The Ole Ball Game

How many runs are earned for the pitcher?

by Jeff
(Los Angeles )

Jeff asked: Runner on first, the batter hits the ball to short.


SS could get the batter at 1st but instead throws to 2nd. The runner on 2nd beats the throw so both runners are safe.

The next hitter smashes a bases clearing double.

Are both of those runs earned for the pitcher?

It just seems like one of those players should have been out. Thanks!


Rick answered: Jeff, thank you for your question.

Rule 10.16 Earned Runs...An earned run is a run for which a pitcher is held accountable.

In determining earned runs, the official scorer shall reconstruct the inning without errors(which exclude catcher's interference)and passed balls, giving the benefit of the doubt always to the pitcher in determining which bases would have been reached by runners, had there been errorless play.

(a) The official scorer shall charge an earned run against the pitcher every time a runner reaches home base by the aid of safe hits, sacrifice bunts, a sacrifice fly, stolen bases, put outs, fielder's choices, base on balls, hit batters, balks or wild pitches (including a wild pitch on the third strike that permits a batter to reach first base) before fielding chances have been offered to put out the offensive team.

You didn't say how the runner got on first base, but I am assuming he was on without an error.

The second hitter gets recorded as a fielder's choice, so he is also becomes an earned run, when driven in by the third batter's double.

While that second hitter looked to be out, if the fielder had made that decision, he becomes safe when the fielder made the decision to attempt to get the runner at second, which is the definition of a fielder's choice.

Yours in baseball,

Rick

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