NCAA change rule on slappers ?

Discussion in 'General Softball Discussions' started by manitoudan, Jan 4, 2018.

  1. manitoudan

    manitoudan Active Member

    Saw a Facebook post stating slappers must keep BOTH feet in the box but the link provided was a bit vague , didnt say when the rule change took effect . Surprised it hasnt been discussed here , would this affect ASA/PGF/ USSSA play ?
  2. JoeA1010

    JoeA1010 Active Member

    Takes place this year. Foot can be on the chalk, but if any part of a foot is outside the box upon contact, it's an out. Changes things quite a bit. The other way it changes things is when a hitter steps a bit out to reach an outside pitch. We had this called a few times in the fall. If umpires insist upon calling strikes 2-3 inches off the plate, hitters will have no chance.
  3. lewam3

    lewam3 Active Member

    (said the pitchers dad)
  4. manitoudan

    manitoudan Active Member

    I don't like it at all, why make the change ?
  5. Captain_Thunder

    Captain_Thunder Super Moderator Staff Member

    How did the rule read before?
    I thought any time a foot was outside of the batter's box - the batter was out! Slapper or not - if you step out too far or to one side - you were out.
    How is it now different?
    City Slicker likes this.
  6. JoeA1010

    JoeA1010 Active Member

    It used to be the entire foot had to be out. Now it's any part of the foot out of the box upon contact and the batter is out. It's a huge change. Costs batters 6-12 inches of the box, depending on one's foot size.
  7. cam.p22

    cam.p22 Member

    As a lefty slapper and hitter growing up I just wanted to add my two cents on this topic. There are a lot of factors that go along with this new rule:
    • Umpires still struggle to call this either way due to it being a judgement call. It is hard for them to watch EVERYTHING that happens during a game, and remember people that they are still human and make mistakes as well. While still trying to keep a good strike zone we are now making them figure out if a players big toe is over the chalk line or not
    • As a slapper and leadoff I would say that 99% of the time I would go and mess up all of the chalk in the left handed batters box; maybe not all at once but before my at-bat was over there would be no more lines. I always started with the front line in the box and then scratching out the inside batters box line closest to home plate. Sometimes Umps would give me a strike, others would make comments but not follow through, and others were so oblivious that they didn't even realize what I was doing while 'playing with the dirt/chalk with my cleats'.
    • As a slapper I would try to hit my left foot in the front corner of the box (closest to the plate and pitcher) at the same time that I hit the ball. With that being said, this means that my right foot is off the ground and ready to take that first step to first base after I make contact; so technically not IN the box, but not out of the box.
    What do we do if there aren't any chalk lines? Or if someone like me comes and makes the lines all jagged and messed up, do we still try to make a judgement call with no batters box?
    Creek01 likes this.
  8. stats_dad

    stats_dad New Member

    As a dad of a slapper, I am fine with the rule change. My issue is that the vast majority of umps cannot make this call accurately. My daughter has been called numerous times for being outside the box (not the plate side). Not once, was the call correct per video. I have politely shown the umps or tournament directors the video after the games. We are not looking for an apology but for the umps to stop making calls outside their ability.

    The young ladies work very hard at developing this skillset and it is unfortunate that we have so many umps unnecessarily short changing them.
  9. Long Baller

    Long Baller Active Member

    I think this is an awful change from an umpiring standpoint. With the entire foot being out, it would (should) be really obvious to make the call. The foot would need to be almost touching the plate or be in front of the plate to be the correct call, and it was still often miscalled. Now, you are putting even more pressure to make an already difficult judgement call when there are so many other things to look for every pitch. Combine that with crooked lines, blurred lines, or no lines at all, then there is absolutely no way an umpire can make an accurate call when you are now talking a couple of inches instead of an entire foot. The old rule wasn't popular (and misunderstood my most), but honestly you need that larger, "must be blatant", infringement to truly enforce that rule. That needs to be an easy call for an umpire, not a more difficult one. Remember, they changed the hit by pitch rule a few years ago to try and take the judgement call off of the umpires....
  10. Long Baller

    Long Baller Active Member

    An elite slapper works every bit as hard on her short game as an elite pitcher does on her pitching game
    Hilliarddad3 likes this.
  11. wow

    wow Active Member

    I am sure this is true.. But rarely is that slapper working on her pitching too! Although some do!

    Slapping is the most lethal element to the game today. A good slapper has more tools than a pitcher has pitchers. Bunt, drag, chop, away, blopper, gap, bounce and pound, and the HR..

    I think slappers change the game dynamics.

    DanMaz likes this.
  12. OhPhat

    OhPhat Active Member

    Will this rule change trickle down to USSSA, ASA etc? I was looking and the 2017 USSSA rules have not changed.
  13. Fairman

    Fairman Member

    This is a silly rule change as it is virtually unenforceable by the plate umpire. We are asking that a human watch a spinning pitch, thrown at velocity through the strike zone and the batters feet at the same time in relation to a line that has disappeared. It is simply impossible and any calls will be random and disrupt the game.

    Does this rule apply to ALL batters or only slappers?
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2018
    Dougk30 and DanMaz like this.
  14. FastBat

    FastBat Well-Known Member

    /\/\I agree. I think this will make very little change, if any. There shouldn't be any lines after the first batter. It becomes a matter of where the ump believes the lines should be vs. where they saw the foot, while calling the 55 mph+ movement pitch, without getting physically hurt themselves by a batted ball/possible foul tip...good luck with that. More likely it would be the same enforcement, if it's very obvious she stepped outside the box, she'll get called on it, teach her to get a good jump but not be too greedy.
  15. DanMaz

    DanMaz Super Moderator Staff Member

    anyone know if this is going to be enforced in HS ball?
  16. coachjwb

    coachjwb Well-Known Member

    One of my favorite stories is when I was coaching high school ball and we did a spring break trip down to Kentucky. We were getting warmed up to play one of the county school teams there. They lined the field and I saw them putting everything away, and I said to the umpire, "hey, they forgot to line the batter's box". Blue says "we don't need any lines down here, we know where the batter's box is". I thought he was kidding and kind of laughed and he says "play ball!". My daughter comes up in the first inning ... not a lefty or a slapper, and he warns her for taking her stance out of the batter's box. She politely asks him (OK she might have rolled her eyes) where the batter's box is and he replies "further back". She moves back an inch or two and asks him if that's OK, and he says "no a little further". So now she definitely rolls her eyes (my way) and moves back a couple of more inches. She asks if that's OK and he calls time and comes out in front of the box and looks and says "yeah that's fine". I might have not made any friends in Kentucky when I asked him "wouldn't it just have been easier for them to have drawn the lines?". Anyhow, to my recollection, that was the only time in my daughter's travel, high school or college career that she was ever warned or called out for stepping out of the box.
    Pacerdad57 likes this.
  17. Spartandad

    Spartandad New Member

    So, are the plate umpire's eyes on the ball coming to call it a ball or strike, or on a slapper's feet? Better re-chalk the box every inning then.
  18. City Slicker

    City Slicker Active Member

    I don't understand all of the discussion about this... seems pretty simple to me. Stay in the box. Isn't that why the lines are there?

    I do agree though that it is going to be really hard for the umpires - especially ones who are by themselves.
  19. MCS21

    MCS21 Member

    I've seen umpires be hungry to make the call. I've seen it in high school and travel and I've talked to some umpires and they say if a girl is willing to eliminate 4 feet of the balls travel to the plate and can still hit it then god bless them I'm not worrying where they're feet are unless the step on or across the front of the plate to hit an outside pitch.
    24GahannaLadyLions7 likes this.
  20. raidian70

    raidian70 Member

    The rule does not apply to high school.

    I think this does make things difficult on the umpires. With one foot completely out of the box, it was a fairly easy call when obvious. Now it is a very difficult call and it will depend on whether somebody is willing to call a guess or not. It happens really fast and it has to be obvious before it should be called.

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