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MIAA Baseball Sliding and Collision Rule Explained

The rule explained below has been in effect since 1995. It was adopted in 1995 by the MIAA Board of Directors at the request of the Baseball Committee and supported by the Sports Medical Committee. The intent of this rule is to encourage base runners and defensive players to avoid unnecessary and violent collisions with the catcher at home plate(see Below).

Force Play-Slide Rule

The intent of the Force-Play-Slide Rule is to ensure the safety of the defensive player. This is a safety as well as an interference rule . This rule pertains to a force-play situation regardless of the number of outs. (Language is from the NCAA baseball code.)

  1. On a force play at any base, including home plate, the runner must slide on the ground and in a direct line between the two bases. This is a legal slide even if contact is made with fielder.
  1. On the ground either can be a head first slide or a slide with one leg and buttock on the ground.
  2. Directly into a base means that the runnerís entire body (feet, legs, trunk, and arms) must stay in a straight line between the bases.

A.R A runner need not slide directly into a base as long as the individual slides or runs in a direction away from the fielder to avoid making contact or altering the play of the defensive player.

  1. Contact is allowed if the runner:
  1. Makes a legal slide directly to the base, or
  2. Is on the ground at the time of the contact and the fielder moves directly down the line between the two bases to attempt a play. Interference shall not be called.
  1. It is an illegal slide if:
  1. The runner slides or runs out of the baseline in the direction of the fielder.
  2. The runner uses a rolling, cross-body or pop-up slide into a fielder.
  3. A.R. A pop-up slide is a legal slide as long as the runner does not make contact with or alter the play of the fielder.

  4. The runnerís raised leg is higher that the fielderís knee when in a standing position.
  5. The runner goes beyond the base and makes contact with or alters the play of the fielder.
  6. A.R. Beyond the base refers to any part of the runnerís body that makes contact with or alters the play

    of the fielder beyond the base.

  7. The runner slashes or kicks the fielder with either leg, or
  8. The slide is flagrant.

NOTE: If the runnerís slide is flagrant, the individual shall be ejected from the game.

  1. If the runner, on a force play, makes an illegal slide at any base including home plate, interference-shall be called

Penalty With less than two outs, the batter-base runner, as well as the interfering runner, shall be declared out and no other runners shall advance. With two outs, the interfering runner shall be declared out and no other runners shall advance.

Collisions

  1. When there is a collision between a runner and a fielder who clearly is in possession of the ball, the umpire shall judge:
  1. Whether the collision by the runner was avoidable (could the runner have reached the base without colliding) or unavoidable (the runnerís path to the base was blocked), or
  2. Whether the runner actually was attempting to reach the base (plate) or attempting to dislodge the ball from the fielder.

Penalty - If, in the umpireís judgement the runner a.) Could have avoided the collision and reached the base, or b.) Was attempting to dislodge the ball, the runner shall be declared out even if the fielder loses possession of the ball. The ball shall be declared dead and all other base runners shall return to the last base touched at the time of the interference.