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Answer Guy responds to your e-mail:
Can you steal first base?
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RSsteeler: Yes. Yes you can. You sound like a man who'd know. Dirkdiggler: Yes, you can steal first base. Boogie down, Dirk! Jason Gray: Of course you can steal first base. If you strike out and then the catcher drops the ball and you get to first you are technically out, but you are not legally out. What about spiritually? James Burden: I would say it is not so much stealing as it is borrowing without permission. Semantics don't cut it when it comes to Commandments. They give the base back when they advance to the next base, right? I suppose. I don't think they steal any bases, as a matter of fact. It's not a good example for the kids. God bless 'em! Scott Moore: No! A batter can advance to first base on a dropped third strike, but that is ruled either a wild pitch or a passed ball, not a stolen base. I see. Now, can a runner be robbed of first base? Most definitely. Either by a fine fielding play, or by the complete incompetence of a certain minor league umpire who shall remain nameless ... right Erik? (oops!) Erik? He owes me money! John Lyons Beck: Essentially, the runner is always free to advance while the batter can't leave the batter's box until the ball is "in play." It makes sense to me, but I'm sure you can be confused about it without too much effort. I'm not paid to be as confused as Nigel. Sooyong Park: How do i can quit espn mag. You can't. Phil Alexander: Legend has it, Germany Schaefer used to run the bases in reverse, so I suppose he could steal first. This comes directly from Ty Cobb's autobiography, a book my brother loaned me when I was 8 or 9 and just beginning baseball. That's when I gave up the game. But then again, I've never understood what he meant by "running in reverse." Did he run from third to second to first, or did he run backwards from first to second to third? Time to check in with Cooperstown. Or with Nigel. Fast Fred: Of course you can. Players like Eddie Stanky and Ron Hunt spent their whole careers getting walks and being hit by pitches that could have been avoided. Tricky. Scott Christensen: Up until Germany Schaefer, you could steal first. Schaefer played for the Tigers in 1908 and was a goofball by all accounts. That minx. On one play, he was the tail in a double steal. He did his part, but the catcher held the ball and the lead runner couldn't advance. Disgusted, on the next pitch he hollered "Let's try it again!" and tore back towards first. No one knew what to do, so the play stood. Next pitch, Schaefer took off again, the catcher threw to second, and the runner from third took off for home. Both men were safe. Schaefer had stolen first and second. From that day on, umpires were told to eject anyone attempting to go back a base. Spoil sports.

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