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Checked swing: Wikis


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A.J. Pierzynski of the Chicago White Sox checks his swing on a low pitch.

A checked swing is a type of swing in baseball. A checked swing occurs when a batter starts to swing for the ball, but stops the swing shortly before the ball reaches home plate. Generally, the 1st or 3rd base umpire decides whether it was a real checked swing or ruled a strike, after a request for such a decision from the home plate umpire or the catcher. (The 1st base umpire makes the call for a right-handed batter, and the 3rd base umpire makes the call for a left-handed batter.) To indicate a checked swing, the umpire will make a "safe" gesture with his hands; to indicate a full swing, he will clench his fist. If the umpire does not respond to the request, it is considered to not have been a swing.

The Major League Baseball rulebook doesn't contain an official definition for a checked swing; it is the decision of the umpire presiding. Generally, factors such as whether the bat passes the front of the plate or the batter pulls his wrists back are considered in the ruling. Some Umpires, notably Plate Umpire Paul Leland, prefer to use the "breaking of the wrists" as the method to decide a checked swing.

A checked swing sometimes results in an unintentional swinging bunt, where the ball hits the bat and rolls a short distance, although the batter apparently stopped his swing.

Check-swinging can also be used in some warm-up exercises, such as the game pepper.



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