Infield Fly

I understand the infield fly rule, though I doubt my knowledge will ever come into play at a cocktail hour or any other

Social event. Hey, I’d say, Did you know that if there are fewer than two outs, and runners on first and second, or first,

Second, and third, and a fly ball is hit that can easily be fielded by any member of the infield, the batter is out even

If the ball is not caught? What kind of nonsense is that? My partner in conversation will ask. Exactly, I’ll say!

Furthermore, runners advance at their own risk! With age I’ve come to realize that the rule protects the team on offense,

Even though it results in one out. What genius devised the infield fly rule? Surely he deserves a statue or a drink in his honor.

Try as I might I cannot figure a way to make this rule pertinent to my life, as I swing and miss one more time.

Swing Batta

Bottom of the 

Ninth.

Pitcher’s team has a

One run lead.

He spits.

Sunflower seeds,

Shells fly,

On the mound

Surveys the bases

All around

Steps down and

Spits again.

Runners on 

First and second.

No outs.

Top of the order.

No outs!!

Pitcher takes the

Mound.

Fire in his eyes.

Catcher signals 1,

Moves his glove

Low and inside.

Pitcher nods.

First pitch–

Batter tees off

Catches ball’s

Bottom, pops it

Straight up.

“Infield fly!”

Yells ump,

“Batter’s out!”

Ball dribbles to

Mound.

Pitcher catches

Runner off second,

Tags him

Trying to get to

Third.

Runner from first

Caught in rundown

Between one, three, and

Six.

Triple play

Saves the day.

Good game, good game!

Let’s go to Dairy Queen!

Studly and I coached Little League softball and baseball teams for many years. One of the most difficult aspects of the sport for kids to understand is the infield fly rule. 

It took me awhile to understand it, too, but I think I’ve got it now:

If there are fewer than two outs with runners on first and second, or first, second, and third, and a fly ball is hit that can be fielded by a player in the infield, the batter is automatically out and runners advance at their own risk. Basically it’s protection for the runners, but try explaining that to an 8-year-old batter whose ball goes uncaught and is called “out!” Tears often ensue.

In the words of Tom Hanks, 

  
Peace, People!