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Why do the umps allow batters to "take a hit" and get first base when it is clearly against the rules.

The coaches teach them "how to take a hit".

I'm not talking about the situation where you're not sure, but about those clear violations. When you see several batters take one "professionally" for the team, why do you allow it?

I believe umps for the most part try to enforce all the rules to the best of their ability. But this one it seems the majority just let it slide like it's a given these days.

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Not all of us give them the base. If the player has a chance to move or if they lean into the ball - I call a ball or a strike based on the location of the pitch.

It always makes for heated discussions with the coaches on the field and hysterical discussions with parents as you leave the park (one-sided discussions, but discussions nonetheless).

Before the season starts, I get my rule book out and make sure I memorize all the pertinent sections for quoting at the appropriate time to unhappy people; however, their usual reply is "I don't give a **** what the rules say, this is BASEBALL!!"
Originally posted by ChicksDigTheLongBall:
Why do the umps allow batters to "take a hit" and get first base when it is clearly against the rules.

Yes, the rules require the batter to make some attempt to avoid being hit, but the reality is that the batter gets the benefit of the doubt here.

The better solution is to keep your pitchers from throwing at the batters.

And it's by no means automatic. In last year's College World Series, there were several instances in which batters were not awarded 1B after being hit, because they made no effort to avoid.

Dave Hensley
Why do the umps allow batters to "take a hit" and get first base when it is clearly against the rules.

Because many umpires do not the B***S to make the call. It is the right call to make, it shows that the Ump is in control of the game, and sets the tone to prevent any type of retailaition from either team.

Once you do it, the team will know that they cannot practice "how to take a pitch".
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Don't generalize. Maybe some umpires automatically give the batter 1B, the good ones don't.

Back when Don Drysdale set the record for consecutive scoreless innings, his frecord was in jeopardy. The Giants has the bases loaded, and the batter made no effort to avoid the pitch. The PU (his name escapes me) would not allow the HPB, and Drysdale got him out, and kept his record intact.

On a personal note, I had a situation in an LA City varsity game about 25 years ago. The batter (who must have also been a FB lineman) turned his butt into a sssslllloooowwww curve. As he started toward 1B, I hollered, "DEAD BALL, ball on the batter, stay here". The coach and the batter both were very upset. I told the coach that his batter not only made no attempt to avoid the pitch, he moved into it. The coach asked me to check with my partner, which I did. We met in the infield, away from everyone. It was difficult for the two of us to suppress our grins. When I asked him what he saw, his remark was, "The worst acting job I ever saw".

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I am known to award a HBP almost every time. At the HS level I have seen players jelly legged by curves, frozen by an errant fastball and even a flinch is enough for me to determine they tried to get out of the way. Its up to me to determine if he made an effort. If as you say it a clear violation such as I state below. There will be no base award. But that is Umpire judgement......and in other words "my judgement"..........backed up by my umpire education and years of experience.

For me to keep a batter at the plate he would have to basically move into a pitch. This year I kept 2 players at the plate after being hit. Both for dipping an armor padded elbow into a slow curves.
I am more inclined to keep batters than most. If I believe he just stood and watched it then he's not getting a base. I had a case about 10years ago where I was covering district JrLL/SrLL allstars. I drew the same team three games in a row. In each game I kept a batter for not avoiding. The first time the manager was upset and didn't understand why he wasn't getting a base. The second time he was aggravated and asked to check his batter. The third time he started to ask then said "never mind it won't do any good." Who says you can't teach coaches. biglaugh

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