How to score automatic putouts?


Unfortunately this article doesn’t cover this case!  Boxscore just shows a routine putout to Mr. Knoblauch!

There are many instances in which a player is called out, and no fielder actually made an out.  (For example, when a batter is called out on appeal for batting out of order.)

I will list all the possible situations and how to score them below.  There are many different scenarios, and most of them occur so rarely that it is difficult for a scorekeeper to know them all and be able to score them correctly in real time.  But, once you understand the rationale behind them it becomes easy. These three key points are all you need to remember in most cases:

  1. Credit the catcher with a putout for any outs recorded on what I will call “technicalities”. e.g., batting out of order, illegally batted ball, being touched by own batted ball.
  2. Credit the fielder closest to the runner for any outs that are called on the runner where neither him nor a base are tagged. e.g., running out of the base line, interfering with a fielder, passing another runner
  3. Credit the fielder closest to the ball for any automatic outs that are due to something that happened with the ball. e.g., uncaught infield fly, runner touched by a batted ball

Here is a list of all the possible scenarios – from Rules 10.09 (b) and (c) and 10.10 (a):

Putout to catcher in these situations:

  • batter called out for illegally batted ball
  • batter out for bunting an uncaught foul with 2 strikes
  • batter out for being touched by his own batted ball
  • batter out for interfering with catcher
  • batter out for failing to bat in proper order
  • batter out for refusing to go to 1st base after an automatic award (e.g., walk)
  • runner out for refusing to go from 3rd base to home (e.g., on a bases loaded walk)

Putout to fielder closest to runner:

  • runner called out for running out of baseline to avoid a tag
  • runner called out for passing another runner
  • runner called out for interfering with a fielder not in act of throwing a ball

Putout to fielder closest to ball:

  • infield fly ball not caught (actually putout to who you think should have caught the ball)
  • runner called out due to being touched by batted ball

Other scenarios:

  • runner is called out for running the bases in reverse order – credit  putout to fielder covering the base the runner left in starting his reverse run
  • batter called out due to interference by another baserunner – putout to first baseman, assist to fielder interfered
  • runner called out for interfering with a fielder throwing the ball – assist to fielder, putout to whomever the throw was intended for



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 January 14, 2016, in Did you know? and tagged . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: