Insider Report

Time Plays 2016 – Summary

There are several factors that interfere with the successful execution of a “Time Play.” The runner approaching the plate often slows down before touching the plate when he realizes there will be no play made on him; The runner approaching the plate will often look back to watch the play behind him which slows him down; If the on-deck batter does not understand the concept of the “Time Play,” he will often raise his arms…

Creating Time Plays

There are different ways that a back runner can help create a “Time Play.” With a runner on second, the batter singles to the outfield and makes a hard fake to second base drawing a throw. This is what happened in the Moss/Molina play above. With runners on second and third and two outs, the batter hits a ground ball to the third baseman or shortstop who fields the ball in front of the runner….

Angels Do Not Score on a “Time Play”

The next day, the Los Angeles Angels beat the Detroit Tigers in Detroit 3-2, despite losing a run on a “Time Play” that could have been pivotal. In the top of the seventh, the Angels had Caleb Cowart on third and Mike Trout on first with one out when Albert Pujols hit a long fly ball to right field. Trout took off, thinking the ball would not be caught. But Andrew Romine made the catch…

Don’t Look Back

Teams often lose a “Time Play” run when the runner advancing to the plate looks back to see what’s going on behind him. The Dodgers dodged a bullet when Joc Pederson made this mistake while the Dodgers hosted the Milwaukee Brewers on June 16, 2016. It took instant replay to confirm the Dodgers’ tying run in the bottom of the sixth inning which was the result of a “Time Play.” With one out, the Dodgers…

Runner Slides Home During Time Play

The runner approaching home plate needs to touch the plate ASAP. I would prefer that he run through the plate rather than slide. In the following play, however, the runner hustled home and slid to beat the third out. The Los Angeles Dodgers hosted the Boston Red Sox on August 7, 2016. The Dodgers had the bases loaded in the bottom of the fifth inning with two outs when Rob Segedin singled to right field,…

Back Runner Draws Throw

Clever base running by the St. Louis Cardinals’ Yadier Molina helped produce a run by gaining time for a preceding runner to score in the Cards 3-1win over the Oakland A’s on Aug. 26 in St. Louis. Here is what happened: In the bottom of the sixth, the Cards had Brandon Moss on third and Yadier Molina on first when Jhonny Peralta hit a fly ball to Coco Crisp in short left center. Both runners…

Runner Ducks Under Tag

A “Time Play” occurred on May 1, 2016 that was kept alive by clever running by a runner going to second base which created time for a preceding runner to score. The play occurred at Wrigley Field where the Chicago Cubs and Atlanta Braves played. This one affected the outcome of the game since the Braves won, 4-3.The Braves were batting in the top of the sixth with one out and the bases loaded when…

Time Play Red Flags

The term “Time Play” is not found in the rule book! Pro rule 5.08(a) covers the “Time Play,” which is umpire lingo. Generally speaking, when a third out occurs just before or just after a runner crosses the plate and the third out is not the result of a force out or the result of the batter-runner being retired before reaching first base, you have a “Time Play.” The rule is universal. If the runner,…

Off Again, on Again

Runners on second and third bases, one out. Batter swings at strike three, ball goes to backstop, batter turns and walks toward his third base dugout. Everyone tells him to run and he stops about 15 feet from the plate area and turns and runs toward first. When running to first he crosses the home plate area as the catchers throw comes home to the pitcher covering home plate in an attempt to put out…