Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Youth Baseball: Challenging the Official Scorer - No hitter or Not.

In the second game of the Cooperstown Dreams Park tournament, the pitcher for our team pitched a no-hitter. We were the home team, so I was the official scorer for the game.

Game 79

In the 4th inning, our pitcher walked a batter then gave up what looked like a hit when an Illinois player ripped a line drive to left field. The left fielder charged it and quickly threw the ball to second base. The base runner was forced out nullifying the hit.

Crazy Youth Parents Series

After the game, I was telling the parents that our pitcher threw a no-hitter. To my surprise, I was immediately challenged on this by a family friend fan who also keeps a score book. She keeps the book to keep herself in the game and to provide a keepsake for her friend's son.

She claimed that there was hit. I asked her if she was referring to the line drive to the outfield that resulted in a force at second. She said yes. I informed her that that was recorded as a fielders choice. She argued that the fielder had no choice. I agreed but the batter essentially produced an out so it is not considered a hit.

She actually got frustrated with me.

She is right that it does not fit the definition of a fielder's choice, but it does not fit the definition of a hit either. Official scorers call this a Fielder's Choice because there is no other term to use for this situation.

From the Baseball Official Rules on

Under Rule 10.05 (b) The official scorer shall not credit a base hit when a:

(1) runner is forced out by a batted ball, or would have been forced out except for
a fielding error;

The Main Point

Travel youth baseball tournaments produce lots of drama.  Regardless of the motive, before you challenge the official scorer, know the rules.


  1. 7-4 on the put out, no hitter in tact. I was behind the plate with a perfect game going and a ball hit to center and the CF guns the kid at first. Perfect game in tact, and completed to give me back to back perfect games as an umpire.

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