Fourth out

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Jun 6, 2016
2,005
113
Chicago
I don't know how often this comes up, but it happened in a game last week and it's an obscure rule people should know.

Sometimes the defense needs to get a fourth out in the inning to prevent a run from scoring. There are a few different ways this could happen, but I think the most common is a live ball appeal.

We were up 6 runs in the last inning so this didn't affect anything but the final score, and no, my girls didn't know what they were doing. I think I'm the only one at the field who realized the fourth out actually prevented a run from scoring.

Runners on 1st and 3rd, 1 out. Weak little pop up toward second base. Both runners do not tag up. F6 catches the ball in the air, throws to F3 for the double play. The runner on third had crossed home plate before the third out. I'm not sure if my players forgot how many outs there were or what, but in the chaos, one of them throws the ball to the 3B for the fourth out, preventing that run from scoring. While we didn't need to get the fourth out to win the game, since this is a timing play, that run counts unless properly appealed.

(What I didn't know then is that, for scoring purposes, the third out doesn't count, and the fourth out is the one recorded in the book)
 
Jun 11, 2013
2,455
113
I was talking about this with someone the other day. One quest for scoring purists, does the 3rd out really count or do you need to correct that in the books?
 
Feb 13, 2021
790
63
MI
Your girls just wanted to make it interesting....F6 went to 1B rather than 3B? ;) Yep, they definitely just wanted to give coach a heart attack.....
 
Apr 20, 2015
929
93
I’m presuming that your runner on 3rd came back and legally tagged up because if not she lost the right to do so when the runner on 1st was put out.


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Jul 27, 2021
86
18
This scenario happened in one of our games a few weekends ago. They got a run.

This will be a good one to bring up to the coach group :)
 
Jun 6, 2016
2,005
113
Chicago
Your girls just wanted to make it interesting....F6 went to 1B rather than 3B? ;) Yep, they definitely just wanted to give coach a heart attack.....

It actually made sense. It was a little bloopy pop up toward the middle of the field, so her momentum was taking her toward first. The runner off the bag was directly in front of her in her line of sight.

And since all she's thinking about is getting that third out, I'm fine with it. Especially since it was the end of the game and the runner on third only mattered for a fun scorekeeping quirk.
 
Jun 6, 2016
2,005
113
Chicago
I’m presuming that your runner on 3rd came back and legally tagged up because if not she lost the right to do so when the runner on 1st was put out.

She did not ever return to third to tag, but since it's a timing play (she crossed the plate before the runner on first was doubled off), her run would have counted had we not thrown to third. Not tagging up is only bad if the defense appeals it, after all.
 
Jun 6, 2016
2,005
113
Chicago
I was talking about this with someone the other day. One quest for scoring purists, does the 3rd out really count or do you need to correct that in the books?

I looked this part up after the game, though I can't find the page now. The third out basically doesn't count for scoring purposes. The fourth out does. So on this one, the 1B doesn't get the putout, but she does get the assist.
 

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