QUESTION: I understand that the starting pitcher gets the benefit of reconstructing and inning for determining her ERA.  If a relief pitcher comes in during the inning say with one out, does the relief pitcher also get the same benefit during the remainder of the inning?  What if the starter pitches four full innings and the relief pitcher comes in to pitch the fifth.  Does the reliever get the benefit of reconstructing the fifth inning and any other inning she might pitch?

ANSWER: Question 1.  Yes, but the starting pitcher is charged with any runs that score, that could be counted as earned, by any runners that are on base when the relief pitcher comes in .

Question 2. Yes

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QUESTION: Thanks for the quick answer.  I thought that a reliever which comes in during an inning to relieve the pitcher who started the inning is charged with every run that scores by any batter the reliever faced that reaches base and that when a reliever comes in during an inning she does not receive the benefit of previous chances of outs when reconstructing the inning to determine earned and unearned runs charged to her.  Only the original pitcher who started an inning gets the reconstruction of the inning benefit.  Am I interpreting the rule incorrectly?  I am looking at NCAA rule 14.25.1 through 14.25.3.  Does this rule not pertain to high school also?


You made me check my books.  I follow the National Fastpitch Coaching Association's scoring guide when scoring games.  There is no language like NCAA 14.25.3.  Additionally my current NFHS (High School) and ASA books are equally as silent on the matter.


R1 on 2nd, R2 on 1st.  R2 reached on an error.  B1 struck out.

There should be two outs but there is only one.

Relief Pitcher takes the circle to face B4 and gives up a triple (B4 bcomes R3).  R1 and R2 are earned runs for the starting pitcher. B5 reaches on error and R3 scores.  Should be three outs.  No more earned runs in this inning in my book when scoring NFHS or ASA.  

I have never scored an NCAA game.  According to 14.25.3 when the relief pitcher took over, there was no more "should be two outs".  There is just one out.  Doesn't make sense to me that the relief pitcher gets penalized for the defense blowing an out opportunity prior to the relief pitcher entering the game!  

I guess it doesn't really matter how you score it as long as everybody scores it the same way.  The number is not important on its own.  It must be compared to other pitchers scored the same way to gain relevance.

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QUESTION: Thank you again for a quick response.  Your response covered another question I had already which concerns NCAA vs NFHS rules.  I am in Kentucky and KHSAA goes by NFHS rules.  I have ordered my new rulebook from NFHS which I haven't received yet.  Just to make sure I'm clear in your example: R1 and R2 are both charged to the starter with only R1 being earned since R2 reached on an error AND R3 is charged to the reliever but R3 is unearned since this run scored on a play which should've been the third out of the inning.  Any further runs scored in the inning would be unearned since the defense has already had the opportunity to record the third out of the inning. Am I looking at this correctly?

You are looking at it the same way I would, so you must be correct!!  Just kidding.  You will find there are other rule differences between NCAA and NFHS.  Interference and obstruction require contact according to what I have been told, I have not looked it up.  Illegal pitches are handled differently.  I am sure there are more!

You should have the books but you can also download a smartphone app for droid smart phones.  I think it cost 6 bucks.  It does not replace a book but is great for search for answers!



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Tom Mielke


Rule and scoring questions for girls/womens Fastpitch Softball. Primarily High School (NFHS) and ASA


Rec, Varsity and Travel Ball Coach and High School Umpire

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