Mayhem after Infield Fly. Don’t let this happen to you.


Crazy things happen in youth baseball a lot. Coming up next…Mayhem on an infield fly
rule fail. At the end of this video we’ll cover how
to handle the infield fly rule for High School and below by umpires coaches and players. For now in this game the team up to bat has
1 out with runners on 1st and 2nd. An infield fly is called by an umpire anytime,
with less than two outs and both 1st and 2nd base occupied, a fly ball can be reasonably
caught by an infielder. Here is what happened in this game. So that is what happened. Now for what should have happened from the
umpire, the first base coach as well as the base runners. We’ll start with the umpire who did call
the infield fly, however, he was facing the outfield at the time and the first base coach
and runner on first did not hear the call. As an umpire you should make this call once
the ball is descending and you judge that it is reasonable at this age skill level that
the ball should be caught. You should yell, “Infield Fly, Batter is
out!” very loudly. This fly ball for a 9 year old is not an infield
fly rule. For 13 year olds, it certainly is. For college and above, the umpire must call
the infield fly for it to apply. At High School and below, an infield fly can
be applied even without it being called. In otherwards, it’s on the runners and base
coaches to know the situation. As a first base coach, I make sure to tell
runners when an infield fly is possible. If I think it’s an infield fly but don’t
hear it called, I’ll loudly remind my runners. “Infield fly, stay on your base.” This way there is only one out, not a double
play. If the umpire didn’t call it, that can be
discussed afterwards. For the defense in this game it’s almost
always going to be the case that the fielders throw to get the force out on the lead runner
and if runners are moving every which way, their will be yelling from the dugout, the
stands, players on the field, etc… This is one of those things that makes youth
baseball so fun…the chaos. Check out this video where something very
similar happened during the Little League World Series regional game.

5 thoughts on “Mayhem after Infield Fly. Don’t let this happen to you.

  1. obviously a lot wrong with the umpiring here, don't want to bag too hard on obviously inexperienced and (hopefully) unpaid volunteers. But I do think it's worth explaining a little more what went wrong (or what should be done right). First, the signal for infield fly is right arm straight up, index finger pointing straight up, with the loud verbal call "Infield Fly! Batter is Out!"; either umpire can call it (usually whichever umpire would have the catch/no-catch call, but let's not get into that), and the other umpire should immediately make the same signal and repeat the verbal. If the ball is caught and there appears to be no confusion on the bases, the play can end with no other signals or verbals. If the ball is uncaught, the umpire should make a clear Out signal and loudly call "Batter is still Out! Batter is still Out!".
    As long as the umpire(s) have made minimally sufficient signals and calls, then any confusion and following outs or runners advancing is entirely on the players and all plays will stand. HOWEVER, if the umpires have done such poor job of signals and verbal calls that they caused the confusion on the bases, they should call time and attempt to undo the chaos; in particular, the umpires should not allow a double-play to occur solely because of their poor calls (remember, the Infield Fly rule is meant to protect the offense from a trick double-play, so let's not have the umpires trick them into a double play anyway). They will expect to put up with a ration of crap from whichever team they've "cheated" (usually the defense) TO A POINT and then eject as necessary. ("we were confused" is not a get-out-of-jail-free card for the offense though, the umpires need to judge for themselves whether their signals/calls were minimally sufficient)
    In this video I think because U1's mechanic was nothing like "infield fly" and a lot closer to "time", and we can't hear what, if anything, he said, they should undo the 2nd out and leave R1 and R2 at their original bases; 1 out, play ball.

  2. I need help.. Because in our league 10U, there is "no" infield fly rule. To me, this means that if the ball is caught the kids should NOT have to tag up.. Because since the batter is not automatically out because an infield fly will never be called then runners HAVE to run no matter what… So if my runners run halfway and stop and watch and he catches it then it could still be a double play because now he has to run back to tag up. But if he doesn't have to tag up (like i propose) then it's possible he could advance on the caught ball and thwart a double play. If the ball is dropped, at least they are halfway and all we can hope is not to get a double or triple.
    How should i coach if the league has "no" infield fly rule? Cal Ripkin division.

  3. umpire needs to yell INFIELD FLY and point in the air immediately after making the call. how are the runners suppose to know if the umpires don’t say shit ?

  4. Not a good example due to the extreme inexperience of all… Players… Umpires… And coaches…
    Key here is that it should not have been called at all… It was NOT a routine play and the younger the age group the more you should expect badly played fly balls!

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