Tag Archives: baseball

The unwritten rules of slo-pitch

Finally, a master list of  slo-pitch rules.  This is for hitters, fielders, pitchers, umpires and even spectators.  The world would be a rosy place if we could all just remember these 15 points.

Rules are in no particular order, except for #1 and #2 which are essential to a game being played in an efficient manner.

  1. Hitters – Always take the first-pitch.
  2. Pitchers – Always throw a first-pitch strike.
  3. Spitz are communal.  If you don’t want to share, leave them in your car.
  4. Umpires – Always call your own guy “out” on close plays.  It’s better for your buddy to bust YOUR chops over the call than some “Gary Go-Hard” getting in your face.
  5. Umpires – If it’s a “foul ball”, yell like your hair is on fire.  Don’t make any baserunners or fielders run for no reason.
  6. Spectators – Shag up those foul balls.  The extra steps add up on your fitbit.
  7. Umpires – If the pitch is a “strike”, make an audible noise so the outfielders can hear you.  If it’s a “ball”, silence is ok.
  8. Clean up your empties and garbage.
  9. Never throw behind the runner.
  10. Always hustle in and out of the dugout.
  11. Don’t try to hit up the middle.
  12. If you accidentally hit up the middle, apologize.
  13. If your 10th guy is a little late…start with 9 and take the auto-out.  Don’t stall.
  14. Clean up your bats from the on-deck circle.
  15. “Three Cheers” should be done with purpose.

The Romance in Arguing with an Official.

Arguing with the officials is as much a part of sport as athletic supporters.  In baseball, players spit near the feet of umpires while managers kick dirt on homeplate.  Football coaches race down sidelines blue in the face with rage screaming bloody murder.  And who could forget this classy gem by NHL head coach Joel Quenneville in the playoffs last year:

That's what Coach thought of the call.

That’s what Coach thought of the call.

Soccer is different.  Arguing with the official is almost romantic.  Players plead their case like jilted lovers.  Their eyes pour with extreme disbelief like the wrongest of wrongs has been done unto them immediately after they kick another man in the shin (from behind).  How could the referee punish me for this?!  They hold their hands as if to pray, begging the referee to see their side, as if the fate of humanity depended on it.  With arms extended out, as if crucified, they beg for a higher power (the guy with the whistle) to see things their way!

I was at my first Edmonton FM match on the weekend.  We tide the match at 1 in extra time off a free kick.  It was a thrilling finish to an afternoon filled with the most romantic sports arguing I have ever seen.  I am now a soccer fan.