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Softball/obstruction in the base path


A girl hits a gapper to right center field, while rounding first base she runs into the first baseman who is in the base path. As a coach, if you run the girl until she is thrown out does she get to go back to the last base that she was safe at? OR if lets just say it is a close play at third but she is called out, does she get to keep third base because she would have been safe if not obstructed with? Thanks.

Hi Jamie,

When a runner is obstructed we protect that runner to the base they would have made "in our judgment" had they not been obstructed.  If the runner passes that base they are no longer protected and liable to be put out.  They would not be sent back to the base they were protected to, they are just out, except see below.

The problem is neither the runner nor the coach knows exactly what base we are judging they would have made.  Sometimes it's easier than others, such as a gapper to the fence etc.  Plus as you state if its a close play or bang bang at 3rd, yes they probably would have made it had they not been obstructed and we are protecting them to there.

If the runner is obstructed between 1st and 2nd you can always have the runner attempt to get to 2nd.  By rule the runner (except if they interfere) cannot be put out between the bases they were obstructed.  In this case even if they are tagged out at 2nd, they would not be out and are returned to 1st.



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Dr. Mark R. Ambrose


I can answer all questions about book rules and "case book" rules governing the playing of ASA softball. Have a REAL situation that happened and are not sure the proper rule was applied, ask me.


I am a registered ASA umpire, a MASA "At-Large" umpire since 1996 and a retired District Umpire-In-Chief. I have very extensive experience in MASA State Championship and ASA national qualifying tournament play both as an umpire and an Umpire-In-Chief. I completed 3 ASA National Schools including the ASA national advanced umpire school in Ok City("Bernie" for those who know him was the lead clinician, I survived the week and couldn't let my kids watch the game tapes when I got home. No, I love you Bernie). I was one of 4 "Yankee" umpires selected to umpire the Men's D National East Championship in 2002 in Winter Haven FL

Amateur Softball Association (The authority in softball)

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