Even while softball newcomers might initially find it intimidating, the game itself is pretty straightforward and simple to grasp once you get the hang of it.
Reading softball statistics can be challenging at times due to the scoring system, which differs significantly from that of other major sports. The softball boxscore is replete with many acronyms and abbreviations, which can make the entire affair seem confusing.
The stat column with the PO designation causes the most confusion.
The putout is referred to as PO in softball statistics.
When a fielder successfully completes an out against a batter or baserunner, they are given credit for that statistic. There are numerous ways for this to occur, and each one counts as a putout.
Even if a putout is not one of the most essential statistics in a game, it is crucial in the context of the overall picture.
Other, more intricate statistical categories are regularly calculated with its assistance. It aids the official scorer in “proving” the outcome of a softball game.
The scorer utilizes putouts to confirm the box score because every hitter eventually gets put out, scores, is left on base or is put out.
They support his argument that the total of runners left on base, runs, and putouts by the opposition are equal to the number of times a team has come to the plate.
Putout and “pitcher only,” another softball phrase denoted with a PO, should not be confused.
How To Get A PO In Softball?
In a number of different situations, a hitter in softball is given credit for a putout.
This indicates that a defender in safe possession of the ball has a number of ways to strike out a batter or baserunner.
The player must make initial contact with the ball in each of them. The following is a list of the most typical techniques to get a putout.
- Force Play
Due to the regular occurrence of infield ground balls, this is one of the most frequent putout possibilities.
Due to the numerous motions made by numerous infield players, it is also most likely the most unusual and intriguing putout play.
When the batted ball is caught by a fielder who has a foot on the base that the batter or runner must move to, a force play putout may occur.
When this occurs, the player who tags the base receives credit for the putout instead of the fielder who initially caught the ball.
- Tag Play
Sometimes, a batter or baserunner is allowed to advance to the next base rather than being obliged to run after a ball.
The defensive player in this situation must tag the runner rather than the base in order to get a putout. A putout is awarded to the player who successfully tags out the runner.
The fielder can tag the runner while attempting to steal the base or during an attempted pick-off, hence the tagout putout can also occur without the batted ball.
When a batter misses the pitch on the third and final strike, a putout occurs.
Many baseball fans think that because the pitcher caused the hitter to miss the ball in this instance, they should be given credit for a putout.
On what is essentially their final catch, the catcher is the one who receives credit for a putout.
- Catching A Flyout
A defensive player will occasionally catch the ball after a batter hits it in a way that sends it flying before it hits the ground. The batter gets eliminated in this instance thanks to a flyout. On the other side, the fielder who successfully caught the ball is given credit for a putout.
Flyouts can happen anywhere on the field; the foul area is not a specific place where they must occur.
When the team that is at bat commits an offensive interference, the interference play putout happens.
This indicates that by blocking the defensive player, the batting team is interfering with or obstructing the action.
In this scenario, the blocking runner will be ruled out and the closest fielder will be given credit for a putout. A fan’s interference with the play may also result in the hitter being called out.
Reaching over the barrier, they can touch the ball on the ground or in the air to accomplish this. A putout is recorded by the fielder who was pursuing and attempting to catch the ball.
When the team on defense alerts the umpire to a rule infraction, an appeal play putout occurs. A putout is awarded to the player if they snag the ball or tag the base during an appeal play.
What Is The Difference Between a Putout And An Assist?
Fans of softball frequently misunderstand the difference between a putout and an assist. This is primarily due to the fact that a putout can be recorded by a player without an assist, whereas an assist cannot occur without a putout.
Both of these will typically happen, however occasionally plays, like as flyouts or certain groundouts, will not overlap. Fielders are given credit for an unassisted putout when they collect a ground ball and cause an out by stepping on a base or tagging a runner. No assistance is noted in these situations.
However, the fielder receives credit for both an assist and a putout if they do this and then pass the ball to a teammate to record an out. Even if a fielder touches the ball accidentally, they are counted as having assisted.
What Are Strategies To Avoiding Put Out In Softball?
- Use good footwork: Proper footwork can help you get to the ball faster and more accurately, giving you a better chance to make a play on it.
- Keep your eye on the ball: It’s important to stay focused and keep your eye on the ball at all times. This will help you anticipate where the ball is going and get to it before the runner.
- Get in front of the ball: When fielding a ground ball, try to get in front of it rather than chasing it from behind. This will give you a better chance to make a clean throw to the base.
- Use two hands: When fielding a ball, use two hands to secure it and make a strong, accurate throw. This can help you get the runner out more quickly.
- Communicate with your teammates: Talk to your teammates and make sure everyone is on the same page. This can help you avoid miscommunications that could lead to an error or putout.
- Practice, practice, practice: The more you practice your fielding skills, the better you’ll get at avoiding putouts. Make sure to work on your footwork, throwing, and positioning during practice to improve your chances of getting the runner out.
In conclusion, PO means “put out” in softball. It refers to a defensive player’s ability to make an out by catching a fly ball or forcing a runner out on a ground ball. This term is commonly used in scoring and statistics to track a player’s defensive contributions to their team. Understanding the meaning of PO in softball is important for players, coaches, and fans to be able to accurately follow the game and evaluate a player’s performance.