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 Post subject: Running on contact
PostPosted: Wed Apr 24, 2013 5:37 pm 
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I just watched Harold Reynolds on the MLB network expound on his dislike for that play in MLB. He wishes teams would stop doing it.

I agree 100%. I hate that play also. A runner on 3B, a ground ball is hit to an infielder (usually to 3B or SS) and the infielder throws home getting the runner out at HP.

Harold Reynolds showed a clip of the Phils doing just that last night against the Pirates and the play resulted in the Philly runner getting thrown out at HP by a mile. Then the Phils hit into a DP resulting in nothing for that inning.

That's great for us because it was the Phils who were guilty of that play and not the Pirates. But, I've seen it happen to the Pirates also.

Running to HP from 3B on contact NEVER made sense to me. I wish the Pirates (at least the Pirates) would STOP doing it.

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 Post subject: Re: Running on contact
PostPosted: Wed Apr 24, 2013 5:43 pm 
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Running on contact makes sense with runners on 1st and 3rd and 1 out, for the following reasons.

First, the play at home involves a good throw to the catcher, who must make the catch, and apply a tag. That is something major league players do successfully a vast percentage of the time, but less often than simply throwing to a base for a force-out. The chances of a throw one-hopping the catcher, who then cannot make the tag, are higher than the chances of a throw to a base not resulting in a force-out.

Second, if the runner is not going, the infielder has no deterrence to firing the ball to 2nd base for the force-out and then hoping that the MI can turn two. If the runner is going, then the infielder has to decide, "Will we get the DP?" If not, the run scores. Therefore, the play negates the inning-ending DP.

Third, if the runner is out at home, the result is then 1st and 2nd with two outs. It takes a hit to score the run ... but it also takes a hit to score the run from 3rd with 2 outs, so the loss of run-scoring ability is not that significant (realizing that taking the runner off of 3rd base means he does not score on a PB, WP, infield single, one-base error).

So those are the reasons for the contact play - 1 out (not 0 or 2 for obvious reasons), runners 1st and 3rd.


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 Post subject: Re: Running on contact
PostPosted: Wed Apr 24, 2013 6:06 pm 
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Bucfan wrote:
Running on contact makes sense with runners on 1st and 3rd and 1 out, for the following reasons.

First, the play at home involves a good throw to the catcher, who must make the catch, and apply a tag. That is something major league players do successfully a vast percentage of the time, but less often than simply throwing to a base for a force-out. The chances of a throw one-hopping the catcher, who then cannot make the tag, are higher than the chances of a throw to a base not resulting in a force-out.

Second, if the runner is not going, the infielder has no deterrence to firing the ball to 2nd base for the force-out and then hoping that the MI can turn two. If the runner is going, then the infielder has to decide, "Will we get the DP?" If not, the run scores. Therefore, the play negates the inning-ending DP.

Third, if the runner is out at home, the result is then 1st and 2nd with two outs. It takes a hit to score the run ... but it also takes a hit to score the run from 3rd with 2 outs, so the loss of run-scoring ability is not that significant (realizing that taking the runner off of 3rd base means he does not score on a PB, WP, infield single, one-base error).

So those are the reasons for the contact play - 1 out (not 0 or 2 for obvious reasons), runners 1st and 3rd.


All good points, on the flip side we have seen Marte get nailed by a mile twice on that play already this year. Not sure if it was 1st and 3rd or just 3rd.

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 Post subject: Re: Running on contact
PostPosted: Wed Apr 24, 2013 7:31 pm 
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Barrys Dopers wrote:
Bucfan wrote:
Running on contact makes sense with runners on 1st and 3rd and 1 out, for the following reasons.

First, the play at home involves a good throw to the catcher, who must make the catch, and apply a tag. That is something major league players do successfully a vast percentage of the time, but less often than simply throwing to a base for a force-out. The chances of a throw one-hopping the catcher, who then cannot make the tag, are higher than the chances of a throw to a base not resulting in a force-out.

Second, if the runner is not going, the infielder has no deterrence to firing the ball to 2nd base for the force-out and then hoping that the MI can turn two. If the runner is going, then the infielder has to decide, "Will we get the DP?" If not, the run scores. Therefore, the play negates the inning-ending DP.

Third, if the runner is out at home, the result is then 1st and 2nd with two outs. It takes a hit to score the run ... but it also takes a hit to score the run from 3rd with 2 outs, so the loss of run-scoring ability is not that significant (realizing that taking the runner off of 3rd base means he does not score on a PB, WP, infield single, one-base error).

So those are the reasons for the contact play - 1 out (not 0 or 2 for obvious reasons), runners 1st and 3rd.


All good points, on the flip side we have seen Marte get nailed by a mile twice on that play already this year. Not sure if it was 1st and 3rd or just 3rd.

First thing to my mind too. I also don't recall the other part of it but Marte sure looked bad in my mind. I would also add that the argument of running in that situation makes sense.

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 Post subject: Re: Running on contact
PostPosted: Wed Apr 24, 2013 11:13 pm 
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NOT running on contact cost Phillies a run tonight.

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Reflexively, obsessively and tastelessly submitted,
No. 9
Obsessive proponent of situational bunting and 2 strike hitting approaches, reflexively pro-catchers calling good games and tasteless proponent of the value of a RBI.


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 Post subject: Re: Running on contact
PostPosted: Thu Apr 25, 2013 2:17 am 
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As always No.9-- you hit the nail on the perverbial head.

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 Post subject: Re: Running on contact
PostPosted: Thu Apr 25, 2013 9:45 am 
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That was the exact situation described by Bucfan, right? First and third one out.

If Rollins runs on contact, at worst you end up with first and second 2 out. If he holds at third, it might be an inning ending double play.


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 Post subject: Re: Running on contact
PostPosted: Thu Apr 25, 2013 10:07 am 
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Ralphie wrote:
That was the exact situation described by Bucfan, right? First and third one out.

If Rollins runs on contact, at worst you end up with first and second 2 out. If he holds at third, it might be an inning ending double play.

There were no outs. You run on contact forcing the defense to either give up a run to turn a double play, or as you said you force them to make a play at home and then you still have runners on first and second with only one out. Really bizarre bonehead move by a veteran. As Bob Walk said, "That's not major league baseball."


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 Post subject: Re: Running on contact
PostPosted: Thu Apr 25, 2013 11:54 am 
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I think that this issue greatly illustrates the hazard of trying to create black-and-white rules into the game of baseball. To me, adopting a "we never run on contact with a runner on third" rule or a "we always run on contact with a runner on third" rule is ridiculous. As pointed out by Bucfan, there are very good reasons why you might want to have a runner on third with less than 2 outs break on contact.
1. It puts pressure on the defense. Fielder has to field the ball cleanly, throw a strike to home, the catcher has to catch it and make a tag. And, as strange as this may sound, throwing a ball to the catcher at home plate is not a frequent occurrence. There is less "muscle memory" than throwing the ball to second base or to first base. It is a higher stress situation and the combination can lead to bad results for the defense.
2. Unless the ball is hit right at a fielder or hit sharply and fielded easily, there is an excellent chance that a runner breaking on contact scores.
3. The time that it takes to determine whether the ball hit to the SS or 2B (as opposed to a corner fielder) opens the door to a SS or 2B having a legitimate shot for a play at the plate when, if the runner broke on contact, there would be no play at home.
4. Even a speedy runner . . . say . . . like Jimmy Rollins . . . can be thrown out at home if he waits to see if the fielder throws to another base first.
5. Ideally, you want a runner with decent speed breaking on contact. Or a runner who is getting a good lead off of third.

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Reflexively, obsessively and tastelessly submitted,
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Obsessive proponent of situational bunting and 2 strike hitting approaches, reflexively pro-catchers calling good games and tasteless proponent of the value of a RBI.


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 Post subject: Re: Running on contact
PostPosted: Thu Apr 25, 2013 12:08 pm 
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With no outs I think the correct play is to break for the plate if you think it's going to be a double play, and not break if you think it's going to be just a force out.


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