Umpire interference on dropped 3rd strike (new rule)

  • Post
    Daniel Wroblewski
    For 2021 MLB, there is a new rule:

    If a pitch that is not caught remains in the vicinity of home plate and it is inadvertently deflected by the batter or umpire, that ball is a dead ball and the runners should return to the bases they occupied at the time of the pitch (but if the pitch was strike three, the batter is out).

    If a ball in the dirt which is strike 3 goes under catcher and hits the umpire and deflects behind the plate, is that interference on the umpire now? Or would a ball that goes directly off the umpire be in play but the case of interference would be when a ball that stops or slowly rolls near the umpire and the umpire takes a step, knocking into the ball?

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