We had this one happen...liner right back at the mound with my pitcher unable to touch the ball, and the ball struck the pitching rubber, which was very exposed, and lined right back past our bewildered catcher....the call on the field was foul ball, which I thought was wrong...but it was entertaining. I would be interested in a reference on this one.
A FOUL BALLis a batted ball that settles on foul territory between home and first base, or between home and third base, or that bounds past first or third base on or over foul territory, or that first falls on foul territory beyond first or third base, or that, while on or over foul territory, touches the person of an umpire or player, or any object foreign to the natural ground. A foul fly shall be judged according to the relative position of the ball and the foul line, including the foul pole, and not as to whether the infielder is on foul or fair territory at the time he touches the ball. A batted ball not touched by a fielder, which hits the pitcher's rubber and rebounds into foul territory, between home and first, or between home and third base is a foul ball. Fungo
Please explain how the pitchers plate can be considered an object foreign to the natural ground, but the bases are not considered such. This is interesting, but doesn't make any sense when you compare the pitching plate and the bases.
Don't think FUNGO was saying the pitcher's plate is a foreign object. He was just quoting the rule. The pitcher's plate is irrelevant. If a pop-up with sifficient back-spin landed at the mound then rolled into foul territory without being touched in fair it would be a foul ball. The relevance is that the ball went foul before passing first or third base, not whether or not it hit the pitcher's plate.
The pitchers plate does have a relevance since it is specifically mentioned in the definition.
"Any batted ball not touched by a fielder, that hits the Pitchers rubber and rebounds into foul territory between home and first or home and third is a foul ball"
The Bases and the pitchers plate are 2 different things....The pitchers plate is an object foreign to the natural ground because it is a hardended whitened rubber spiked into the ground. Its sole reason for being is as a reference for pitching requirements.
Why the rubber is different from the bases more in reference to the ball being foul...Any ball crossing the foul line before the base is foul and any ball crossing the foul line after striking the base or passing a base is fair.
Fungo, thank you for the reference on that one. I imagine that you would have one frustrated hitter on your hands when he scorches one up the middle only to be given a foul ball on the play...but the rules are the rules.