Batting Out of Order – What’s the Penalty?

Situation

In the top of the second inning, with one out and base runners on first and third, the batter hits a ground ball up the middle and into center field. The runner scores from third and the runner from first advances to second base on the apparent RBI single. Before the next batter enters the batter’s box, the Manager of the defensive team calls for “time” and approaches the home plate umpire. The Manager notes on the line-up card that the offensive team skipped a batter in the lineup, and requests that the batter who just singled be called out and the run that just scored be disallowed.

Ruling

Because of when the defensive Manager brought the offensive team’s oversight to the attention of the umpire, dictated how the umpire ruled. In this instance, because the defensive team appealed to the home plate umpire after the out-of-turn at-bat occurred and before a pitch was delivered to the next batter, the umpire ruled that batter who was supposed to bat in that slot is out, and the result of the out-of-turn batter’s at-bat (the run that scored) is disallowed. The base runners are re-set to first base and third base.

Explanation

Rule 6.07 (b) batting out of turn – states that when an improper batter becomes a runner or is retired, and the defensive team appeals to the umpire before the first pitch to the next batter of either team, or before any play, or attempted play, the umpire shall (1) declare the proper batter out; (2) nullify any advance or score made because of a ball batted by the improper batter’s advance to first base on a hit, error, base on balls, a hit batter, or otherwise. Note: If any base runner advances on their own during an improper at-bat (such as an on wild pitch or passed ball), that advance shall be deemed legal.

There are several situations where batting out of order may occur, resulting in different rulings. Reference rule 6.07 – Batting out of Turn – to get a full understanding of this rule’s application.

This article was originally written and published by LittleLeague.org and can be found here: https://www.littleleague.org/university/articles/hey-blue-the-batted-out-of-order/

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