Are There Really Seven Ways to Reach First Base Without a Hit in Baseball?

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There are either eight or nine ways to reach first base without a hit in Major League Baseball. The number depends on whether or not a distinction is made between an intentional walk and an unintentional walk.

The seven other means for a batter to reach first base without a hit are being hit by a pitch, making it to first on a dropped third strike before the catcher can throw the batter out, the catcher’s equipment interfering with the batter’s swing, the pitcher throwing four illegal pitches in an at-bat (though this can also be counted as an unintentional walk), a fielder’s choice, an error, or a dropped sacrifice fly (in which case the batter takes first but is not awarded a hit).