Hit (baseball)

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In baseball statistics, a hit (denoted by H), also called a base hit, is credited to a batter when the batter safely reaches first base after hitting the ball into fair territory, without the benefit of an error or a fielder's choice.

Contents

Scoring a hit

To achieve a hit, the batter must reach first base before any fielder can either tag him with the ball, throw to another player protecting the base before the batter reaches it, or tag first base while carrying the ball. The hit is scored the moment the batter reaches first base safely - if the runner is put out while attempting a double or triple on the same play, he still gets credit for the hit.

If a batter reaches first base because of offensive interference by a preceding runner (including if a preceding runner is hit by a batted ball), he is also credited with a hit.

Types of hits

A hit for one base is called a single, for two bases a double, and for three bases a triple. A home run is also scored as a hit. Doubles, triples, and home runs are also called extra base hits.

An "infield hit" is a hit where the ball does not leave the infield. Infield hits are uncommon by nature, and most often earned by speedy runners.

Pitching a no-hitter

A no-hitter is a game in which one of the teams prevented the other from getting a hit. Throwing a no-hitter is rare and considered an extraordinary accomplishment for a pitcher or pitching staff. In most cases in the professional game, no-hitters are accomplished by a single pitcher who throws a complete game. A pitcher who throws a no-hitter could still allow runners to reach base safely, by way of walks, errors, hit batsmen, or batter reaching base due to interference or obstruction. If the pitcher allows no runners to reach base, the no-hitter is a perfect game.

History

In 1887, Major League Baseball counted bases on balls (walks) as hits. The result was skyrocketing batting averages, including some near .500; Tip O'Neill of the St. Louis Browns batted .485 that season, which would still be a major league record if recognized. The experiment was abandoned the following season. There is some controversy regarding how the records of 1887 should be interpreted; as the number of legitimate walks is known for all players that year, computing averages using the standard method used in other years is quite simple.

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