Is the runner out if hit by the ball while in play and in the baseline?
Photo Bill Stanton: Checkswing.com
Frank asked: The base runner was hit by the ball while running home . He was in the baseline and the play was live. Is this runner out?
Rick answered: Frank, thank you for your question.
Rule 8-4 Art 2...Any runner is out when he:
k. is contacted by a fair ball before it touches an infielder, or after it passes by any infielder, except the pitcher, and the umpire is convinced that another infielder has a play.
Rule 5 Dead Ball Suspension Of Play Sec 1 Dead Ball Art 1... Ball becomes dead immediately when: a fair batted ball:
1. touches a runner or an umpire before touching any fielder and before passing any fielder other than the pitcher
2. touches a runner after passing through or by an infielder and another infielder could have made the play.
Based on your description the answer is the runner is out.
As you look at the image above, the runner on third base is leading off in foul territory.
Players are taught to do that for their safety, as well as, if they are hit with a batted ball while they are in foul ground, they are not out.
"In the baseline" could still locate the runner in foul territory. The determination would be whether the umpire has called the ball foul or not.
With a runner coming from third, the runner would have to be in fair territory at the time he was hit to be out. That is all determined by the chalk line and whether he was inside or outside of that.
If the league described does not allow leadoffs, then the runner would be coming straight down the chalk and the chances are he was in fair ground, thus out.
Yours in baseball,