Weird Bunt

Alright I know this really isn’t a pitching scenario but my coach asked us this last year and nobody knew the answer.

There is a runner on third and the coach calls for the squeze play. The batter lays down the bunt and while taking off to go to first his helmet falls off and lands on the ball in fair territory with the ball under the helmet.

Whats the call?

Ironic things happen in a game – don’t they! I’ve seen a hit ball rifle up a fielder’s arm and into his glove sleeve – out of play but the ball is still live and in play. I’ve seen the ball get stuck in the webbing of a third baseman’s glove and the ball is still live and in play. I’ve seen a pitcher get a bazooka shot to the groin and actually stagger back right to the second baseman -collapse in pain and lock his legs shut, while the second baseman dug it out and the ball was live and still in play.

As long as the helmet was in fair territory, and not deliberately entered into the path of the ball so as to deflect or otherwise alter the play intentionally, and the ball remains in fair territory – I would play it as a live ball unless in the umpire’s judgment there was obvious belligerency to fair play – in which the umpire under ORB# 9.01© may enforce a judgment appropriate to the situation. Protests by either club can be field appropriately if there is a disagreement to that umpire’s decision.

Coach B.

In the NFHS rulebook it states in Rule 5-1-f-5 that “Ball becomes dead immediately when a fair batted ball lodges in players equipment or uniform” The ruling is that each runner gets two bases.