Baseball: Around the horn triple play.

There was one yesterday. I’ve looked but can’t locate an answer. Just how rare are they?

For the uninitiated, “around the horn” means from third to second to first base. With runners on first and second, or first, second and third the batter grounds to the third baseman who steps on third base for one out, throws to second base for two outs and the subsequent throw to first base gets the third out.

I would think quite rare because that ground ball to third base has to be just so in order for the third baseman to step on the base with practically no delay or you won’t get the runner at first.

I remember reading of one unusual triple play. There were runners at first and second and the batter grounded to the first baseman who stepped on the base and threw to third. The runner who had been on second stopped and started back to that base but was caught in a rundown. The other runner who had been on first apparently became so absorbed by the rundown that he forgot that he was standing between first and second was also out in a rundown.

Maybe it happened to the Brooklyn Dodgers in the era when they once wound up with three runners on third base.

It would also seem to require a slow batter: a direct throw from third to first is often a tolerably close play on a batter with decent speed.

Don’t forget that any triple play requires at least two runners already on base with no outs. This means you have to have cracker jack infielders (to pull off the triple play) but somehow allow those runners to get on base without answer…either margional pitching, exceptional batters, or bad luck.

Triple Plays/SABR Knock yourself out.

SABR is the pre-eminent group on baseball research, so you can be sure their stuff is pretty well documented.

Based on that link, looks like the last around-the-horner was in 1998, and a total of 3 happened in the 1990s. Pretty rare, I’d say.

I think it is the situation that makes it more seldom – 1st and 2nd with 0 outs – because there are lots (probably 2 a day) of 6-4-3 doube plays.

I assume by “rundown” you mean a pickle? “Rundown” sounds like a tackle a la football.

a rundown is when a runner is caught between bases with the baseman ahead of him holding the ball. The runner then retreats toward his previous base. A throw to the basemand there forces him to turn toward the other base. The fielders keep advancing toward each other cutting down the running area and after maybe three throws the runner is tagged. When a baserunning screwup results in a runner being trapped he tries to prolong the rundown as much as possible to allow other runners to reach safety.

There’s a way to get 4 outs in an inning. Bases loaded, nobody out, batter lines to short (out 1). All 3 runners went with the pitch, throw to second with a tag (out 2) and on to first with a tag (out 3). Tags are needed because the outs aren’t forced, due to the batter lining out.

The runner who left third crosses the plate before the last out, though. His team claims he scored, since the play on the runner behind him wasn’t a force. The fielding team throws to third and appeals that he left the bag early. The ump so rules, for out 4.

Not trying to be corrective, but I’m not sure what “four outs in an inning” has to do with the OP.

And, unless I’m mistaken, you don’t need to tag out a player who left the base early on a “line out” to an infielder. If a player lined out to the shortstop, merely throwing the ball to the second baseman puts the runner on second out.

The one time I heard about four outs was a Yogi Berra quote. The the Yankees opposing team had a baserunning mixup resulting in a jam between home and third base. Finally a total of four players were either tagged or caught off base. It resulted in a big argument between the opposing manager, players and the home plate umpire. Yogi simply went to the dugout and is reported to have said something along the lines of, “Let 'em argue. We got four outs and three of 'em count.”

Not only that but the right situation will probably have to occur late in the game where the fielding team has a slim lead. The third baseman is probably holding the line against a right-handed pull hitter to try to prevent an extra base hit. It’s a situation where a bunch of factors have to come together. Of course, if the batter is a pinch hitter with a bad wheel then the liklihood of pulling the triple play increases substantially.

You always need the right confluence of events for a triple play. But the batter doesn’t have to be a slow runner: he could hit a smash down the 3B line, which the third baseman makes a grab for on the fly, and the other two runners are doubled off (assume the runner on first doesn’t realize it’s caught until the ball is at 2nd).

I’d rather restrict “around the horn” to mean the third baseman has to field a ground ball, step on third, throw to second, etc. That is, an out at all three bases.

But that’s me, not you. :slight_smile:

We had a kid do an unassisted triple pay in Little League many, many years ago. Snagged a hard line drive at third, tagged the guy coming from second who fell when he tried to get back, then beat the runner that had been on third back to the bag. :eek:

If could only have played like that even half the time, we would have won the occasional game. :stuck_out_tongue:

He probably still tells people about it.

David. I hate you. Well, not really. But now that I found the link which I provided, about triple plays, I have wasted tooooo much time finding additional info for the guys who did that website. I have access to a historical newspaper database, and it’s fun to do this. Almost. Sometimes. But, I’m getting old. Not as old as you. I need intervention. :slight_smile:

Tough shit, pal. The chaplain is down the hall.

My mother didn’t raise me to protect people from themselves.

Well, blabbermouth, how did the guys who did the website find out you have access to a newspaper data base?

:wink: :smiley:

samclem, I’m shocked you hadn’t already contributed to their wealth of knowledge… :smiley:

It’s a long story. I used to belong to SABR. Great organization. I belonged because I could get access to ProQuest Historical Newspapers for the price of my subscription(about $75.). But then ProQuest fell on hard times. And they shitcanned us. So now I don’t belong. Bummer.

SABR are good people. Uberresearchers about baseball statistics and info. I will resubscribe when my 17 year old gets a job and quits draining me.

I did this (well, sort of), also a long time ago in Little League. I caught a line drive along the third base line (batter out) and stepped on the base (runner who was two steps off the base was out). The runner on second had been barreling down toward third and pretty much ran into me; he would have been an easy third out. But since there was already one out it counted only as an unassisted double play.