The Ole Ball Game

Scoring winning run

by Andrew
(North Carolina)

Andrew asked: The situation is: bottom of the 9th, bases loaded, no outs. Defense playing in - batter hits to shortstop who dives to smother the ball and throws home from his knees too late, game over. How does one score the at bat? A fielder's choice or a hit? The SS could have gone to 3rd or 2nd for an out but the game would have been lost. So while he "had" to go home for the sake of the game he did have other options regarding the batter - so it seems it is a FC. ?

Rick answered: Andrew, thank you for your question.

It should be scored as a fielder's choice, unless the official scorer determines that the circumstances of the play would have ended in a basehit, no matter where the shortstop decided to go with the ball.

In this case, since the only option for the shortstop is to go to the plate to keep the game alive, he makes the play; but is unable to get enough on the throw to get the runner, it should score as a basehit.

Yours in baseball,


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