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Wacky Batters Box - I Dare You To Call A Strike!
Here in Orem, Utah the Parks and REC field prep crew are less than diligent when prepping the girl's fastpitch fields. I think they treat these fields with the same casualness that they do for the slow pitch leagues where the batter's box lines are ignored in league play. The field preppers are probably completely unaware of how important the batter's boxes are in the girl's accelerated game with both power hitters and slap-hitters.
The batter's boxes should be 6" from home plate, 3 feet wide by 7' long, 4 feet in front of a line drawn through the center of home plate. The diagrams in the USA Softball rule book are quite clear that the boxes should also be aligned with a line drawn through the middle of second base to the middle of home plate.
On this Windsor Park field, on this day, the boxes were lined up from home plate towards where the second baseman would typically be standing. This makes it near impossible for me, as the plate umpire, to focus and call strikes as the optical illusion makes almost everything near the edges of the plate look like balls. Wiping out the lines helped, but in all seriousness, the accelerated teams deserve better!
Michael Leavitt - Orem, Utah
YOUTUBE LINK: https://youtu.be/ljSStaA1wQU