No it is not a dead ball, the runner must commit some act of interference. Simply running the bases is not in itself an act of interference, the runner must commit some other act other than being exactly where they are suppose to be. And remember, the runner is not out until the umpire calls and signals the out. In the college video posted, the umpire is barely starting to raise the fist for the out call when the runner is hit with the ball and is maybe 1 step from the base. How is the runner suppose to magically disappear in that fraction of a second?Comp, thanks for posting the vid, it's not clear, but sans interference call, wouldn't the throw into the runner be ruled a dead ball and batter-runner be awarded the next base? I don't agree with the non-interference call, tho.
No rule cites anything about going out of the way to be hit by the ball. The rule states a runner is out if they interfere with a thrown ball, as I have repeatedly stated interference requires some act. Running the bases is not an act of interference, the runner must commit some other action other than running the bases. Veering off into the throwing lane would be an act of interference, running over the fielder as they are throwing the ball would be an act of interference, waving arms around and slapping at the ball would be an act of interference. If you want to call this interference, then any time any runner is hit by a thrown ball it is going to have to be ruled as interference and that simply is not the rule. NCAA again has gone way off the deep end of their interpretations when they started talking about reasonable expectation of the runner sliding in their rule clarification. Nothing in the rules require a runner to slide, yet they issue a ruling which essentially states the runner must slide if they do not want to be called for interference. Yet, it is perfectly ok to slide into the fielder and take them out as long as it is a legal slide.Isn't the rule that runner can not go out of thier way to be hit by ball?