TWO games end with runner hit by batted ball! How do you score that???

On Saturday there were a couple of rare instances of a runner being hit by a batted ball. More coincidentally, they both happened with two outs in the 9th inning, ending the game, as the batting teams were mounting comebacks. What are the odds of that? I don’t know, this isn’t a stats blog (maybe I’ll create one someday?), but runners hit by batted balls is infrequent enough, happening twice in one day is exponentally rarer, and having it possibly cost your team a game in the 9th….

Anyhow here are the detais of the first occurrence. The Giants were leading the Angels 5-2 heading into the 9th. Anaheim LA  rallied to make it 5-3 and had runners on 1st and 2nd when David Freese singled to make it 5-4 with runners on the corners.  Since Freese was the potential winning run, he was pinchran for by rookie utility infielder Taylor Featherston as Matt Joyce came to the plate. And then this happened:

Wow! What a way to kill a rally. The pinch runner gets hit with the batted ball. By rule he is out, and the batter is awarded first base, and no other runners can advance unless forced. So how do we score that? Well, it’s a hit for Matt Joyce, but who gets the putout?

According to rule 10.09 (c) (2) “The official scorer shall credit automatic putouts….when a runner is called out for being touched by a fair ball …credit the putout to the fielder nearest the ball.”

So in this case, the official scorer credited second baseman Joe Panik with the putout.

Meanwhile the other LA team was the beneficiary of a simiar play.  They had come back in the 7th and 8th innings to take a 6-4 lead over the Diamondbacks. In the 9th Arizona had a runner on first which brought the tying run to the plate. And it was David Peralta who could easily tie the game with a swing of the bat. Tension was mouning at Chavez Ravine. Peralta hit the ball solidly up the middle and…

This one wasn’t quite as obvious as the Angels runner, but the ball does deflect slightly off of Jordan Pacheco and you can see 2nd base umpire Jeff Kellogg clearly point to the runner and indicate he is out for interference, ending the game.  And as in the Giants game, the second baseman (Howie Kendrick) also got credit for the putout.

That’s two putouts for second basemen who didn’t touch the ball to save a game for their teams, on the same day!


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 I occasionally also write articles for the Canadian Baseball Network at

Posted on May 3, 2015, in Did you know?, MLB Situation and tagged . Bookmark the permalink. 7 Comments.

  1. Braves also hit a base runner in the bottom of the seventh yesterday against the Reds.

  2. Very rare indeed. I think interference by the runner being hit by the batted ball has happened only once in the more than 10 years that I have umpired high school baseball. In that same time I have had two umpire partners hit by a batted ball for umpire interference.

  3. Yes, I saw a vine of the two sequences over at Tumblr recently. Amazing coincidence! Been trying to find other scorekeeping blogs to try and connect, I recently started one myself. Been scoring all my life on and off. It’s at .

  4. Great! Funny that I found Squaretender right at the end of their run. Been hoping they’d find the spark to get it going again.

  1. Pingback: TWO games end with runner hit by batted ball! How do you score that??? | Watching Watching Hu

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