The Ole Ball Game

Can the infielders stand in the runners baseline?

by keil
(lubbock, tx)

Keil asked:

The basecoach said my shortstop had to backup because he was in the runners baseline at second base, before a pitch was made.

Rick answered: Keil, thank you for your question.

Infielders can stand anywhere they would like to, as long as they don't impede the runners access to his running lane.

The runner has to be able to move out into his secondary lead without coming in contact with or working around an infielder. If the infielder is far enough away as to not interfere with the runner he is fine.

Runners have the responsibility to avoid a fielder who is in the process of fielding a batted ground ball or pop fly, even if it takes them out of their running lane.

If the infielder is in the baseline when the ball is hit, and he is not in the process of fielding the ball, he needs to move out of the path of the runner.

Hope this helps clarify the situation.

Good luck as you move forward.

Yours in baseball,

Rick

Comments for Can the infielders stand in the runners baseline?

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Aug 21, 2015
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what is the penalty if he does not move?
by: Zeus.

Ok so what if the player does not move and the runner has to run around him? Would this be reason for an interference call and an extra base? this happend in a game I was coaching when I asked the coach for the opposing team to have his player move. He said he would once the play started and he did not. What is the penalty?

Jun 25, 2014
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Dangerous
by: Anonymous

It's poor form and in this day and age of trying to Minnie concussions it's frankly dangerous to put them in baseline. It's also immorally cheating because impeding the runner gives more time to field. Soft/baseball is a gentlemans sport this is not football. There is also no reason to stand there anyway. If for example 2base or ss has ball all they have to do is stretch glove out as the runner isn't allowed to run out of line away from them. It's why you never see it in Legion, and especially MLB. It's dangerous, poor sportsmanship, and not necessary. Notice NONE of example positions diagrams show them in baseline?

Jun 22, 2014
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Infielder's positioning
by: Rick, theoleballgame

Tom, the actual baseline, the one that gets established for the runner, is 3 feet. When there is a play being made on a runner or batter-runner, he establishes his baseline as directly between his position and the base towards which he is moving.

The only reason an umpire might make a fielder move prior to the pitch is if he noticed on a previous pitch that the fielder's positioning was interfering with the runners space as he took his secondary.

If the fielder is not interfering with the runners lead, or secondary, the fielder is fine. He must adjust when the ball is hit, or if the runner attempts to steal.

Yours in baseball,

Rick

Jun 20, 2014
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Lead off
by: Tom

If the fielder is in the basepath before the ball is pitched as the batter leads off, isn't the basepath wide enough for the runner to lead off behind or in front of the fielder?

Jun 20, 2014
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Lead off
by: Tom

If the fielder is in the basepath before the ball is pitched as the batter leads off, isn't the basepath wide enough for the runner to lead off behind or in front of the fielder?

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