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rcooper

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Posts: 73
Reply with quote  #1 
If a batter does the slapping footwork, keeps their hands in the same starting position, but only sticks the bat out is this a slap or a drag bunt? The batter was able to foul off about 7 pitches.
Harley

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Posts: 153
Reply with quote  #2 
Same thing happened to me this weekend, not as many fouls though.  Think it was only 3.  I asked the PU and was told it wasn't a bunt.  There was no follow through like a normal swing, basically just your normal slapping footwork and then held the bat out to meet the ball.  If they would have been fair, would have went about as far as a good bunt.  Looked like a bunt to me, regardless of the footwork.
BrianR

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Posts: 26
Reply with quote  #3 
Not an umpire here, but agree that a slap, 2 strike foul should be treated just like a bunt 2 strike foul.  Love to see a rule change here in the future.

The only problem, the USSSA rule book does not see it the same way.  Here is the definition from the USSSA Rule book that makes it clear that a slap foul is OK;

SLAP HIT. A slap hit occurs when the batter gives the appearance of bunting, using a

modified swing or slap at the ball as it approaches home plate. If an attempt to “SLAP”

is a foul ball, it is treated the same as any other foul ball including an attempt by the

batter with two strikes.

BUNT. A bunt is a legally batted ball, which occurs when the batter does not swing to

hit the ball, but holds the bat in the path of the ball to tap it slowly to the infield

BUNT, ATTEMPTED. An attempted bunt (“offer”) is any movement of the bat toward

the ball when the ball is over or near the plate area. Holding the bat in the strike zone is

considered an attempt to bunt. In order to take a pitch, the bat must be pulled back away

from the ball. If an attempted bunt results in a foul ball, it is treated as any other foul

ball, if the batter has two strikes and this happens, the batter is out.

Harley

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Posts: 153
Reply with quote  #4 
But, also from the USSSA rule book

BUNT, DRAG. A drag bunt is a bunt where the batter attempts to bunt the ball by

running forward in the batter box, carrying the bat with her. The movement of the bat is

in conjunction with the batters forward movement.


Which to me reads as if the batter moves her feet in normal slapping footwork, brings bat into zone and on contact with the ball, does not follow through as you would with a normal swing, it should be considered a bunt.  So, with 2 strikes if its a foul, the batter would be out.  I think the key is if there is a follow through on the swing or not.  If there is a follow through, its a slap, if not, then it should be considered a drag bunt?

BrianR

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Posts: 26
Reply with quote  #5 
Yes, you could argue for sure that a "Drag Bunt", 2 strike foul should be an out and not considered a slap.  But you are right, umps see the feet movement and call the dropping of the bunt a slap even if the player does not swing through the ball.  I saw the same motion this weekend.

Further back in the rules, outside of definitions, they could clarify this by describing that a 2 strike foul ball from a drag bunt is an out.

Heck, how many times do we see a players foot completely leave the batters box on the slap?  Everyone argues the players foot is in the air when the bat and ball make contact. I have yet to see a player get called out for being out of the box and I do not recall seeing that call being made much at the college level either.  I am sure it is VERY difficult for the ump to watch the foot, ball and bat all at the same time to determine if a player is out of the box or not.  The Umps sure have a thankless job, much less putting up with all the screaming & crazy parents & coaches.  LOL 

A batter shall not hit the ball fair or foul while either foot is touching the

ground completely outside the lines of the batter’s box or while touching the

plate.

PENALTY: The ball becomes dead immediately. The batter is out.

semm71

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Posts: 101
Reply with quote  #6 
As far as the foot being outside the box on the Drag/Slap, and I have seen this alot, it's unfotunate, but rarely if EVER in a USSSA tournament do the batter boxes EVER get redrawn. by game 2 there is no box anymore. So the umpire can't call it even if they wanted to.  
And I have always believed that a DRAG BUNT is an out if fouled on the 3rd strike.  Looks like I may have to start trying it anyway.

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~Coach Sean~
jtmumford

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Posts: 19
Reply with quote  #7 
I have always had the same issue...unless there is a swing, regardless of the footwork, it should be considered a bunt.  However, it is likely a judgement call on the part of the umpire so, good luck getting it called as I have never seen a drag bunt 3rd strike foul ball ever treated as a bunt.
newyank3

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Posts: 95
Reply with quote  #8 
The biggest issue here is the fact that most girls don't actually slap. They flatten their bat and drag it thru the zone. When I have seen this umpires will call them out as they judge it to be a bunt. If there is an actual wrist snap on the swing then that is an actual slap attempt and should be allowed to foul off balls all day long if the batter is in the box.

Bottom line most of these players need to be taught proper slap mechanics.
softballinstructor

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Posts: 1
Reply with quote  #9 
I agree that the players are not being taught proper mechanics. I am a pro hitting coach and played at the highest collegiate level. There are a lot of different options especially for the lefties. For all batters: bunt, slap, fake bunt/slap (they fake the bunt and then slap), fake slap/bunt (they fake the slap and then bunt). For lefties: drag bunt, drag slap: option 1: soft slap (intention is to hit to the 5/6 slot hitting it hard enough to get past 3rd baseman but soft enough to make the short stop have to charge), option 2: hard slap (this method could be hit over the fence). As an umpire, I would focus on the movement of the bat and not the footwork (from the "drag"). If the batter drags bunt on the 3rd strike and it goes foul, they should be out. Hope the explanation helps. 
Rthuba

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Posts: 1
Reply with quote  #10 

Salisbury World Series 2015: 12U C:  We had the same issue, lefty after lefty doing slaps or drag bunts for many many fouls until they got the walk.  (batter 1 had it perfect)  Batters 9/10 not so much.

Talked to the Ump and he said it was a judgement call but we would have to "ask" for the review.
Next time at bat we challenged that it was a drag bunt and got the call. 

they continued slapping but after the out we at least got a tiny bit of bat movement.

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