Baseball Rules: How To Play Baseball
Baseball is a sport that can be traced back to 1744, and the game’s forms have remained unchanged till the modern age of the present day. Those who live in North America, Canada, and Japan are the most enthusiastic about the game. Baseball is a sport that is practiced all over the world, with the World Series of Baseball serving as the pinnacle of the sport. Ironically, teams from North America are the only ones who compete in this tournament.
Object of the Game
In baseball, the goal is to score more runs than your opponent while maintaining possession of the ball. Essentially, the goal is to hit the ball as far as you possibly can before sprinting around four bases to accomplish a single run. Once a player manages to make it around all four bases without being tagged out, another hitter is sent in to take his place.
A game is played between two teams, each consisting of nine players, and is won by the team with the most points. After nine innings, each side alternates between batting and fielding duties in order to complete nine innings of play. The scores at the end of each inning are added up to form a cumulative score, with the winning team being the team with the most points. Each inning consists of three outs for each team, after which they switch roles. Each inning may be divided into two parts: the top (where the away team bats) and the bottom (when the home team bats) (where the home team bats).
- The infield and outfield are separated by a diamond form with four bases, each of which is 90 feet away from the other.
- The hitter takes his position at home plate.
- Before a hitter may successfully score a run, he or she must touch all of the bases.
- The ball measures approximately 3 inches in diameter and is white with red embroidery.
- To protect themselves from being hit by balls that are missed by the batter, the catcher wears an extra layer of padding in their glove, as well as leg guards, body pads, and a helmet.
Getting on base is as simple as hitting the ball with a baseball bat into the designated fielding area and making it around all four bases (before the fielding team is able to collect the ball and throw it to the base the batter is running to). The hitting of a home run, which usually indicates that the ball has left the playing field and is in the crowd, results in a mandatory point for the player. A player may choose to stop at any base if they believe they will not be able to complete the journey to the next base before being tagged out.
When you hear the phrase ‘the bases are loaded,’ it refers to a situation in which there is a player on every base except the home plate.
The number of points you earn will be determined by how many players make it around to home plate before being tagged. On a single hit, a player can earn a maximum of four points.
Winning the Game
To win a game, you must outscore your adversary across the 9 innings played. After nine innings of play, the winning team is determined to be the one with the most points. In the event of a tie, additional innings are played until a winner has been declared.
Rules of Baseball
- Baseball is played by two teams of nine players each
- The fielding team’s positions are comprised of a pitcher, catcher, first baseman, second baseman, shortstop, third baseman, and three outfielders, one each in left field, center field, and right field
- The offense’s positions are comprised of a pitcher, catcher, first baseman, second baseman, shortstop, third baseman, and three outfielders, one each in left field, center field, and right field
- Games last for 9 innings in which both sides get to bat once. If the game is a draw after 9 innings then an additional inning will be added until a winner is established. It is not necessary for the team batting second at the bottom of the 9th inning to finish their batting innings if they are already ahead in the standings. Once a batting order is chosen, then it cannot be altered throughout the game. It is permissible to use substitutes
- However, they must bat after the player who they are replacing. If a hitter succeeds to hit the ball from the pitcher, they must make an effort to go at least as far as first base. They can then sprint as far as they want to as many bases as they want until they are tagged out. Each base must be touched with some part of the batters body when running past
- A hitter can receive up to three strikes before being struck out. A strike is judged when a hitter swings for a ball and misses it. The batter can leave the ball but, if it’s inside a particular region (called the ‘strike zone’), then a strike will also be delivered. If four balls miss the strike zone and the hitter does not swing their bat, they can walk to first base
- sWhen on base, the batter can sprint to the next base at any moment
- Player dismissals include’strike outs’ (referring to a batsman missing the ball three times), ‘force outs’ (referring to a player failing to reach base before the defensive player), ‘fly outs’ (referring to when the ball is hit in the air and caught without it bouncing), and ‘tag outs’ (referring to when the batsman is tagged while running by the defensive player with the ball).
Basic Rules of Baseball
Read for 1 minute and 24 seconds on December 31, 1899. Following these baseball principles can assist your youngster in getting started right away.
An “out” occurs when an attacking player is forced to leave the field after completing the following actions:
- Being tagged by a ball that is currently in play
- Having the ball in your glove before a player of the other team holding the ball in their glove gets to first base or home plate
- The act of swinging three times at a pitch and missing on all three occasions
Once the attacking team has gotten three outs, it is their time to take the field and defend. An inning comes to a close when both teams have played both offense and defense, and each team receives three outs in the process of playing both offense and defense.
There are three opportunities for each hitter to hit a ball that is tossed to them. The term “strike” refers to when a batter swings and misses, or when a batter does not swing on a pitch that the umpire has declared fair. After three strikes, the team is given the opportunity to “out.”
The bases are connected by lines placed on the field to mark their locations. When determining whether or not a ball is in play, the lines running from home plate to first base and from home plate to third base are employed. If a ball is hit between the bases, it is considered to be in play. A foul ball is one that is hit outside of the base lines on a baseball field. The first or second pitch that a hitter smacks foul counts as a strike for the batter. Whenever a hitter hits a foul ball on the third pitch, it is considered a foul ball, and the batter is given another pitch.
An unjust pitch is referred to as a ball when it is thrown by a pitcher. It is permissible for the hitter to walk to first base if the pitcher delivers four balls in a succession.
Baseball Rules And Regulations
- A professional baseball game is comprised of nine innings. Essentially, each inning is divided into two half-innings, each of which consists of three outs being recorded
- As soon as the ninth inning concludes, if the score is still knotted, the teams immediately play extra innings. In order for a team to score more runs than the other, they must play as many extra innings as necessary. A defense team has nine players on the field: one for each position on the field
- And one for each position on the field. There can be anything from one to four players on the field for an offensive team, including a hitter at home plate and one to three runners on the basepaths
- A Major League Baseball club has a 25-player active roster, which is made up of players who may be quickly deployed onto the field. Additionally, a Major League Baseball team has a 40-player roster, which is made up of the 25 active players, as well as some injured or Minor League players. It is only a strike if a hitter smacks a foul ball if he has zero or one strike against him at the time of the hit. If the hitter already has two strikes against him, the foul ball will not be counted as a third strike against him. The hitter is out if a defensive player catches a hit before it hits the ground, regardless of whether the ball is inside or outside the foul lines. The bases are placed 90 feet apart and organized in a diamond shape
- They are made of concrete. The circumference of a baseball ranges between 9 and 9.25 inches in diameter.
Every baseball field is divided into two sections: the infield and the outfield, where the majority of the field lines and components are located. Baseball grounds are divided into two distinct sections: the infield and the outfield. The infield is formed like a diamond, which is why baseball fields are sometimes referred to as diamond fields. Each of the diamond’s four corners is marked with a bag or a base of sorts. They are referred to as first base, second base, third base, and home plate in that sequence.
In order to win a baseball game, a team must score a greater number of runs (a tally unit that is often known as “points” in other sports) than the other team in order to win.
One team plays offense, which means that their goal is to score runs by hitting the baseball from home plate, which allows them to move around the bases and, presumably, wind up back at home plate at the end of the game. Upon reaching home plate after making it all the way around the bases, the team is awarded a run for their efforts.
The opposite team plays defense, which implies that their goal is to keep the offensive players “out” of the game so that they do not score any runs themselves. When an offensive player is forced to leave the field, he or she must return to the bench and sit for the remainder of the game.
As soon as three outs are recorded, the half-inning comes to a close, and the two teams reverse roles: the team that was previously on defense now plays offense, and the team that was previously on defense now plays offense again.
The act of hitting the baseball is one method through which an offensive team can move bases and ultimately score runs. It takes place when a member of the offensive team, referred to as the batter, takes the field at home plate. He is wielding a bat, which is a long, thin club made of wood or aluminum that he is swinging. He is facing the pitcher’s mound, where a member of the defensive team known as the pitcher is standing with the baseball in his hands.
A unique throwing method is employed by the pitcher in order to toss the ball at the hitter. The act of throwing is referred to as pitching, while the throw itself is referred to as the pitch. Whenever a hitter believes he has a chance to hit a pitch, he swings his bat toward it in an attempt to make contact with it. There are a number of other defensive players who are stationed across the baseball field with the goal of keeping the ball from reaching the ground. If they manage to catch the ball, the hitter is instantly ejected from the game.
Game Format and Duration
MLB games are made up of nine innings. In baseball, an inning is made up of two half-innings. A half-inning begins with one side on defense and the other on offense; once three outs have been recorded, the half-inning is over and the game is over. The teams then reverse positions, with the team that was on offense now playing defense and vice versa, and the following half-inning begins with zero outs. The game continues until the teams exchange roles again. Baseball, in contrast to other sports such as basketball and football, does not have a timed clock; instead, innings are used to organize the length of a baseball game.
Each baseball player specializes in one or a few defensive roles, depending on his or her location on the field. There are nine defensive positions in baseball: pitcher, catcher, first baseman, second baseman, third baseman, shortstop, left fielder, center fielder, and right fielder. There are also nine offensive positions: pitcher, catcher, second baseman, third baseman, and shortstop. The varied spots on the field correlate to the different positions of each player on the pitch. The catcher, who squats behind home plate, and the shortstop, who is stationed between second and third base, are the only two positions whose titles do not correspond to specific areas of the field on which they are assigned.
A baseball bat is a club that looks like a stick and is constructed of wood or metal. It is thinner at the end that is designed to be held by the batter, and this is referred to as the handle. The other end of the bat, referred to as the barrel, is substantially thicker than the other end of the bat, and it is this section of the bat that makes contact with the ball throughout the game. The throat refers to the portion of the bat that lies in between the handle and the barrel, where the handle gradually grows into the barrel.
There are three different approaches to making an out. A force out occurs when a runner is on his way to a base and the ball is thrown to that base before the runner reaches there.
Atagplay is defined as the act of tagging a runner with the ball before they reach the base. Throwing three strikes can also result in a player being forced to leave the game.
What is a strike in baseball?
The umpire determines whether or not there is a strike. According to the regulation, a strike is defined as a pitch that crosses the front of the home plate between the tops of the batter’s knees and the bottoms of their armpits. This pitch counts as a strike if the hitter misses it or doesn’t swing at it in the proper manner. Foul balls can also count as a strike up until the third strike in a game of baseball.
What is baserunning in baseball?
Baserunners can advance when a ball is hit, as long as the ball strikes the ground before it leaves the field. The player who catches the ball before it hits the ground must “tag up” at the base where he or she was standing when the ball is hit before going ahead.
5 Basic Baseball Rules for Beginners
When learning the rules of a new sport, one of the most tedious aspects is figuring out how to play. Apart from knowing how to make plays and acquire terminology, you must also grasp how the game is played in order to be a valuable member of the team. In this case, learning to play baseball is no exception, and one aspect of baseball that can cause individuals frustration is the sheer number of distinct regulations that must be memorized. As someone who has spent his whole life participating in baseball, I have a great deal of experience when it comes to knowing all of the laws of the game.
A baseball game’s five most significant fundamental rules are: balls and strikes, tagging up, force outs, tag outs, and a maximum of nine players permitted in the lineup.
1) Ball and Strikes
In baseball, one of the most important parts is understanding what constitutes a ball, what constitutes a strike, and how many of each a hitter receives in a given game.
Every Batter Gets Four Balls and Three Strikes
During each at-bat, each hitter will receive four balls and three strikes. Whenever a hitter is hit by four pitches, he or she is granted a walk to first base. After receiving three strikes, a hitter is considered to have struck out, and the defense is awarded an out. The hitter may swing and miss at any pitch in order to earn a strike called on him. A pitcher can send the ball within the strike zone without the batter making contact with it. When the hitter receives his third strike, which can be either a pitch through the strike zone or a swing and miss from the batter, the batter is considered to have struck out and the next batter will come to the plate.
Another strike is called when the batter smacks a foul ball while bunting; the hitter is now considered to have struck out.
Check out my other article for a more in-depth look at the various ways a hitter may be called out on a strike. It goes into further detail about the various ways a batter can be called out on a strike.
Every Batter has a Unique Strike Zone
Because no two baseball players are exactly same, each batter’s strike zone is different as well. And, while the laws of the strike zone might differ significantly from league to league, the vast majority of strike zones follow a consistent set of guidelines. When a batter is poised to swing at a pitch, the strike zone is established in the majority of baseball leagues. When it comes to baseball, the strike zone is always the same width as the plate, which is always 17 inches. The height of the strike zone is often measured from the batter’s knee to the halfway between the player’s shoulders and the top of his or her slacks, depending on the situation.
If you’d want to understand more about the strike zone in baseball, please see my other post, which goes into further detail on what the strike zone in baseball is.
2) Tagging Up
The concept of tagging up is one of the rules that inexperienced players have the most trouble grasping. The goal of the game is to move to the next base without being thrown out or tagged out, but the rule prohibiting players from tagging up on a fly ball prohibits them from accomplishing that goal. So, what exactly is a tag up in the sport of baseball? A fly ball gets tagged up when there are less than two outs in a baseball game and the hitter hits it with the tag up rule in effect. When a fielder touches a fly ball, a baserunner is required to touch the base that they are currently on.
Whenever a baserunner fails to tag up on a fly ball, the fielder who caught the ball is given the option of attempting a force out by throwing the ball to the base where the baserunner was stopped.
Take note that the runner must wait for the fielder to touch the ball before he can begin his journey back to the starting line.
3) Force Outs
It is possible for the defense to record an out in a variety of ways, but the force out is likely to be the most prevalent sort of out. In baseball, what exactly is a force out? In baseball, a force out occurs when a player is required to advance to the next base after receiving a fair ball, but the defense can record an out by merely standing on the base the runner is required to reach. In baseball, a force out play occurs when the defense gains possession of the ball and touches the base before the runner.
In addition, the force-out rule is advantageous to the defense since it is simpler to touch the base than it is to contact the baserunner while still keeping possession of the baseball.
When a hitter hits a fair ball on the ground, the batter is compelled to sprint to first base to avoid being out.
Because these runners are being pushed to move towards first, second, and third base, the defense has a chance to get a force out at one of these positions in this situation, which is advantageous to the offense.
Check out the video below to see an example of how the defense makes use of the force out rule to force a double play.
4) Tag Outs
Another typical method for the defense to record an out is through the use of tag-outs. A baserunner moves to the next base but is stopped by the defense before he or she can reach the next base, which is known as a tag out. Tag outs are most commonly used when there is no force out to be done at the base of operations. When a baserunner is on his way to the next base and there is no other baserunner in front of him who is forcing him to run, the defense must tag the baserunner before he reaches the next base in order to prevent the baserunner from reaching the next base.
Check out the video below to see an excellent demonstration of how a player must tag a runner in order to record an out.
5) Nine Players Allowed in the Lineup
In addition to tag-outs, the defense uses this technique frequently to record a successful out. A baserunner advances to the next base but is stopped by the defense before he or she can reach the next base, which is known as a tag out in baseball. In most cases, tag outs occur when there is no need for a force out to be done on the ground level. Whenever a baserunner is on his or her way to the next base and there is no other baserunner in front of him or her to force him or her to run, the defense must tag that baserunner before that baserunner or that baserunner and his or her teammate reach the base in question.
In order to witness an excellent illustration of how a player must tag out two runners at the plate, watch the video below, where the catcher tags out both of them.
Baseball Rules and Regulations Simplified for Beginners
In this simple instruction for beginners, you will learn how to play baseball according to the fundamental principles. In addition, there is more information on team tactics as well as scoring schemes. THE RULES OF BASEBALL ARE SIMPLE: Some baseball regulations configurations vary from league to league, and this is true of baseball rules as well. In the United Kingdom, baseball is governed by the British Baseball Federation. Baseball is a team sport that has had the same basic format since it was first played in 1744.
Its admirers and followers are enthralled by the game and show tremendous enthusiasm for it.
In Canada, North America, and Japan, the game is extremely popular.
Despite this, only teams from North America play in this important competition.
So, what are the best places to begin playing baseball in the United Kingdom? TheBritish Baseball Federationis an excellent location to begin your search. They will assist you in locating a club near you, no matter where you reside in the United Kingdom.
Rules and Regulations of Baseball
In its most basic form, the goal of baseball is to have scored more runs than your opponent by the time the game is over. You accomplish this by striking the ball as far as you possibly can once it has been tossed towards you. Following the strike of the ball, you should be sprinting around four bases in order to complete one ‘run’. The game continues as you make your way around the bases (without being tagged) until another hitter enters the fray.
Rules for Baseball Players
- Baseball is a team sport played between two teams of nine players each, similar to the rounders game
- There are a total of nine innings in a game, with each team having one spell of batting and fielding in each innings
- Baseball is played between two teams of nine players each, similar to the rounders game
- Baseball is played between two teams of nine players each
- Each team will be given three “outs” every inning, after which they will switch roles. The following are the baseball rules and regulations that apply to the player roles on the fielding team:
- A pitcher is someone who throws things. A catcher is someone who catches something. Four infielders, one at first base, one at second base, one at shortstop, and one at third base
- Outfielders in left field, center field, and right field
- Three outfielders in right field
Basic Baseball Rules on Equipment
- The baseball field is divided into two portions, which are referred to as the infield and the outfield. Between the infield and outfield is a diamond-shaped area with four bases positioned 90 feet apart that serves as a division. The pitching mound is usually placed in the middle of the infield. In this position, the pitcher will stand in order to toss the ball ‘overhand’ towards the batter. From the pitcher on the high mound to the hitter at home plate, the distance measured is 60.5 feet (18.4 meters). It is the batter’s responsibility to take his position at home plate
- The other three bases are designated as first base, second base, and third base, respectively. It is not possible to score runs until the hitter has reached all of the bases when he makes a run
- Baseball bats are usually constructed of wood or aluminum (or other metal alloys)
- But, in recent years, composite materials have been used. The baseball ball has a circumference that is close to three inches in diameter. There are red stitches across the white fabric. A large glove known as a “mits” is worn by the players on the fielding team to assist them in catching and picking up the ball. The catcher stands behind the batter in order to catch any balls that are missed. Catchers in baseball are required to wear additional padding in their gloves, as well as a helmet, leg guards, and a body cushion.
Scoring in Baseball
- A hitter scores after striking the ball and then running around all four bases in a single motion
- The fielding team attempts to grab the ball and toss it to the base that the batter is attempting to reach as quickly as possible. The goal is to accomplish this before he returns to the starting position. It is required to score a home run, which happens when the ball leaves the playing field (typically landing in the stands). Players can take a break at any base if they are concerned that they will be tagged out before reaching the next base. In the event where more than one player is already on one of the bases, a single hit might result in multiple points being scored. The phrase a-z’ bases are loaded’ refers to the fact that there is a player on every base in baseball. The number of players that make it to home plate before they are tagged determines the overall score. A single hit can result in a maximum of four (4) points.
General Baseball Rules and Regulations
- Baseball games are nine innings long, with each side getting to bat once in each inning. if the home team is already ahead in points, they will not be required to finish their batting innings
- If the away team is already ahead in points, they will not be required to complete their batting innings. After a batting order has been selected, it is not possible to modify it. Every team’s hitters take turns at the plate during an innings, and the game continues until three batters are out. Substitutions are permitted under baseball laws. Substitutes, on the other hand, must bat from the position in which the preceding player was batting. It is the responsibility of each hitter to make an effort to at least reach first base if he is successful in hitting the ball from the pitcher
- A runner has the option of advancing to as many bases as they choose before being tagged out. Although each base must be touched by some portion of the batter’s body when he runs past it, this is not required. A hitter can receive up to three strikes before being ruled out of the game. In baseball, a strike is recorded when a batter swings at a ball and totally misses it
- As long as the ball is thrown inside a specific region, known as the strike zone, a strike will also be called even if the hitter decides to try and hit it with his bat. If the hitter is hit by four consecutive balls that leave the strike zone, he will advance to first base. If they do not swing their bat, they are still subject to this baseball law. A hitter has the option to run from one base to the next at any time. The following are examples of player dismissals under the fundamental baseball rules:
- A’strike out'(batsmen missing the ball three times) is defined as follows: It is possible to be “forced out” (when a player fails to reach base before the defensive player). A ‘fly out’ (when the ball is struck in the air and captured before it has a chance to bounce back)
- Tag outs (in which a defensive player with the ball tags a batsman with the ball as he runs away from the field)
- During the game, they take turns fielding and hitting, with the host side going first. It is customary to divide each innings into two sections: the ‘top’ (where the away team bats) and the ‘bottom’ (where the home team bats).
Officials in Baseball
The PDF Baseball Rule Bookdescribes the role and responsibilities of officials in the game of baseball. If a hitter misses three legal pitches or fails to swing at three pitches that are determined to be ‘hittable,’ the umpires may rule a strike.
Winning a Game of Baseball
Winning a game indicates that you have outscored your opponent over the nine innings that have been played. At the conclusion of each inning, the scores are put together to get a cumulative score. After nine innings, the winning team is the one with the most points. It is referred to as a ‘equal number of turns at bat’ in the game’s fundamental regulations. In the case of a tie, extra innings are played in order to determine the winner.
Advanced Baseball Regulations
In order to win a game, you must outscore your opponent in all nine innings of the game played. After each inning, the scores are put together to form a total score. After nine innings, the winning side is determined by the team with the most points accumulated. ‘Equal number of turns at bat’ is what the baseball’s fundamental rules refer to as. In the case of a tie, extra innings are played in order to determine the victor of the match.
A very basic description of baseball regulations, as well as the fundamentals of softball rules, may be found in these simplified baseball rules. On thebaseballpage, you can find a comprehensive summary of the rules. A single game is played by two teams, each of which alternates between playing attack and defense for the length of the game. A “season” is a period of time during which a collection of teams, referred to as a league, compete against one another. While not necessarily in the round robin style, each club in the league plays every other team in the league a set number of times, which is determined by the league’s rules.
The objective of a baseball game is for one team to score more points, which are referred to as “runs” in baseball jargon, than the other team.
A representation of a baseball diamond.
The bat is the most important of them.
- Bats are offensive tools that are fashioned of either wood or metal depending on the game being played. It is a long, hard stick with a diameter of around 2 inches (5 centimeters), except for the handle, which has a diameter of approximately 1 inch (2.5 centimeters). When playing baseball, the ball is white (though various colors can be used), and the lacing is red and approximately the size of a hand. Softball is played using a white or yellow ball (typically) with white stitching that is roughly the size of two fists
- It is also known as “baseball.” It is a defensive gadget made of leather that is worn on the player’s hand to assist him in capturing the ball when he is on the field. It can take on a variety of forms to satisfy the specific requirements of the player’s defensive position
- The game is played on a field whose dimensions vary based on the age of the participants. According to the rules, every field contains a diamond with bases at each of its four corners, which the offensive players must traverse in order to score. The infield is the portion of the field closest to the bases, while the portion of the field farther out from the bases is referred to as the outfield.
The bat is an offensive implement that can be constructed of either wood or metal, depending on the game being played. It is a long, hard stick with a diameter of around 2 inches (5 centimeters) except for the handle, which has a diameter of approximately 1 inch (2.5 centimeters). Balls used in baseball are typically white with red lacing around the size of a hand (but different colors can be used). Softball is played using a white or yellow ball (typically) with white lacing that is roughly the size of two fists; it is also known as “softball.” It is a defensive equipment made of leather that is worn on the player’s hand to assist him or her in capturing the ball when playing football.
The attacking players must circumnavigate every field, which is shaped like a diamond with bases at its four corners, as previously stated.
- The “strike-out” occurs when a hitter fails to earn the opportunity to advance to second base while still at home plate. An out occurs when the pitcher successfully thwarts the batter’s attempts to hit the ball
- The “ground out” occurs when the batter hits the ball on the ground and a defensive player can retrieve the ball and throw it to another defensive player standing on first base before the runner reaches first base
- And the “strike out” occurs when the batter hits the ball against an opposing pitcher’s pitches. In baseball, the term “force out” refers to a situation in which a runner is obligated to reach a base (by regulation), but fails to do so before the ball reaches a defensive player standing on the base. The “ground out” is one of several forms of outs referred to as “force outs.” Other types of outs include the “fly out,” which occurs when the batter hits the ball in the air and the defender catches it before it touches the ground, earning an out. Running out of bounds while between bases is called the “tag out,” which occurs when a defensive player makes contact with an offensive player while holding a held ball.
A baseball game is broken into many “innings,” during which each side alternates between playing defense and then offensive, or vice versa, to complete the cycle. An inning is made up of 6 “outs,” with three coming from each club. When the defensive team knocks out three of the offensive team’s players, the teams exchange roles, with the offensive team becoming the defensive team and vice versa. Based on the sort of “ball” being used, each side can earn up to nine opportunities for runs to be scored against them.
On thebaseballpage, you can find a summary of these rules.
Baseball Rules: 8.00 The Pitcher
- The pitcher shall stand facing the batter, his entire pivot foot on, or in front of and touching and not off the end of the pitcher’s plate, and the other foot free.
- He shall not raise either foot from the ground, except that in his actual delivery of the ball to the batter, he may take one step backward, and one step forward with his free foot.
- The pitcher may have one foot, not the pivot foot, off the rubber and any distance he may desire back of a line which is an extension to the back edge of the pitcher’s plate, but not at either side of the pitcher’s plate.
- If a pitcher holds the ball with both hands in front of his body, with his entire pivot foot on or in front of and touching but not off the end of the pitcher’s plate, and his other foot free, he will be considered in a windup position.
- In disengaging the rubber the pitcher must step off with his pivot foot and not his free foot first.
Set Position shall be indicated by the pitcher when he stands facing the batter with his entire pivot foot on, or in front of, and in contact with, and not off the end of the pitcher’s plate, and his other foot in front of the pitcher’s plate, holding the ball in both hands in front of his body and coming to a complete stop.
- Before assuming Set Position, the pitcher may elect to make any natural preliminary motion such as that known as “the stretch.” But if he so elects, he shall come to Set Position before delivering the ball to the batter.
- Preparatory to coming to a set position, the pitcher shall have one hand on his side; from this position he shall go to his set position as defined in Rule 8.01 (b) without interruption and in one continuous motion.
- A pitcher cannot pitch from off the end of the rubber with just the side of his foot touching the rubber.
- This must be enforced.
Pitchers are constantly attempting to “beat the rule” in their efforts to hold runners on bases and in cases where the pitcher fails to make a complete “stop” called for in the rules, the umpire should immediately call a “Balk.”(c) At any time during the pitcher’s preliminary movements and until his natural pitching motion commits him to the pitch, he may throw to any base provided he steps directly toward such base before making the throw.
The pitcher shall step “ahead of the throw.” A snap throw followed by the step directly toward the base is a balk.(d) If the pitcher makes an illegal pitch with the bases unoccupied, it shall be called a ball unless the batter reaches first base on a hit, an error, a base on balls, a hit batter or otherwise.
This would be a balk with men on base.(e) If the pitcher removes his pivot foot from contact with the pitcher’s plate by stepping backward with that foot, he thereby becomes an infielder and if he makes a wild throw from that position, it shall be considered the same as a wild throw by any other infielder.
If he makes a wild throw, such throw is the throw of an infielder and what follows is governed by the rules covering a ball thrown by a fielder.8.02The pitcher shall not-(a) (1) Bring his pitching hand in contact with his mouth or lips while in the 18 foot circle surrounding the pitching rubber.EXCEPTION:Provided it is agreed to by both managers, the umpire prior to the start of a game played in cold weather, may permit the pitcher to blow on his hand.PENALTY:For violation of this part of this rule the umpires shall immediately call a ball.
However, if the pitch is made and a batter reaches first base on a hit, an error, a hit batsman or otherwise, and no other runner is put out before advancing at least one base, the play shall proceed without reference to the violation.
The pitcher, of course, is allowed to rub the ball between his bare hands.PENALTY:For violation of any part of this rule 8.02 (a) (2 to 6) the umpire shall:(a) Call the pitch a ball, warn the pitcher and have announced on the public address system the reason for the action.(b) In the case of a second offense by the same pitcher in the same game, the pitcher shall be disqualified from the game.(c) If a play follows the violation called by the umpire, the manager of the offense may advise the plate umpire that he elects to accept the play.
- Such election shall be made immediately at the end of the play.
- All umpires shall carry with them one official rosin bag.
- If at any time the ball hits the rosin bag it is in play.
- A pitcher may use the rosin bag for the purpose of applying rosin to his bare hand or hands.
For such infraction of this section (b) the penalty shall be immediate ejection from the game.(c) Intentionally delay the game by throwing the ball to players other than the catcher, when the batter is in position, except in an attempt to retire a runner.PENALTY:If, after warning by the umpire, such delaying action is repeated, the pitcher shall be removed from the game.(d) Intentionally Pitch at the Batter.
If, in the umpire’s judgment, such a violation occurs, the umpire may elect either to:1.
may warn the pitcher and the manager of both teams that another such pitch will result in the immediate expulsion of that pitcher (or a replacement) and the manager.
(League Presidents may take additional action under authority provided in Rule 9.05) To pitch at a batter’s head is unsportsmanlike and highly dangerous.
Umpires should act without hesitation in enforcement of this rule.8.03When a pitcher takes his position at the beginning of each inning, or when he relieves another pitcher, he shall be permitted to pitch not to exceed eight preparatory pitches to his catcher during which play shall be suspended.
Such preparatory pitches shall not consume more than one minute of time.
Each time the pitcher delays the game by violating this rule, the umpire shall call “Ball.” The intent of this rule is to avoid unnecessary delays.
Obvious delay by the pitcher should instantly be penalized by the umpire.8.05If there is a runner, or runners, it is a balk when-(a) The pitcher, while touching his plate, makes any motion naturally associated with his pitch and fails to make such delivery; If a lefthanded or righthanded pitcher swings his free foot past the back edge of the pitcher’s rubber, he is required to pitch to the batter except to throw to second base on a pick off play.(b) The pitcher, while touching his plate, feints a throw to first base and fails to complete the throw;(c) The pitcher, while touching his plate, fails to step directly toward a base before throwing to that base; Requires the pitcher, while touching his plate, to step directly toward a base before throwing to that base.
If a pitcher turns or spins off of his free foot without actually stepping or if he turns his body and throws before stepping, it is a balk.
It is possible, with runners on first and third, for the pitcher to step toward third and not throw, merely to bluff the runner back to third; then seeing the runner on first start for second, turn and step toward and throw to first base.
However, if, with runners on first and third, the pitcher, while in contact with the rubber, steps toward third and then immediately and in practically the same motion “wheels” and throws to first base, it is obviously an attempt to deceive the runner at first base, and in such a move it is practically impossible to step directly toward first base before the throw to first base, and such a move shall be called a balk.
Of course, if the pitcher steps off the rubber and then makes such a move, it is not a balk.(d) The pitcher, while touching his plate, throws, or feints a throw to an unoccupied base, except for the purpose of making a play;(e) The pitcher makes an illegal pitch; A quick pitch is an illegal pitch.
- With runners on base the penalty is a balk; with no runners on base, it is a ball.
- Umpires should bear in mind that the purpose of the balk rule is to prevent the pitcher from deliberately deceiving the base runner.
- However, certain specifics should be borne in mind:(a) Straddling the pitcher’s rubber without the ball is to be interpreted as intent to deceive and ruled a balk.(b) With a runner on first base the pitcher may make a complete turn, without hesitating toward first, and throw to second.
- A manager or coach is considered to have concluded his visit to the mound when he leaves the 18 foot circle surrounding the pitcher’s rubber.
- Any attempt to evade or circumvent this rule by the manager or coach going to the catcher or an infielder and then that player going to the mound to confer with the pitcher shall constitute a trip to the mound.
In a case where a manager has made his first trip to the mound and then returns the second time to the mound in the same inning with the same pitcher in the game and the same batter at bat, after being warned by the umpire that he cannot return to the mound, the manager shall be removed from the game and the pitcher required to pitch to the batter until he is retired or gets on base.
The manager should be notified that his pitcher will be removed from the game after he pitches to one hitter, so he can have a substitute pitcher warmed up.
The substitute pitcher will be allowed eight preparatory pitches or more if in the umpire’s judgment circumstances justify.© 1999 Major League Baseball Properties, Inc.