Umpire Interpretations(view all)
(©MLB Umpire Manual)

27. RUNNER MISSES HOME PLATE

27. RUNNER MISSES HOME PLATE

Rules 5.09(b)(12), 5.09(c)(2), 5.09(b)(5)[former Rules 7.08(k), 7.10(b), 7.08(d)]:

Rule 5.09(b)(12) [former Rule 7.08(k)] states that should a runner, in scoring, fail to touch home plate and continue on the way to the bench (making no effort to return), the runner may be put out by the fielder touching home plate and appeal-ing to the umpire for a decision.  However, this rule applies only where a runner is on the way to the bench and the catcher would be required to chase the runner. It does not apply to the ordinary play where the runner misses the plate and then immediately makes an effort to touch the plate before being tagged.  In that case, the runner must be tagged.  In such cases, base path rules still apply to the runner (i.e., he may not run more than three feet from the “base path” between him and home plate). On a play at the plate, should the runner miss home plate and the fielder miss the tag on the runner, it is preferable that the umpire make no signal on the play. As outlined in the previous paragraph, the runner must then be tagged if the run-ner attempts to return to the plate; if the runner continues on the way to the bench, the defense may make an appeal. A runner may no longer return to touch a missed base—home plate or other-wise—after having entered the dugout. If two runners arrive at home plate about the same time and the first runner misses home plate but the second runner legally touches the plate, the first run-ner may not return to retouch home plate and may be put out on appeal. If the appeal on the runner is sustained for the third out of the inning, neither run scores. See Official Baseball Rule 5.09(c)(2) Approved Ruling (A) [former Rule 7.10(b) Approved Ruling (1)].