In very simple terms, “batters” become “batter-runners” when they have occasion to run to first base and “runners” when they successfully reach first base. Hitting a fair ball or receiving a base on balls are perhaps the two most common ways that a batter can become a batter-runner. We address in great detail all the ways a batter can reach base in our [The Runner] course. But some additional means of becoming a base runner include:
- Being hit by a pitch
- Hitting into a fielder’s choice
- The defensive team commits an error that allows the batter to reach base
- Interference by the catcher or a defensive player
- Advancing to an unoccupied first base on a dropped third strike by the catcher
Technically speaking, a player is referred to as a “batter-runner” in the period after putting a fair ball into play until the play is ended – either when he becomes a runner by reaching base or is put out. The player remains a runner until one of three things happens: he successfully scores a run, is put out, or the inning ends due to a third out by a teammate.