I was just looking at some of my stats and saw this will be my 100th post. That is pretty cool. For those unaware, this blog is in support of my book RuleGraphics: Professional Baseball.
It is a book that takes the difficulty and confusion out of baseball rules by putting all the information on one page. From definitions, key points, sample plays, and illustrations, everything that is needed to understand a rule is in one place. In addition, the book is organized in a simple, straight forward way.
We are trying to kill rule myths one at a time.
I found this interesting play from the big leagues:
This is actually something that most fans understand but it is funny to see anyway.
A ball that touches first, second or third base is a fair ball. It is fair no matter what happens after it touches the base. Most of the time when a ball touches a base it takes a funny hop and the batter makes it to first.
It does not happen often but it is not terribly unique either. Just something that adds a bit of color to the game. Fair/foul ball is covered on page 37 of RuleGraphics.
Baseball at its heart is a very simple game. Hit the ball, run in a circle and score a run. Other side, try to get three guys out before they circle the bases. Yeah, there are nuances and oddities in there, but for the most part weeks will go by when all that is called is out/safe, ball/strike and fair/foul.
The challenge becomes really knowing the rules when something odd does happen. Then, for umpires that do multiple leagues, the challenge on top of the challenge becomes knowing the rule differences.
I wanted to write a quick post discussing all the potential leagues out there and what rule set they use.
There are 3 base rule sets:
- OBR – stands for Official Baseball Rules. These are the rules that govern Major League Baseball. RuleGraphics is based on this rule set
- NCAA – College rules are very similar to OBR rules with some differences based on participation and safety. RuleGraphics would be the same in about 80-85% on instances.
- NFHS – High school rules are a bit different from OBR. In addition to changes for participation and safety, this rule set has some differences making in “simpler” for umpires in some situations. There are about 220 differences between OBR and NFHS rules. Most are small. RuleGraphics would be the same in about 70-75% of instances
The key question becomes how does this relate to your child’s ball game. Again, I am taking broad strokes, but in general here is a breakdown.
- Little League – uses the same base rules as OBR. They do have added safety and participation rules. But the core rules are similar. RuleGraphics would apply to these leagues.
- Babe Ruth / Cal Ripken – uses the same base rules as OBR. In fact, the Babe Ruth Rulebook is a direct copy of the Major League Baseball rule book with sections added noting the difference. Again, most are safety and participation related. RuleGraphics would apply in these leagues
- Pony League – OBR based like LIttle League and Babe Ruth. RuleGraphics would apply. Again, some age based modifications made for safety and participation
- Other Youth Leagues – Dixie, and USSSA use OBR based rules with modifications. RuleGraphics would apply
- Travel Tournaments – In my neck of the woods most of these tournaments use NFHS rules. Check your local listings
If you are super interested in learning all the minutia around the differences. This is a great resource.
If your desire is to learn the basics of the rules for your child’s game, there is a good chance RuleGraphics will get you what you need to know.
I noticed we have gotten a fair amount of traffic today. I suppose people enjoy reading the terror of Cubs’ blown saves past.
Just a quick recap on the intention of this blog. The blog itself publishes short articles explaining baseball rules. We augment the posts with video to help the explanations. We are a go to destination for help in learning rules.
The blog is in support of our simpler version of the baseball rule book called RuleGraphics. It is available here. We think learning the rules of baseball should be a whole lot easier than relying on the current rule book and old myths. Our book is a great starting point receiving praise from umpires and fans alike.
It was the #1 Hot New Release in the baseball/coaching sub category of Amazon in March.
Our website contains samples of the book, information on the authors, how to buy (if you are looking for digital copies), and other goodies.
There are plenty of ways to connect with us.
We are on Google+
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We are on Instragram. Take a #rulegraphicsselfie at your favorite ballpark and send it to us.
Thanks for stopping by, kick your feet up and stay awhile, connect with us, ask questions about anything rule related you would like covered.