The Ole Ball Game

what constitutes a fielding error?

by Sam Kent
(Cheyenne,WY, USA)

What constitutes a fielding error?

What constitutes a fielding error?

Sam asked: Ball is hit within fielding range of the short stop but the ball passes under his outstretched glove.

What constitutes an error?

Rick answered: Sam, thank you for your question.

An error, by definition, is a misplay by a fielder or a team, which is recorded in the error column of the player's or team's record.

The definition itself leaves a lot of room for speculation. The final decision is left to the official scorer.

I am guessing you are referring to the ground ball in the hole, which got under the glove of the Royals SS.

They look at whether the fielder would have been able to throw out the runner, even if the ball had been fielded cleanly.

The ball was in the hole and the scorer must have decided that, even if it was fielded cleanly, he would not have been able to throw the hitter out. Speed of the runner also becomes a determining factor.

Yours in baseball,

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Jul 30, 2017

by: Rick,

Situations such as you described are hard to call, unless you actually see the play in real time.

Some things to consider within the play itself:

1. Even though the shortstop actually caught the ground ball, in the scorer's judgement, did he have a reasonable chance, with a good throw, to get the batter-runner out? If he did, then it should be scored as a base hit, no error.

2. If the bad throw resulted in the batter-runner reaching one or more additional bases, the play would be scored as a base hit, e-6

Yours in baseball,


Jul 15, 2017
by: Anonymous

If short stop dives for a ball but makes a bad throw is that an error.

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