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Discussion: What do 12 and 6 foot arcs really look like?

Posted Discussion
Sept. 7, 2023
Bruce M
Men's 55
122 posts
What do 12 and 6 foot arcs really look like?
Here is an attempt to demonstrate them: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QSLcVbcAZt8
Sept. 7, 2023
DaveDowell
Men's 70
4306 posts
The easiest visualization I mention to players is the height of the average man for 6' and the top edge of a standard basketball backboard for 12' ... Most folks "get it" in that context ...
Sept. 7, 2023
Bruce M
Men's 55
122 posts
Yes, Dave, that is why I did the video on a basketball court. Hope it helps. :=)
Sept. 7, 2023
softball4b
Men's 70
1247 posts
I don't know if I could hit off of you, but it would be fun. Good Stuff!!
Sept. 8, 2023
mck71
Men's 60
344 posts
Excellent video Bruce. When I get questioned (usually on higher pitches) I would look for a field rake, they are usually 6 ft, and then I simply walk out in between home and pitchers plate and place the rake on top of my head (I am a little under 6ft) so that then gives questioning players a decent point of reference.

My guidance to anyone who asks is find a spot high and low and stay consistent, 1st inning through 7th inning. Mistakes will be made but try to be consistent is what most players are looking for in an umpire (and a little hustle when necessary :-)
Sept. 8, 2023
HSquared
Men's 60
147 posts
Thanks Bruce. As a 6'-0" pitcher myself, it's easy to achieve the 6 ft arc (most anything above my head). But the perception from a batter perspective is, that from 60 ft, the pitch is a "fast pitch" meeting the 6ft height threshold . There is no way to achieve the "same pace" with the given 6ft vs 12ft (arc) geometry. In lies the big debate. Thanks again for the video, and good luck in LV.
Sept. 8, 2023
Ozone8
44 posts
Very helpful, thank you.
Sept. 8, 2023
lb16
Men's 60
196 posts
My rant on pitch arc. I have seen consistently in all senior sanctions. Pitcher throws pitch 8-10 inches over head height of an over 6' pitcher called illegal almost every time "flat". Next pitch 13-15' range hits mat no illegal "strike". All sanctions should go to 6-10' that way you don't have to constantly swing at 13' plus pitches a little over 10' or so would still be acceptable. I know it's underhand and all that but if it is being called correctly consistently something should be changed. JMO end of rant!
Sept. 10, 2023
Full Count
57 posts
I think it really only matters what the umpires interpretation is. Definitely different from ump to ump. All you can hope for is the same calls for each team. Hopefully the ump can give a verbal on illegal pitches, that will give time for the hitter to process. U-trip umps tend to have a lower strike zone.
Sept. 10, 2023
Parman
Men's 65
40 posts
Going to 6-10 ft arc would eliminate nearly all of the barking at umpires about high pitches. Id like to see it adopted
Sept. 10, 2023
FOFO
Men's 60
284 posts
THe tough part is the inconsistency of some officials. I don't really care how high or low it is within reason as long as they call the same pitche illegal on a consistent basis.
I umpired NSA which is 6-10 for many years. I would hold my head level and if the ball disapperaed above the brim of my cap it was illegal. Was it 10 feet? Not sure but it was illegal every time.
Sept. 11, 2023
Mikelmart
150 posts
This 6-12 pitch falls under perception vs. reality.
Every umpire/hitter will have their own interpretation. It's best that the umpire be as consistent as possible, establish his zone with the pitcher and call illegal pitches loud enough for the batter to hear. The high pitch is easier to call in time but the low pitch not as much and once again be as consistent as possible,
Sept. 13, 2023
SS11
60 posts
So Bruce, if it goes over the backboard, it went over 12', right? Since the top of the backboard is 12', if the ball is over that it is illegal. Correct?
Sept. 14, 2023
DaveDowell
Men's 70
4306 posts
SS11 ... Probably not ... The "clamshell" style backboard Bruce was pitching over generally are not taller than 18" ... Bruce was skimming the ball over that one, which would be just a couple of inches under 12" ... Had he been at an outdoor court with rectangular "standard" backboards, the top edge would be very close to 12" ...
Sept. 14, 2023
SS11
60 posts
Dave - you are almost correct. But those style of backboards range from 33" tall on a small one to 36" tall (for that shape). The difference is the amount of metal under the rim. There is a minimum 28" above the rim to top of backboard on those style backboard bought by cities for playgrounds. (Known from past life). Those pitches were all 12'6" at bottom of ball or higher.

For the sake of softball and 6'-12' is it the bottom or top of the ball that should be judged?
Sept. 14, 2023
Full Count
57 posts
Nice video Bruce.
Sept. 14, 2023
Dbax
Men's 65
2100 posts
SS11. Nope. I asked the question on the post. He said the top of the board was measured at one foot 10 inches above the 10 foot rim.
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