Did you know? Batted ball hitting runner

Photo courtesy of Michael Ciaglo
Oregon Daily Emerald

When a batter hits a ball which hits a runner before a fielder has a chance to play the ball, it’s a dead ball, the runner is out, and the batter is awarded first base.  But this site isn’t about baseball rules.  There are lots that are – check out Umpire-Empire, or The Rulebook Guru if you want to learn more about some of the more knottier rule applications.  This article is about how you score this play.  

Since the batter hit the ball, and a runner in front of him was put out, logically this sounds like a fielder’s choice.  Actually, it could have even be worse as it may have even been a double play ball, that just happened to hit the runner.  But according to scoring rule 10.05 (a) (5), it is scored a hit!

So, the runner in the above picture, who made the right baseball play by jumping over the hit ball, may have cost his teammate a hit.  Now you know.


About Ruben Lipszyc

I write about baseball. I'm a member of the Boston Chapter of the Baseball Blogger's Alliance, and I write about my Red Sox and keep Albertans up to date on local baseball happenings at RubensBaseball.blogspot.com. I occasionally also write articles for the Canadian Baseball Network at www.CanadianBaseballNetwork.com.

Posted on September 13, 2012, in Did you know? and tagged . Bookmark the permalink. 4 Comments.

  1. Better to save an out in this case … the batting average may not increase, but it won’t hurt the inning (especially if that runner being hit by the batted ball resulted in the third out)
    As to the scoring mechanics, the putout is credited to the nearest fielder to the runner who was hit by the ball, so the scorer needs to note that on the scoresheet as well as the single.

  2. on catcher interference how is the hitter scored. a sacrifice where the runner does get on base how is that scored. hbp is it scored only for on base %, fielders choices how are they scored

    • On CI, there is no at bat charged to the batter. It doesn’t help nor hurt his batting average or on base percentage. See here for full details on CI. A sacrifice is scored as a SAC. It does count as a plate appearance but not an at bat, but like a CI it does not impact your on base percentage. HBP also counts as a plate appearance but not an at bat, and does help the on base percentage, but does not affect batting average (exact same as a walk). A fielder’s choice is basically treated the same way as a ground out. Hurts the batter’s batting average and on base percentage. Scored as FC 6-4 (or whatever fielder’s were involved in getting out the base runner).

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