BATTER INTERFERES AFTER THIRD STRIKE NOT CAUGHT
See Official Baseball Rule 6.01(a)(1) and associated Comment regarding situations where the batter-runner, after a dropped third strike, interferes with the catcher attempting to field the ball. Official Baseball Rule 6.01(a)(1) was changed for the 2013 season, and the previous interpretation of this rule is no longer valid. Under the new rule, it no longer matters if the batter is in the vicinity of home plate or up the first baseline when the infraction occurs. If, in the umpire’s judgment the batter-runner “clearly hinders the catcher in his attempt to field the ball,” the batter-runner is declared out, the ball is dead, and runner(s) return to the base occupied at the time of the pitch. The location of the batter-runner is no longer relevant.