When a batter hits the ball and reaches base safely, how do you know if it should be scored as a hit or not? Generally, it is scored a hit unless he reached via an error or a fielder’s choice. There are, however, some key points to note as detailed in Scoring Rule 10.04.
Essentially give the batter a hit except when any of the following apply:
- An error was charged to a fielder, and the batter would have been put out if not for the error.
- Note: give the benefit of the doubt to the hitter. If an infielder makes a diving play, and then his wild throw takes the first baseman off the bag, award a single to the batter as ‘ordinary effort’ would not have put him out.
- A runner is forced out. (e.g., runners on 1st and 2nd, and batter hits a routine ground ball to the infield. If the infielder throws the ball – or runs to a base – and retires the runner at either 2nd or 3rd base, that is a force out)
- Note that this applies no matter who fields the ball. If it’s a line drive hit to left field, but the left fielder throws the ball to 3rd in time to retire the forced runner from 2nd, it is also a force out.
- This also applies on a “clean” hit, if a forced runner misses the first base he needs to advance to and is called out on appeal. E.g, runner on 1st, routine hit to right field, and runner goes to third base but does not touch second. If called out on appeal, the batter loses his hit. It is essentially the same thing as the runner having been forced out at 2nd.
- An infielder puts out a runner trying to advance one base.
- This is differentiated from the above, in that it does not need to be a force out, and it only applies to infielders. E.g., runner on 3rd, ground ball to the 2nd baseman who throws the ball home to get runner out. No hit. Same situation, but it’s hit to the right fielder who throws the runner out. This is a hit.
- A fielder tries unsuccessfully to put out a runner trying to advance one base, but would have had the batter out.
- E.g. runner on 2nd, ground ball to shortstop who throws to 3rd not in time to get the runner. Since if there was no runner, the batter would have likely been thrown out at first, he does not get a hit
- Also, no hit is given if a runner is called out for interfering with a fielder attempting to field a ball.
- Also note that if a batter is called out on appeal for having missed first base, he does not get credit for a hit.