In baseball, a passed ball is a pitch that the catcher fails to catch or handle, which results in one or more baserunners advancing to a higher base. A passed ball is different from a wild pitch, which is a pitch that is thrown by the pitcher in a way that makes it difficult or impossible for the catcher to catch.
A passed ball can occur for a number of reasons, such as a pitch that is thrown too low, too high, too far to one side, or too fast for the catcher to handle. The catcher is typically responsible for catching all of the pitches thrown by the pitcher, and any pitches that are not caught or are mishandled can result in a passed ball.
When a passed ball occurs, the umpire typically makes a signal to indicate that the ball was not caught or handled properly. The baserunners are then allowed to advance to the next base, depending on how far the ball gets away from the catcher and how quickly the catcher is able to retrieve it.
A passed ball can have significant consequences for a team, as it can allow baserunners to advance and potentially score runs. However, passed balls are not always the fault of the catcher, as pitchers can also be responsible for throwing difficult pitches that are difficult to catch.
In conclusion, a passed ball is a pitch in baseball that the catcher fails to catch or handle, which results in one or more baserunners advancing to a higher base. It can occur for a number of reasons and can have significant consequences for a team.