Just thought about this while playing wiffleball earlier. During a baseball/softball/wiffleball game, can a switch-hitting batter just switch positions in-between pitches during an at-bat or when he calls time? I know this could be dangerous or just an odd thing to do but I've never heard rules against it so is it allowed?

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    Do you mean in-between pitches during an at bat? To switch mid-pitch would be ninja like...
    – user527
    Aug 21, 2012 at 0:07
  • Yes, that would be one of the options. I know it sounds like it would be a stupid thing to do, but is it allowed. The other option, let's say the batter is batting right handed and the count is 1-2 and decides he wants to bat the rest of the AB left-handed. Aug 21, 2012 at 0:12
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    @edmastermind29 or deadly
    – wax eagle
    Aug 21, 2012 at 1:03
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    this of course leads to the inevitable standoff between the switch hitter and the switch pitcher.
    – wax eagle
    Aug 21, 2012 at 3:00
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    According to the rules, the switch pitcher would have the advantage here, since the switch hitter has to choose a side before the pitcher gets set.
    – weiy
    Nov 14, 2012 at 19:53

3 Answers 3


According to baseballrules.com:

A batter may switch to the other box after every pitch if he so desires. He may do it on any ball strike count. One of the oldest myths in baseball is the one that says you can't switch boxes when you have two strikes on you.

The only restriction on the batter is that he may not step into the other box after the pitcher is in position ready to pitch. Rule 6.06(b)

So by the wording of the MLB rule, the batter can't switch batters boxes after the pitcher is set:

6.06 (b) He steps from one batters box to the other while the pitcher is in position ready to pitch;

There appear to be no other restrictions specific to switch-hitters.

  • 1
    That's not quite true, the batter is not technically allowed out of the box on a called strike or ball. However, this rule is rarely enforced. And often one of the other permitted circumstances happens that allows him to step out (most commonly the pitcher leaves the dirt of the mound)
    – wax eagle
    Aug 21, 2012 at 0:52

You are allowed out of the box after a strike or ball if you call timeout as the batter... If the umpire grants you time then walk around and enter the other batter's box.


You can switch sides in between pitches. No rule says that you can't, only if the pitcher is in position. I'm an umpire.

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