Retrosheet


Passing Runners on the Bases

According to Official Baseball Rule 7.08 (h), any runner is out if he passes a preceding runner before that runner is out. This is not an appeal play but is called immediately by the umpire. There have been many cases of a runner passing a preceding runner through the years.

Many thanks to Rob Wood for finding and writing up most of the recent ones.

Latest additions:
(on 7/22/2019): 8/25/1933
(on 4/27/2019): 4/26/2019
(on 3/26/2019): 8/15/1926, 7/4/1936 7/25/1939, 7/19/1940, 8/16/1942, 7/6/1943, 8/20/1944, 5/10/1950, 8/15/1950, 6/30/1952, 5/5/1957, 6/19/1974, 6/18/1978, 8/8/1985, 7/2/1986, 7/30/1992, 4/19/1999, 5/31/1999, 6/22/1999, 9/18/2000, 6/16/2010, 4/4/2013
(on 2/28/2019): 5/8/1955, 7/1/1956, 5/7/1957, 5/3/1970, 4/13/1999
(on 1/10/2019): 8/7/2018
(on 4/15/2018): 4/14/2018
(on 4/7/2018): 4/6/2018
(on 3/5/2017): 9/22/1926

Here are the instances of this event we have in our files:

Click on the date to see the boxscore and play-by-play when available

9/18/1915 - In the top of the twelfth inning of a scoreless game in Boston, Ty Cobb led off with a double into the overflow crowd standing in right field. Bobby Veach bunted to move Cobb but Red Sox hurler Ernie Shore threw high to first and Veach was safe. Sam Crawford was walked intentionally to load the bases with none out. Marty Kavanagh forced Cobb at home. With one out and the bases still loaded, Ralph Young hit into another force out at home. However, Kavanagh, running from first on the play, rounded second and passed Crawford for the third out of the inning.

4/24/1919 - In the second game of the season at Redland Field in Cincinnati, with Cliff Heathcote on first with one out, Rogers Hornsby drove the ball to right center that might have gone for a triple or homer. However, Reds second sacker Morrie Rath faked Heathcote into believing that Rath had caught the ball. Heathcote returned towards first base while Hornsby was digging for second. Hornsby was called out for passing Heathcote.

9/12/1920 - In the top of the fourth inning of a game in Chicago, Washington's Frank Ellerbe was on first base with two outs. Patsy Gharrity hit the ball into the left field bleachers for an apparent two-run homer. When Ellerbe heard the fans in those seats cheering he thought Joe Jackson had caught the ball which would have ended the inning. After rounding third base, Ellerbe turned and went to his shortstop position. Meanwhile Gharrity trotted around the bases. When he rounded third base, he was called out for passing Ellerbe. Both umpires, Bill Dinneen and Ollie Chill, made the call. Washington argued that since the ball was out of play it did not make any difference that Gharrity passed Ellerbe. The headline in the next days' New York Times read: "Gharrity's Homer Retires His Side." This event had no effect on the game as the Senators beat the White Sox, 5-0.

6/6/1921 - In the bottom of the second, the Cubs had runners on first and second with no outs when Tom Daly hit a fly to right. Dodger Tommy Griffith lost the ball in the sun. John Kelleher, the runner on first, thought the ball would be caught and returned to the bag only to have Daly pass him.

8/15/1926 - In one of the strangest plays in major league history, the Dodgers loaded the bases with one out in the bottom of the 7th inning of game one versus the Braves. Babe Herman hit a flyball off the Ebbets Field right field screen. Hank DeBerry easily scored from third base. Dazzy Vance, the runner at second base, held up to see if the ball would be caught and then proceeded around third base and headed for home. Chick Fewster, the runner at first base, also held up before beginning his journey around the bases. Babe Herman, not paying close attention to what was transpiring in front of him, rounded second base and headed for third. Brooklyn's third base coach, seeing Herman close on the heels of Fewster both on their way to third base, yelled "go back, go back" in an attempt to get Babe to return to second base. However, for some strange reason, Vance thought those words were meant for him, so he returned to third base! Fewster saw Vance returning to third base so he slowed his approach. Herman, though, never slowed and slid "safely" into third. Confusion reigned at Ebbets Field since nobody had ever seen three baserunners on the same base before. Boston infielders tagged all three Dodgers presuming that two of them would have to be out. After huddling, the umpires ruled that Herman was out for passing Fewster (Herman had slid into third base moments before Fewster had arrived), and Fewster was out when he was tagged since Vance was the rightful occupant of third base. So receiving vital assists from bad baserunning in front of him and an ineffective third base coach, Babe Herman had just doubled into a double-play.

9/22/1926 - In the top of the seventh inning with one out, Pie Traynor hit a Texas Leaguer to left with the bases loaded. The runner on second, Paul Waner, paused and George Grantham passed Waner on the base line and was called out. Waner then scored, so two runs scored on the play.

5/30/1930 - In the first game of a Memorial Day doubleheader, Dodger Del Bissonette batted against Claude Willoughby of the Phillies in the bottom of the fourth inning with runners on first and second. As Bissonette's fly ball neared the fence, which it cleared for what should have been a home run, Babe Herman, fearing a catch, stopped. Bissonette didn't see Herman and passed him. He was called out by umpire Lou Jorda and was credited with a 2-RBI single.

9/15/1930 - In the bottom of the first with runners on 1b and 2b, Dodger Glenn Wright hit the ball to right-center. It looked like it might be caught so Babe Herman slowed up as he neared 2b. The ball bounced over the fence for a home run but Wright had his head down as he ran between 1b and 2b. Consequently, he passed Herman and was called out. He lost a homer but still knocked in 2 runs.

4/26/1931 - In the first inning with Lyn Lary on first and two out, Lou Gehrig hit a home run into the centerfield bleachers at Griffith Stadium. However, the ball caromed back to the centerfielder. Lary returned to the dugout, evidently thinking the ball was caught. Gehrig was declared out for passing the runner and lost the homer. He ended the year tied for the lead in homers with Babe Ruth.

8/25/1933 - In the bottom of the third with one out, Pete Fox was hit by a pitch and Charlie Gehringer's infield single moved him to second. Gee Walker hit a ball off the right field wall. Gehringer realized it would not be caught and ran with his head down and passed Fox who was waiting near the bag to see if the ball would be caught. Gehringer was called out immediately for passing Fox, and Fox got a late start and was thrown out at the plate, so Walker managed to double into a double play.

7/4/1936 - The Browns had the bases loaded with one out in the bottom of the 2nd inning of game two versus Detroit. Moose Solters hit a long drive that Tigers left fielder Goose Goslin lept for at the wall. Goslin came down with the ball holding it aloft for all to see. Al (Tommy) Thomas, the runner at third base, easily scored. Lyn Lary, the runner at second base, and Harlond Clift, the runner at first base, returned to their respective bases. However, the umpires ruled that Goslin had caught the ball after it rebounded off the wall so it was not a legal catch. Goslin threw the ball to Tigers third baseman Marv Owen who touched third base. After a short delay, Owen then threw the ball to Charlie Gehringer who stepped on second base. Tigers right fielder Gee Walker then grabbed the ball and ran over and tagged both Clift and Solters who were both standing on first base. The umpires huddled and then ruled an inning-ending double-play: Lary was forced out when Owen touched third base and Solters was declared out for passing Clift when he rounded first base as Clift was returning to first base. Thomas' run counted since the "passed runner" scenario removes the force and Solters was deemed to have passed Clift after Owen touched third base, so the third out of the inning was not a force play, which would have nullified the run.

7/25/1939 - Senators had runners on first and second base with one out in the bottom of the 7th inning versus Detroit. Jimmy Bloodworth hit a deep flyball to left field that Earl Averill dropped for an error. Taffy Wright was able to score from second base. Cecil Travis, the runner on first base, held up between first and second to see if the ball would be caught. Bloodworth, who sprinted into second base, was declared out for passing Travis.

7/19/1940 - In the top of the 4th inning of the second game, Emmett Mueller of the Phillies was the runner on first base with one out in St. Louis. Johnny Rizzo hit a groundball to Cardinals third baseman Jimmy Brown who tossed to second baseman Joe Orengo in an attempt to start an around-the-horn double-play. Orengo stepped on second base but threw wildly to first base allowing Rizzo to reach second base on the error. Thinking he was clearly out on the force at second, Mueller started walking off the diamond toward the Phillies first base dugout. However, the umpire ruled that Orengo had come off second base before he had the ball so Mueller was safe at second. The Cardinals then tagged out Mueller as he was walking towards the dugout which resulted in an inning-ending double-play since Rizzo was declared out for passing Mueller between first and second base (when Mueller was walking off the field).

8/16/1942 - The Yankees loaded the bases with no outs in the top of the 4th inning at Philadelphia. Charlie Keller hit a long flyball over the center fielder's head, scoring two runs. Joe DiMaggio, the runner on first base, held up between first and second base thinking the ball may be caught. Keller made his way to second base but was declared out for passing DiMaggio between first and second base, though he was credited with a two-run single.

7/6/1943 - The Indians had runners on second and third base with one out in the bottom of the 1st inning versus Philadelphia. Ken Keltner hit a comebacker to the pitcher who trapped Oris Hockett between third and home. Hockett stayed in a run-down long enough for Lou Boudreau to reach third base. When the Philadelphia catcher finally ran Hockett back to third, seeing Boudreau already perched there, Hockett kept running past third base and into shallow left field where the catcher dutifully tagged him out. After Connie Mack had a word with the umpires, Boudreau was then declared out for technically passing Hockett when Hockett took his stroll into left field, resulting in a bizarre double-play.

8/20/1944 - The Athletics loaded the bases with one out in the bottom of the 6th inning versus the White Sox. Ed Busch hit an infield pop-up that White Sox second baseman Roy Schalk dropped. Frankie Hayes, the runner on third base, scampered home. Bill McGhee, perhaps aware of the infield fly rule, remained rooted to second base. George Kell, however, the runner on first base, ran to second base. Umpires ruled a double-play: Busch was out per the infield fly rule and Kell was declared out for passing McGhee. Hayes's run counted.

4/20/1945 - In the top of the seventh inning, the Indians had runners on 1B and 2B with one out when Eddie Carnett hit a fly to CF. Myril Hoag thought the ball would fall in but it was caught. Hoag passed Mike Rocco beyond 2B for a double play.

6/9/1948 - In the bottom of the eighth inning, the Cardinals were losing to the Braves, 11-4, having scored three runs in the inning. Enos Slaughter was the runner on first when Marty Marion hit a ball down the right field line. Slaughter thought the ball was foul and stopped running while Marion saw it land fair and rounded first. He was called out for passing Slaughter.

5/10/1950 - In the top of the 7th inning in Washington, Cass Michaels was on first base for the White Sox. Gus Zernial hit a long drive off the center field wall. Zernial cruised around first base and headed for second base. Unfortunately Michaels thought that Senators center fielder Irv Noren had caught the ball and, after falling down in his haste to reverse direction, literally crawled on his hands and knees back to first base. When Chicago's first base coach yelled at him, Michaels scrambled to his feet and ambled into second base before the Senators returned the ball to the infield. Zernial reluctantly retreated to first base but was called out for passing Michaels when he rounded first base.

8/15/1950 - In the bottom of the 3rd inning the Red Sox had runners on first and second base with one out versus the Athletics. Billy Goodman hit a flyball to left field. Mel Parnell, the runner on second base, tagged up while Dom DiMaggio, the runner on first base, took off running. DiMaggio was declared out for passing Parnell when he rounded second base which resulted in a double-play as Athletics left fielder Barney McCosky had caught the flyball just in front of the Green Monster.

6/30/1952 - The Reds had runners on first and second base with no outs in the top of the 8th inning in St. Louis. Bobby Adams hit a line drive on which Cardinals right fielder Enos Slaughter almost made a fine running catch. Herman Wehmeier, the runner on second base, held up to see if the ball would be caught, only managed to advance to third base. Bob Borkowski, the runner on first base, also held up and only managed to advance to second base. Adams, who was running hard out of the batter's box, put on the brakes midway between first and second base and retreated to first base. However, he was declared out for passing Burkowski.

6/19/1953 - In the bottom of the first inning of the second game against the Dodgers, Cubbies Frank Baumholtz and Eddie Miksis each bunted for a hit. After a fly out, Hank Sauer hit a fly to center for the second out but Miksis rounded second and passed Baumholtz for the third out, thus killing a potential rally.

5/8/1955 - With runners on first and second and one out in the top or the 11th inning of Game Two in Cleveland, Bill Renna of the Kansas City Athletics hit a looping flyball down the right field line. Cleveland's right fielder Al Smith got his glove on the ball but could not hold it. Dick Kryhoski, the runner on second, advanced to third base. However, Bill Wilson, the runner on first base, thought the ball had been caught and returned to first base. Renna, the batter, ran all the way to second base and was called out for passing Wilson. He was credited with a single.

7/1/1956 - Milwaukee Braves loaded the bases in the top of the first inning with one out versus the Cubs. Joe Adcock lofted an easy flyball which was dropped by the Chicago right fielder allowing Bobby Thomson to score from third base. The Cubs tried to make a play on Hank Aaron at third base but threw the ball into left field allowing Aaron to score too. Andy Pafko, the runner originally on first base seemed content to advance only as far as second base but Adcock, the batter, tore around the bases and wound up on third base. To cap it off, Pafko was eventually caught in a rundown between second and third base to complete a bizarre double-play.

5/5/1957 - The Tigers had runners on first and second base with one out in the bottom of the 4th inning versus Baltimore. Reno Bertoia hit a long drive to left-center field on which Orioles left fielder Dick Williams made a fine running catch. Ray Boone, the runner at second base, stayed near second in case the ball was caught. However, Frank House, the Tiger runner on first base, ran all the way and was called out for passing Boone when he rounded second base, causing an inning-ending double-play.

5/7/1957 - In the top of the ninth inning in Brooklyn, the Reds had runners at second and third with one out. Don Hoak hit a line drive double to right field on which Frank Robinson easily scored from third base. However, Pete Whisenant, the runner on second base, went back to second base when Dodger right fielder Carl Furillo deked him into believing that Furillo had caught the ball. The batter Hoak kept running and was called out for passing Whisenant when he rounded second base.

5/26/1959 - Joe Adcock lost a homer in Harvey Haddix' perfect game. In the bottom of the 13th inning, after Felix Mantilla reached on an error and was sacrificed to second, Hank Aaron was intentionally walked. Adcock then hit his home run. However, Aaron didn't know the ball left the park, so he returned to the dugout and Adcock was called out for passing Aaron.

9/1/1960 - The Phillies and Dodgers were tied at 2 in the bottom of the 11th inning. With one out, Tommy Davis doubled to left and moved to third on a balk by Turk Farrell. Frank Howard and John Roseboro were intentionally passed to load the bases. Duke Snider pinch hit for Charlie Neal and hit a long fly off the wall in left-center. Roseboro knowing the winning run would score did not run to second, and before the run scored, Snider who kept running passed Roseboro between first and second base before the run scored and was called out. (Note that once Snider is called out, Roseboro is no longer forced to go to second, so the run would not have been prevented by throwing the ball to second.)

5/23/1961 - The Dodgers were playing in Cincinnati. Maury Wills was the runner at first with one out in the third inning when Willie Davis hit a pop fly to center. As it dropped in for a hit, Wills was returning to first and Davis rounded the bag too far and passed Wills.

8/29/1962 - In the bottom of the 13th inning, the Reds and Dodgers were tied at 1 run apiece. With runners on second and third, Duke Snider was intentionally walked to load the bases for John Roseboro. The outfield was naturally playing very shallow to try to prevent a sacrifice fly. Roseboro hit a fly to center field which went over Vada Pinson's head for a hit. After Tommy Davis scored the winning run, Roseboro was called out for passing Snider between first and second. Snider then went on to second, but it didn't matter. (See the note for the 9/1/1960 game.)

8/12/1964 - In the top of the ninth inning in Minnesota, the Tigers had the bases loaded with one out and ahead 3-2. Jerry Lumpe hit to left field, scoring Don Wert and Mickey Lolich but passed Bill Bruton between first and second base. He was credited with a single and two runs batted in. Bruton scored the sixth run when the next batter, Al Kaline, doubled.

4/21/1967 - Tony Oliva of Minnesota lost a home run due to a base running blunder. Playing in Detroit in the third inning, Cesar Tovar was the runner at first base. Oliva hit the ball out of the park off Denny McLain, but then passed Tovar between first and second. He was credited with a single and one RBI for scoring Tovar.

8/11/1967 - In the first game of a double header at Detroit, Frank Robinson hit the ball to center field in the top of the third inning. The runner on first, Russ Snyder, thought the ball was caught and returned towards first. Robinson rounded the bag too far and passed Snyder, who ended up at second base when the play was over.

5/23/1968 - In Anaheim, the Indians had the bases loaded with one out when Larry Brown hit a sacrifice fly to right field, scoring Duke Sims. However, Tony Horton rounded second and passed Jose Cardenal to end the inning.

4/8/1969 - In the bottom of the second Angel Bobby Knoop hit a ball to right field. The Seattle Pilot fielder, Mike Hegan, crashed into the wall just as he got to the ball. It rolled back towards the infield where it was retrieved by the second baseman, Tommy Harper. Aurelio Rodriguez scored from second but Knoop passed Tom Satriano between first and second. Satriano ended up at second base while Knoop was called out and was credited with a single.

4/25/1969 - In the bottom of the seventh inning against the Expos, Pirate Roberto Clemente was on first when Willie Stargell singled. Clemente eventually ended up at third base but Stargell was called out for passing Clemente between first and second base.

7/18/1969 - Don Buford hit the ball into the right field seats in Fenway Park in the eighth inning. Tony Conigliaro leaped and fell into the stands, but did not have the ball when he came up. The first base umpire, Bob Stewart, gave no signal. Dave May, running at first, hesitated, then started back to first base. Buford passed him and May was called out while Buford circled the bases. A five minute argument followed. Earl Weaver argued about Stewart's delayed home run call. Buford was credited with a run scoring single, and May with a run scored, even though those events never actually happened on the field. Home plate umpire Red Flaherty allegedly called May out, which was why he stopped running. The hit came off Ray Jarvis, who was ahead 6-0 at the time. May's run was the only tally of the game for the Orioles.

5/3/1970 - In the top of the first inning against the Dodgers, Montreal's Rusty Staub batted with one out and Don Hahn on first base. Staub singled to center field but as Hahn neared second base Dodger middle infielders deked him into believing that Staub had hit a pop-up. Hahn headed back towards first base and was passed by Staub when Rusty rounded first base. To compound his mistake, Hahn was caught in a run-down between first and second base, the result being that Staub singled into a double-play!

5/15/1970 - After Ron Swoboda reached on an error in the top of the second inning, Phillies center-fielder Oscar Gamble dropped a fly hit by the Mets' Joe Foy. Foy passed Swoboda and was called out while Swoboda returned safely to first.

5/26/1970 - The Phillies had runners on first and third in the top of the ninth inning in Montreal with no outs. Byron Browne hit a fly to short right field that was trapped by Rusty Staub for a single. Terry Harmon held at third base and Jim Hutto was returning to first when Browne rounded the bag and passed Hutto. The next batter, Tony Taylor, hit an inside the park homer to score the eventual game-winning runs.

7/9/1970 - In the seventh inning at Tiger Stadium, Dalton Jones pinch hit for Jim Price with the bases loaded. Jones hammered the 2-2 pitch into the upper deck in right field for a grand slam. However, Jones passed Don Wert between first and second and was called out, thus ending up with a 3-RBI single. Vicente Romo had entered the game to face Jones.

5/27/1972 - The Brewers had runners on first and second with one out in the seventh inning at Fenway Park. Mike Ferraro hit a fly ball to center and John Briggs started running from first, but Tommy Harper made a great running catch. After rounding second, Briggs passed George Scott and was called out for a double play.

9/11/1972 - In the bottom of the sixth inning, the bases were full of Indians with one out. Roy Foster hit a fly to left field, that was scored as a sacrfice fly due to the passing a runner out, but Ben Oglivie dropped the ball. Oglivie threw to Rico Petrocelli at third for a force-out of Jack Heidemann while at the same time Foster passed Kurt Bevacqua between first and second for a double play to end the inning. However, Buddy Bell scored before the third out, which was the runner being passed, so the run counted.

6/19/1974 - Giant Ed Goodson hit a home run in the third inning off Bob Gibson at St. Louis with Garry Maddox on first and no one out. Unfortunately, Goodson passed Maddox between first and second. Goodson was credited with a single and a run batted in.

6/19/1974 - In one of the strangest plays ever the Dodgers (who else?!) loaded the bases with two outs in the top of the 1st inning at Pittsburgh. On a 3-2 count, Joe Ferguson took ball four but many people thought home plate umpire Satch Davidson had called him out on strike three. Pirate catcher Manny Sanguillen, thinking the inning was over, rolled the ball to the mound and started walking to the Pirates dugout. Lee Lacy, the runner on third base, walked to the Dodgers dugout. Jimmy Wynn, the runner on second base however, thought it might have been called ball four, rounded third base and tried to score since home plate was left unattended. Sanguillen ran back onto the field and applied the tag on Wynn. Sanguillen then threw the ball to third baseman Richie Hebner who stepped on third base thinking that would put out Lacy. By now Lacy figured out something strange was occurring so he made a bee-line for home plate from where he was standing next to the Dodgers dugout. Hebner threw the ball back to Sanguillen who tagged Lacy sliding into home plate via the on-deck circle. After a protracted argument involving both managers, several players, and all four umpires, the umpires ruled that Wynn was out for passing Lacy and Lacy was credited with scoring an "automatic" run on the bases-loaded walk.

7/4/1976 - Catcher Tim McCarver of the Phillies hit a grand slam in the second inning of the first game of a doubleheader at Pittsburgh. The 375 foot homer came off Larry Demery. However, after rounding first base, McCarver passed Garry Maddox and was called out. He received credit for a single and three runs batted in.

6/24/1977 - Ralph Garr of the White Sox homered off Minnesota's Paul Thormodsgard in Minneapolis. It came in the third inning with two men on and no one out. Jim Essian, the runner on first, thought the ball might be caught by the Twins' right fielder, Dan Ford, so he retreated towards first base. Garr was watching the flight of the ball and passed Essian after rounding the bag. He was credited with a single and two runs batted in.

6/18/1978 - The Twins had runners at first and second base with one out in the bottom of the 4th inning versus the Tigers. Rod Carew hit a deep drive on which Detroit centerfielder Ron LeFlore appeared to make a spectacular catch before crashing into the outfield fence. Umpire Ken Kaiser initially signaled that it was a catch, but when LeFlore spun around to make a throw back to the infield, he dropped the ball and Kaiser then signaled "no catch". Hosken Powerll, the runner on second base, returned to second when he saw the umpire's initial signal. Roy Smalley, the runner at first base, who had run at the crack of the bat rounded second base before retreating back to first base when he saw the umpire's first signal. Both runners moved up a base after seeing the umpire's second signal. When the dust settled, Powell was on third base, Carew was on first base, and Smalley was declared out for passing Powell when he rounded second base. (Smalley actually also "passed" Carew when he headed back to first base, but since he was technically already out, there was no infraction for that.)

7/18/1978 - In the 9th inning, the Dodgers led the Pirates 6-2. With one out, Ron Cey homered to extend the Dodgers' lead. After Steve Garvey singled, both Dusty Baker and Joe Ferguson walked to load the bases. Bill North flied out to CF but Ferguson was off at the crack of the bat. He passed Baker between 2B and 3B and was called out, thus ending the Los Angeles inning. The Pirates did not score in the bottom of the inning and the Dodgers won, 7-2.

9/5/1978 - In the bottom of the 7th inning, the Twins loaded the bases with one out against the White Sox on singles by Dan Ford and Jose Morales and a walk to Larry Wolfe. Bombo Rivera singled to CF, but Ford failed to touch home plate as he passed it while Morales did, so Morales was called out for passing Ford. Ford then came back and stepped on the plate, and Minnesota scored only one run in the inning. They scored two more in the ninth but lost 4-3.

4/10/1982 - The Astros were playing in Atlanta. In the top of the 4th inning, Jose Cruz reached on an infield single. After an out, Ray Knight hit a ball to RF; Cruz stayed near 1B waiting to see if Claudell Washington would catch the ball. When he didn't, Knight rounded the 1B while Cruz was still near bag. Knight was called out (but credited with a single) and Cruz landed on 2B. Houston eventually scored one run in the inning and Atlanta eventually won the game 8-6.

5/14/1982 - Pittsburgh's Lee Lacy batted in the bottom of the eighth inning as the first batter to face Tom Hume of the Reds. The bases were loaded with no outs and Lacy hit one of Hume's pitches out of the park. However, in the celebration during his run around the bases, Lacy passed Omar Moreno between first and second. He is credited with a single and three runs batted in. Luckily, Moreno's run won the game for the Pirates 8-7.

6/18/1983 - Willie McGee dropped Mel Hall's fly ball with Greg Lake on 1B in the top of the fourth inning. Hall passed Lake and was called out. Lake was caught in a rundown between 1B and 2B for a very strange double play with LF David Green getting an assist when he recovered the dropped ball.

10/1/1983 - In the top of the 12th inning in Baltimore, the Yankees had Dave Winfield on 2B and Omar Moreno on 3B with one out. Don Baylor hit a come-backer to pitcher Bill Swaggerty. In the ensuing rundown, Winfield passed Moreno, who eventually scored the winning run when catcher John Stefero dropped the ball.

4/29/1985 - The Yankees had runners on 1B and 2B in the top of the fourth inning at Texas when Bobby Meacham hit a ball that just cleared the fence for a homer. He paid no attention to the fact that Willie Randolph stayed near 1B waiting to see if the ball would drop in. Meacham passed Randolph after rounding 1B and was called out. Randolph and Butch Wynegar both scored on the play and Meacham was credited with a single. Those runs put the Yanks up 4-0 but the Rangers won, 7-5.

5/15/1985 - In the San Francisco second inning, David Green doubled. Jose Uribe then hit a grounder to Pirates SS Bill Almon and Green was caught between 2B and 3B. He eluded the tag, returning to 2B, but was passed by Uribe and the latter player was called out. The visiting Pirates won the contest, 3-2.

8/8/1985 - The Cardinals had runners on first and second base with no outs in the bottom of the 8th inning versus the Cubs. Terry Pendleton hit a line drive to Chicago first baseman Leon Durham who threw to shortstop Chris Speier to try to double-off Jack Clark, the runner at second base. On a close call Clark barely got back to second before the throw. Speier then threw the ball back to Durham to try to double-off Andy Van Slyke, the runner at first base, but his throw hit Van Slyke's helmet and bounced away. After retouching first base Van Slyke raced to second base where Clark was still standing. Clark then belatedly took off for third base where he was tagged out after a run-down. It was a triple-play because Van Slyke was declared out for passing Clark when both were standing on second base (Van Slyke was slightly on the third base side of Clark at the time). The official putout sequence was 3-6-4-6-5-8.

7/2/1986 - Athletics had runners on first and second base with one out in the bottom of the 2nd inning versus Cleveland. Jerry Willard hit a deep drive that was caught by the Indians center fielder. Dave Kingman tagged up at second base while Alfredo Griffin, the runner on first base, ran hard at the crack of the bat and returned to first base after the catch. It was ruled a double-play since Griffin was declared out for passing Kingman at second base because Griffin touched second before Kingman came back to tag up although Griffin said he never was ahead of Kingman.

7/29/1986 - With the bases loaded in the bottom of the first inning, Milwaukee's Ernie Riles hit a fly ball to deed left-center. When the ball dropped between Claudell Washington and Rickey Henderson of the Yankees two runs scored. Riles, who ran hard from the plate, did not notice that Gorman Thomas had stayed near the 1B bag. When Riles passed Thomas, he was called out. Rob Deer followed that play with a home run, thus Riles's gaffe cost the Brewers a run. However, they beat the Yankees, 6-4.

5/26/1987 - The Indians had runners on 2B and 3B with one out in the top of the sixth inning at Fenway Park when Brook Jacoby hit a grounder to 3B. Wade Boggs threw wildly to the plate but Mel Hall was called out for passing Joe Carter during the play. The Red Sox were ahead at the time, 5-0 and eventually won, 6-5.

5/22/1991 - In the bottom of the first inning, the Royals had runners on 1B and 2B with one out when Danny Tartabull hit an infield fly to 3B. When Mariners 3Bman Edgar Martinez dropped the ball, Brian McRae took off from 1B and passed Kirk Gibson at 2B. McRae was called out but the Royals won, 3-1.

9/16/1991 - The Dodgers had runners on 1B and 3B when Lenny Harris hit a grounder to 3B in the bottom of the eleventh. Chris Sabo threw home to nab Jose Offerman and Harris kept running. He was called out for passing Brett Butler. The Dodgers won in the 12th, 6-5.

5/23/1992 - After a single and a muffed grounder, the Tigers had runners on 1B and 3B with no one out in the bottom of the eighth inning. Cecil Fielder hit a liner to deep right-center scoring Lou Whittaker from 3B. Travis Fryman did not advance, thinking the ball might be caught, and Fielder passed him after rounding the 1B bag.

7/30/1992 - The Blue Jays had runners on first and third base with no outs in the bottom of the 2nd inning versus Kansas City. Pat Borders hit a ground ball to Royals third baseman Gregg Jefferies who threw home to nab Candy Maldonado, the runner on third base. Maldonado got into a run-down which allowed Kelly Gruber, the runner on first base, to advance all the way to third base. When Maldonado retreated to third Gruber was declared out for passing Maldonado. Maldonado mistakenly believed that he was called out and starting walking towards the Toronto dugout where Royals catcher Mike Macfarlane tagged him out to complete a strange double-play.

8/30/1992 - In the top of the fifth inning, Baltimore's Brady Anderson walked and Randy Milligan singled to LF. Mike Devereaux hit a fly ball to the wall in RF, which was caught by the Mariners' Jay Buhner. Milligan took off for and went beyond second on the hit and passed Anderson, who stayed near the bag. Milligan thus became the second out on the play. Anderson evidently became confused and was tagged out to complete a very weird triple play. The Orioles still won the game, 2-0.

10/20/1992 - In the top of the fourth inning of game 3 of the World Series, the Braves had runners on first and second with no one out after singles by Deion Sanders and Terry Pendleton. David Justice hit a fly to very deep centerfield near the wall. Sanders retreated towards second as Devon White chased the ball. Pendleton was running on the play and rounded the bag, passing Sanders and was called out on the play. After a spectacular catch by White, he relayed the ball to the infield and Sanders was tagged by Kelly Gruber for an apparent triple play but the umpire declared Sanders safe. Replays showed that Sanders was clearly out.

6/19/1993 - The Tigers had the bases loaded and one out in the bottom of the second inning. Alan Trammell doubled to RF scoring two runs. However, as Lou Whittaker rounded 2B he was called out for passing Milt Cuyler. The Tigers went on to win the game, 10-7.

9/17/1993 - The Dodgers Cory Snyder was on 1B with one out in the top of the fourth inning in Colorado when Billy Ashley singled to CF. As Ashley rounded the bag, he passed Snyder and was called out. The Rockies won the game, 12-3.

5/14/1995 - In the top of the ninth inning, Yankee Tony Fernandez had an apparent hit to RF, that was scored as a sacrifice fly after the passing a runner out. As Danny Tartabull scored from 3B, Gerald Williams stayed near 1B expecting the ball to be caught. However, when Boston's Troy O'Leary dropped the ball and Fernandez rounded 1B, he was called out for passing Williams. The Red Sox won the game 3-2.

6/27/1995 - The Padres had the bases loaded and no one out in the top of the fourth inning in Los Angeles. Roberto Petagine hit a fly ball that Dodger LF Billy Ashley lost in the lights. Two runs scored on the play but Ken Caminiti stayed near 1B and Petagine rounded the bag too far and passed Caminiti. It didn't hurt much as the Padres won, 14-3.

4/8/1997 - The Mariners had the bases loaded with one out in the bottom of the fifth. Ken Griffey, Jr. doubled to CF and Alex Rodriguez, starting from 1B, passed Joey Cora and was declared out at 2B. Cora, who started from 2B, only made it to 3B on the double. Seattle went on to beat the Indians 14-8.

7/21/1998 - In the top of the third inning in San Francisco, Travis Lee of the Diamondbacks reached when SS Rich Aurilia booted a ground ball. Devon White then singled to LF, moving Lee to 2B. After a fly out by David Dellucci, Jay Bell flied out to RF. White was called out for passing Lee at 2B, turning the fly ball into a double play. Arizona won anyway, 5-3.

9/26/1998 - The Pirates' Adrian Brown singled to lead off the top of the fourth in Cincinnati. Jose Guillen was hit by a Pete Harnisch pitch. Kevin Young then homered to LF and Guillen rounded 2B and passed Brown, turning a three-run homer into a two-run shot. The Reds won 6-2.

4/13/1999 - The Red Sox loaded the bases with one out in the bottom of the first inning against the White Sox. Troy O'Leary hit a line drive to left field that caused havoc. Darren Lewis, the runner on third base tagged up planning to score after the catch. He never got the chance since John Valentin, the runner at second base, thought the line drive would hit off the Green Monster so he took off running and planned to score on the "hit". Unfortunately, the over-eager Valentin passed the stationary Lewis when he rounded third base. It was a strange inning-ending double-play since the White Sox left fielder caught the ball.

4/19/1999 - The Brewers loaded the bases with no outs in the bottom of the 9th inning versus St. Louis. Brian Banks hit a flyball that Cardinals center fielder JD Drew dropped. Banks was declared out for passing Lou Collier who was tagging up at first base.

5/31/1999 - The Giants had runners on first and third base with one out in the top of the 7th inning in Philadelphia. Bill Mueller hit a pop-up to shallow right field that fell in for a single. Brent Mayne scored from third base but when Mueller rounded first base he was declared out for passing Marvin Benard, the runner on first base, who thought the ball would be caught.

6/22/1999 - The Rangers had runners on first and second base with no outs in the bottom of the 9th inning versus Oakland. Juan Gonzalez hit a line drive on which Tony Phillips made a great diving catch in left-center field. Ivan Rodriguez, the runner at second base, waited near second base, but Rusty Greer, the runner on first base who represented the tieing run, ran hard all the way. Greer was declared out for passing Rodriguez when he rounded second base to complete a double-play. The game ended when the next batter, Rafael Palmeiro, flied out.

8/2/2000 - In the bottom of the seventh inning, the Cubs had the bases loaded with one out and Eric Young batting. Young hit a ball to deep LF that looked like it might be caught. Damon Buford scored from 3B but Joe Girardi could only advanced one base to 3B. Young tried for a double on the play without checking the status of the runner in front of him (Brant Brown) and passed Brown. The gaffe was the second base-running blunder of the inning for the Cubs as Willie Greene had been thrown out at 2B by Rockies RF Larry Walker when Greene took a wide turn. The Cubs only scored one run in the inning but won the game 3-2.

9/18/2000 - Ronnie Belliard of the Brewers led off the bottom of the 7th inning with a single versus the Cubs. The next batter Raul Casanova hit a long flyball to right-center field on which the Cubs right fielder misplayed it for an error. The ball bounced into the stands for what should have been two bases for both Belliard and Casanova. Unfortunately, Belliard had waited near first base and Casanova was declared out for passing Belliard when he rounded first base. Belliard scored what proved to be the winning run via a sacrifice fly by the next batter.

8/29/2001 - In the top of the second inning, the Mariners' David Bell walked. Tom Lampkin hit a liner to Tampa Bay's Ben Grieve in RF. Bell saw that Grieve should catch it, put his head down and returned to 1B. Lampkin saw the ball drop in, put his head down and started for 2B. Lampkin passed Bell and was called out. The Mariners still won the game 5-2 on their way to 116 victories.

7/6/2002 - In the top of the tenth with Mike Caruso on first and one out, the Royals Michael Tucker hit a long fly to center which was caught by Terrence Long of the Athletics at the wall. However, Long snow-coned it and lost it over the fence for a homer when he hit the wall. Tucker stopped as he approached second, but Caruso not realizing that the Long had not held the ball started to tag up and passed Tucker going back to first. Tucker was called out for passing the runner; he lost a homer but was credited with an RBI-single that gave the Royals a 4-3 victory over the Athletics.

5/7/2004 - In the top of the third inning in Seattle, Yankees outfielder Hideki Matsui walked. Ruben Sierra hit a fly to the wall in right-center field. Matsui started for second base but thought the ball would be caught. He started back towards first while watching the play in the outfield. The ball was dropped as Sierra rounded first. He motioned Matsui to run towards second but Matsui did not see him. Sierra passed Matsui and then retreated towards first base as Matsui turned to run to second. Sierra was called out for passing Matsui. The Mariners won, 6-2.

5/8/2004 - For the second consecutive day, a runner was passed. The Padres were batting in the top of the third inning in Florida. Jay Payton doubled and Terrence Long singled him to third base. Miguel Ojeda hit a ball to center and Juan Pierre attempted to make a shoe-string catch. It appeared that he caught the ball and Long retreated towards first. The play was ruled a trap and Ojeda rounded first and passed Long for the out. The Padres still beat the Marlins, 6-3.

6/26/2005 - These plays often happen when the batter is watching the ball and not paying attention to the runner. But on this day in St. Louis, the problem came about because the preceding runner became very confused. With one out in the bottom of the fourth and runners on first (Abraham Nunez) and second (Hector Luna), Cardinal catcher Yadier Molina hit a drive off the right field wall, scoring Luna easily. However, Nunez thought the ball had been caught and started back to first. Molina saw him, stopped and waved frantically for him to go to second. Nunez kept going back to first and Molina was ruled out for passing the retrogressing Nunez, even though Molina was completely stationary at the time. Now befuddled by the proceedings, Nunez stopped running in any direction and was tagged out as the Pirates completed a very odd double play that was scored as right fielder to second baseman on an RBI single.

4/16/2006 - Javy Lopez of the Orioles hit a home run to left center as Darin Erstad attempted to catch the ball at the wall. The runner on first, Miguel Tejada, thinking the ball was caught, returned towards the bag and Lopez rounded first and passed Tejada. Lopez was called out and Tejada scored on the play, giving Lopez an RBI single over the wall.

7/3/2006 - In the top of the 8th inning with runners on first and second, Jason Bay hit a ball to deep left field. It bounced, but left fielder, Cliff Floyd, picked it up on the bounce with his bare hand and fired it back into second base. Bay, who thought the ball had been caught, passed Sean Casey (who advanced to second base safely) while heading back to the dugout, and was called out. Bay was awarded an RBI on the play as Jose Bautista scored on Bay's single.

6/16/2010 - The Giants had runners on first and third base with one out in the bottom of the 1st inning versus Baltimore. Pablo Sandoval hit a deep drive over the Orioles center fielder's head. Aubrey Huff, the runner on third base, scored easily. Juan Uribe retreated to first base as if he planned to advance after a catch. Uribe only managed to reach second base on the long drive, but even worse Sandoval was declared out for passing Uribe when he rounded first base.

6/27/2011 - In the bottom of the sixth inning of an Interleague game between the Reds and the Rays, Evan Longoria rounded 2B thinking that Matt Joyce's fly would drop in. He passed Ben Zobrist, who was going back to 2B to tag up. Umpire Angel Hernandez immediately called out Longoria for passing Zobrist.

5/20/2012 - In the top of the ninth of an Interleague game in Houston, Michael Young of the Rangers was on first base when Nelson Cruz hit a fly ball that Astros CF Justin Maxwell touched but dropped in attempting to make the catch. The ball was ruled in play by third base umpire Tim McClelland. Young returned to first because he thought the ball was caught. The throw came in to second base for an apparent force, but Cruz also thinking the ball had been caught rounded first and headed into the infield back to the third base dugout. He had passed Young and was out before second base was tagged. Young, having returned to first, was safe while Cruz was credited with a single and called out for passing Young.

4/4/2013 - Trailing 6-2 Tampa Bay had runners on first and second base with no outs in the bottom of the 9th inning versus Baltimore. Evan Longoria lined a single into left-center field. Sean Rodriguez, the runner on second base, scored easily. But Ben Zobrist, the runner on first base, remained close to first base until he was sure the ball would not be caught. Longoria was declared out for passing Zobrist when he rounded first base. That killed the rally and Baltimore went on to win the game 6-3 just a few batters later.

4/12/2014 - In the top of the third inning at Seattle, Oakland's Brandon Moss hit a fly ball to left center. Dustin Ackley made a sliding catch, but dropped the ball on the transfer to his throwing hand. The play was ruled no catch. Josh Donaldson retreated toward 1B while Moss rounded the bag and passed Donaldson. Coco Crisp scored from third on the play, which went in the books as a sacrifice fly to the first baseman!

7/1/2015 - In the bottom of the eighth in Queens, Mets pinch hitter Darrell Ceciliani missed the pitch on a squeeze play. Ruben Tejeda was run back towards 3B by catcher Miguel Montero. Tejeda ran past 3B and Montero tagged Daniel Murphy, who had advanced from 2B and was standing on 3B when tagged. Since Tejada was not on the bag, Murphy was safe. Tejada was tagged while standing behind the bag and was out. 3B umpire Chris Guccione had called Murphy out but then reversed himself and told Murphy to stay on the bag. The umpires huddled and upheld the calls. This was not a traditional passing the runner but was strange enough to include here.

8/26/2015 - In the bottom of the second inning, Alcides Escobar of the Royals hit a fly ball to CF. As Adam Jones of the Orioles caught the ball at the wall, Omar Infante rounded 2B. Paulo Orlando was returning to the bag. Infante touched Orlando and then passed him for an automatic out.

5/9/2016 - In the bottom of the second inning, Marlins catcher J.T. Realmuto's fly to CF just cleared the fence. Marcell Ozuna returned to 1B in case the ball was caught as Realmuto rounded the 1B bag. No call was made on the play and Realmuto continued around the bases behind Ozuna, Crew chief Brian Gorman requested a review, which overturned the call to passing a runner. Realmuto was called out and Ozuna scored. Realmuto was credited with an RBI single.

4/6/2018 - In the bottom of the 6th, the Yankees had Giancarlo Stanton on third and Gary Sanchez on first with one out when Neil Walker hit a weak grounder back to the pitcher. Stanton got in a run down between home and third long enough for Sanchez to reach third. As Orioles catcher Caleb Joseph ran Stanton back toward third, Stanton ran past the bag down the line a bit without being tagged. Joseph then tagged Sanchez who was standing on third and went on to tag Stanton who had turned into foul territory. Stanton was ruled out and Sanchez safe. Orioles manager Buck Showalter came out questioning the ruling saying that Sanchez should also be out since he had passed Stanton once Stanton ran behind the base. The umpires huddled and did not change the call. Later they admitted that they were wrong. After the similar play on 7/1/2015, which is described above, rule 5.09(b)(9) was put in place saying the runner who reached third was out for passing the runner who was on third and that runner, Stanton in this case, was entitled to third if he could get back to the bag before being tagged out. This should have been an inning ending double play. Showalter protested the game, but since the Orioles won 7-3 in 14 innings, the protest was withdrawn.

4/14/2018 - In the top of the fourth with runners on first and third, Deven Marrero of the Diamondbacks hit a fly to left center in Dodger Stadium that just cleared the wall. Alex Avila, the runner on first started back to the bag to tag up and Marrero briefly passed behind and ahead of him. The play was first ruled to be a three-run homer, but the replay review reversed the call with Marrero being called out and credited with a two-run single.

8/7/2018 - In the bottom of the third in the first game of a doubleheader against the Braves, the Nationals had Trea Turner on first with one out when Juan Soto came to bat. Soto hit a fly to the wall in left center that center fielder Ender Inciarte leaped to try to catch. The ball hit the wall and immediately went into and out of his glove going high into the air and back toward the field. Left fielder Adam Duvall backing up the play caught the ball before it hit the ground. Third base umpire Vic Carapazza called the ball in play right away, but Turner did not see that and retreated to first. As he did he passed Soto who had rounded first unsure of whether the ball had been caught for an out. Soto was called out for passing a runner and was given a single on the play. However, since Turner had not advanced from first, the single was removed from the scoring the next day.

4/26/2019 - In the bottom of the seventh against the Tigers, the White Sox Jose Abreu hit what appeared to be a three-run homer to left center, but it did not the clear the fence by very much, so Tim Anderson went back to first to tag up. Abreu passed by him rounding first, and was called out when the Tigers challenged the play, which became a two-run single.

Minor Leagues

7/28/1924 - In an International League game at Rochester, Fred Merkel hit a home run against Baltimore with Griffin on second and Gonzales on third. Griffin passed Gonzales before the latter could score for the third out. The three lost runs cost Rochester the game, as they lost 4-2 to the Orioles.


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