Of course, with two runners on base in the following inning, the batter wallops one, tosses the bat that strikes the catcher, my arms shoot up quickly, and the ball flies over the wall for an HR. I, on the other hand, called the hitter out and placed the two runners back on base. It was the right thing to do.
The batter can't be awarded a hit by this rule. If he has control of the bat when it hits the ground, it is considered illegal and a strike can be issued. The only exception would be if the batter's arm is injured or disabled to such an extent that he cannot hold the bat properly. In that case, the umpire has the discretion to call him out.
This rule was put into place because many players were injuring themselves by throwing bats during their careers. Throwing bats are dangerous tools that can cause serious injuries if used improperly. Bats can break off if thrown with too much force; however, most bats will suffer minor damage if thrown gently like a softball.
There have been some recent cases where batters have thrown bats in anger, but they are extremely rare events. If you are in any way concerned about another player causing injury to yourself or someone else by throwing/bashing baseballs/bats, please feel free to voice your opinion to the umpires. They will take your concerns into consideration when making calls at the plate.
If the batter-runner advances to first base and the fielder throws behind him, he is tagged out. If catcher's interference is reported and the hitter does not reach base, the catcher is penalized with an error but not with a time at-bat. If the ball hits the backstop or a player other than the catcher interferes with the throw, then it is called a wild pitch. Otherwise, if the batter reaches first base safely, then no further action is taken by the official scorer.
The rule was changed in 2015 to allow for the possibility of the runner reaching first base before the ball is thrown by the catcher. If this occurs, then the batter is awarded with a free pass and can take his place on the field without interrupting the game.
Prior to this change, if a catcher threw to second base instead of to first, where there was no baserunner ahead of him, then he had to give up his next turn at bat. Now that requirement has been removed so that pitchers can be replaced more easily if they are unable to continue.
There have been several cases where a catcher has thrown to second base in hopes of getting a force out, only to have the play overturned because no one was able to touch any part of the baseball while it was in flight.
If the catcher strikes out on the third pitch, the hitter is not instantly out, like in slow-pitch softball. The hitter is now a runner and must be caught by the catcher. If first base is occupied or there are two outs, this rule does not apply.
A runner on second base advances to third base while the ball is in the air. The runner is out when the ball is caught and tossed back to the second baseman, who tags base before the runner can get back on base. However, a runner may tag up and then safely go to the next base. If the ball hits the ground before all players have reached their bases, then it is called a ground rule double. A player can also be awarded extra bases if the ball is not touched until after he has reached his base. For example, if a player reaches first base on a fly out, then goes to second on a single, then takes third on a throw from the pitcher into left field, he has scored two runs and won the game.
If the ball is in the air and no one is covering the base, either because they missed the catch or were too slow, then it is an easy touchdown or home run. The batter gets this chance because he could have been trying to advance another base had there been people between him and first base.
In football, if the ball is in the air and no one is covered, then it is considered a free kick for the receiving team. In soccer, if the ball is in the air and no one is marked, then it is an open goal.
If the batter interferes with the catcher's throw after being out on strike three, the umpire must call "Time," and the runner is out for the batter's interference. All other runners are restored to their former locations.
If the umpire calls the batter, batter-runner, or runner out for interference, all other runners must return to the last base lawfully touched at the moment of the interference, unless otherwise provided by these rules. The regulation states that interference is "an act by the team at bat."
If a hit ball strikes a runner, the ball is dead and the runner is out. This also applies to the hitter as he exits the batter's box. Interference occurs when a base runner gets struck by a batted ball. There is no requirement for purpose. The ball is dead, the offender is called out, and the other runners return to their last base.