down. The runner romped home.
I’ve (fairly hurriedly) scanned the current rulebook and don’t see any applicable rule that would make the ball dead if a cow eats it. Everything I’ve seen either refers to people or inanimate objects coming into contact with the ball. I think that makes this the right call.
Is there a rule I’m missing?
Sunday, March 17, 2013
We’re not in Sarkhan anymore!
The March 7 decision by Japanese baseball’s executive committee to drop the 3½-hour time limit on extra-inning games came as welcome news. We have observed the second anniversary of the Great East Japan Earthquake of March 11, 2011, the subsequent tsunami and nuclear power plant problems that led to a period of setsuden (power-conservation measures).
In spite of the passing of the two-year mark, however, normalcy has not returned in some places. For example, in my city of Musashino west of Tokyo, the time-and-temperature board in front of Japan Railways Kichijoji Station remains blank.
Also, at a branch of our city office, an escalator leading from the first to second floor of the building is still shut down. Most likely, it has just not occurred to the city officials to turn on the digital board and restart the escalator.
Also, many of the fluorescent lights in the JR train carriages have never been put back.
However, noting the fact 11 of the 12 Central and Pacific League teams played double-figure numbers of tie games last season, and the average length for games is still well over three hours, NPB is making the wise move to scrap the time limit. The 12-inning restriction remains in place.
...Another strange happening often seen in Japanese games but one I have not seen very much in the majors occurs when a guy gets hurt and goes into the clubhouse for examination and treatment.
Of course all care should be given when a man is injured, but all too often it seems his leaving the field is unnecessary. Sometimes the player goes off the diamond, acting as if he is at death’s door, and the plate umpire signals to the P.A. announcer to ask the fans to wait a few minutes while the injured party gets checked out.
Everyone waits 10 or 15 minutes, after which the player comes running out, having apparently made a miraculous recovery. I am not sure what can be done about it, but this is also one of the reasons games are often held up.
Posted: March 17, 2013 at 10:22 AM | 5 comment(s)
Sunday, January 27, 2013
“Hey Rocky, watch me fake a throw to third and pick the runner off at first!”
“But that trick never works.”
“This time for sure! Presto!”
Balk on Bullwinkle, beginning in 2013:
Under a rule change imposed by Major League Baseball, pitchers will no longer be allowed to fake a pickoff to third base and throw to first as a way to dupe a runner on first base into breaking for second. Next season, that move would be a balk. Pitchers can still step off the rubber and fake to third.
Posted: January 27, 2013 at 04:50 PM | 26 comment(s)
Monday, January 14, 2013
Jayson Stark reports on several potential rules changes that spun out of last week’s owners meetings. The most notable: coaches and managers will be able to bring an interpreter to the mound for meetings with players who don’t speak fluent English.
No word if Phillies pitchers will get their own English-to-1940s grifter interpreter for when Charlie Manuel comes out for pitching changes. ”I don’t even know what ‘what’s the rumpus’ means,” said Cole Hamels, explaining his support for the rule.
Other proposed changes:
- Teams will be permitted to have a seventh coach in uniform; the previous limit was six; and
- The fake-to-third, throw-to-first pickoff move would now be considered a balk.
Thanks to Carl.
Posted: January 14, 2013 at 06:22 PM | 47 comment(s)
Tuesday, November 27, 2012
Rules, rules, rules, rules, rules, rules, rules, rules, rules, rules, and more rules.
Think of baseball as a living thing, an organic garden. It still needs care and weeding and pruning to flourish. Baseball is overdue for some pruning—nothing too major, but changes to the rules of how the game is played to keep it going strong while still honoring its heritage.
When it comes to areas of improvement, I’ve come up with a starting nine: nine rules changes baseball should implement immediately. I have named each of the proposed rules in honor of the person most associated with the need for change.
Posted: November 27, 2012 at 04:01 PM | 29 comment(s)
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