A double in baseball is when a batter hits the ball and successfully reaches second base (and only second base) without a fielder making an error or attempting to put out another runner. A batter may be credited with a double if they reach third base or home plate, and an error occurred on the play and the official scorer determines that the batter would have only reached second base if the error had not occurred.
What is a ground-rule double?
A ground-rule double occurs when the batter hits a fair ball that leaves play (or otherwise is artificially obstructed while in the field of play) but is not considered a home run. Each runner, including the batter, is awarded two bases (e.g., a runner on first advances to third, and a runner on second advances home and scores a run). The exact stadium factors which dictate a ground-rule double differ by stadium.
How does a Double Affect Batting Average?
For calculating batting average, doubles count the same as every other hit (single, triple, and home run). Batting average only calculates based off total hits.
How Does a Double Affect Slugging Percentage, Relative to a Single?
Doubles count twice as much as a single when calculating slugging percentage
Explanation of Where to Hit the Baseball for a Double
For this explanation, I am including the spray chart (visual breakdown of where a batter hits the ball) for Freddie Freeman’s 2018-2020 seasons. I have limited to only plate appearances that resulted in a double:
From this image, we can draw a few conclusions about how a double occurs:
Doubles can occur on line drives down the first and third base line
Doubles can occur when the ball is hit into a gap between the leftfielder and centerfielder, or between the centerfielder and rightfielder
Doubles can occur when the ball is hit deep: over the outfielder’s head and near the outfield wall
Note: these are basic explanations; lots of overlap among them (e.g., many of the balls labeled (3) are also (2) since balls hit closer to the outfielder are more likely to be caught by the outfielder running to the ball, but others are deep line drives that fall into the gap between the outfielders).
Which Players have the Most Career Doubles?
# of Doubles
# of Plate Appearances
Which Players have the Most Doubles in a Single Season?
What stands out the most: 8 out of 10 of these seasons occurred before 1940!
Wesley is a jack of all trades hobbyist. Though much of his spare time is spent playing board games (especially solo card games like Legendary), Hearthstone, Rocket League, and MLB The Show.e He also enjoys most sports, but pays way too much attention to baseball and football.