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Can a batter switch sides during an at-bat?


Aug 21, 2008
Boston, MA
I have a friend who believes it is allowed in ASA for a batter to switch from one side of the plate to the other during an at-bat.

I have never seen this and always thought it wasn't allowed. He says he has seen it and it is allowed in ASA play. I've looked in the ASA rulebook and while it says you can't leave the batter's box without a timeout, it doesn't say you have to return to the same one you left.

I am not trolling/joking here this is a real question.
What say you?
Jun 22, 2008
I have seen it happen on occasion where you have a girl that slaps left handed, but can only swing away right handed. Many times they will come to bat with a runner not in scoring position and bat left handed, but then after a stolen base they will switch to right handed to swing for power.

So, the answer to your question is yes it is allowed, but, there are some provisions for it. If the pitcher is on the pitcher rubber and the batter steps across the plate, they are out. The batter should always call time before stepping to the other side to make sure they arent called out.
May 13, 2008
The ASA rule states that...

The batter shall not step directly in front of the catcher to the other batter's box while the pitcher (FP Only) is taking the signal or (SP Only) is in position to pitch, or anytime thereafter prior to the release of the pitch. EFFECT: The ball is dead, the batter is out and the runners may not advance.
Mar 11, 2009

So they ask for timeout and step out of the box, and walk around the catcher and umpire to the other batters box with no issues?
We have a couple of girls on our team who slap and hit away from different sides of the plate. If they can't seem to get a slap, they'll move over to the other side - after asking for time. That happens almost every game with these two particular girls.
May 7, 2008
Per the ASA rule, I think the batter can do it any time prior to when the pitcher steps on the rubber to take her sign. Once the pitcher is on the rubber, the batter must remain in her box unless she requests and is granted timeout.
May 5, 2008
Definitely allowed - the timing of it may have restrictions as described above, but certainly can be done. We did it one year in the first round of a tournament against a pitcher who seemed to have trouble pitching to hitters on the left side. I think the atmosphere of being in this big tourney also played a part because even though she KNEW our first two batters were NOT going to hit or bunt the ball from that side, she pitched 4 straight balls to both and we got 2 on just like that.

I've also seen many others start off on the left side to try to get on slapping, then switch over after 2 strikes or vice versa.

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