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Obstruction. 2006 NFH Softball Rules Section 36 Obstruction (Defense)

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2006 NFH Softball Rules

Section 36 Obstruction (Defense)

Obstruction is the act of the defensive team member that hinders or impedes a batter’s attempt to make contact with a pitched ball or impedes the progress of a runner or batter-runner who is legally running the bases, unless the fielder is in possession of the ball or is fielding a batted ball. The act may be intentional or unintentional, physical or verbal

No, Obstruction

Yes, Obstruction

Umpires need to be "part of the game" and/or "be aware."  Watch this next video clip and look for a sign the catcher or third base person provides that may tip you off to a possible play involving the runner at third base.  Is there "obstruction" on the catcher?  Is there "obstruction" on the third base person, before or after the throw? 

Per Rule : unless the fielder is in possession of the ball


Umpire Actions

All "obstruction calls" require a delayed dead-ball signal. ( Left arm straight out, horizontal to the ground and away from the body)  This allows all runners/batter-runner the ability to advance whether they are played on or not. If the obstructed runner/batter-runner is put out prior to reaching the base that would have been reached had there not been obstruction, a "dead ball" is called and the obstructed runner/batter-runner and each other runner affected by the obstruction will be awarded the base or bases which would have been reached, in the umpire's judgment, had there not been obstruction.  An obstructed runner may not be called out between the two bases where she was obstructed.

Case Book Example, 2006

  • 2.36 SITUATION C: F2, (a) with the ball, or (b) about to receive a thrown ball, is blocking home plate. R1 slides into F2 and is tagged out. RULING: In (a), R1 is out. In (b) the umpire would call and signal a delayed bead ball. The runner would be awarded the base, in the umpire’s judgment, she would have received had there been no obstruction


  • 2006 NFHS Rule Book: 2-36; 8-4-3b

  • 2006 NFHS Case Book: 2.36 Situation (x3)

  • 2006 Umpires Manual: The Field Umpire, Page 45 (Obstruction – Fake Tag – Catcher Obstruction), The Plate Umpire, Page 35 (Catcher Obstruction)

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