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When a batter is running through the bases, he should always drop his bat. If he doesn’t drop the bat, it will likely slow him down and it may cause interference if the bat came into contact with the ball or with a fielder. However, if the batter hits the ball and drops the bat, but the batter or the dropped bat makes contact with the ball, it is regarded as a dead ball.
Keep reading to find out more about dropping the bat in baseball…
Do you have to drop the bat in baseball?
Despite that the batter is recommended to drop his bat after he has hit the ball and before he starts to run the bases, there is no baseball rule that tells him he should drop the bat. There is nothing stopping the batter from carrying the bat as he runs the bases, despite that it will likely slow him down or cause potential interference with the ball or fielders.
Baseball rules regarding dropping the bat
If a batter carries the bat with him as he runs to first base, it may cause protestations in the opposite team as well as calls that the batter should be called out. However, the baseball rule book does not contain a rule stating that the batter should be immediately called out if he carries his bat to the first base.
As the batter hits the ball, he usually drops the bat on the ground. However, what happens if the player drops the bat and unintentionally hits the ball or the area of the ball with the dropped bat. It is difficult to tell whether the batter meant to cause interference. The rules will depend on whether or not the bat actually made contact with the ball.
If there was no contact with a fielder or defender, it is likely that the batter will not be called out. The rules do not directly point to the issue of carrying a bat to the first base but rather discusses interference caused by carrying the bat to the first base.
If the batter interferes or causes an illegal action while carrying the bat toward the first base. If he interferes with the fielders of catchers by running out of the box with the bat in his hand. If the batter causes interference with the catcher, the umpire will call him out. In this case, the batter is out and the ball is called dead.
No player will be allowed to continue after such interference on offensive terms. All runners will be made to return to the last base according to the umpire that was legally touched before the call of interference.
If interference is called as the batter runs toward the first base with the bat in his hand, but he doesn’t reach the first base, all other players must return to the base that there were at at the time of the pitch.
Why do baseball players throw the bat?
Batters will usually throw the bat after they have hit the ball, by releasing it as they finish their swing. As they have hit the ball, they will start running toward the first base immediately as they will not be sure where the ball will end up. If it is an infield ball, they are attempting to run ahead of the fielders throw to the first base.
If the ball is hit toward the outfield, they may have the chance for another base, so they need to run as soon as they hit the ball and release the bat as quickly as possible. Some batters will release it even before their swing actually ends.
If the batter strikeout to finish the inning, he may just toss his bat in the direction of the dugout, along with his helmet, for the bat boy to pick it up. They may also have their glove ready for the next half inning.
Is the batter out if he steps on the plate?
If the batter hits a thrown ball with any part of his knew or foot when he is outside of the batter’s box or the home plate, then he will be called out. The umpire will immediately call the ball dead and all of the runners will need to return the previous base that they occupied before the time of the pitch.
Is a runner out if hit by the ball?
If a runner gets hit by a legally hit fair-batted ball while he is standing on the base, the runner will be called out by the umpire, unless the ball has already been passed to an infielder or if an infield fly rule has been called by an umpire. The base is not regarded as a sanctuary in baseball.