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Baseball Myths
These common baseball myths, were found through research on the internet. Unfortunately, I can't recall where we found this, 
to respectfully give the gentleman credit. He did display a much deeper understanding of Baseball Rules than most. We hope he 
doesn't mind us sharing these but, they are so common and we though they'd be helpful. We have verified the contents as best 
we could but, review and utilize these at your own risk, as accuracy is not guaranteed and we cannot accept any liability in 
connection with this content. We welcome verifiable corrections and additional Baseball Rules Myth enlightenments. 
Please feel free to call us at 954-962-0920 for corrections and submissions. (all will be verified before changing)

The Myth statement is in the green box, the clarification is in the white box below it. 
The Rule Reference, when provided is colored orange.
Hands are considered part of the bat
The hands are part of a person's body. If a pitch hits the batter's hands the ball is dead; if he swung at the pitch, 
a strike is called (NOT a foul). If he was avoiding the pitch, he is awarded first base. 
Rules: 2.00 PERSON, TOUCH, STRIKE (e) and 6.05(f) Official Baseball Rules

Batter-runner must turn to his right after over-running first base
The batter-runner may turn left or right, provided that if he turns left he does not make an attempt to advance.
An attempt is a judgment made by the umpire. The requirement is that the runner must immediately return to first 
after overrunning or over-sliding it. Rule: 7.08(c and j)Official Baseball Rules
If the batter breaks his wrists when swinging, its a strike.
A strike is a judgment by the umpire as to whether the batter attempted to strike the ball. Breaking the wrists, or 
the barrel of the bat crossing the plate are simply guides to making the judgment of an attempt, these are not rules.
Rule: 2.00 STRIKE Official Baseball Rules
Batted ball hits the plate first its a foul ball
The plate is in fair territory. There is nothing special about it. If a batted ball hits it, it is treated like any 
other batted ball.
Batter cannot be called out for interference if he is in the batters box.
The batter's box is not a safety zone. A batter could be called out for interference if the umpire judges that 
interference could or should have been avoided. Rules: 2.00 INTERFERENCE, 6.06(c) Official Baseball Rules
Ball is dead on a foul-tip
There is nothing "FOUL" about a foul-tip. It is a strike and the ball is alive. A foul-tip is the same as a swing 
and a miss. To be a foul-tip, by rule, the ball must go sharp and direct from the bat to the catcher's hand or glove 
AND BE CAUGHT. Confusion arises on this because people commonly call any ball that is tipped or nicked a foul-tip. 
It is not a foul-tip, by rule, unless the nicked or tipped ball is caught. If it is not caught, it is simply a 
foul-ball. A foul-ball is a dead ball. A foul-tip (a legally caught nick) is a live ball strike, just like a swing 
and a miss. Read the rule in the Official Baseball Rules
Batter may not switch batters boxes after two strikes
The batter can switch boxes at any time, provided he does not do it after the pitcher is ready to pitch.
Rule: 6.06(b)Official Baseball Rules
Batter who batted out of order is the person declared out
The PROPER batter is the one called out (If Appealed Successfully). Any hit or advance made by the batter or runners 
due to the hit, walk, error or other reason is nullified. The next batter is the one who follows the proper batter who was 
called out.
Rule: 6.07(b, 1)Official Baseball Rules
Batter may not overrun first base when he gets a base-on-balls
Rule 7.08(c and j) simply state that a batter-runner must immediately return after overrunning first base. It doesn't 
state any exceptions as to how the player became a runner. It could be a hit, walk, error or dropped third strike.
See Official Baseball Rules
Steve's note: I have discussed this myth, which appears quite often, with both a former ML crew chief and a college-level interpreter who both perceive this statement as TRUE, that a batter-runner may NOT over-walk first base. The interpretation is that a base-on-balls is an awarded base under ML rules. The protection ends when the batter-runner reaches the awarded base (1st). This rule is specifically TRUE in NFHS Rulebook. A base-on-balls is considered a live-ball base award and therefore the runner is protected to the base(s) awarded and no further. If they run through the base, they are at-risk once they've touched the awarded base.
Batter is out if he starts for the dugout before going to first after a dropped third strike
When a third strike is called, or is swung at and missed and the catcher does not make a legal catch, the batter may 
attempt to reach first base if it is unoccupied when there are less than 2 outs, or even when it is occupied when 
there are 2 outs. Occupied means it was occupied at the time of the pitch. The fact that the runner attempts to steal 
does not make the base unoccupied. Time of pitch is defined as the moment the pitcher starts his windup or commits to 
a pitch to the plate. To be legally caught the ball must be caught in-flight. This means if the catcher catches the 
ball cleanly on a bounce it is NOT a legal catch. The batter may run to first anytime before he leaves the dust circle 
surrounding home plate. He is not out simply because he walks off toward the dugout. If the bases are loaded with 
2 out and the catcher does not make a legal catch of a third strike, a force play goes into effect because the batter 
has now become a runner. The catcher may step on home plate to force out the runner from third or tag the batter or 
throw to any other base. Rule 2.00 BALL casebook Rule 6.09(b) Official Baseball Rules
Batter does not pull the bat out of the strike zone while in the bunting position, its an automatic strike
A strike is an attempt to hit the ball. Simply holding the bat over the plate is not an attempt. This is umpire 
judgment. Rule 2.00 STRIKE Official Baseball Rules
Batter is out if his foot touches the plate
To be out the batter's foot must be ENTIRELY outside the box when he contacts the pitch. There is no statement
about touching the plate. The toe could be on the plate and the heel could be touching the line of the box, which means the foot is not entirely outside the box. Rule: 6.06(a) Official Baseball Rules
Batter-runner is always out if he runs outside the running lane after a bunted ball
The runner must be out of the box AND cause interference. He is not out simply for being outside the lane. He could 
be called for interference even while in the lane. This is a judgment call. 
Rules: 2.00 INTERFERENCE, 6.05(k), 7.09(k) Official Baseball Rules
Runner is out if he slaps hands or high-fives other players, after a homerun is hit over the fence
The ball is dead on a homerun over the fence. You can't be put out while the ball is dead except when you pass 
another runner. Rules: 5.02, 7.05(a) Official Baseball Rules
Tie goes to the runner
There is no such thing in the world of baseball umpiring. The runner is either out or safe
Runner gets the base he's going to, plus one on a ball thrown out-of-play
When a fielder other than the pitcher throws the ball into dead ball area, the award is 2 bases. The award is from 
where the runners were at the time of the pitch if it is the first play by an infielder before all runners have 
advanced or from where each runner was physically positioned at the time the ball left the throwers hand on all other 
plays. Rule: 7.05(g) Official Baseball Rules
Anytime a coach touches a runner, the runner is out
The runner is out if the coach PHYSICALLY ASSISTS the runner. Hand slaps, back pats or simple touches are not 
physical assists. Rule: 7.09(I)Official Baseball Rules
Runners may never run the bases in reverse order
In order to correct a base running mistake, the runner must retrace his steps and retouch the bases in reverse order. 
The only time a runner is out for running in reverse, is when he is making a travesty of the game or tries to confuse 
the defense. Rules: 7.08(I),7.10(b) Official Baseball Rules
Runner must always slide when the play is close
There is no "must slide" rule. When the fielder has the ball in possession, the runner has two choices; slide OR 
attempt to get around the fielder. He may NOT deliberately or maliciously contact the fielder, but he is NOT required 
to slide. Rule: 7.08(a, 3)This rule does not apply to professionals
Runner is always safe when hit by a batted ball while touching a base
The bases are in fair territory. A runner is out when hit by a fair batted ball, except an infield-fly.
Rules: 5.09(f), 7.08(f) Official Baseball Rules
Runner may not steal on a foul tip
There is nothing foul about a foul-tip. If the ball nicks the bat and goes to the catcher's glove and is caught, 
this is a foul-tip by definition. A foul-tip is a strike and the ball is alive. It is the same as a swing-and-miss. 
If the ball is not caught, it is a foul ball. Rules: 2.00 FOUL-TIP, STRIKE Official Baseball Rules
It is a force out when a runner is called out for not tagging up on a fly ball
A force play is when a runner is forced to advance because the batter became a runner. When the batter is out on a 
caught fly, all forces are removed. An out on an a failure to tag-up, is NOT a force out. Any runs that cross the 
plate before this out will count. Rules: 2.00 FORCE PLAY, 4.09 Official Baseball Rules
An appeal on a runner who missed a base cannot be a force out
A runner must touch all the bases. If the runner misses a base to which he was forced because the batter became a 
runner and is put out before touching that base, the out is still a force play. If this is the third out, no runs 
may score. The base can be touched or the runner can be touched, either way it's a force out.
Rules: 2.00 FORCE PLAY, TAG, 7.08(e), 7.10(b) Official Baseball Rules
Runner is out if he runs out of the baseline to avoid a fielder who is fielding a batted ball
The runner must avoid a fielder attempting to field a BATTED ball. A runner is out for running out of the baseline, 
only when attempting to avoid a tag. Rules: 7.08(a), 7.09(L) Official Baseball Rules
Runners may not advance when an infield fly is called
An Infield-fly is no different than any other fly ball in regard to the runners. The only difference is that they 
are never forced to advance because the batter is out whether the ball is caught or not. 
Rules: 2.00 INFIELD-FLY, 6.05(e),7.10(a) Official Baseball Rules
No run can score when a runner is called out for the third out for not tagging up
Yes it can. This is not a force play. A force play is when a runner is forced to advance because the batter became a 
runner. When the batter is out on a caught fly, all forces are removed. An out on an a failure to tag-up, is NOT a 
force out. Any runs that cross the plate before this out will count.
Rules: 2.00 FORCE PLAY, 4.09, 7.10(a) Official Baseball Rules
A pitch that bounces to the plate cannot be hit
A pitch is a ball delivered to the batter by the pitcher. It doesn't matter how it gets to the batter. The batter may 
hit any pitch that is thrown. Rule: 2.00 PITCH. (If the ball does not cross the foul line, it is not a pitch.)
Batter does not get first base if hit by a pitch after it bounces
A pitch is a ball delivered to the batter by the pitcher. It doesn't matter how it gets to the batter. If the batter 
is hit by a pitch while attempting to avoid it, he is awarded first base. Rules: 2.00 PITCH, 6.08(b)
If a fielder holds a fly ball for 2 seconds it's a catch
A catch is legal when the umpire judges that the fielder has COMPLETE control of the ball. The release of the ball 
must be voluntary and intentional. Rule: 2.00 CATCH Official Baseball Rules
You must tag the base with your foot on a force out or appeal
You can tag a base with ANY part of the body. Rules: 2.00 FORCE PLAY, PERSON, TAG, 7.08(e) Official Baseball Rules
Ball is always immediately dead on a balk
It is not. If a throw or pitch is made after the balk call, the ball is delayed dead. At the end of the play the balk 
may be enforced or not depending on what happened. On a throw; if ALL runners advance on the play, the balk is ignored. 
If not, the balk award is enforced from the time of pitch. On a pitch; if ALL runners INCLUDING the batter, advance on 
the play, the balk is ignored. Otherwise, it is no-pitch and the balk award is made from the time of the pitch.
Rule: 8.05 PENALTY Official Baseball Rules
This Rule is TRUE in NFHS Rulebook. If the ball is pitched, all action on the play is negated. All runners are awarded one base and the count on the batter remains the same.
If a players feet are in fair territory when the ball is touched, it is a fair ball
The position of the player's feet or any other part of the body is irrelevant. A ball is judged fair or foul based on 
the relationship between the ball and the ground at the time the ball is touched. 
Rule: 2.00 FAIR, FOUL Official Baseball Rules
Ball must always be returned to the pitcher before an appeal can be made
An appeal may be made anytime the ball is alive. The only time the ball must go to the pitcher, is when time is out. 
The ball cannot be made live until the pitcher has the ball while on the rubber and the umpire says "Play." If time is 
not out, the appeal can be made immediately. Rule: 2.00 APPEAL, 5.11, 7.10 Official Baseball Rules
With no runners on base, it is a ball if the pitcher starts his windup and then stops
A pitch is a ball delivered to the batter by the pitcher. If the ball is not delivered, it is not a pitch. If this 
happens with runners on base it is a balk. Rule: 2.00 PITCH
Pitcher must come to a set position before a pick-off throw
The pitcher is required to come to a complete stop in the Set position before delivering the pitch, not before making 
a throw. Rule: 8.05(m) Official Baseball Rules
Pitcher must step off the rubber before a pick-off throw
If the pitcher steps off the rubber he is no longer the pitcher, he is a fielder. He can throw to a base from the 
rubber, provided he does not break any of the rules under rule 8.05 Official Baseball Rules
Fielder catches a fly ball and then falls over the fence it is a homerun
As long as the fielder is not touching the ground in dead ball territory when he catches the ball, it is a legal 
catch if he holds onto the ball and meets the definition of a catch. If the catch is not the third out and the 
fielder falls down in dead ball territory, all runners are awarded one base. If the fielder remains on his feet 
in dead ball territory after the catch, the ball is alive and he may make a play.
Rules: 2.00 CATCH, 6.05(a), 7.04(c) Official Baseball Rules
Ball is dead anytime an umpire is hit by the ball
If an umpire is hit by a batted ball before it passes a fielder, the ball is dead. On any other batted or thrown ball, 
the ball is alive when the umpire is hit with the ball. Umpire interference also occurs when the plate umpire 
interferes with the catcher's attempt to prevent a stolen base. 
Rules: 2.00 INTERFERENCE, 5.09(b), 5.09(f) Official Baseball Rules
Home plate Umpire can overrule the other Umps at anytime
The umpire who made a call or ruling may ask for help if he wishes. No umpire may overrule another umpire's call.
Rules: 9.02(b, c) Official Baseball Rules