How to Score a Dropped Third Strike


In general, most baseball batters reach first base by way of a hit or a walk. Sometimes, players will reach base on an error, hit by pitch or fielder's choice. One of the most uncommon ways to reach base is from a dropped or uncaught third strike. If first base is unoccupied and a third strike is not handled by the catcher, the batter has the opportunity to run to first base. If he beats the ball to first, he is awarded the base. This uncommon play has a specific way of being scored.

Score the play "K WP" if the batter reaches first base on a wild pitch third strike. Wild pitches are considered the pitcher's fault.

Score the play "K PB" if the batter reaches first base on a passed ball third strike. Passed balls are considered the catcher's fault.

Score the play "K 2-3" if the third strike is uncaught, but the catcher throws the batter out at first base. The "2" signifies the catcher's numerical position in scoring, and the "3" represents the first baseman. If, by some chance, another player gets in on the putout, score the play with the appropriate positional numbers.

Score the play "K 2U" if the third strike is uncaught, and the catcher tags out the batter before he reaches first. The "U" represents unassisted, meaning the catcher made the putout himself.


In all instances, even if the batter reaches first base, the pitcher and batter both receive a strikeout. Pitchers can conceivably record more than three strikeouts in an inning. The hitter gets an "0-for-1" in the box score. If the ball is tipped by the bat and uncaught by the catcher in foul territory, the play is ruled a foul ball, and the batter remains in the box. Keep a book with scorekeeping hints and tips handy. Baseball is full of obscure rules, and you never know which ones you'll need to refer to during a game.